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Author Topic: Want to Change my External HD Label - How to do this with Lightroom  (Read 2361 times)
AndrewKulin
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« on: September 13, 2013, 08:23:42 PM »
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My photos are currently stored on an external RAID Enclosure, designated with volume label E:.  Lightroom (5) recognizes this as E: as well.

However, this drive is not always powered up, and occasionally, if I connect another USB device (thumb-drive, external drive or whatever), my system will then designate that unit as E: (Win 7 X64 Ult).

If I then run Lightroom, my photo drive shows up as "?" (even if at this point it is powered up) because E: has been allocated to something else, and my external RAID drive with the photos on it is given some other letter, for example, G:  This is somewhat of a nuisance that I can get around by running Windows Disk Mgmt and changing drive labels, but it is a nuisance.

So what I would like to do is to re-designate my external RAID photos drive with a letter at the back end of the alphabet (e.g., X:) so if and when I insert some other USB drive into the system when my RAID is powered off, the new device won't grab the "X:" label because that choice is way down the available list of available drive letters.

So my question is how do I do this without buggering up my Lightroom settings or losing/corrupting my catalogue?

I hope it is as simple as relabel the E: drive to X: Drive with Windows disk management, then start lightroom, and then when the E: shows up as "?" tell it (somehow) that E: is now X:.   But I'd like confirmation that this is so from someone with more familiarity/knowledge with Lightroon's workings than I have.

Thanks
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MarkH2
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« Reply #1 on: September 13, 2013, 11:56:57 PM »
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Andrew,

Have you tried this (it works for me).  Assign a letter (E: in your case) to your physical RAID drive, so that Windows will always mount it as "E:" and will reserve "E" so that it will not be assigned to any other drive.

To do this, mount your RAID.  Then Control Panel / Administrative Tools / Computer Management / left panel: Storage / Disk Management / right click on the volume you have mounted / Change Drive Letter and paths / Change… / Assign the following drive letter: [from the dropdown].  Assign E.  It will now be reserved and always assigned when you mount your RAID.

Fine point: I do this with an external drive, not a RAID, so I'm not 100% sure it works with RAID, but I expect it does.

I also find that Windows sometimes "forgets" that it is supposed to assign "E:" to your physical device and assigns the next available letter from the unassigned pool.  In that case, simply go through the drill above to assign it "E:".

I recently moved all my photos off my C: drive to an external.  I did this by folders high in the tree (e.g., My Pictures / 2013).  In each case when "?" showed up I directed Lightroom to the new location.  Worked faultlessly.

Mark
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john beardsworth
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« Reply #2 on: September 14, 2013, 02:34:49 AM »
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The trick is to make sure your top level parent folder is visible in the Folders panel - right clicking folders and Show Parent Folder. Then, if the drive letter changes, you just need to right click that top level parent folder.

For example, let's say that what you see in Folders is 2011, 2012, 2013 and then monthly and daily subfolders. If the E drive changes to F, you'd have to right click each folder and point it to F:/2011 etc. Imagine these 2011, 2012, 2013 are actually subfolders of a Pictures folder, which is shown in Explorer and not in Lightroom. If you now right click 2011, Show Parent Folder, you'll see Pictures in the Folders panel. When the drive changes again, you just have to right click the Pictures folder and update it.

Also, can you set a network share address. So the E drive would be the network share //Photos. You'd have to update the top level folders as above, pointing to the network share instead of E, and you'd have to import new files from the share rather than E, but you'd then be immune to the letter changing.
« Last Edit: September 14, 2013, 07:45:53 AM by johnbeardy » Logged

PhotoEcosse
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« Reply #3 on: September 14, 2013, 07:26:32 AM »
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Both the above suggestions should help.

Just another wee tip.

You say that sometimes your external drive is not powered up.

To avoid, on the one hand, having to switch everything on individually or, on the other, wasting electricity, I have my PC system box connected to the mains via the "master" socket of an automatic switching device. That way, as soon as I switch my PC on, all of the other peripherals (currently two monitors, two printers, eight external drives, the sound system and the scanner) all switch on automatically and, conversely, all switch off automatically when I close down the PC.

As an amateur whose PC might be switched on and off three or four times in any day, that system serves me well. A professional who switches on at 8.00am and off at 6.00pm might not gain the same comparative benefits.
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AndrewKulin
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« Reply #4 on: September 16, 2013, 07:51:24 PM »
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Thanks all for replying.  I was able to get this done without issue.

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