Photography and Art

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Update on Sharing Lightroom on Two Computers

I recently wrote a post on my plans to share Lightroom on two computers, my primary editing machine in the family room and my primary printing machine in my studio. After much reading, I decided to place the catalog on a portable disk drive and schlep it between the two machines. This seems to work quite well - my files are spread between the two computers, but the catalog sees all the network files on both machines. However, there are three issues with this solution. Carrying the catalog up and down the stairs (not to mention connecting it and disconnecting it) is a pain in the butt. The portable disk is noticeably slower than a local disk. And, there is a bug somewhere in the Adobe code base that takes my network down whenever I try to edit a Lightroom file in Photoshop on my studio machine. The other computer blue screens.

The first two problems I can live with. The latter one is more troubling and I was looking for a solution when I found this article by Lightroom guru Denis Pagé.

He points out that you can get around the issue where Lightroom is programmed not to open a catalog on a network drive by using the DOS shell command SUBST to create a disk letter that is assigned to a network share. Lightroom will be fooled into thinking that the disk is local and will open the catalog. Denis warns against using this technique to support more than one person editing a catalog at a time and I intend to ensure that only one version of Lightroom is open at the same time. I will restrict the number of people who can share the catalog directory at the same time to 1.

I'll implement this over the holidays and let you know how it goes.

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