Lightroom workflow/storage etc

Started Apr 24, 2012 | Discussions thread
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7enderbender Contributing Member • Posts: 822
Lightroom workflow/storage etc

Hello everyone,

I'm in the process of rethinking my photo editing and storage workflow. I may be buying a new laptop in a few months or so to replace my current main computer, Thinkpad T60.

I like to do most of my work and photo editing on my laptop. It's just convenient to me and the thing has been pretty reliable and delivers good results. My desktop PC is mostly being used for my music and recording applications and I'm ok if all this stays that way.

Not sure yet what my new laptop may look like but other than the challenge finding one with a good hi resolution screen I find storage an issue. I may end up going with another Thinkpad if I can find one with a good screen again or I may consider the Macbook pro route if they really come out with some kind of retina display for a 15" MBP.

One issue with all this is the size of hard drives. SSDs are fast but small. Larger capacities are perhaps 500 or 750 GB in standard HDs. I now have 500GB and I'm starting to run out of space because of photos alone.

So my main question is how people are using Lightroom as a management and database application when using laptops. At the moment I keep original copies in four places: laptop, external hard drive, desktop PC backup drive and a backup server in my house. I use Lightroom really for the most part on my laptop so I have given up trying to sync databases or using a wireless server approach (not really supported by LR3 anyway).

And that's ok but it requires to keep all photos on my laptop and that's where I'm running out of space. And I'm not sure I want to plug in external drives any time I open up LR. Secondary drives in a laptop would be nice - which would be another reason to go with another Thinkpad where this is relatively easy by swapping the optical drive.

So what am I missing? How do professionals with lots and lots of photos maintain their storage on a laptop in conjunction with LR3 or 4? Do you dump older photos and live with the fact that LR complains about not finding them? Do you start new databases all the time? What if you need to go back to an old set? Do you import it again?

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