Lightroom Migration Tool - ON1 Photo Raw 2019

 

ON1 Photo RAW 2019

Adobe® Lightroom® Migration FAQ

In 2017 we added support for basic migration for Adobe® Lightroom® catalogs. This migrated folders and photos as well as basic collections and metadata. It could also create copies of edited photos with the Lightroom® edits processed or “burned” into the photos. It could not however do the final step, the holy-grail of migration, which is to migrate the actual Lightroom® edits in a re-editable, non-destructive way.

 

IMPORTANT NOTE BEFORE MIGRATING

The migration process can take some time especially if you select the copy with Lightroom® adjustments option. You can continue to use Lightroom® and ON1 Photo during the migration process. The Migration Assistant is intended for one-time migration of catalogs, not continual syncing of changes. However, if you have more than one Lightroom® catalog you can use the Migration Assistant again on each catalog to merge them into one ON1 Photo RAW installation. Please make sure you have done the following:

1. Made sure Lightroom has access to all of the files in your catalog by connection all drives. 

2. Update your Lightroom Catalog: Synced Folders, find all missing photos and validate DNG files in your Lightroom Catalog from the "Library" Tab. (see below)

3. Make sure you have enough free space on your hard drives (especially when using the copy option). 

After completing these three steps, you will be able to run the Lightroom Migration Tool. 

 

A Primer on RAW Processing

And for good reason, it is a very difficult problem. First-off there is a bit of technical ground we need to cover. Processing a RAW photo into something pleasing in a multi-step process. First you have to decode the often compressed data. Then comes the debayering, the step that actually converts the RAW data into an, albeit dark and ugly, RGB image. That’s the first bit of magic. The second comes in actually making that photo look like what you saw through the camera. This includes adjusting the whitepoint, applying a gamma curve and other camera specific adjustments including color, camera profiles, reducing noise, correcting for hot pixels and lens distortion. That’s all just to get something that looks normal. Every RAW processor is different and uses many algorithms just to get to this point. When we start to talk about even the basic RAW adjustments like shadows, highlights, contrast, whites and blacks there is even more magic to accurately target those areas and do the right thing. So what does this mean  when we talk about migrating the settings from Lightroom® to Photo RAW you may ask? Well it means that it’s not a simple process of copying the slider values from Lightroom®. For example a shadows slider value of +50 in Lightroom® won’t yield the same results in Photo RAW. In fact it’s even more complicated, as the visual results for a given control value change from photo to photo, they are adaptive. In order to get the same visual results, and that’s what we are really talking about here, we have to visually compare the results from Lightroom® and determine what the corresponding settings would be in Photo RAW to give you the same appearance. And that has to be done for every photo! To solve this problem, we developed a fast, machine-learning, algorithm that does just that.

 

 

What Gets Migrated?

Now let’s talk about everything that gets migrated from Lightroom® to Photo RAW and where the limitations may be. First a chart to make it easy to understand:

 

Lightroom® Feature

Migrated

Notes

Folders

Yes

All top-level Folders in Lightroom® become top-level cataloged folders in Photo RAW

Photos/Videos

Yes

All photos/videos in the cataloged folders are added. This may include some photos that are not cataloged in Lightroom®. Photo RAW only migrates available photos and does not migrate photos from offline volumes. Only files of supported file types and color modes will appear.

Versions

Yes

 

Stacks

No

 

Collections

Yes

All normal collections are migrated to albums. Collection sets become album sets. Smart collections are not migrated

Crop

Yes

 

Spot Removal

Yes

Spot Removal is migrated to the Clone Stamp when used in Clone mode. When used in Heal mode it is migrated to the Perfect Eraser. The results will not be a pixel perfect match but will generally remove the same spots with comparable results.

Basics

Yes

Camera Profiles are matched for Adobe® and Camera profiles. Other LUTs or custom profiles are not migrated. Clarity is called Structure in Photo RAW. Dehaze is called Haze and will look a bit different. The quality of the results is very good for most photos.

Black & White

Yes

You will find this in the Black & White filter in Effects

Tone Curve

Yes

Parametric curve adjustments are not migrated, but point-based curves are.

HSL/Color

Yes

You will find this in the Color Adjustment filter in Effects

Split Toning

Yes

You will find this in the Split Tone filter in Effects. Colors will be close but not exact

Detail

Yes

There are significant differences in the sharpening and noise reduction algorithms. We did our best to align them but they may require manual adjustments to taste before output

Lens Correction

Yes

We will apply automatic lens correction if we have a matching lens profile. Manual distortion settings are not migrated

Transform

No

Unfortunately Transform is very different and we couldn’t find a practical way to migrate these settings. You can achieve similar results using the Transform pane in Develop in Photo RAW.

Effects

Yes

You will find these in the Vignette and Film Grain filters in Effects.

Calibration

No

 

Red Eye

No

You can reduce red-eye automatically in the Portrait module

Graduated Filter

Yes

You will find these as adjustment layers in the Local module using the Adjustable Gradient. Range mask, Moire and Defringe are not migrated at this time.

Radial Filter

Yes

You will find these as adjustment layers in the Local module using the Adjustable Gradient. Range mask, Moire and Defringe are not migrated at this time.

Adjustment Brush

Yes

You will find these as adjustment layers in the Local module using the Adjustment Brush, including the Auto Mask function. Range mask, Sharpening, Moire and Defringe are not migrated at this time.

 

For most photos, where you have done basic raw adjustments, cropped, retouched and maybe added a couple local adjustments your migrated settings and visual results will be very close. There are some cases, such as JPG original photos, captured under difficult lighting situations with lots of edits that may not be as close. Keep in mind that your original photos and your settings in Lightroom® are not modified by this process, so everything is safe.

 

Start Your Migration

Are you ready or thinking about making the switch from Lightroom® to ON1 Photo RAW? If so, we want to make your transition as smooth as possible. We broke the most common method down into 4 steps to make it easier to follow along when making the switch from Lightroom®.

 

Remember, Lightroom® is a non-destructive editor so all the metadata changes and the edits you’ve made are in Lightroom®’s catalog file, not in the photos themselves. Fear not. We want you to maintain as much as you can from Lightroom® so your time is not wasted. Our Lightroom® Migration Assistant helps tremendously when you are ready to make the switch from Lightroom® to ON1 Photo RAW. There are some key steps in this process to prepare first.

  1. Find your photos – Connect any external drives or shares containing photos you want to migrate. Then use the Sync Folder command in Lightroom® to make sure your Lightroom® catalog and the actual files are up-to-date. This will add any photos that Lightroom® is missing as well as remove broken links. In addition to connecting all drives, we recommend Synchronizing your folders, finding all missing files and validating all DNG files prior to starting the Lightroom migration process. To do this, right click on the folders on the left side of Lightroom's Library module and choose "synchronize folder": Screen_Shot_2018-11-15_at_4.33.45_PM.jpgYou can also "Synchronize Folder", "Find all missing photos" and "Validate DNG Files" from  the "Library" menu at the top: Screen_Shot_2018-11-15_at_4.36.17_PM.jpg
  2. Pre-organize – Take this opportunity to remove any photos, virtual copies or collections you don’t care about. It’s also a good time to reorganize your folders if necessary. It may also be a good idea.
  3. Make the Switch – Next install ON1 Photo RAW if you haven’t already. Then open Lightroom® and go to the File > Plug-in Extras menu. Then select the Migrate Catalog to ON1 Photo. You will see a dialog that looks like this. It explains the process and what to consider, like a short version of this documents.
    1. On the second tab, choose if you want to migrate your collections and Develop settings. For most of us, you will want both of these on.
    2. On the third tab, choose if you want to create rendered copies of your photos. This will make non-editable copies of any photos in Lightroom® that have Develop settings applied to them. For most of us, you will leave this option off.
    3. Press the Migrate button and wait. The process can take a long time depending on the number of photos that you have. It does work in the background, just leave Lightroom® open and it will do it’s work. It’s a good idea to start this at the end of the day and let it run overnight.
  4. Start to Edit -- Once the migration process is completed you will see the same folders that were in the Folders section of the Library module in Lightroom® in the Cataloged Folders pane in the Browse module of Photo RAW. You will be able to navigate the folders in the same way. Your collections will appear in the Album pane. When you look at photos they may have a small “LR” badge on their corner. This means they have Lightroom® settings for them that have not been translated to Photo RAW settings yet. In the background we scan the photos and perform the translation. If the photos have the “LR” badge this hasn’t been accomplished yet. Don’t worry, when you open a photo to edit it, this is done on the fly and the photos appearance will update as well as it’s thumbnail and preview in Browse. All of the non-destructive settings will be applied and you can adjust them in the Edit module. If you want to remove the settings and start from scratch, you can press the Reset button.

 

IMPORTANT NOTE BEFORE MIGRATING

The migration process can take some time especially if you select the copy with Lightroom® adjustments option. You can continue to use Lightroom® and ON1 Photo during the migration process. The Migration Assistant is intended for one-time migration of catalogs, not continual syncing of changes. However, if you have more than one Lightroom® catalog you can use the Migration Assistant again on each catalog to merge them into one ON1 Photo RAW installation. Please make sure you have done the following:

1. Made sure Lightroom has access to all of the files in your catalog by connection all drives. 

2. Update your Lightroom Catalog: Synced Folders, find all missing photos and validate DNG files in your Lightroom Catalog from the "Library" Tab. 

3. Make sure you have enough free space on your hard drives (especially when using the copy option). 

After completing these three steps, you will be able to run the Lightroom Migration Tool. 


 

FAQ

Q: Who is it for?

A: It is for any and all Adobe Lightroom® users that want to transfer their photos (with the non-destructive edits intact) into the ON1 Photo catalog, and keep them in a non-destructive format.

 

Q: What is it?

A: It is an automated AI-powered algorithm that takes the edits you have done in Lightroom® and migrates them into ON1 Photo RAW, retaining the settings.

 

Q: What can it do?

A: It can migrate all of your non-destructive edits from Lightroom® into ON1 Photo RAW and leave them in a non-destructive state. This allows you to view and edit the various sliders and settings the same way you can inside of Lightroom® but in ON1 Photo. It will transfer almost every edit you can perform in Lightroom® including raw processing, crop, retouching and local adjustments along with folders, photos, albums, and metadata. This give you the freedom to discontinue using Lightroom® and not lose non-destructive work.

 

Q: How does it work?

A: After you install ON1 Photo you open Lightroom® and click File > Plug-in Extras > Migrate Catalog to ON1 Photo. This will bring up a modal dialog as the first step. Learn more about the migration process here.

 

Q: How accurate is it?

A: It’s quite good on most raw photos. For raw photos, where you have done basic raw adjustments, cropped, retouched and maybe added a couple local adjustments your migrated settings and visual results will be very close. There are some cases, such as JPG original photos, captured under difficult lighting situations with lots of edits that may not be as close. Keep in mind that your original photos and your settings in Lightroom® are not modified by this process, so everything is safe.

 

Q: How fast is it?

A: Not very. There is a lot going to make this happen and people tend to have tens of thousands of photos in their Lightroom catalogs. The process will take most users four to eight hours. On the plus side, it can run in the background and you can continue your normal work. A good idea is to start in at night when you are done with your work and by morning it should be done. Let me give you some deeper insights on how long it takes in our testing that you can apply to your scenario.

 

For these tests we are working on a couple year old mid-range Lenovo laptop with an Intel Core i7 processor. The photos are stored on a slow external USB 2 drive. This is pretty common set-up for many of us. For this test we had a catalog of 5000 photos. It’s a mix of RAW and JPG with a few PSDs thrown in for good measure. We had edits on every photo. This would simulate a user who uses a preset on import. Keep in mind many users only apply settings (make edits in the Develop module) on a smaller percentage of their photos. In our test it took as average of 3:00 to complete the migration.

 

If you scale these numbers up to a more normal catalog of 50,000 photos where only 25% of the photos have edits, on the same computer it will take about 7:30 hours to complete.

 

How can you make it faster you might ask? The longest portion of the migration process is Lightroom generating the small JPG photo for matching, that’s about 80% of the time spent. So to make it faster,, only migrate photos with settings that really matter to you. If you have done super basic adjustments like only turning on lens correction or adjusting white balance or noise, reset those settings. You can batch apply them quickly again in Photo RAW after the migration.

 

Q: How much extra space does it need?

A: When the migration process is performed we need to make a small JPG version of your photo with Lightroom’s settings applied for comparison. Each file takes about 125Kb, or about 625Mb per 5000 photos that are migrated. These are temporary files and are removed automatically over time. They are stored in the application cache which is located on your boot drive. Keep in mind we only need to create these temporary files for photos you have made Develop module adjustments to in Lightroom.

 

Beyond these small temporary files, we are not actually creating a new version of the image file on disk unless you select “create a copy.” We will create a very small ~5KB .on1 and .on1meta sidecar file for each photo that serves as the host for those non-destructive edits (which are stored in the Lightroom® catalog). The .on1meta files are also temporary and are removed automatically over time.

 

Q: Does it migrate my collections?

A: Any normal collections, the ones you drag and drop photos into, and their contents will be copied over as Albums. If you have used collection sets, their organization will be maintained as well. Unfortunately Smart Collections will not be migrated, but you can create Smart Albums later inside ON1 Photo, which are similar.

 

Q: Does it migrate my presets?

A: No, it will not migrate over the Lightroom® Presets. It will migrate the photos you have applied presets to and give you a very close visual match for the photo.

 

Q: What files/folders/file types get migrated?

A: All top-level Folders in Lightroom® become top-level cataloged folders in Photo RAW

 

Q: What does it not migrate?

A: Red eye correction, photo stacks, and adjustments from the Calibration and Transform panes. In ON1 Photo we offer a red eye correction tool, use subfolders instead of stacks and have our own Transform and Color Profile panes for making these corrections after the migration.

 

Q: Does it sync in both directions?

A: No, the Migration tool is intended to be a one time transfer of the Lightroom catalog. Once the migration of a catalog completes ON1 will write it to our database and that will not be overwritten if you attempt to migrate the same files again.

 

Q: I have more than one Lightroom® catalog, will it still work?

A: Yes, you just need to migrate each catalog, one at a time.

 

Q: What happens if I already have non-destructive settings on the same photo in ON1 Photo RAW?

A: We will ignore Lightroom settings when you attempt migrate and the file will remain the same.

 

Q: What about Keywords? Metadata, Location, People, Keyword List?

A: All metadata on a per photo basis will migrate over, the master keyword list will get recreated from those photos. Keywords in Lightroom that are not associated with any files will not be migrated.

 

Q: Can I select which photos to migrate?

A: Yes and no. We recommend you audit your catalog first, and remove any photos you don’t want or need to speed up the process. You could also select just the photos you want to migrate and create a new catalog with only those photos and then migrate.

 

Q: What happens to my original photos and Lightroom® catalog?

A: Nothing, they will still live in your Lightroom catalog and all the settings will remain intact.

 

Q: What is a .on1meta files?

A: These are temporary sidecar files that hold the settings for the migration. They will automatically delete themselves once the migrate completes.

 

Q: Will Lightroom “Virtual Copies" be migrated?

A: Yes. All Virtual Copies in your Lightroom catalog will migrate over during the process as a  “ON1 versions.”

 

Q: Will the migration process create and write files to disk for virtual copies?

A: No, they will be “ON1 versions" visible only inside ON1 Photo RAW.

 

 

Still Having Trouble? 


For more information on the new features of ON1 Photo Raw 2019 Please refer to our User Guide.

 

To contact the ON1 Support Team, please click here

 

Legal Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are not endorsed by Adobe®. They do not endorse or support the ON1 Migration tool.



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