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1  General / General Discussion / Is the DAM Forum dead? on: November 03, 2012, 10:59:23 AM
I've been a member of this forum for 6 years. Though I haven't posted much, I learned a lot from the forum discussions and Peter's books.

For some time the forum activity has been fading away, to the point that it now seems to be drawing its last breath. Peter no longer seems to answer questions here, and hasn't posted in 7 months. I used to check in fairly often, but since there's never much new here anymore, I've become a rare visitor myself. So is everyone fully up to date on DAM issues then, with nothing left to talk about? Is the DAM Forum dead?
2  DAM Useful Stuff / DAMuseful Software / Re: Problem with Rank & File in CS4 on: June 20, 2011, 02:13:11 PM

No, I never found a remedy, nor got any advice towards solving it. The buggy behavior continues with CS5. I think maybe everyone else stopped using Rank & File, so that no one else considers it an issue, and solving the problem is not a priority. Too bad, because it was a useful function when it worked. I pretty much had to give up on it, but if you or anyone else comes up with a fix, I would appreciate hearing about it.

3  DAM Stuff / Backup Strategies and Tools / Re: Acronis True Image Home 2010 on: November 23, 2009, 05:32:44 PM
I've now used Acronis True Image 2010 (which is listed as Windows 7 compliant on their web site) on my Windows 7, 64-bit machine to restore a backup to a second drive, and it was successful. The new drive booted flawlessly and seems to be identical to the source drive. I've also been using it for a couple of weeks to make daily backups across my network.

The only serious problem I've had is that I've not yet been able to get the rescue recovery module (booted from the rescue CD) to see my network drives so I can restore from there in full recovery mode. I'm still working on that, but it can be worked around in any event, with some inconvenience. A minor issue (which others have also reported) is that when you are setting up a backup across a network, it asks you to provide login validation credentials, and after you enter them it keeps asking for them over and over again--even though it actually remembers the credentials and logs in to the networked drive just fine.

Still, lots of other people on the Acronis help forums are reporting problems with the 2010 product under Windows 7, and my guess is that there are incompatibilities between the program and some common hardware components and/or drivers. I guess I was lucky. But if you haven't made the jump, it's probably a good idea to wait until this stuff gets sorted out.

4  DAM Stuff / Backup Strategies and Tools / Re: copying between external hard drives on: November 23, 2009, 05:16:44 PM
Joe, Syncback freeware V3.2.19.0 is working for me under Windows 7, 64-bit.

5  DAM Stuff / Backup Strategies and Tools / Re: Acronis True Image Home 2010 on: November 01, 2009, 06:15:10 PM
There are experienced users of that program here, and hopefully some of them will weigh in. I installed it for the first time a couple of weeks ago, and elected to go with the 2010 version because it specifically says that it supports Windows 7. I first installed it on an XP system. Installation went fine. I backed up my C drive, and then restored the backup to another drive. It worked perfectly. I now have the program installed under Windows 7, and it again seems to be working OK, though I haven't yet done a full backup and restore on this system.

You can download the version of your choice and do a free trial for 30 days. That's what I did.

6  General / Comments about the book / Re: It's Here! on: April 29, 2009, 01:13:14 PM
My pre-order is in too. Looking forward to it.

7  General / Comments about the book / Re: Next Edition? on: April 01, 2009, 08:47:55 AM
I'm going to pre-order it, so I get one of the first copies.
8  DAM Useful Stuff / DAMuseful Software / Re: Problem with Rank & File in CS4 on: March 31, 2009, 06:05:24 PM
I tried reinstalling CS4, but still have the problem with R&F. I did find that the number of files that get the label and star keywords, and preserved file name added, varies a bit; usually 14-15 files, but sometimes up to 19. But the remainder of the files in a folder aren't being written to. Peter, any insight on this problem?
9  DAM Useful Stuff / DAMuseful Software / Problem with Rank & File in CS4 on: March 28, 2009, 07:18:58 PM
Recently I've been having a problem with Rank & File in CS4 that I hadn't noticed before. When a folder contains more than 14-15 images, R&F seems to run OK, but when I check the files, only the first 14-15 images have keywords and preserved filenames written to the metadata. If I then select the remaining images and run it again, the same thing happens; only the first 14-15 images in the new selection have metadata written. The summary dialog at the end of the process says the operation was performed on all the files, without reporting any errors. So I have to select groups of 14 to get the job done, which of course is too laborious to continue very long.

I never had a problem like this in CS3, but I'm not sure if it's a Bridge CS4 thing, or something else. I'm runing Rank & File v. 1.16, on a PC, with XP-Pro. Is this something anyone else has encountered? Any suggestions?


10  General / General Discussion / Re: CS4: super slow? what's going on? on: March 17, 2009, 01:51:45 PM
You are probably experiencing difficulty with CS4's new OpenGL support for 3D video cards, as are many other users. The discussion of this issue has raged on Adobe forums ( for several months. Go to the forums page, and you'll see a number of topics on this subject. If you're brave, look for the main thread there entitled "Photoshop CS4 is a disaster", which had over 800 posts the last time I checked. If you start a new thread there, maybe you can get someone who has followed the issue to summarize the current situation for you.

I experienced similar problems when I first installed CS4 and put in a new 3D graphics card to take advantage of the new 3D features. I went back to my 2D Matrox card and have been waiting for the OpenGL problems to be sorted out. There is a new CS4 version out which is reported to fix at least some of the problems, but I haven't had time to check it out yet.

One place to start is with Adobe's list of tested graphics cards: Before the new CS4 version at least, some people with cards on the tested list were still experiencing problems. I'm not sure what the latest situation is.

11  General / General Discussion / Re: The blurring line between originals and derivatives: workflow implications on: February 18, 2009, 02:55:25 PM
Thanks Hert, that is useful information.

12  General / General Discussion / Re: The blurring line between originals and derivatives: workflow implications on: February 16, 2009, 03:21:27 PM
Thanks for the feedback, Peter. I share your concern about the potential for corrupted files migrating to the backups, if the backups are continually updated; that's why I've been worried about the "originals as derivatives" issue pushing me in that direction. My situation may not be quite as risky as it first appears though, because I've been keeping two separate backup drives, and only updating one of them with modified originals. And I have been using ImageVerifier to check the files. Also, my really mission-critical files (in particular, several hundred images that went into a couple of books) were burned to DVD as insurance. But while I would hate to lose ANY files, I don't depend on most of them for a living. If I did, I would certainly reduce my risk to the minimum by adopting write-once media backups for all my files. Anyone who would be devastated by the loss of files should follow your example, not mine.

For most of my work, I think that your suggestion of using LR to save changes to originals, and then making a couple of backups of the LR catalog, will be a good way to go. Then I won't need to make changes to the original DNGs, nor push them into either of the backups. But I'll read the new version of your book when it comes out; maybe I will change my mind about how much risk is acceptable.

13  General / General Discussion / Re: The blurring line between originals and derivatives: workflow implications on: February 15, 2009, 06:49:13 PM
Thanks Peter, those approaches do make sense; although neither one seems ideal. Currently I'm using your second option--pushing modified files into the backups. But I worry about the potential problem that you mentioned: corrupted files migrating onto the backup drive. If you make frequent changes to the "originals" on the primary drive, then you must also frequently migrate those changes to the backup; which of course increases the chances of the backup becoming corrupted somewhere along the line. If the second backup set is on DVD/Blu-ray, the originals should be protected from overwriting by corrupted modified files. But then there is only one backup of the modifications. (In my case, I decided not to use DVDs, but rather an additional hard drive backup. I understand the risk there, but decided that for my purposes the additional safety of the DVDs was not worth the hassle of burning and storing them. I do try to avoid overwriting any files on the secondary backup drive, but just add new files to it periodically, for what that's worth.)

I hadn't thought of using Lightroom as a strategy for saving all the develop modifications. I assume then that you uncheck "Automatically write changes into XMP" in the LR Catalog Settings? I'll have to mull over that approach. Right now, I do some of my modifications in Bridge/ACR, and some in LR. It seems that if I were going to rely completely on the LR catalog for saving develop edits, I would need to avoid using ACR on a file after the original tweaks and archiving, and I would need to bring every file into LR for subsequent work. Is that what you are doing? [Edit: Upon reflection, I guess there's no compelling reason to prevent LR from writing changes to the original files, as long as those changes are not pushed into the original file backups.]

I think you are right that the ideal situation would be for Expression Media to save the develop metadata in its catalog; then you could just do all subsequent work from there, rather than having to go to another program. Maybe in a future version, EM could incorporate the ability to open a file in LR or ACR, and save the develop metadata in its catalog rather than elsewhere? I don't know much about IDimager, but I took a quick look at its manual, and it appears to me that the edits would have to be made using that program's own image editor (not ACR or LR) in order to have it save the develop metadata in its catalog.

When is the new version of your book coming out?
14  Software Discussions / Media Pro & Expression Media / Re: Old Question re: going to EM2 - for Peter, John ... on: February 15, 2009, 05:19:58 PM
EM is much better than it was. Just be careful using Hierarchical Keywords until they release the fix next month.
15  General / General Discussion / The blurring line between originals and derivatives: workflow implications on: February 13, 2009, 12:21:03 PM
Since reading Peter's book a couple of years ago, I've been employing a workflow similar to the one he recommended. It seems to me that a central concept was to differentiate between original and derivative image files. Originals are processed, archived and backed up, and then left essentially unaltered. Avoiding any "resave" steps minimizes the chances of corruption of the originals, and assures that you will always be able to go back to a good file if need be. Indeed, if you back up to DVDs, the originals can't be changed, which is one of the safety features of that strategy. So all subsequent modifications of such a file become derivatives, and each one is saved as a new version in the current working "bucket". It all seems very logical and practical.

But now I find myself increasingly perplexed about how to best handle the ever-increasing tendency to make image modifications in metadata rather than in pixels. The advent of DNG file wrappers, as well as ACR and Lightroom methodology means that the majority of my changes occur in metadata. Do I save the modifications within the original DNG (or TIFF or JPEG, for that matter) file? If I do, I violate the rule of leaving original files unchanged, and archiving becomes very problematic. On the other hand, if I make a copy which becomes a derivative (e.g., filename.dng ---> filename-b.dng), the size and speed economy of metadata edits is completely lost.

So, how do some of you handle this situation where the difference between an original and a derivative image file becomes ever more blurred?

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