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Projects, file structure and contents
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JimmieB [Avatar]
Newbie Private Message Joined: Nov 30, 2020 18:25 Messages: 4 Offline
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PhotoDirector Version 12.0.2228.0 (64-bit)
Version type: 365
SR number: PTD200921-07

I've been using PD for only a few weeks, and my purpose is to tag my photos in a simple manner (e.g. year-month; location; event) and to tag faces. The idea is to make it easier to find photos. My Pictures folder contains around 16,800 files in 563 folders, 21GB in size, but of course that includes files created by PD. At this point, I have imported (and tagged and done face ID) on roughly half of my photos. I am not a professional photographer, and have no plans to do extensive photo editing, nor do I need to set up "projects" for clients such as Smith-Barton Wedding Nov 2020 or McDonald Family Photos 2019 and the like.

For me, one single project is fine, preferable in fact. By that I mean, I want my tags and faces to address ALL my photos. But somehow, it appears that I have a few different projects - see attachments "PD directory structure" and "PD phd files". I have a few questions:


  1. Given that I want my tags and faces to address all my photos, does it matter that I have these different projects?

  2. If it does matter, is there a way I can fix the problem, like somehow combine these existing projects into one?

  3. Am I trying to handle too many photos? If so, what are the limitations and what is a sensible way to divide my photos into subsets?

  4. Am I missing anything about what "project" means? (I have searched quite a lot in the Cybelink support materials and in the forum, and can't find an explanation of what a "project" is.)



In addition, yesterday I started to have some operational difficulties. When I tried to rename a folder (which had worked fine before), PD would freeze. I had to use Task Manager to close it, and when I re-opened it, the same problem would recur. In addition, when I now open PD there is some sort of error (?) message that flashes for a split-second, but then disappears. I think it is something about file locations, maybe. I have re-started my PC several times, but it still happens. I have not tried re-installing PD because I don't want to lose any of the many hours of work I've done.

5. Could this be caused by something I have described here, or is it a separate problem?

Thanks. I appreciate any and all help!
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This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at Dec 01. 2020 09:42

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Hello JimmieB,

Welcome to the PhotoDirector forum laughing

When a new project is built in PhotoDirector it is typical for the project folder to include:


  1. the actual project file with .phd extension (named xxx.phd)

  2. a number of sub-folders (named "xxx_bcmgr", "xxx_cache" & "xxx_faceme")

  3. other sub-folders or documents may be present, depending on the editing carried out



I can't account for the folder tree structure shown in your screenshot (PD directory structure.docx), unless, at different times, you've used the Export Project command & exported to a new folder within your existing project folder.

*** When you open PhD (the most recent project) are all your 16 800 photos present? If so, PhD is working as you'd expect, and you could export the project to a new folder within PhotoDirector\12.0. After that, all other project folders & sub-folders could be deleted.

Given that I want my tags and faces to address all my photos, does it matter that I have these different projects?

If you want to be able to search ALL your photos for tags/face tags in PhD, then you'd want them in one project. Once photos are tagged & exported, you can use Windows to search for tags/keywords/faces.

If it does matter, is there a way I can fix the problem, like somehow combine these existing projects into one?

If *** is true, your photos may already be in a single project.

Am I trying to handle too many photos? If so, what are the limitations and what is a sensible way to divide my photos into subsets?

My assessment would be YES, given reports in this thread. See my test on a project containing 20 000 photos. I would divide photos into subsets based on the folder structure you've set up in Windows. e.g. by year, or other category.

Am I missing anything about what "project" means?

To quote the PhD Help File:

When you import photos into CyberLink PhotoDirector, the program automatically creates and saves your work in a project in the .phd file format. Use the options in the File menu to create a new project or open an existing project.

Note: a CyberLink PhotoDirector project (.phd) file essentially contains a list of the photos in the library, and a log of all the edits and adjustments you want to make to these photos. Project files do not include the photos in them.


I trust that's of some help to you in trying to streamline your PhD workflow.


PIX

PhD CDR ADR DZ MVL PP Forum Moderator
PIX YouTube channel
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JimmieB [Avatar]
Newbie Private Message Joined: Nov 30, 2020 18:25 Messages: 4 Offline
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Hello PIX, and thank you for all this information! I think I understand this much better now.

I see it like this: A project is a temporary thing, a workspace. While it is in-progress, it does not alter the original images in any way. Rather, it contains a sort of list of all the changes that the user has made to each image. When the user is finished making changes, they must Export the project in order to have the changes applied to the images. Then there are two sets of images: the original, unchanged images, and the new images including all the changes.
The other thing I now realize is that at least some of those changes (e.g. tags) in the new images, are contained in the image metadata, and are visible to Windows and, I suppose, to other photo editing tools.

In other words, it is like this:

  1. In the starting state, the user has the original image with its original metadata.

  2. During the project, the user still has the original image with its original metadata, plus, separately, a list of changes (tags, faces, edits, etc.)

  3. When the project is finished, the user Exports the project, and then has the original image with its original metadata, plus the new image with the changes now embedded in new metadata.



Please correct me if I've not got this right yet.

Assuming I am basically right, this also means that once I'm finished with my project(s), I can delete the original images. I can also, if I wish, import the new images into PD, and make further changes.

Thank you again,
JimmieB.
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Hello again,

Congratulations!

For someone who's only been using PhD for a few weeks, your understanding of how the projects all work is superb!

Personally, I would never delete my original images. If storage is an issue, even with your 1TB D Drive, I'd store my original photos on an external drive. That's, of course, up to you.

PIX PhD CDR ADR DZ MVL PP Forum Moderator
PIX YouTube channel
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JimmieB [Avatar]
Newbie Private Message Joined: Nov 30, 2020 18:25 Messages: 4 Offline
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Thank you! If I understand it well, it is because you explained it VERY well!
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JimmieB [Avatar]
Newbie Private Message Joined: Nov 30, 2020 18:25 Messages: 4 Offline
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This didn't turn out quite as I expected.

I got all my tagging and faces done, and then Exported all the photos in the Project (there are about 11,600 of them) into a new directory, keeping the original directory structure under that. I set the checkmark to store tags in metadata.
I examined the exported photos in Windows File Explorer and indeed my tags were there in a metadata item called "Tags", and the face names were there in an item called "People". So far so good.
Then I decided to check this another way, so I imported all the recently exported photos into a new Project. On the Project tab, PhotoDirector correctly shows all my folders and all the tags, but there are no faces at all. On the Metadata tab it shows the tags, but I can' find any face data there either.

Is this the way it is meant to be, or am I missing something?

Thank you.
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