Today’s Question: The Folders list in Lightroom Classic do not display some of the subfolders on my hard drive. How do I update those folders that are present on my hard drive so they are also present in Lightroom Classic?
Tim’s Quick Answer: The Folders list in Adobe Lightroom Classic only displays folders that contain photos being managed by Lightroom. Therefore, to view those folders in Lightroom you would need to import the photos (if applicable) contained within those folders.
More Detail: While the folder structure shown on the Folders panel on the left panel in the Library module of Lightroom Classic will reflect the folder structure of the hard drive where those folders are actually located, there will be some differences based on how Lightroom manages and displays folders.
First, Lightroom will generally only show folders that contain photos you have imported into your Lightroom catalog. If you import photos from a folder representing a trip, that folder will appear in Lightroom. If that folder contains a subfolder that only includes documents that can’t be managed by Lightroom, the subfolder will not appear within Lightroom.
Similarly, if you have two folders on the same hard drive, and you have imported the photos from one into your Lightroom catalog without importing the photos from the other folder, you will only see the first folder on the Folders list in Lightroom.
So, if you are managing photos on a hard drive that contains more than just photos, you will never see the entire folder structure from your hard drive within Lightroom. If folders that contain photos on your hard drive are not showing up in your Lightroom catalog, you just need to import the contents of that folder into Lightroom.
Note that if you are importing photos that are already in the desired storage location, you should use the “Add” option (rather than “Copy” for example) when importing the photos into your catalog.