Removing Temporary Catalog Collections


Today’s Question: I tried the technique you shared for finding photos that still have an outdated process version assigned to them in Lightroom Classic. Now that I’m finished with the collection created by that search, is there a way to get rid of it?

Tim’s Quick Answer: Yes. Any temporary collections created in the Catalog section of the left panel in the Library module of Lightroom Classic can be removed by right-clicking on it and choosing “Remove this Temporary Collection” from the popup menu.

More Detail: The Catalog section of the left panel in Lightroom Classic includes some “special” collections, which differ from the collections you can create in the Collections section further down that panel.

Some of these collections are permanent, meaning you can’t remove them. These include the “All Photographs” collection that enables you to browse all images in your entire catalog, as well as the Quick Collection that provides an easy way to temporarily group photos together for a short-term project.

Other collections that might appear in the Catalog section are considered temporary and can be removed if you no longer want them to appear there. For example, if you use the Library > Find Previous Process Photos” command to locate all images that have a Develop module process version earlier than the current version, the “Previous Process Photos” collection created in the Catalog section is temporary, and can be deleted. Just right-click on the temporary collection and choose “Remove this Temporary Collection” and it will be removed.

Similarly, if you use the Library > Find All Missing Photos command, a “Missing Photos” collection will be created in the Catalog section. That temporary collection can also be removed with the same command. And there are some other temporary collections that will be created with certain other commands. The key to remember with these collections is that they can be removed when you’re finished working with them.

If you’re not sure whether a collection in the Catalog section is temporary, just right-click on it to see if the “Remove this Temporary Collection” command is on the popup menu. If not, the collection is “permanent” in the Catalog section.