Adobe Camera Raw not retaining adjustments

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I have confirmed in recent photos that I can't rely on Adobe Camera Raw to retain the adjustments. As an example, I just now post-processed an image file, closed ACR by clicking the Done button and cataloged the image. I was suspicious about ACR not retaining adjustments, so I was very careful to click the Done button rather than the Cancel button. As a test, after cataloging the image I opened the image file in ACR again to determine if the adjustments were retained and they had been. About 15 minutes later I decided to consider eliminating one of the adjustments. So, I opened the same file again and none of the adjustments had been retained.

This is an intermittent issue that I believe has been happening beginning since about a week ago.

Any ideas? Anyone else having this issue?

Windows 10
 
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Growltiger

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What exactly do you mean by "after cataloging the image"?
When you open the file is it always the same file in the same location?
Are you sure you don't have a jpg file with the same name at the same location and have opened that by mistake?
 
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What exactly do you mean by "after cataloging the image"?
When you open the file is it always the same file in the same location?
Are you sure you don't have a jpg file with the same name at the same location and have opened that by mistake?
1. I probably shouldn't have mentioned that I cataloged the file, as I probably only caused confusion. I only meant that I didn't immediately open the file in ACR after closing it. I cataloged it first and then reopened it in ACR.

2. In this case, the file is in the same location as it was when I clicked Done in ACR. Even so, I should be able to move the file to any location and open it afterward in ACR with all of the adjustments saved. (I move files using my cataloging software and it automatically moves the .xmp file when it moves the raw file.)

3. Yes, I do have a JPG with a similar but not exactly the same filename.ext. (Thank goodness that my workflow includes exporting a full-size JPEG; otherwise I would have had to completely redo all of my adjustments again in ACR.) However, I didn't open the JPEG by mistake. As you know, if I had opened the JPEG, it would have opened by default in Photoshop, not ACR. The file in question opened in ACR because it is a raw file.

Did something happen to the .xmp file? That's where all the settings reside.
The .xmp file is still there. However, either something happened to it that wiped out all of my adjustments or ACR isn't reading them.
 
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Growltiger

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I think you did something that stopped it picking up the xmp file. If this happens again, cancel out at once and take a look at that folder, and look at the matching xmp file. Check it is there. Open it in a text editor (Notepad) and see if it looks OK.
 
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I think you did something that stopped it picking up the xmp file. If this happens again, cancel out at once and take a look at that folder, and look at the matching xmp file. Check it is there. Open it in a text editor (Notepad) and see if it looks OK.
I wouldn't know what to look for to make sure it's OK.

I just now reviewed two .xmp files in Notepad, one corresponding to a NEF that has retained the ACR settings and the one corresponding to the NEF that hasn't. The format is completely different between the two files. I apply only one keyword, the same keyword, to all my NEFs and that's the only thing I did to the file between editing the image and reopening it in ACR. I conducted a search for that keyword in both .xmp files and it's there. However, that keyword is displayed at least 100 lines into the malcontent .xmp file, whereas it's displayed in the seventh line of the .xmp file that has the retained settings.

If it would be helpful to post the two .xmp files in Dropbox, I'm happy to do so.

I'll also attempt later today to reproduce this issue.
 
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I just now got an idea that causes me to conclude that all my adjustments in the malcontent .xmp file were wiped out.

When I post-process images in ACR, I always change the Clarity and Dehaze global settings to a value of 8. (I rarely use any other value.) Those settings are displayed in the .xmp file with the retained settings. In the malcontent .xmp file, the Clarity and Dehaze global settings are a value of zero, which is ACR's default value.

Clearly at least to me, something happened to the malcontent .xmp file that reverted all the settings to those before I changed them in ACR.
 

Growltiger

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I have not heard of anyone else having a problem like this. It would be happening a lot if it was a bug in ACR.
I am very suspicious of what your cataloging software is doing, as well as the bit about moving the xmp file automatically. What is that software?

Seeing those two files won't help. You need to do some more scientific step by step tests. For example.
1. Unedited NEF. No XMP file.
2. Single edit in ACR.
3. Now you have the first XMP. Save a copy under a new name v1.
4. Open it again in ACR, confirm it is all OK. Exit. Save a copy of the XMP file again under a new name v2.
5. Use catalog software to move to new location. Have both files gone from where they were? Have both arrived at the new location? Save a copy of the moved XMP file under another new name, v3.
6. Open it again in ACR. Is it OK? Come out and save yet another copy of the XMP file under a new name, v4.
7. Compare the four copied XMP filles v1, v2, v3 and v4. Are they all identical? They should be. If not, you should have pinned down the stage where the problem is.
 
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I've been using versions of the cataloging software for 8 years and have never had this problem. It's the latest version of IDimager PhotoSupreme, though I may not have installed the most recent update, which would have only a minor change that doesn't (or shouldn't) affect me.

After I eat breakfast, I'll conduct the steps you advise and I'll get back to you. Many thanks, as always!
 

Growltiger

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I also have to save a copy of the NEF named the same as the copy of the XMP. Just want to make sure that's what you intend.

I'll get back to this in about an hour as I have to leave right now.
Yes.

You don't have to drink tea when you take afternoon tea. I drink iced water. Tea is a meal, not just a drink. Hence "tea-time". A strange English thing.
 
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Ironically, I drank ice tea during lunch even though it's cold here. Normally I would not do that. You apparently planted the idea in my head.

I conducted all of the steps and am not surprised that everything is fine; all four copies open in ACR with the one adjustment step (desaturation) retained and all .xmp files seem to have identical content. However, that's not conclusive for me. This has been only an intermittent issue, so I'm not surprised that this time there were no problems.

I'm going to do some more testing and will report back once I determine something or give up trying.
 

Growltiger

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Ironically, I drank ice tea during lunch even though it's cold here. Normally I would not do that. You apparently planted the idea in my head.

I conducted all of the steps and am not surprised that everything is fine; all four copies open in ACR with the one adjustment step (desaturation) retained and all .xmp files seem to have identical content. However, that's not conclusive for me. This has been only an intermittent issue, so I'm not surprised that this time there were no problems.

I'm going to do some more testing and will report back once I determine something or give up trying.
Keep monitoring and thinking about what could have happened.
Could it have been something you clicked in ACR that reset it or set it to a profile?
 
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The cataloging software is comprised of two database files -- a catalog database and a thumbnail database. I compacted both of them today. That's because when I rebuilt the thumbnail of one of the image files (sometimes required when using the catalog), it eliminated almost everything in the .xmp file.

Both database files may be fine now, though I had compacted quite recently and don't understand why either would need to be compacted so soon. One or both databases may be corrupt and need to be replaced. (I know how to do that.)

There is also the possibility that a program file in ACR and/or the cataloging software may have become corrupt.

The most difficult characteristic of this issue is that it appears only intermittently. Tough to diagnose!

Thanks again for your help. I'll continue to keep the thread informed.
 
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time for the pros in the Café Drinking Team to step up.
Thanks for the offer, but I think for now I actually know what I'm doing when it comes to the cataloging software. I realize the mere possibility of me understanding what I am doing would catch everybody by surprise, but it's true. Indeed, years ago I sold a "How to" ebook about using this particular software. Not a single complaint about the ebook; only high praises. So for now, just keep your fingers crossed for me that I figure out the source of the problem.
 
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I have discovered a situation that is reproducible most of the time but not all the time. If I use my cataloging software to change the XMP information such as keywords in the catalog, then embed that information in the XMP file, and then rebuild the thumbnail, all of my ACR image adjustments in raw files are wiped out. I have contacted the developer to ask if it's likely that my catalog database file and/or my thumbnail database file have become corrupt and need to be rebuilt.

I haven't tried doing this with PSD or JPEG files. One step at a time.
 
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