Simple solution to Lightroom bug: Duplicate Image finding.

One of the oddities of Lightroom (although I love the program) is that the import "feature" to ignore duplicates doesn't always work. On my recent trip to Cambodia, I used the second card slot of my D300s as a backup - essentially writing images to an SD card and a CF card at the same time. This is a great way to backup images without having to worry about downloading to a drive in the field. I tried to travel as light and simple as possible, so this worked great - in theory.

Turns out I had to do some card switching with my videographer/photographer buddy, Marianne Bach (a fireball of energy and talent!) while we were in the heat of shooting and I wasn't sure which cards had all the images. I knew some were duplicates, but there were also some images that only existed on one card. To make sure, I just knew I could download them all in to Lightroom and it would ignore any duplicates and import one of everything. That's the way it's supposed to work.

Well, it doesn't really work that way and Lightroom imported two copies of hundreds of images, but not every one. They were scattered throughout the catalog. They were all completely identical RAW files and should have been seen as such. I would have had to manually go through and find all the duplicates and remove them. Instead, I used this great little plugin to find the duplicates and put them in their own special smart collection, where I could delete the copies. 

The plugin is called Lightroom Duplicate Finder and it's on this website: It was very helpful to quickly grab only the duplicate images and worked as expected. It's affordable as well at about $12.