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Lots of New Toys with Lightroom 2.0

Adobe has just released Version 2 of its Lightroom photo-workflow application:

In conjunction, I am releasing export plugins that I've been working on solidly for the last six months:

The Facebook plugin is new for Lightroom 2 (and still very “beta”), while the others are totally rewritten versions of the plugins I had for Lightroom 1. (If you are currently a user of one of my Lightroom 1 plugins, be sure to see the section on migration later in this post.)

I'm also releasing Jeffrey's Metadata Wrangler Export Filter, a plugin filter that allows selective control of which metadata is written into exported images, regardless of the kind of export. Export filters (what Adobe calls “post-process actions”) are an officially supported replacement for the “piglet” plugin infrastructure that I developed for Lightroom 1.

One-Click Plugin Upgrades

Plugin installation is much easier with Lightroom 2 than it was with Lightroom 1. I've written up general instructions:

However, with my plugins, you need to pay attention to the install just the first time, because I've built into each the mechanism for self upgrade. When a new version is available, you can upgrade with the click of a button. See details here.

Old 1.x Versions

My old Lightroom 1 plugins still work in Lightroom 2.0, but I no longer support them.

I have been working on these new versions pretty much non-stop for the last six months, which explains why I have not been particularly responsive to issues related to the 1.x versions (sorry).

Overview

Just to give a feeling for some of the capabilities of the new plugins, here is a screenshot of part of Lightroom's export dialog, with my new Export-to-Zenfolio plugin active as the main export, and my Metadata Wrangler filter enabled as well....

There are many other new features not shown in the dialog above, such as little touches like an estimated time for the upload to complete (an example of which is shown at right).

Title and captions now exclusively use the preset templates I previewed in some of the old plugins, but also, with most of the new plugins, you can now use the same templates when creating “auto destinations”. These allow you to specify the upload destination dynamically, e.g. “upload to a gallery with the same name as the master-image folder.” (I'll write about this in more detail another day.)

I'd like to write more here about the little features I've added – I'm proud of how polished some of these plugins are – but I've been working on them so much lately that I've left myself little time to prepare for this announcement. Add in there the fact that I just flew half way around the world to visit my folks for the summer, and have been trying to enjoy my boy enjoying life, and it's been hectic trying to get ready in time.

If it hadn't been for my mom and my sister watching Anthony a lot since I arrived, I'd have never been able to get things ready in time, such as this announcement, a full writeup on Installation and Management of Lightroom Plugins, the writeup on the Metadata Wrangler, etc.

I do need to mention a few important points about the new plugins...

Migrating From the Lightroom 1 Plugins

The Lightroom 1 versions of my plugins are totally separate from the Lightroom 2 versions, which means that the “uploaded to...” history accumulated while using the Lightroom 1 versions is not used by the Lightroom 2 versions. However, once you're ready to switch to the new version, you can migrate the upload history via the “Plugin Extras” menu item for each new plugin...

That brings up an “Extras” dialog that allows you to import data from the old plugin into the new plugin. It also provides an option to clear out old plugin data (which you should do only after migrating any upload history you want to preserve!). These options work on the current catalog, so if you have multiple catalogs, you must migrate each catalog independently.

Also, once you've moved your workflow to the new plugin, you should flush the old plugin's preferences (which are stored per computer, not per catalog). This is especially important for the SmugMug, Zenfolio, and PicasaWeb plugins, since the old preferences contain login credentials. (The new plugins save only encrypted login credentials in the preferences.)

Plugin Expiration

Especially early on, I expect a lot of version churn with these plugins. I've been working on these for ages, but the new plugins have had little real-world testing beyond my own, so I'm sure that once they're out in the wild, bugs will be discovered and reported (and fixed) at a fast clip.

Because I expect rapid changes, and I don't want out-of-date plugins to remain in use, I've built an expiration into the plugins to encourage (and, eventually, force) an upgrade to a newer version. With the one-click upgrade described earlier, this should be of minimal inconvenience.

More to Come...

I've run out of time to prepare for this announcement, so I'll leave the presentation to other plugin features for a post another day. In the mean time, give them a try and let me know what you think...


Comments so far....

I just wanted to say thank you for these plugins – the Flickr and Zenfolio ones are a lifesaver for me and this is just fantastic.

— comment by Guy Collier on July 29th, 2008 at 4:52pm JST (6 years, 3 months ago) comment permalink

Just downloaded all the version 2 plugins. Very nice! You’ve saved weeks of my life with the Zenfolio uploader. You can put me on the list of those who be interested in a shutterfly uploader. They are the last place around to get good prints on fuji crystal archive.

— comment by Adam on July 30th, 2008 at 12:28pm JST (6 years, 3 months ago) comment permalink

Excellent work as always – Zenfolio plugin saves me a lot of time.

I’ve noticed that you now compile your plugins with luac but what is more interesting to me is that you used some obfuscation to your compiled code (so not evan very readable in ChunkSpy output). I was looking to do the same thing but have never seen any tools to do this on automated basis and the situation with lua code being relatively easily readable concerns me (I’ve mentioned it on Adobe forums). Would you care to share your approach to this? Is this an available tool (obfuscator) or have you done something of your own?

Alex

— comment by Alexey D on July 30th, 2008 at 4:57pm JST (6 years, 3 months ago) comment permalink

Thank you so much for your hard work on these plugins! I am especially excited about the Metadata Wrangler Export plugin. I’ve been meaning to learn more Perl and really understand the ExifTool library (your Regular Expression book has been very helpful thus far) but I’m still not comfortable stripping out thumbnails and such as a batch process. This means I don’t have to as I can just use the plugin.

Great work! Thanks!

Mark

— comment by Mark on August 3rd, 2008 at 12:18am JST (6 years, 3 months ago) comment permalink

Thanks for your blog and work with LR plugins. I will be using the Zenfolio one and would love a Shutterfly plugin, is that in your plans?. We use Shutterfly for photo books — once you learn one service its hard to switch, I don’t know if there are other photo book options that are better.

I’ve no immediate plans for Shutterfly, but could consider it once things calm down. However, a quick perusal of their site didn’t yield anything about a public API, and I wouldn’t try to make a plugin without that, so it doesn’t bode well…

I also like that sometimes you post pics of your son, even if it is not a photographic “work of art”… it makes me feel better since 99% of my pics are of my daughter!

Things would be pretty sparse if I limited myself to posting “works of art”, even using my own inflated sense of ego. I post mostly stories… stories that I want to read about myself, when I’m old and senile (likely next year ;-) ). —Jeffrey

— comment by Rob on August 4th, 2008 at 9:24pm JST (6 years, 3 months ago) comment permalink

Hey Jeffrey. Awesome blog, you’re on my Google reader feed. I really enjoy the Western perspective you apply to your posts about life in Japan. Very interesting!

The smugmug export tool is simply wonderful. Thank you so much for all the time you’ve invested into working on it! The quick transition to LR 2 is quite welcome, too :).

Best regards,

Adam.

— comment by Adam Steenwyk on August 5th, 2008 at 5:20am JST (6 years, 3 months ago) comment permalink

Hi Jeffrey, First thanks for your great plugin. It really change my workflow. About the expiration think, I understand your reason for doing this. But I usually connect once with my laptop to upload pictures to flickr. Having to upgrade first takes a bit of time that I could spend later on, while off line, specially because the upgrade process is not working automaticaly on my non always admin vista.
Could you instead of giving a full stop on time limit give it a 5 time grace period, with maybe an automatic upgrade download, so I can upload my picture, see there is a new version, and upgrade offline without consuming some cyber cafe time wherever I am?
That would be great . Thanks.

— comment by Hugo on August 11th, 2008 at 4:51am JST (6 years, 3 months ago) comment permalink

Jeffrey — your plug-ins are excellent!! But do you know is there any way to export and maintain the LR folder structure at the destination?? I have the catalog with all my old JPEGs and newer RAW images, but periodically I’d like to export everything (typically after much rearranging and editing) to my Home Server… but I definitely don’t want everything in a single folder. The wife would not approve… what I want is the same “tree” that I have in Lightroom. Adobe only seems to allow specifying a folder and ONE subfolder.

Any ideas? Thanks!

— comment by Allen J. on August 13th, 2008 at 1:37pm JST (6 years, 3 months ago) comment permalink

Have you considered a plug in to allow export that will preserve folder structure. As an example, I have all raw files. Would like to be able to export several folders and sub folders and export as jpgs to give to someone. At present, the only way I see is to create the folder structure at destination then export each folder, one at a time to the new location. I would think a lot of folks would be interested.

— comment by Terry Metcalf on August 14th, 2008 at 10:21pm JST (6 years, 3 months ago) comment permalink

I have just installed your fantastic export to Flickr plug-in, many thanks for your time and effort.

I have already uploaded quite a few pictures prior to finding your solution, is there any way to enter the metadata for ‘At Flickr’, without this in place it seems I cannot update any images that I change and would therefore lose my comment thread unless I fall back to Flickr uploader :(

— comment by Louise on August 16th, 2008 at 10:29pm JST (6 years, 3 months ago) comment permalink

Wonderful. I used your piglet/plugin for lightroom 1. I will be updating when I get home. Are you not charging or ‘asking for donations’? I think that a 5 dollar paypal link would be in order?

— comment by carl on August 20th, 2008 at 1:02am JST (6 years, 2 months ago) comment permalink

So you say:

“Export filters (what Adobe calls “post-process actions”) are an officially supported replacement for the “piglet” plugin infrastructure that I developed for Lightroom 1.”

Does this mean there is an easy way to create these “actions” or that a plugin can be specified to act in this way? (LR/Mogrify plugin for example?)

I think I left three messages on various parts of your site, sorry…

— comment by Eric on September 24th, 2008 at 6:32am JST (6 years, 1 month ago) comment permalink

I hope you don’t get tired of folks thanking you for your plug-ins and, even more importantly, the obvious effort you have taken to provide straight-forward instructions for their use. Your Lightroom 2-to-Flickr plugin, in particular, is going to have a dramatic effect on my workflow.

Too bad about the apparent unlikelihood of a plug in for Shutterfly. My wife continues to insist on using the site for her photographs – which means I have to wrangle uploading her shots using their cumbersome interface. Grrr. It makes using your plugin for my own stuff on Flickr all the sweeter. Thanks again.

— comment by Bill Grae on October 17th, 2008 at 11:36am JST (6 years ago) comment permalink

Your plugins are great…thank you! I’d also like to chime in with another request for a Shutterfly exporter :)

— comment by Dave on October 17th, 2008 at 3:12pm JST (6 years ago) comment permalink

Thanks for the plugins! You’ve saved me so much time uploading to Flickr and Facebook!

— comment by Phil Jones on November 7th, 2008 at 11:52am JST (6 years ago) comment permalink

Hi Jeffrey. Love the blog. Love the plugins. I’m using the Facebook plugin and it doesn’t seem to have the export options for controlling resolution, sharpening, etc. that standard export has. Any plans for getting that added? Domo!

I took those sections out because only one set of parameters makes sense for Facebook, so to keep the interface simple, I took them out. —Jeffrey

— comment by Ash on November 29th, 2008 at 12:50pm JST (5 years, 11 months ago) comment permalink

PLLLLLEEEEase consider Shutterfly

— comment by Keith on March 25th, 2009 at 10:32pm JST (5 years, 7 months ago) comment permalink

My smugmug plugin’s ‘upgrade’ box has never worked (vista machine). I’ve been using this thing for nearly a year now, and I am reallllly sick of having to manually upgrade all the time. I couldn’t even get the most recent upgrade to work. Usually when I finish working on my photos I’m tired and cranky, and thats when I find out that I have to re-install this stupid program… therefore I’m developing a pretty unfair grudge against you. Is there some way we can fix this? I’m going back to uploading the old fashioned way otherwise.

My plugin works fine, wont you just let me be, without expiration dates!??

It’s beyond me how you can be rude to me after I let you use something I worked hard to build. I thought I was being kind, but maybe I should have been selective in who I allowed to use it. In any case, if you had upgraded recently, you would have noticed that expiration was removed from the “stupid program” quite a while ago. —Jeffrey

— comment by Rich on March 31st, 2009 at 10:45am JST (5 years, 7 months ago) comment permalink

Hi,

Just wondering down the line, if I format my computer and reinstall everything… how does that work with the registration model? Can I still activate it? or will i run into a wall because its still locked to my previous install on the same computer?!

Thanks

Nick

If you’re speaking of Lightroom’s registration, I don’t know. If you’re speaking of registrations for my plugins, they are good for two installs by default, but if you reformat or the like, just drop me a note and I’ll bless the codes for additional installs. —Jeffrey

— comment by Nick Eagle on June 28th, 2009 at 10:27pm JST (5 years, 4 months ago) comment permalink

Please help me….I’m getting crazy!!!!
For a couple of days I’ve not problem with the plugin – I liked it.
But all of a sudden I cannot “Authenticate to flickr” from Lightroom 2.5.
When I click on “Authenticate to Flickr” nothing happens. I already switched of my Firewall – but with no success.
Any hints are welcome….

Merci,
Timo
Munich, Germany

— comment by Timo on November 5th, 2009 at 5:52pm JST (5 years ago) comment permalink

Sorry here’s a addition to my previous message. Here a part of the log-file. I couldn’t send it to you direct because there’s an error sending the log because Lightroom could conact your server….

[...]

Ah, well, that tells me that your system security settings are blocking Lightroom from using the network. Find what’s blocking it and add an exception, and it should be fine. —Jeffrey

— comment by Timo on November 5th, 2009 at 9:00pm JST (5 years ago) comment permalink

Here’s the solution to my above problem.:

After I tried to upload manually via the Homepae of flickr and failed there too I read in the flickrs-FAQs that when you use Firefox be sure that Internet Explorer is not in Offline-Modus!! And indeed my Internet Explorer was in Offline Modus, I changed that and now it’s all good?!!!
Thank Jeffrey for the beautiful plugin!!!

— comment by Timo on November 6th, 2009 at 4:14am JST (5 years ago) comment permalink

Dear Jeffrey,

First of all thank you for the wonderful plugin you have created. I was searching for a plugin that could export images to facebook from LR and was directed to your site. Installation was a breeze and the user interface has no learning curve. Wish some big name publishers hired developers like you. I plan to donate for your hard work in 3 weeks time (maxed out my ccard tied to paypal this month on a car purchase lol).

Again thank you for this awesome plugin :D

Regards,
Aniv Das

— comment by Aniv on June 7th, 2010 at 2:57pm JST (4 years, 5 months ago) comment permalink

Jeffrey,

I’m from Melbourne Australia. Have just bought LR4 for a Windows 7 machine. I prefer Chrome as my browser. I seem to be missing something obvious. I’ve installed your plug-ins for both Flickr & Facebook. Let’s get Flickr working first. I open Chrome and login to Flickr. I open LR4 and your plugin and click on the “Authenticate to Flickr” button. A window pops up asking me to “View the authentication page at Flickr”, but nothing happens in my browser. I’ve disabled my “Blink” firewall, the Ad-block plug in for Chrome but still no luck. Frustrating.

Cheers

John

Not sure what the problem might be… the plugin tells Lightroom to open a URL, and Lightroom tells the system-default browser. Are you sure Chrome is your system default browser? (Perhaps try making it not so, then putting it back?) —Jeffrey

— comment by John Godfrey on June 26th, 2012 at 9:15pm JST (2 years, 4 months ago) comment permalink

From Oakland, California – how will your plugin be affected by the “new Smugmug” they just released today (without a whole lot of documentation as far as I can tell)? I’m really hoping there will be no impact on your plugin but it sounds too good to be true…

I use your plugin on a Win7 Pro 64-bit box running LightRoom 3.

As far as I can tell, it’s a display-only change… nothing on the back end affects the plugin. —Jeffrey

— comment by hedera on July 31st, 2013 at 3:47am JST (1 year, 3 months ago) comment permalink

Hi Jeffrey!
I’m currently testing your tumblr + flickr plugins, tumblr seems to be working fine.
I have a question about the flickr plugin. I have previously used flickr manually, without LR, and already have a big collection there. Is there a way of synching/importing all those uploaded files in the publish service in LR? I have checked the help section with synching but could not find specific info for that. Thanks for letting me know if this is possible. (the plugin connects perfectly with my flickr account and shows the name of the sets I have online, but with zero images)

Greeetings from Paris,
Sidney

See here. —Jeffrey

— comment by Sidney on August 19th, 2014 at 12:44am JST (2 months, 13 days ago) comment permalink
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