Lightroom 1 Export Plugin for Flickr
This page is for the old Lightroom-Version-1 version of this plugin. Go here for the current version.

Initial Preview  ·  Install Instructions  ·  “Piglets” (Plugin Extensions)  ·

(version history is below)

Some users on Windows get a FormatMessageW failed error when uploading with this or other plugins. Most users don't get it, but those that do seem to get it often.

If you get it, you may find a solution at Alexander Kiel's blog.

Version History

20080714.47Flick Pro users can now opt to Replace previously-uploaded images. I'm not 100% sure exactly what the semantics are with respect to what is preserved from the prior image and what is taken from the new image; let me know how it goes.
20080622.46Fixed the "_update_status" bug that was still happening when the plugin was used with an export preset configured to save non-sRGB JPGs to a photoset selected at export time.
20080613.45A couple of small bug fixes that might help this run in the 2.0 beta a bit better.

Minor tweaks: Added the Flickr logo to the head of the export dialog. Moved the plugin debug log to the Documents / My Documents folder.

Mac Users: if you get an error when you try to install the plugin, something along the lines of "this plugin is already installed or not compatible with your version of Lightroom", please see the install instructions and manually remove the previously-installed version(s). If that still doesn't let you install the new version by clicking, then manually install it. I have no idea why this is happening, so if someone figures it out, please let me know.

20080413.43Uh, a version of the .42 fix that actually fixed.
20080413.42Fixed a problem that caused some people to get an internal error with the previous version. I also reverted the change added in .39 that was aimed to get around a problem in 1.4.0. That problem no longer exists in 1.4.1, so I've put things back.
20080411.41Fix for the "_update_status" bug that those few who export non-sRGB JPGs ran into.

The “Filesize was zero” bug has been solved. Sort of.

It turns out that “Filesize was zero” is Flickr's shorthand for “The size of the file you attempted to upload ended up being larger than the per-image upload limit of your account, which is 5MB if your account is a free one, or 10MB for a pro account.”

The plugin now checks the image that Lightroom builds for the export, and reports the error prior to uploading. The entire export is canceled at that point. I'll work on more sociable error handling for a future version.

Thanks to Ken Rachynski for his help in debugging this.

20080315.39To work around a time-related bug in Lightroom 1.4, I've changed the option that used to be “Set 'taken on' date with each shot when Minimize Embedded Metadata is set” to one that always sets the proper time on the image. It's now ”Set 'taken on' date with each shot (to work around a Lightroom 1.4 bug)”, so you'll probably want to set that if you're using Lightroom 1.4, unless you don't want any date-related metadata sent. Even with this option selected, the file sent to Flickr will still have the wrong “00:00:00&#&8221; time encoded in the EXIF, but the plugin will tell Flickr the proper time, so Flickr's idea of the image's time will be correct.
20080314.38Minor update to allow the plugin to work with Lightroom 1.4.
20080221.37Minor UI tweaks for better appearance on a Mac.
Updated Swedish translation.
20080217.36Small fix to the wording in the Title/Description dialog
  • Updated French translation.
  • Now includes a Swedish translation by Niklas Sjöström.
  • The “select photoset at time of export” (for export presets) feature should actually work now.

Refactored a bunch of the photoset-related code — could have introduced some bugs.

You can now sort the list of photosets, and for presets, have the photoset dialog come up with each export (so now you can select a photoset, or create a new photoset, from export presets).

Includes New version (20080130.4) of my Run Any Command piglet.

20080128.33Tidied up some mistakes in the translation hooks. Interested in doing the translations for my plugins for your favorite language? It's a difficult and thankless job, but you earn good karma for giving to the greater community. If interested, please contact me (jfriedl‍@‍
20080123.31Fix "internal error" bug introduced in previous build, that affected those upgrading from several versions back.
20080122.30Added "Run Any Command" Piglet.
Some internal refactoring to better support the piglet infrastructure.
20080117.29Have export dialog allow file types that any enabled piglets allow. Bail if the resulting filename has an extension that can't be uploaded.
20080115.28Added the piglet manager for fourth-party add-ons
20080109.27New and tidied French translation
20080107.26Housekeeping changes to allow auto-install on OSX
20080104.25Add an option to have the "taken on" date sent with each image even when "Minimized Embedded Metadata" is checked in the Metadata section, to address the issue reported by Scott McMillin
20071227.24Updated French translation
20071222.23Ensure that a long login status message does not crowd out the logout button
20071217.22Update to the title/description logic. Properly handle a no-gallery situation. New French translation file.
20071213.21fix bug introduced in .19
20071213.20new French translation file
20071213.19Can now filter the export so that only images previously exported to Flickr will be processed, or, conversely, only images that have not been previously exported to Flickr.
20071212.18Minor internationalization prep.
20071210.17More internationalization prep. Added a first draft of a French translation, courtesy of Gilles Theophile. (Contact him with any suggested changes.)
20071205.16Can now export the original master file. Can now note an image resolution in pixels per inch/cm in the image metadata.
20071204.15More internationalization prep.
20071204.14Fixed keywording
Added the ability to enter extra keywords in either Flickr style (space separated), or Lightroom style (comma separated).
Lots of internal work to lay the groundwork for internationalizing the plugin.
20071127.12Fix typo introduced in the previous version.
Send along a per-install random identifier with the version check, so I can count how many of each plugin is being used.
20071127.11Make it so that the previous item (bandwidth quota not shown for pros) works without requiring reauthentication.
20071127.10Don't show upload quota remaining if the user has a pro account, since such accounts have unlimited bandwidth (or so I'm told... I don't have a pro account, so I really can't test this)
20071127.9Fix typos introduced in previous version

Added some HTTP error trapping in an effort to get around the 'FormatMessageW failed' error that some Windows users have been seeing:

When the trapping is enabled, those errors are ignored, which may allow things to mostly work, or may simply lead to silent failure. Features that rely on the result of the upload (the new photoid) will stop working for uploads that experience a trapped error, such as the 'delete previously uploaded versions' feature.

This may not help, but it's worth a try until the underlying issue can be found and resolved.

20071125.7Now handles properly ampersands in Flickr photoset names
20071125.6Updated the Upload-Management section to allow visiting the exported photos only when not visiting the exported photoset, which allows one to always visit exactly one Flickr page after the upload, the photoset if a photoset was used, or the list of exported photos otherwise.
20071125.5Added a "Save to Local Disk" section to the dialog:
20071123.3Added plugin debugging option, to track HTTP calls
20071123.2Report under the Title/Description the result of what is chosen
20071121.1Initial public release

The 30 most-recent comments (out of 101; see all), most recent last...

Hi Jeffrey, I have been using your plug in for a while and it is quite good. I have noticed however, that all keyword tags get exported in lightroom hierarchichal format even when that option is not selected. That or something weird is happening, as when I go to flickr I will see some keywords like color > red rather than color; red. Is this a known issue? I have done the same exporting to my hard drive without your plug in and in that case the option is respected.


— comment by Gerardo on April 16th, 2008 at 2:44pm JST (16 years, 3 months ago) comment permalink


Outstanding job on the Flickr uploader.

Would you consider a custom version to help simplify my need to upload both sample and deliverable images for delivery to customers?

Paid, of course 🙂


— comment by Ross Cobb on April 25th, 2008 at 12:27pm JST (16 years, 3 months ago) comment permalink

Hi Jeffrey

This worked for a couple of pics, but when exporting any now I get

Bad upload: empty response

Using LR2.0 beta, and latest version of your plug-in

These are cropped photos and even at 75% jpeg I get the error so can’t be anywhere near 10 MB file

Any ideas?

— comment by Paul Webster on May 1st, 2008 at 5:07pm JST (16 years, 2 months ago) comment permalink

Does the plug in handle inclusion of GPS metadata when uploading to flickr? I have photos properly tagged within Lightroom, but after uploading to flickr it would seem the information is lost.

— comment by Kevin on May 24th, 2008 at 3:40am JST (16 years, 2 months ago) comment permalink

Disregard my last comment. flickr requires you to enable the automatic importing of GPS data. Your plug-in, which rocks, is working fine.

— comment by Kevin on May 24th, 2008 at 10:38pm JST (16 years, 2 months ago) comment permalink

This plugin is great, but it seems to frequently hang or get stuck during upload. When this happens, I’ve let it run for a few hours, and it stays on the same photo, which never appears in Flickr. If I try to cancel it, it never cancels. I have to restart Lightroom (using 1.4.1 on Mac OS X 10.5, not the beta) and retry the export.

Any ideas?


It sounds like a flaky internet connection to me, but it’s hard to tell… —Jeffrey

— comment by Tim Norman on May 27th, 2008 at 8:15am JST (16 years, 2 months ago) comment permalink

Thanks a lot for this. It’s working great so far and I’m sure will help me with my photography as I stop being lazy and load more pictures for critique.

— comment by Brent on May 27th, 2008 at 10:59am JST (16 years, 2 months ago) comment permalink

I seem to have a problem crop up with my plugin. It worked just fine for quite some time but then one day, I tried to export to Flickr and it does not show up at all in the drop down menu (in the exports dialog). All it shows is “Export to Disk.” I’m betting that there is a problem with the recent version of Lightroom because updating LightRoom is the only thing that I can think of that has changed. I’m running Lightroom 1.4

Any pointers would be great.

You have to reinstall the plugin when you go from 1.3 to 1.4. The 1.x plugin install/upgrade support is really minimal, so you have to do everything manually (it’ll be better in 2.0). —Jeffrey


— comment by Art on May 28th, 2008 at 11:07pm JST (16 years, 2 months ago) comment permalink

And trying to export without the photo set got this error:

Bad upload: Service currently unavailable (API Disabled)

Maybe it’s just Flickr, then?

Yeah, the “Service currently unavailable” message is one from Flickr; I suspect that they were doing maintenance, or having “issues”. I’d not programmed to handle that error (or many other errors… they’re weak in that respect). I’ll try to update the plugins to be a bit better… —Jeffrey

— comment by Suzanne on May 29th, 2008 at 2:40am JST (16 years, 2 months ago) comment permalink


I have downloaded and installed your plugin for Flickr. Every time I attempt it I get the following message: Internal Plugin Error Bad Upload: Empty Response.

Only the first image I am trying to upload makes it, and it does not put it in the set I want it to go to. I am using Windows XP and LR Beta 2.0. I have also tried it in LR 1.3 with similar results. I also tried the Adobe version and had similar results.

Any help would be appreciated,

— comment by Michael on May 29th, 2008 at 10:43pm JST (16 years, 2 months ago) comment permalink

Love the plugin. With LRMogrify it has sped up my work and reduced the number of files on my computer.

That said I have one request for addition. Can you add the ability to automatically add the original filename as flickr metadata? I often rename the pictures for posting on flickr and this would be a nice addition for me.

Mark Alston

— comment by Mark Alston on June 1st, 2008 at 1:10am JST (16 years, 2 months ago) comment permalink

Hi Jeffrey,

Just a quick thanks for this plugin. I’ve been making a conscious effort to embrace the new workflow tools that exist and this is certainly a major benefit of such. Whilst im only in my mid to late 20’s i have been using the internet and digital cameras since the inception of both and for the most part have (being a PC user) utilised manual image copying and archiving. XP never really got close to even the ease of iPhoto in image management IMHO. Dont even start me on XP’s attempts at batch file renaming. The most automated i have been is via custom macros in Photoshop and a collection of specific renamers, res/size editors and the like. Over the last month i have evaluated Lightroom and tried to get my head around FlickR (as i was an avid SmugMug user i have struggled with FlickR’s reverse display of photo sets, its lack of elegant private galleries and the lack of grid photo navigation) but now i am sold. The workflow has become fun! Tagging and indexing 20 gig of photography is not so fun :/

Once again thanks for your work and hello from Australia!

— comment by Dave on June 11th, 2008 at 10:18am JST (16 years, 1 month ago) comment permalink

I still get

An internal error has occurred: [string “colorspace_check.lua”]:95: attempt to call field ‘_update_status’ (a nil value)

When using an export preset. When run with the normal export dialog no problems.

I’m exporting a RAW image with AdobeRGB to JPEG 100% quality sRGB.



— comment by Dave on June 20th, 2008 at 6:26pm JST (16 years ago) comment permalink

I just noticed an anomaly . My Export plugin will not allow me to create a new Photostream because it says I have exceeded my Photostream quota. I can’t find any reference to a Photostream Quota in the help pages of Flickr (but have posted this question there, too.) This seems odd as I only have three Photostreams in my flickr account.

3 is the limit for free acounts. Flickr Pro (paid) accounts have no limit. —Jeffrey

Thanks for this plugin – it is so useful. And thanks for sharing your life with us via your blog. I feel like I really know your family and am getting to know japan at the same time.

— comment by Brian Jones on June 23rd, 2008 at 9:20pm JST (16 years ago) comment permalink

Enjoying this plugin. Haven’t seen anything else that would let me tag everything in lightroom and export the picture, tags and all, to flickr. So much better than doing it both places!

Unfortunatly, you can group me with the people getting the ‘Bad Upload: Empty Response’ error. Running the Beta2 on Windows XP SP2. For me, I can only upload a single picture at a time. Settings: Photos all in RAW, convert to JPEG/sRGB, Sharpen at low for glossy paper, Write Keywords as Lightroom Hierarchy, and save image files to disk after upload, and I’ve enabled both debugging options.

The files don’t get saved to the disk. That isn’t a big deal; I was doing that to keep track of what shots got uploaded in batches. But, since I’m doing one at a time, no need for the extra export.

Hope some of that helps.

— comment by Chris on June 25th, 2008 at 10:24pm JST (16 years ago) comment permalink

This plugin is amazing! I use it all the time. Is there any way to have the plugin wait until any in-progress uploads are finished before starting? It takes me awhile to upload to Flickr and when I have two uploads running simultaneously the photos get out of order in my photostream. If there’s any way to do this it would be awesome! Thanks for this great plugin!

— comment by mangtronix on June 26th, 2008 at 11:02am JST (16 years ago) comment permalink


Really good plugin.
Except that since the last update, I can’t export anymore to flickr… the plugin detect there’s an update version X.XXXXX, so I came and installed it… but it still detect it and so I can’t export. I dunno if it’s because of the update detected.
tried to reload LR but nothing changed. Uncheked auto detect updates but idem.

please help?

(sorry for my english, i’m french)

— comment by minipez on June 27th, 2008 at 5:35pm JST (16 years ago) comment permalink

Thanks so much .. you are a complete gem!

I’ve been loving this for some months now and recently added the LR/mogrify which has been incredibly useful not to mention the time & effort I save in not having to go to PS just to add a watermark (how dumb to leave that out Adobe!!!)

… anyway, I have just tried to use a droplet with the ‘run any command’ piglet and it appears to run & complete and then proceeds to complete the mogrify command but when it gets uploaded to Flickr there is no result from the droplet, only the mogrify result. If I run the droplet standalone it works fine so something is getting lost in the process of exporting. I have tried turning off the mogrify and running just the ‘run any command’ but still no results. It seems to complete the droplet action but then overwrites it again in the next stage of exporting. I’ve tried changing the order too but still no luck.

Any suggestions?

LR does offer basic watermarking during export. I don’t use droplets (I’m not even sure what they are), but I know others have gotten them to work with the Run Any Command piglet…. —Jeffrey

— comment by Cindy on June 27th, 2008 at 8:39pm JST (16 years ago) comment permalink

I love the concept behind the plugin and it’s proving to be a very useful tool for me, I wish I had found it sooner. Unfortunately I’m having a major stumbling block with it and I can’t seem to work out what the issue is. I use it on a Mac and it installed and loaded just fine, but when I start the export and have the upload running if I try to upload a lot of photos, it freaks out and times out, so now I’m attempting to do it in small batches which gets me a little further each time, but in the end still ends up timing out, is there a solution I’m missing to this problem?

— comment by Jonathan on June 29th, 2008 at 1:12am JST (16 years ago) comment permalink

If you are getting an error – with “check now” with
“Internal Plugin Error
Reply from the version server not understood:
The requested URL /LightroomPlugins/v/2.0 Beta/flickr was not found on this server.

The solution I found is to make sure that the “Add to Photoset” section says “don’t add to a photoset”. Somehow the adding to photoset from the plugin does not work properly.

— comment by on July 10th, 2008 at 1:25am JST (16 years ago) comment permalink

Thanks so much for this extremely useful plugin. Funny thing is that I was using it to upload my photos and then created my photosets on the Flicrk website. After having done this ten or more times, I realized I could do it directly from the plugin! Flickr (Yahoo!?) owes you some money, as your plugin was what made me ultimately decide to switch to Flickr for my phonots. Thanks again!

— comment by Kamal on July 12th, 2008 at 11:00pm JST (16 years ago) comment permalink

This plugin is excellent! Thanks.

What license is it released under? I’m thinking about tweaking it a little (specifically, adding the replace support that you can’t test) but I don’t know if I’d be allowed to share my changes.

Actually, Flickr did finally get back to me, and gave me a free Pro account. I’ve built the “replace” feature into the Flickr plugin (and into the Zenfolio one) for the LR2.0 version that I’ve been working on for ages, just w a i t i n g for Adobe to release. I’ll release those versions the day LR2.0 is released. —Jeffrey

Update a few hours later:
Ah, what the heck, I just added it to the 1.x version of the plugin, so if you upgrade to 20080714.47 or later, you’ll see the replace option in the Upload Management section. —Jeffrey

— comment by dave glasser on July 14th, 2008 at 6:59pm JST (16 years ago) comment permalink

Well, couldn’t ask for better service! Thanks!

I tested this out, and as I guessed from the Flickr API, when replacing a picture *only* the image itself is changed; changes to title/caption/tags/access control don’t seem to take effect. That’s probably a good thing (since you wouldn’t want to overwrite changes made on Flickr, especially to tags which other users can change). I guess the ideal solution would be to save this flickr metadata when you upload a photo into the database, and when replacing a photo, make API calls to look up that metadata on Flickr; then make calls to change the metadata if it *has* changed in Lightroom but *hasn’t* in Flickr. Or something. But “don’t clobber Flickr changes” is a fine start.

— comment by dave glasser on July 15th, 2008 at 1:43am JST (16 years ago) comment permalink

Character set bug?

If my LR keyword is “«Test»”, then it shoes up in Flickr as “ÇTestÈ”.

Actually, it shoes up as both “«Test»” and “ÇTestÈ”.
– If I edit the «Test» keyword in LR and uncheck “Include on Export”, then Flickr only shows “ÇTestÈ”.
– If I check “Minimize Embedded Metadata” on export, then Flickr only shows “«Test»”. (But then the other metadata is stripped from the file stored on Flickr—not really what I want.)
– (It doesn’t seem to make a difference if I check “Write Keywords as Lightroom Hierarchy”.)

So it looks like Flickr is reading “ÇTestÈ” from the embedded EXIF or XMP.

Any ideas? Is Flickr just broken? Or can your plugin tell it somehow that the EXIF is in UTF-8?
(Thanks for all your hard work!)

— comment by Peter Davis on July 18th, 2008 at 12:24am JST (16 years ago) comment permalink

I really like to integrate uploading to flickr into Lightroom. The plugin functions are excellent!

Actually I get the following error message:
Bad upload: empty response

I’m currently using LR 2.0 BETA / Vista with a flickr pro account. I don’t know if there is a problem with the picture size, but if I decide to resize the image (for example 1000px width) uploading is working properly.
Any ideas? Thanks for your hard work!

— comment by Stephan on July 19th, 2008 at 8:05am JST (16 years ago) comment permalink

As a new user of Flickr and your upload plugin for Lightroom
( LR V 1.4.1 Plugin 20080724.47)
I don’t seem to get the Camera Metadata posted to flickr. It may well be a setting in Flickr I haven’t found or in the Export Plugin.

Any help/suggestions…many thanks

PS. Thanks for the plugin, great time saver….

— comment by Mike on August 6th, 2008 at 1:25am JST (15 years, 11 months ago) comment permalink

Thank you so much! I have here more than 8500 photos from the Faroe Islands and needed a month or so, to make a first selection and Flickr upload. I was frustrated, how much time this took, forcing me to spend a lot of time just waiting on LR and my browser to operate. I almost resignated.

Today, I accidently found this plugin (just for fun google after “Lightroom Flickr plugin” only to look, if anybody is out there).

Mail me, if you need a German translation of your interface. You know, both Flickr and Lightroom offer German interfaces, and many users are not familar with all the English terms.

— comment by Arne List on August 28th, 2008 at 3:53am JST (15 years, 11 months ago) comment permalink

Thank you so much for releasing such a useful plugin! 😀

— comment by Paulo Sacramento on October 6th, 2008 at 2:43pm JST (15 years, 9 months ago) comment permalink

Jeff, don’t know if you’re still answering questions about users of your plugin for the first version of Lightroom, but in case you are:

I’ve been using the Mac version successfully for some time (great product, by the way). Then Apple advised me to erase my hard drive and re-install everything, due to problems that couldn’t be more easily fixed. I re-installed Lightroom, downloaded your plugin again, installed it as per your instructions (it wouldnt’ automatically install, as you mention in your instructions), and…nothing. Lightroom won’t recognize the plugin.

I’ve deleted it from my system twice, downloaded again and re-installed, to no effect. Any ideas? Thanks! John

Plugin install for LR1 was a much more hands-on approach.. you have to place the plugin folder “flickr-jfriedl.lrplugin” into the specific folder on your system, then restart Lightroom. It should just pick it up. The zip file for the final version of the LR1 plugin has not changed since last summer, so if you had it working once, you should be able to get it again, but as I said, LR1 is sort of finicky. —Jeffrey

— comment by John on February 4th, 2009 at 8:45am JST (15 years, 5 months ago) comment permalink

Thanks, Jeffery. That’s what I did, following your instructions–the module folder for Lightroom in application support/adobe/lightroom/modules.

When I select “Export” in Lightroom, I get four options: custom, burn JPEGs, Export to DNG, and For Email.

The reinstall seems to have given my computer the flu, when it comes to plugins. I’m having some problems with another, too.


— comment by John on February 4th, 2009 at 9:35am JST (15 years, 5 months ago) comment permalink
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