Using Tree Mirror

Free version compared to full licensed version

You can use the free version of this plug-in with Lightroom’s Export feature to export your photos with their folder hierarchy to your own folder or to a Photo Upload publish service. Note: Use this plug-in from Lightroom’s Export button\menu item.

In addition, the paid for full version allows you to create published collections from where you can also export photos and their folder hierarchies.

For most people the free version of this plug-in, using Lightroom’s Export capability, does the job of exporting photos and their folder hierarchies perfectly.

All the tutorials on this page use features in the free plug-in.

Export to a new folder, retaining part of the folder hierarchy

1. Select the photos in Lightroom’s Library module that you wish to export.

2. Click “Export…”.

3. Change the “Export To:” in the top of the Export dialog to “Photo Upload”.

4. In the Photo Upload – Account section, choose “Tree Mirror” in the “Upload to:” box.

5. Use the Add/Refresh button to add an account for your Tree Mirror settings (you will likely only need to do this the first time you use the plug-in).

6. Open the Settings window by pressing the Settings button.

7. In the “Source base folder:” text box, specify the base folder for the source (original) photos.

For example:

Z:\Pictures

8. Tick the check box “Export to folder:”.

9. In the “Destination base folder:” text box specify the base folder for the destination (exported) photos.

For example:

Z:\Pictures\Export 1080

Your Lightroom Export and Settings windows should look a little like this:

Export - Folder

This will export the selected photos, and preserve any folder hierarchy in the path name after the specified source base folder.

For example, if you exported photos from:

Z:\Pictures\2010\2010-01-11 Aconcagua

Then with the settings above the photos would be exported to:

Z:\Pictures\Export 1080\2010\2010-01-11 Aconcagua

10. Click “Ok” to close the Settings window.

11. Finally, click “Export” at the bottom of the Export dialog to export your photos.

Export to a Lightroom published service, retaining part of the folder hierarchy

1. Select the photos in Lightroom’s Library module that you wish to export.

2. Click “Export…”.

3. Change the “Export To:” in the top of the Export dialog to “Photo Upload”.

4. In the Photo Upload – Account section, choose “Tree Mirror” in the “Upload to:” box.

5. Use the Add/Refresh button to add an account for your Tree Mirror settings (you will likely only need to do this the first time you use the plug-in).

6. Open the Settings window by pressing the Settings button.

7. In the “Source base folder:” text box, specify the base folder for the source (original) photos.

For example:

Z:\Pictures

8. Choose “All” in the “Sub-folder names:” list (to export all the sub-folders).

9. Tick the check box “Export to publish service:”.

10. From the “Publish service” list choose the publish service for the destination (exported) photos.

Note: The publish service list will only show those publish services that are “powered” by the Photo Upload plug-in available from this Website. You cannot export photos to other types of publish service.

In the picture below there are numerous available Photo Upload publish services.

Your Lightroom Export and Settings windows should look a little like this:

Export - Publish service

This will export the selected photos and preserve any folder hierarchy AFTER the specified source base folder.

For example, if you exported photos from:

Z:\Pictures\2010\2010-01-11 Aconcagua

Using the settings in this example. the photos would be exported to your publish service with the following hierarchy:

2010\2010-01-11 Aconcagua

11. Click “Ok” to close the Settings window.

12. Finally, click “Export” at the bottom of the dialog to export your photos.

Please leave your feedback in the comments section of this post. Thanks!

*** Standard word of warning. Photos are precious little things and I cannot be held responsible if this plug-in causes anything bad to happen to your photos that you cannot restore from a secure backup.

What file name should I use with Tree Mirror?

You can, of course, specify whichever file name you want for your exported photos using the “File Naming” section in the Export/Publish Service settings window.

However my preferred naming when dealing with photos taken within seconds of each other is to use the following custom format:

{Date (YYYYMMDD)»}{Hour»}{Minute»}{Second»}-{Filename»}
Example: 20150620165531-IMG_2526.jpg

This format includes the minutes and seconds from the photos properties.Export - Filename Template Editor

36 thoughts on “Using Tree Mirror”

  1. Hi my name is Janek,

    I have a problem using the licenced version of tree mirror. When I use the mode “Export to a Lightroom published service, retaining part of the folder hierarchy” a error appears “Service_TM.lua:1044: attempt to index field ‘album’ (a nil value) when I try to publish the exported photos from the publishing service. Can somebody please explain what it means.

    cheers Janek

    1. Hi Janek,
      Oops – you found a recently introduced bug. Apologies!
      Please use the Update button to get the latest (3.6.7) version and this should now fix the problem.
      Let me know how you get on.
      Thanks,
      Rob

  2. I’m trying to get this thing to work automagically with Amazon Cloud Drive.

    – Does TreeMirror only creates references to existing files? No copied/duplicated files on the drive, I hope.
    – What happens if I upload my hierarchy to Amazon, then add new images, then do a lot of edits on existing images, and then export the hierarchy from scratch. Will I have to reupload ALL my images from scratch to the server, or only the diffs?
    – What happens if I delete a file from the library? Will this file become “orphaned” on the server once I export the hierarchy again?
    – Still trying to get sub-folders to play nicely with Amazon cloud drive, seems like there’s a bug there, will report once I know what’s going on.

    Thanks.

  3. Hi,

    I’m very interesting by your plugin for picasa and maybe flickr, but before buy them, I have some question.

    With the free version, I use tree miror export. Your plugin create automaticcaly a publication collection named with each folder name from the hierarchy, separated by -. For example 2010-2010-01-11 Aconcagua. My hierarchy is something like 2015\1501\150126 Holidays\. To avoid very long name, I want that my album exported in Picasa is named 150126 Holidays, and not 2015\1501\150126 Holidays.

    Q1:
    Is it possible to keep only the name of the folder that contains the pictures for publishing ?

    Q2:
    Does your plugin publish automatically the pictures to picasa, or flikr, after the export ? Or do I have to publish manually by cliking on publish button ?

    Q3:
    If I modify some pictures in several folders, that I have already published in Picasa using your plugin. Is there a way to re-publish all my modified pictures without selecting each collection and clicking on publish button ?

    1. Hi Gwen,
      In answer to your questions:
      1. For Picasa Web and Flickr, Tree Mirror Export will always make a single collection with a named based on all folders in the sub-folder hierarchy. You can change your “source base” folder to reduce the sub-folder hierarchy – e.g. you could set the base folder as “2015\1501” if you wanted just the folder name “150126 Holidays”.
      However I will consider adding an option to just use the last folder in the sub-folder hierarchy. Thanks for the suggestion.
      2. You will have to use the “Publish” button after using Tree Mirror Export. Lightroom does not allow plug-ins to auto-publish.
      3. You can select multiple collections at once and then choose Publish. But Lightroom does not have a straightforward “Publish All” button for all collections in publish service.
      Thanks!
      Rob

      1. Thanks for your answer, but change the source base each time can be boring.

        I think that adding an option for that can be usefull.

        1. The latest version (2.6) of the Photo Upload plug-in now includes the same features as the Tree Mirror Export plug-in. You can use this Photo Upload plug-in instead of Tree Mirror Export. One of the new features added is the setting to use just the last folder name from the sub-folder hierarchy.
          Hopefully this is exactly what you were after.
          Please let me know how you get on with it.
          Thanks,
          Rob

          1. Hi Rob,

            Thanks a lot. I will try in few days.
            Just to be sure, with free version, it’s not possible to publish. It just creates the collection.

            To publish, I need a licence ?

          2. In the free version, you get one published collection from which you can publish. The licensed version allows you to create additional published collections. So you should be able to give it a try without requiring a license. Thanks.

          3. Hi Rob,

            I tried this evening, but I can’t find this new option.
            Where is it ?
            Maybe the Combo Sub-Folder Name, but the Combo is disabled in the free version, so I can’t test.

          4. The option is called “Source base folder” and for Tree Mirror it should always be enabled, even for the free version. Are you sure you have selected your service for “Upload to:” as being “Tree Mirror”?

  4. Hi,

    I just purchased Amazon Cloud plugin and also installed tree mirror export.

    I’m trying to upload images to Amazon cloud with the same folder structure I have on my PC but I can’t.

    For example I have C:\Pictures\2012\sport\A on my PC but on Amazon it shows as \Pictures\2012-sport-A

    I’m not sure how to set everything to mirror the folder structure from my PC to Amazon Cloud.

    Can you help me please?

    thanks,
    Nunzio

    1. Hi,
      You should be able to do what you want just with the Photo Upload for Amazon Cloud Drive without the Tree Mirror Export plug-in.
      Use the “Export sub-folder hierarchy after folder” setting. If you photos are on your hard drive in sub-folders beneath the C:\Photos folder then just put C:\Photos in the box below the setting. I keep meaning to put a tutorial page together for this. Let me know how you get on!
      Thanks,
      Rob

      1. Hi,

        thanks for the reply. Using just the publish plugin the subfolders are not created (I already check the settings as you pointed out) and all the photos just go like in one giant folder.

        When I install the plugin it creates an “untitled” folder/collection (in lightroom and amazon). I can’t rename that so created another one called “My Photos” however as I said subfolders don’t get created.

        Help please!
        Nunzio

        1. Hi,
          You can only use the “Export sub-folder hierarchy after folder” setting with a licensed version of the plug-in.
          And it would only really make sense to use it via Export, not Publish.
          Have you bought a licensed version of the plug-in? And are you using it via Export, not Publish?
          Thanks,
          Rob

          1. Hi,

            I was using the Publish and not export! it works perfectly through export. Thanks!

            However it would be nice to have it work through publish so to keep track of what needs to be republished.

            Through export you will loose track of what you already have uploaded. If you know the publish way to work you should know what I mean..

            Any chance of making the publish work soon with the plugin?

            Thanks,
            nunzio

          2. Lightroom makes it not really practical to create real world folder hierarchies using Publish. You can create Publish collections, but these cannot contain photos, just other sub-collections or albums. Only albums can contain photos. These restrictions mean that there are instances when you cannot recreate a folder hierarchy where there are real world folders that contain both sub-folders and photos. Hopefully this makes sense.
            The Tree Mirror Export plug-in tries to get around this by each real world folder having a Lightroom publish album called “Album”. This is far from ideal when creating backups – but perhaps this would work for you?
            Regarding your problem though – there may be another alternative solution. You say you want to keep track of what you’ve uploaded. Well, each photo has a Metadata tag called “Exported” set to “Yes” when it has been uploaded by the plug-in. Why not include a column for this “Exported” value in your Lightroom Library to help you see which photos have been uploaded?
            Thanks,
            Rob

    1. Hi,

      Yes – hopefully soon-ish. The problem is that for flexibility for the user the Tree Mirror Export plug-in is implemented as an Export Filter. But Lightroom does not allow Export Filters to work with videos. The plug-in needs to be re-structured to work as a regular Export plug-in rather than an Export Filter so the work is not quite as trivial as one might think.

      Thanks,
      Rob

    2. Hi,

      There is now a new version of the Tree Mirror Export plug-in available which allow you to include videos in your export. You can get the new version by using the “Update” button in the plug-in’s settings from Lightroom’s Plug-in Manager.
      Let me know how you get on.

      Thanks,
      Rob

  5. Awesome, I’ve been looking for a workflow for this since I started using Lightroom 2. (Amazed that Adobe have not made it possible to use regexp and original file folder as part of name creation on export, thoguh!)

    But with your plugin, I have now significantly less work on exporting, every single time!

    Hereby donating for this fine plugin! (Urge other users to do the same!)

  6. Hi,

    I was delighted to find your plugin – I’ve been dearly missing this function. Thank you up front!

    So much for the good news: I can’t get it to work here… 😉

    Perhaps you can help me:

    1.) Which folder in the library should I select in Lightroom before choosing “Export”? If the selected folder doesn’t contain any images, the button is greyed out. Should I check “display fotos in subfolders” from the “Library” menu?

    2.) When exporting, the plugin creates jpg files in a system directory (users/appdata/temp/something), and when the process completes, this folder is deleted. The resultant files do not end up in the intended target directory. The logfile shows three totally different paths – the path displayed with “Photo Destination File” has nothing in common with the one displayed with “Export Base Folder”.

    Perhaps I could send you the log file in question?

    Regards,
    VGER

    1. Hi,

      You should probably explain what you are trying to do.

      To answer your questions:
      1) You should simply select the photos you want to export, not the folders in the library.
      2) When exporting files, Lightroom creates temporary files that meet your export criteria (e.g. size, file format etc.). When the export has finished doing whatever the export should be doing, Lightroom removes the temporary files. Without knowing what you are trying to achieve I can’t comment any further.

      Regards,
      Rob

      1. reg. 1.) I can’t do that without having “display fotos in subfolders” checked, because the top folder only contains subfolders, not images themselves. So I’ll keep that for the time being.

        reg 2.) It looks like the temps are created all right, but not in subfolders, and they are not transfered to the “Export base folder”. Apparently they are just deleted when the process is completed, the target folder stays empty. I’m sure that’s not supposed to happen, should it?

        1. (After a few emails…)
          This problem was due to the base folder paths being case sensitive. This is the expected behaviour on Mac but not on Windows.
          I’ll create a new version of the plug-in allowing it to work more flexibly with Windows folder paths.
          Thanks for highlighting this and I’m glad you’ve got your photos exporting as expected now.

          1. The latest version of the plug-in (1.0.7) is now more tolerant to Windows folders not needing to be case sensitive.
            Thanks for your help highlighting this one.

  7. Thank you for the plugin, it works well on LR4.
    I have a question, what is the use of specifying the base folder path if you still need to select a bunch of pictures in the catalog? What does it really do?

    Thank you!

    1. Hi,

      During export, the plug-in replaces the master base folder with the export base folder.
      It also creates any folders that do not exist.
      I use it to easily create a resized version of my photos in a folder hierarchy that mirrors the hierarchy of the original photos.

      Rob

  8. Having trouble installing the plugin on Lightroom 4. First the plugin manager would give me an “error occurred while trying to load the plugin”. So finally I renamed the folder to “treemirrorexport.lrplugin” which is the filename convention it was looking for. Then I do see the plugin on the left side of the manager dialog box with a red circle and the error “installed but not working”. In the Plug-in Author Tools section the error is “the plu-in description script (info.lua) is missing. Any thoughts

    1. Hi. I’ll email you and you may need to send me some screenshots or details of exactly where you installed the plugin. You definitely don’t need to rename the extension as you did. Thanks.

  9. Great idea ! too bad It doesn’t work on lightroom 4 (OSX Mountain lion).
    It’s exporting something somewhere but there is nothing in the export folder.

    Thanks for your time 🙂

    1. Could you turn on Output to Log and kindly send me the *.log file from your Documents folder?
      If you give me a valid email address when you post your next comment then I can contact you by email.
      Thanks!

      1. The plug-in should now work on Macs. I had help from another Mac user to fix a problem. Would appreciate if you could try the plug-in and let me know if it now works for you.
        Thanks.

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