Sometimes Guys You Have to Read the Manual
OK, I finally admitted it. I had to research on how to move Lightroom Catalogs. Over the last several years, I have made every mistake possible on reorganizing and moving catalogs. So last night before moving a catalog from my laptop internal drive to a brand new external, I actually went and googled the process.
David Marx at TheLightroomLab.com has posted two videos regarding this process. First video covers moving the catalog files onto the external drive. The second video covers moving the actual photo files.
Basically the process is copy the catalog files to the new location and point Lightroom to that location. The second video covers moving the actual photo files, key being, let Lightroom move the files.
Of course I have done all sorts of things, exporting catalogs and deleting the original, trying to merge catalogs by moving photos into the new catalog. The results were always hours of repair work.
But last night I followed Marx's instructions and successfully moved fifty gigs of images. It was painless.