Feature #8800

Option "Add to original's film roll" in exports.

Added by Richard Wonka over 7 years ago.

Closed: won't fix
Target version:
Start date:
Due date:
% Done:


Estimated time:
Affected Version:
hardware architecture:


When I export images as backups or finals from my originals, I would like them catalogued within darktable, ideally in the same roll.

Currently, I would have to re-import them and then re-type the film-roll's name (exactly) in order to achieve this.

Apart from the event-based sorting, this is one of the few reasons why I still start shotwell at all.

It would be nice to have the option of adding an exported image to the original's film roll.

To make it easy for beginners of darktable, this could then be used for built-in export preset "backup as jpg" that exports a full-resolution jpeg next to original image and adds it to the original's film roll.


#1 Updated by Tobias Ellinghaus over 7 years ago

  • % Done changed from 0 to 20
  • Status changed from New to Incomplete

I tend to close this as "wontfix" since I can't see any use case for having exported images imported in darktable. You already have the original you exported. Could you please tell me why it is a good idea to see exported files on the lighttable?

#2 Updated by Richard Wonka over 7 years ago


darktable has functionality to keep a catalogue of images, which many users will expect to be complete.

A probably fairly common use case for exports is to export a jpg (or tiff or whatever) in full resolution which saves all the changes done in darktable as a backup of one's work.

This makes a lot of sense, as in five years, the settings defined in this version of darktable may not produce the same result (if any at all) or I only want to keep the export and remove the raw file.

If I now export the product of my work, it suddenly disappears from darktable's view and renders the darktable's image catalogue incomplete: There is an image there that I definitely want to keep and that belongs to this film roll's context, but darktable doesn't show it to me. I am very hesitant to delete a raw file if I can not see that the export has worked as expected and the file is right there next to it.

So I then have to either switch to another software (shotwell, file manager, etc... ) that shows me the product of my work - or re-import the image that I just produced. - Neither option makes much sense, as it distracts from my actual work and/or invites problems in the interaction with other software... (What happens to darktable when I remove an image in shotwell? - What the other way around?)

All this overhead can easily be avoided by having the option of adding an export to the current film roll.

It even makes sense to add information about exports/derivatives to the original's metadata and to link from the original to all of its exports and from the exports to their original. going back and forth between versions is likely to be a common step when creating different versions of one image for different uses.

#3 Updated by Richard Wonka about 7 years ago

This would neatly slot into the new grouping feature where one export of the raw file (the camera's exported jpeg) is already imported into the film roll.

I really do think this makes sense.

#4 Updated by Tobias Ellinghaus about 7 years ago

  • % Done changed from 20 to 0
  • Status changed from Incomplete to Closed: won't fix

#5 Updated by Richard Wonka about 7 years ago

I would like to re-open. If someone could rename the Issue to "Add to original's group", please? Since dt now has group support, that title makes more sense.

This feature fixes a current inconsistency in darktable's behaviour:

Darktable has collection management, film rolls and now even grouping, so it definitely has features for image management. Current default behaviour is to group raw files with their exports if any are detected. But: Adding more exports to the group would require a re-import and then re-grouping.

In my workflow I want to keep track of some exports (because I re-use them) like an HQ export as a backup or a commonly used low-res export for web use, or to have an export for each possible watermark to be used, etc. Doing this allows me to do everything I need to do from within darktable instead of changing to another application that also features image management, but doesn't have this limitation.

Darktable already is an image management software, why not make it better at what it does?

Also available in: Atom PDF

Go to top