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Virtual Copies

Make a virtual copy of a photograph if you want to retain the original.

You can also create virtual copies with different editing, such as a black-and-white version.

Lightroom doesn't duplicate the actual photograph.

Instead, it creates another editing instruction file for the photograph.

There are several ways you can create a virtual copy.

On Tool Bar?


Keyboard Shortcuts

Ctrl + '

Right Click Menu

Create Virtual Copy

Menu on Top of the Screen

Photo > Create Virtual Copy

On Preview Cell (Border)?


Other & Related Methods

When you create a new collection, you can select Create a Virtual Copy.

Which Is Which?


The virtual copy has the white corner.

How can you tell which preview is the original, and which is the virtual copy?

Look in the lower-left corner of the two previews.

The lower-left corner of virtual copy is folded back.

If you don't see the white corner, press j until you do.

Lightroom Makes a Stack

When you make a virtual copy, Lightroom automatically stacks the original and the virtual copy.

Compare & Survey Views

If you have several virtual copies in the stack, use the Compare and Survey views to compare them.