Recover damaged catalogs

Expression Studio 2.0

Microsoft Expression Media can partially or fully recover damaged or corrupted catalogs by using its built-in catalog recovery tool.

When you attempt to open a corrupted catalog, Expression Media indicates to you that the catalog appears damaged. At that point, Expression Media will open a new, empty catalog, and then begin scanning the corrupted one, searching for any salvageable elements. As Expression Media locates undamaged or partially damaged material, the application will populate the new catalog with that material. The scan can vary in duration depending on the size of the original catalog. When the scan finishes, Expression Media will display a dialog box that lists the following:

  • The number of media items that were contained in the catalog.

  • The number of media items that it could recover.

The actual elements recovered could vary. For instance, Expression Media may recover an image, but not its thumbnail or a voice annotation associated with the image, or Expression Media may recover an image but not its metadata.


You can choose to cancel the recovery process at any time by clicking the Cancel button in the Repairing Catalog dialog box. Once you cancel the process, Expression Media displays a dialog box showing the items that it recovered before you cancelled the recovery process. You can either work with the catalog from there or close the catalog and initiate the recovery process later by reopening the catalog file.

Though the catalog recovery tool in Expression Media may be able to automatically restore only a portion of a file, you can often perform additional tasks to restore the remaining elements, such as lost metadata or lost thumbnails. If the recovered data in your catalog is missing some elements, refer to the following lists for additional steps that you can take in order to recover additional lost data.

If the missing data consists of one or more of the following, you must rebuild and reset paths to the original files to restore the data:

  • Thumbnails

  • Previews

  • Catalog Folders

  • File paths

For information on resetting paths, see Find and manage original files.

If the missing data consists of one or more of the following, to restore the data, you must locate the original file and synchronize its annotations to the file you are recovering:

  • Metadata

  • Hierarchical Keywords

  • Catalog Sets

  • Voice annotations

  • Video

  • Label/Rating

For information on synchronizing annotations, see Modifying digital camera metadata.

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