How to Organize Your Preset Folders in Lightroom


Lightroom is one of the best (if not the best) post-production editing software available on the market. It simplifies and speeds up a photographer's workflow to where he/she can spend less time editing and more time shooting. However, if there is a weak spot to Lightroom, it’s organizing presets. If you're not careful, it can turn into a bunch of cluttered, poorly categorized folders. Here's how you can create organized preset folders, so you don't waste time searching for what you need.

presets folder in lightroom

Develop Presets:

If you have ever worked with presets, you know that Lightroom offers the Develop Presets folder for storing your presets.  It's where you’ll find all of your installed presets. The folders appear on the left side of your screen in your Lightroom interface organized by sets. 

New Folders:

It’s at this point in the Lightroom interface that you might want to gain (or regain) some organizational control of your folders. The most obvious way to do this is to create new preset folders to organize your presets better.

There are two ways to create new preset folders:

  1. From the Lightroom Develop module, just right-click on an existing folder within your presets panel. You’ll see the option to create a “new folder”. Just click on that to create and name a new folder.
  2. The other way is to start from the beginning by opening your file manager or browser to open your Develop Presets folder. Once there, you can add any new sub-folders you create - but you won’t see them until you restart Lightroom. 

Re-naming Folders:

If you already have preset folders, but you would like to rename them to find them more easily. You can follow the same two steps outlined above by either starting from your browser or from within the Develop module. Whichever way you choose, you will need to be on the presets panel and complete following steps:

  • Click on the folder you’d like to rename.
  • Then right-click on that folder to open a popup menu.
  • On the popup menu, click on “rename.”
  • Once that folder is displayed, enter the new name.
  • Click ok to save the new name.

Note: Folders always display in alphabetical order. You might want to think about naming the most frequently used folders so that they will appear at the top. You can do that by either adding a number in front of the name or the letter “A” followed by the name. This guarantees it displays at or near the top of your list of folder names.

Organizing Presets:

Once you’ve organized your folders, you can move on to organizing your Lightroom presets. There are two ways to accomplish this:

  1. Move your preset folders around by opening your browser.
  2. Move the preset folders while you're in Lightroom. 

In the Develop module, you also can move presets between folders by clicking, dragging, and dropping them. Remember that presets are also displayed in alphabetical order by their name. If you have frequently-used presets, you can consider renaming them as we stated above with the letter “a” or a number at the start of its name.

There’s no need to let preset folders or presets be a cluttered mess on your desktop. With a few extra minutes, you can rename them and organize them so you can easily find them when needed saving you precious time.