Creating custom Metadata Field Lists in Lightroom

When you’re in Lightroom’s Library mode, you are able to set the metadata for your photos based on some pre-defined field lists.

If you’re like me, you’ve probably found yourself switching between multiple different metadata field sets, for instance between Default, EXIF, and Location:

But as it turns out, there’s a way that you can set up your own custom field lists so that you can have one screen with every field that you commonly use.

Here’s the custom one that I’ve set up, with just the Title/Caption section and a Location section. Everything I normally need when tagging photos:

To set one up, browse to  %appdata%\Adobe\Lightroom. You’re looking for a folder called Metadata Field Lists . If it’s not there just create it yourself.

Within that folder, you can make as many lrtemplate files as you wish to have preset lists. The one that I showed above is called Alan.lrtemplate , and the content of the file looks like this:

Once you’ve created your file, restart Lightroom and you should see your a new option in the Metadata settings.

Here are a list of at least some of the common field names. There are more available than this, but this should get you started:

  • com.adobe.filename: The leaf name of the file (for example, “myFile.jpg”).
  • com.adobe.originalFilename.ifDiffers: The leaf name of the file (for example, “myFile.jpg”) prior to renaming. Only displayed if differs from the current file name.
  • com.adobe.sidecars: If any “sidecar” files are associated with this file (for instance, .xmp or .thm files), this item will list the extensions of those files.
  • com.adobe.copyname: The name associated with this copy.
  • com.adobe.folder: The name of the folder the file is in.
  • com.adobe.filesize: The formatted size of the file (for example, “6.01 MB”)
  • com.adobe.fileFormat: The user-visible file type (DNG, RAW, etc.).
  • com.adobe.metadataStatus: The status of the metadata in the file, as compared to the metadata in the Lightroom catalog. Typical values (in English) are “Up to date”, “Has been changed”, or “Conflict exists”. (This list is not exhaustive.)
  • com.adobe.metadataDate: Date/time when Lightroom last updated metadata in this file.
  • com.adobe.audioAnnotation: If an audio file (typically .wav file) is associated with this photo, this will contain the name of that file. Only displayed if there is an audio file.
  • com.adobe.separator: Inserts a dividing line.
  • com.adobe.rating: The user rating of the file (number of stars).
  • com.adobe.colorLabels: The name of assigned color label. Despite the plural name, only one color label can be assigned to a photo.
  • com.adobe.title: The title of photo.
  • com.adobe.caption: The caption for photo.
  • com.adobe.label: This entry allows you to insert a custom label describing the items that follow it.
  • com.adobe.imageFileDimensions: The original dimensions of the file (for example, “3072 x 2304”).
  • com.adobe.imageCroppedDimensions: The cropped dimensions of file (for example, “3072 x 2304”).
  • com.adobe.exposure: The exposure summary (for example, “1/60 sec at f/2.8”) exposureTime?
  • com.adobe.shutterSpeedValue: The shutter speed (for example, “1/60 sec”)
  • com.adobe.apertureValue: The aperture (for example, “f/2.8”)
  • com.adobe.brightnessValue: The brightness value
  • com.adobe.exposureBiasValue: The exposure bias/compensation (for example, “-2/3 EV”)
  • com.adobe.flash: Whether the flash fired or not (for example, “Did fire”)
  • com.adobe.exposureProgram: The exposure program (for example, “Aperture priority”)
  • com.adobe.meteringMode: The metering mode (for example, “Pattern”)
  • com.adobe.ISOSpeedRating: The ISO speed rating (for example, “ISO 200”)
  • com.adobe.focalLength: The focal length of lens as shot (for example, “132 mm”)
  • com.adobe.focalLength35mm: The focal length as 35mm equivalent (for example, “211 mm”)
  • com.adobe.lens: The lens (for example, “28.0-135.0 mm”)
  • com.adobe.subjectDistance: The subject distance (for example, “3.98 m”)
  • com.adobe.dateTimeOriginal: The date and time of capture (for example, “09/15/2005 17:32:50”) Formatting can vary based on the user’s localization settings
  • com.adobe.dateTimeDigitized: The date and time of scanning (for example, “09/15/2005 17:32:50”) Formatting can vary based on the user’s localization settings
  • com.adobe.dateTime: Adjusted date and time (for example, “09/15/2005 17:32:50”) Formatting can vary based on the user’s localization settings
  • com.adobe.make: The camera manufacturer
  • com.adobe.model: The camera model
  • com.adobe.serialNumber: The camera serial number
  • com.adobe.artist: The artist’s name
  • The software used to process/create photo
  • com.adobe.GPS: The location of this photo (for example, “37°56’10” N 27°20’42” E”)
  • com.adobe.GPSAltitude: The GPS altitude for this photo (for example, “82.3 m”)
  • com.adobe.creator: The name of the person that created this image
  • com.adobe.creatorJobTitle: The job title of the person that created this image
  • com.adobe.creatorAddress: The address for the person that created this image
  • com.adobe.creatorCity: The city for the person that created this image
  • com.adobe.creatorState: The state or city for the person that created this image
  • com.adobe.creatorZip: The postal code for the person that created this image
  • com.adobe.creatorCountry: The country for the person that created this image
  • com.adobe.creatorWorkPhone: The phone number for the person that created this image
  • com.adobe.creatorWorkEmail: The email address for the person that created this image
  • com.adobe.creatorWorkWebsite: The web URL for the person that created this image
  • com.adobe.headline: A brief, publishable synopsis or summary of the contents of this image
  • com.adobe.iptcSubjectCode: Values from the IPTC Subject NewsCode Controlled Vocabulary (see:
  • com.adobe.descriptionWriter: The name of the person involved in writing, editing or correcting the description of the image
  • com.adobe.category: Deprecated field; included for transferring legacy metadata
  • com.adobe.supplementalCategories: Deprecated field; included for transferring legacy metadata
  • com.adobe.dateCreated: The IPTC-formatted creation date (for example, “2005-09-20T15:10:55Z”)
  • com.adobe.intellectualGenre: A term to describe the nature of the image in terms of its intellectual or journalistic characteristics, such as daybook, or feature (examples at:
  • com.adobe.scene: Values from the IPTC Scene NewsCodes Controlled Vocabulary (see:
  • com.adobe.location: Details about a location which is shown in this image
  • The name of the city pictured in this image
  • com.adobe.state: The name of the state pictured in this image
  • The name of the country pictured in this image
  • com.adobe.isoCountryCode: The 2 or 3 letter ISO 3166 Country Code of the country pictured in this image
  • com.adobe.jobIdentifier: A number or identifier needed for workflow control or tracking
  • com.adobe.instructions: Information about embargoes, or other restrictions not covered by the Rights Usage field
  • com.adobe.provider: Name of person who should be credited when this image is published
  • com.adobe.source: The original owner of the copyright of this image
  • com.adobe.copyright: The copyright text for this image
  • com.adobe.rightsUsageTerms: Instructions on how this image can legally be used
  • com.adobe.copyrightInfoURL
  • com.adobe.allPluginMetadata: All metadata defined by plug-ins.
  • (plugin ID).*: All metadata defined by the plug-in with the given ID.
  • (plugin ID).(field ID): A specific plug-in provided metadata field.

3 thoughts on “Creating custom Metadata Field Lists in Lightroom

  1. com.adobe.originalFilename.ifDiffers causes the entire file to not appear in the Metadata Field List drop-down. It cannot be used.

    Where did these field names come from? Are they through your own experimentation or Adobe documentation?

    1. I’m sorry—I think a syntax error in my code caused the issue, not the com.adobe.originalFilename.ifDiffers—that works fine.

      Also, here is a link to Lightroom documentation which may help find more metadata tags: com.adobe.originalFilename.ifDiffers

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