Simplify Entry of Common Metadata in Lightroom 2

Update: A newer version of this plugin is now available. 
Please visit the
Metadata Panels plugin page to download the latest version, and find the latest documentation for the plugin.


According to Scott Kelby I must be either a serial killer or a micro biologist.  Apparently they are the only two types of people who religiously maintain metadata for their photos, but as you might suspect the reality is a little more mundane. 

I keep my metadata up-to-date on all my rated photos for two main reasons:

  1. So I can find them later; and
  2. To help me grow as a photographer by allowing me to better understand what an image captures and how.  

Applying keywords, IPTC location information and geoencoding (when appropriate) helps me to find my photos later.  Gaining insights into my photography depends more upon captions, ratings,  labels and EXIF data.  My quandary was Lightroom 2 addresses these goals using two separate Library Metadata panel layouts: Location and Default

Constantly changing backwards and forwards between these two tagsets (i.e. Metadata panel layouts), or scrolling around the massive All tagset, unnecessarily slows down my workflow.  Fortunately this was a simple issue to resolve as the Lightroom 2 SDK provides a way to define new tagsets.  The result is my newest plugin which provides two additional tagsets for use in the Library module.

Default (With Location) Extends the standard ‘Default tagset with additional IPTC location fields
LR: All A copy of the standard ‘All’ tagset, to demonstrate  available fields.


Metadata Tagset Plugin in action

The second tagset was added because I found the SDK documentation for tagset development to be  insufficient and (in places) inaccurate.  The LR: All tagset implements most of the fields available in the Metadata panel, so if you are interested in modifying my plugin to better suit your individual workflow you have a working example of most of the fields you can select from.


  1. Download the plugin: Latest Metadata Tagsets zip
  2. Copy the file where you want the plugin to permanently reside, then unzip the file.  This should create a sub-directory called metadata-tagsets.lrplugin.
  3. Open Lightroom 2, then select the File\Plugin Manager menu option.
  4. Press the Add button, select the metadata-tagsets.lrplugin directory created in step 2, then press OK.
  5. The plugin is now installed and enabled.  Press Done.


When you open the Library module and display the right panel, a Metadata section is shown towards the bottom of the panel.  To use the new features:

  1. Select the drop down list showing available tagsets.
  2. Choose one of the new tagsets listed at the bottom of the list.  For example, the Default (with Location) tagset depicted here.

I hope you find this plugin useful and feel free to share your experiences or suggestions in the comments section below.

Posted on February 25, 2009 at 9:56 am by Matt · Permalink
In: Howto, Project, Software · Tagged with: , , , , ,