Add option to show contents of parent folder and subfolders when searching by folder name

When I select a folder in the Source Browser, the images in that folder are displayed in the Image Browser. The images (if any) in the subfolders of the chosen folder are not displayed. This is the behavior I expect since I have already moved all the images I want to adjust to that folder.

Now we have a search feature in PL2 and if I search by folder name I would like to have the option for the Image Browser to show all the images in the parent folder and subfolders.

In my view this makes the search results more meaningful, since it is common practice to organize images using a hierarchical file system .


For me this is also a super important feature, as I have a nested directory structure.


not in 3.3 version yet!
I hope it is not one of those features which will be implemented only in a major version (such as the HSL color picker :frowning: ) in order to lure us to pay for the upgrade!

I would agree that this is an excellent idea but…

I have written my own browser app for macOS and can tell you that it would not be easy to keep everybody happy.

My browser, at the moment, expects a root folder with nothing but sub-folders. That way, the loading of thumbnails only happens when a sub-folder is selected. I tried displaying thumbnails as well as sub-folders from the root but the time taken to load all files from all sub-folders on app startup is pretty horrendous.

If users were prepared to avoid placing images in the root folder, then it is possible but, if they envisage large numbers of files in any one folder in the hierarchy, they are going to have to expect lags and judders when scrolling.

Unless you go down the route of a once only loading that takes time to put thumbnails into a cache before they are fully accessible.

Having just downloaded the trial just now to decide if this is the tool I want to switch too. I immediately noticed this was missing. I consider it such a standard feature that is available in every single other DAM/file browser i have ever used for photography.
without it, this software is basically useless because you don’t respect the most basic form of DAM organisation that every single photographer I know uses.

Having a thumbnail of a folders’ actual contents has been a significant time-saver for me. I still use a DxO competitor’s product because that feature is so crucial. I can only imagine for users who have tens and hundreds of thousands of photos to have to manage, that could be a deal-breaker. PhotoLab’s empty preview screen vs the competition.

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I have been evaluating DxO PL 4 against quite a few other products.

I have to add my voice to the others here, clicking on a folder and seeing the photos in that folder and all sub folders is a really basic and standard requirement. It is available in every other application I have tried so far.

I spent some time looking through menu items and preferences trying to find where to turn this on, after initially being surprised to find it wasn’t on by default.

Then I came to the forums to search for this option and was very surprised this functionality isn’t available.

Therefore I’m going to have to take this product off the short list, despite the other great abilities.

I would strongly suggest this feature is given priority, to the point where nothing else on the product is developed until this is fixed. It is so fundamental that I’m not sure how anyone is able to use the application. It is up there with having a photo editor that couldn’t display pictures.

Anyway, I’m labouring the point. Hopefully this will get fixed and I can have a look again in the future.


Hang on, am I reading this right? I can’t click on a folder and have it show me the images that are contained within the subfolders? I just purchased DxO and if it can’t do this simple thing - then I’m going to have to see if there’s a refund. I have a very organised library and cannot do without this basic 1990’s feature. Can someone please confirm? Thanks.


Welcome to the forum, Marshalleq.
I can confirm that this functionality is still missing from PL4.
Regards, Joseph.

To see the images in subfolders you have to open them individually. This does not appear to be an issue for most of us. Personally, I don’t see the advantage of that feature especially, if like me, one uses a descriptive and meaningful folder naming convention for every folder instead of just using a date as a folder name. I know what is in each of my folders without viewing a single thumbnail. However, I understand that each of us has our own preferences. . .


yes for me too, I do not see the point of seeing the images of a subfolder.
I classify my images by year / date-event /
And with over 150,000 photos, I don’t want my pc to slow down trying to display everything.
After this remains an option to satisfy some users why not.

My app for Mac computers happily browses my Pictures folder, which contains 6,700 images in a hierarchical structure of Place, Year, Month, Day, without hesitation. I have a beta tester who has 80,000 images in their folder and can browse without any significant delay as well.

It can be done if DxO want to do it.


I agree that it is a shame that this feature isn’t part of PL4 in 2021. It is such a basic feature that many other programs offer. It is definitely something that I really miss from Lightroom.


Definitely voted, I can see that its not part of everybody’s work flow, but its a very handy feature that I use regularly on other software and that I missed when I moved to PhotoLab. I would not use it all the time, but begin able to avoid having to manually move to folder after folder to do something or find something can be very handy at times.


Yeah - I was having a try at shifting over from Exposure Software’s Exposure, which I shifted to from Lightroom. I’m mostly happy with Exposure (which does have this feature), but someone talked me into this. I did not expect this basic feature to be missing and for the life of me can’t find a reason why DxO would purposefully exclude it. Perhaps one of the developers has a bee in their bonnet about it so to speak.

The core function I need at present is to be able to organise and sort an extremely large collection and DxO is quite a step down from Exposure (and Lightroom) in this regard. It’s a shame as the feature would probably raise them quite a few ranks if they simply enabled it.

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This is an absolute must for me. I have a set of workflow folders and it helps me see where I am in my overall workflow. How many images are in my Import folder, how many in my grading folder, how many in my editing folder, how many in my completed folder. I just need these basic numbers to know how how much time I have left on my WorkFlow folders.

I also just want to know how many images I have on my whole catalog or in my nature category. It’s an essential need.

Photolab is somewhat reluctant to add usability or compability (HEIC support?) over time. I stumbled about a lot of feature i first noticed missing when using photolab. As always: release number increases, not so useful headline features come. In the end I need to use LR. What a bummer.

This is such a crucial feature. How it isn’t implemented already is surprising to say the least.
A workaround, use project groups and sub projects. But having to do that for a a few years of photography is not something I’d gladly sit down to do.

Come on! We are in 2023!

I’d upvote this multiple times if I could.

Very basic option, in my opinion.

(Keywords above: option & opinion.) :grinning:
Understood this may not be how everyone wishes to work… that’s why a simple option in the settings pane “Show images within subfolders” would be nice. Keep the current behavior as is and just tuck the setting away within the program settings and call it a day.

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