Problem with copy/paste history stack?

When I copy/paste the history stack between 2 pictures, it never copies over the lens correction module. Is that on purpose? Many times we shoot a set of pictures using the same lens, so when copy/pasting the stack across images, copying the lens correction module seems quite appropriate.

I would understand if I chose “selective” copy/paste but I didn’t so…


Copy the complete history stack from the selected image. If more than one image is selected, the history stack is taken from the image that was selected first.

Information relating to internal display encoding and mask management is considered unsafe to automatically copy to other images and will therefore not be copied when using this button.

The following modules are excluded from the copy operation:

You can override all of these exclusions by using “selective paste…” and choosing which modules to paste to the target image(s).

The reason is that some modules have settings that change from image to image. White balance could be an example, or lens correction (if you copied the corrections that were made at a different focal length, even if everything else matches), you would get incorrect results.
Some of those modules are now probably better behaved (I think lens correction no longer forces the original camera, lens and focal length on the new image), but I may be wrong. Try the selective copy + selective paste combo, and see if it works.

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Yes it’s really odd that the only way to copy all modules is to “selectively” copy and paste

I think they wanted to make the ‘default’ (simple) copy/paste safe, so they don’t transfer module settings that may change from image to image.

Yes that was the intention but for me that prevention of foot-shootery is rather inconvenient, especially since a lot of these settings are only problematic when transferred between cameras and aren’t an issue between images from the same camera (which is how I would assume the vast majority use it). It would be nice to be able to disable this “safe mode” and/or to have a separate “safe copy” button.

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This has been a issue for me, too. I take photos in manual mode and copied white balance and lens correction within darktable for years until these modules became excluded in normal copy/paste with STRG-C and STRG-V.
In summer I was on a longer holiday, made hundred shots for panorama stitching and needed to copy many edits from one photo to others and back. For every copy/paste process I needed to use the “selective copy” and click on white balance and lens correction modules which was very annoying.

The bug on github I opened was closed ‘as design’ so I switched from darktable to Ansel where both modules are included in normal copy/paste.

Yes I have to say that, while I will definitely stick with darktable, looking through the list of changes, it does seem that Ansel fixes a lot of the things that annoy me about it. It’s a shame that those improvements couldn’t be achieved through discussion and consensus. In the end, I guess it’s a bit much to expect that we can all agree on the best solutions and sometimes a fork is the least bad way to end the discussion.


Personally I don’t find it too inconvenient to use ctrl-Shift-c to bring up a list of what I want copied across between images. Somethings such as raw black/white point I never want to copy across as this can really screw with the image if it is changed. I am not sure if this value changes with the same camera using different ISO settings.

The little bit of effort it takes to do ctrl-shift-c is worth the powerful control that DT puts into my hands. But that being said it would be worth considering your suggestion as WB and lens correction seem logical modules to copy between images.

Sorry for hijacking this thread - but the headline would be the same:

I have the problem that copy/paste processes that contain a stack of multiple instances of the same module (e.g. multiple color calibration instances) often end up with a mixed order of the instances on the target image where I paste them.

I always use selective copy and select all. The including “module order” option doesn’t make a difference either activated or not.

Anyone having the same issue? Is there a workaround to get the stack pasted in the right/source order with multiple instances?

This issue is quite annoying as I often use at leas two instances of color calibration module for whitebalancing and color grading and the wrong order gives different results.

I ended up finding a way to simulate what I wanted by using “styles”. Made the basic changes that are repeated on my other images on one picture, then made a style out of it, then applied that style to my other pictures. Works great.

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Actually, with the current dev version, Ctrl+C copies everything; then, Ctrl+Shift+V pops up the window with all options selected, so you just need to click OK (pressing Enter seems to toggle the first checkbox).

That is what happens in 4.4.2 as well.


This is kind of counter-intuitive. I have a style to apply modules I frequently use, including lens correction, denoise (profiled), color balance RGB, etc.

Sometimes on heavy edits, I’ll copy/paste from the first image instead of using the style. It wasn’t until later when I was really scrutinizing the images that I realized there was too much distortion, then finding that lens correction was missing.

If I apply from the style, lens correction is included. But if I copy/paste, lens correction is excluded. These two methods seem equivalent. Doing selective copy every time to force inclusion of lens correction is not intuitive.

My style (REF):
Andrew Default.dtstyle (8.1 KB)

You do all edits including lens correction on first image, then create style from it, then select all images in light table and apply style to all, then fine tune the odd ones that need it.

Works great for me.