View Full Version : iTunes Just Wiped Out My Music Library

Jan 29, 2005, 02:13 PM
I was listening to music and suddenly the whole computer froze, and the song I was listening to got stuck. So I did a reboot. When I turned the computer back on, and opened iTunes, I got a warning message that the "Library was damaged" or something, and when the iTunes window finally opened, all my Playlists were wiped out and all but 1GB of the music in my library was gone.

I still have the physical MP3 files on my HD, but why would iTunes do this? Now this is just a huge pain in the neck.

:confused: WTF :confused:

Jan 29, 2005, 02:18 PM
I got the same but without the freezing just every few weeks my library becomes 'damaged' and so I lose all my playlists as I have to load all the music into a new library. If anyone knows how I can fix this or has had a similar problem please help becuase it is so annoying having to sort music for my iPod every few weeks.

Jan 29, 2005, 02:56 PM
Trash the prefs. I had this problem once or twice back on my parents iMac, and I think that fixed it, but I'm not sure.

Jan 29, 2005, 02:57 PM
I thought that too but I did that about a month ago and it still happens...

Apr 26, 2006, 06:27 AM
that same thing happened to me..."damaged library" and so on. I seem to still have all the music, but how do i get it back to iTunes???

(any responses could not be simplified enough)


Apr 26, 2006, 07:02 AM
I don't know what to tell you about getting your library back. But sounds like once you get things how you like it again you should start backing up your iTunes Library.itl and iTunes Music Library.xml files. That way if it happens again you can revert to the backup and you'd be good to go. I have no clue why it got corrupted in the first place though.

mad jew
Apr 26, 2006, 07:25 AM
In the iTunes folder in your Music folder (or My Music on a PC), there should be those two files that apunkrockmonk mentioned. Usually, when iTunes crashes like this, it makes you a new version of each and renames the old one to iTunes Library (previous) or something similar. Has this happened for you?

In simple terms, is there more than one iTunes Library data file in your iTunes folder? :)

Apr 26, 2006, 07:31 AM
I've got all my music in a folder in the iTunes folder in "Music".

In that location I also have the (recently reduced) songlist with an iTunes icon beside it. These are the songs which appear in the iTunes library when i open it.

How do I get all the songs in the folder to appear in my iTunes library?


Apr 26, 2006, 07:33 AM
Repair Disk Permissions? :confused:

mad jew
Apr 26, 2006, 07:36 AM
I'm not sure if we're on the same wavelength. :o

Get out of iTunes, open up a new Finder window, go to the Music folder, then open up the iTunes folder. Name the items you see. At the very least there should be three items; iTunes Library, iTunes Music (this one is a folder) and iTunes Music Library.xml. Are there any more items?

Sorry if this is oversimplified and apologies if you've already answered me but I've failed to comprehend you. :)

Apr 26, 2006, 07:48 AM
I appreciate the help Mad Jew... (and everyone)

Can't be too simple for me.

Here's what I have in the location you described...

iTunes Library
iTunes Music (a folder containing all the music which used to be, and which i want to be in iTunes when i open the app... how do I get it there?):)
iTunes music library.xml
Previous iTunes Libraries.

mad jew
Apr 26, 2006, 07:51 AM
Previous iTunes Libraries.

Excellent! I think. If you quite iTunes, drag the file named iTunes Library to the Desktop, and then remove the term Previous from the newest of those other iTunes Library files, then reopen iTunes, do you get your music back? Just tell me if you want this worded differently. :)

If you're really struggling, then maybe post a screen shot of this folder by holding down COMMAND-SHIFT-3 and then showing us the result. :)

Apr 26, 2006, 08:02 AM
/Users/shane/Desktop/Picture 2.png
Yikes! here's the result. I renamed that open folder by removing the word 'previous', but iTunes Library folder on the desktop and reopened iTunes and it seem there's no music there at all now.

Apr 26, 2006, 08:04 AM
/Users/shane/Desktop/Picture 2.png
Yikes! here's the result. I renamed that open folder by removing the word 'previous', but iTunes Library folder on the desktop and reopened iTunes and it seem there's no music there at all now.

Umm, please upload that image to a server somewhere :rolleyes: :rolleyes: :)

Then, we'll be happy to take a look. You might need to rename the library file inside the folder as well, since mine has a name like "iTunes Library 2005-9-7". Did you do this?

mad jew
Apr 26, 2006, 08:06 AM
Okay, the attachment didn't quite work. You have to press the Manage Attachments button near the bottom of the Reply To's Additional Options box and work from there.

Irrespective, if the renaming method didn't work then I'm not sure what else you can do. I'd drag all the files except the folder with your music in it (should be the only folder there) to the Desktop to start afresh. Then, I would drag the folder with the music in it to an open iTunes window to manually re-add all your songs. Of course, this will unfortunately lose all your play counts and playlists. :(

Just to be sure though, don't do anything until you've shown us what you were renaming. :)

Apr 26, 2006, 08:29 AM

I didn't know you could just drag and drop song files to an open window in iTunes!
I don't mind about losing playlists or any of that.

Unfortunately, I'll never get this afternoon back, but there you go.

I really appreciate your time and patience, Thank You! ... smiley faces for everyone!

:) :) :) :) :)

Apr 26, 2006, 12:44 PM
Its the play counts lyrics and artwork that I'd be pissed about losing if my library file got corrupted.

Always keep a backup.

Apr 26, 2006, 01:44 PM
I have my 110 gig iTunes library backed up in triplicate over the span of 40 + DVD's.

But, if what happened to you guys, happened to me I would be fuming....

mad jew
Apr 26, 2006, 04:39 PM
I'm glad it's all working now. Thankfully this seems to be a pretty rare problem. :)

Apr 27, 2006, 08:05 AM
I have my 110 gig iTunes library backed up in triplicate over the span of 40 + DVD's.

But, if what happened to you guys, happened to me I would be fuming....
Thought of an external HDD?

Apr 27, 2006, 04:49 PM
Thought of an external HDD?


All my iTunes music is on my external 300 gig lacie, and all that is backed up on DVDs


Aug 5, 2008, 01:54 PM
How to import music files from your computer into iTunes -

Simple. Just open up iTunes, and hold down Ctrl + O. Now browse for your music file, and open it, and it will come up on your iTunes. For instance, if you use a file server such as Limewire or Frostwire, download and enqueue the file. Then click Save As at the bottom. Save it to your Desktop or whatever, go into iTunes and press Ctrl + O, browse for the playlist and open it. And its on iTunes.

And about the topic of this forum, I have been having the same problem. If you have ever updated iTunes to a newer version (such as the 7.5), a folder will be created in something similar to this: User/(YourUsername)/(My) Music/iTunes/Previous iTunes Libraries.

In there you should find your libraries you had before you updated to a new iTunes. In my case, there is two in here because I have upgraded twice. So there is two. If you have upgraded once, there will be one. The file extension is unknown, but the file type is: iTunes Music Database File. If there is a way of getting that into iTunes, I will be happy :)