Best way to manage huge iTunes libraries?

Discussion in 'Digital Audio' started by 50548, Sep 4, 2013.

  1. Guest

    I am sure others have libraries much bigger than mine, so here is my question:

    What, in your opinion, is the best way to manage and store huge iTunes libraries? I am currently ripping all my CDs (hundreds of them) as ALAC files, not to mention my large video collection of movies and TV series.

    So far, things are acceptable with my internal 1TB iMac drive, but iTunes will very soon start begging for more space. My library is backed up via TM and I do not use NAS or anything of the sort.

    Should I just use a big external HD for that? A NAS solution? Anything else possible? Are externally-stored libraries subject to lags when being loaded?

    Tks for your advice!
  2. macrumors 603

    The least expensive and easiest way would be to buy a USB double HD dock like this. Then buy 2 HDs and use one as your iTunes library and clone (copy) to the 2ed.

    Never get caught without a backup.
  3. macrumors 65816


    My iTunes library is just around 1TB, homed on external drives (primary + backup) hosted by a Mac mini. I've ran this way for over 3 years now using OWC Firewire 800 drives but recently upgraded to Lacie 2big Thunderbolt drives.

    I leave the iTunes folder in the default location under the Music folder with all the library database files but I store the "iTunes Media" folder on the external. This ensure fast iTunes startup, shutdown and file referencing with the database files running from the internal drive. Then the actual media playback occurs from the external which is no problem for Firewire or faster (no lags, etc. even when more than one client is streaming).

    My personal preference is to use duplicate storage devices, one primary and one backup, with backup space that's at least 2 times the library size so it can capture incremental backups (Time Machine, Chronosync, etc., whatever backup system you prefer).
  4. Guest

    Tks; so you use symlinks to connect to the iTunes Media folder externally?

    As for the first reply above: isn't USB too slow for such a setup? I would also prefer TB or FW800 for that.
  5. macrumors 65816


    No. You can set the iTunes media folder location in iTunes > Prefs > Advanced.

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