Running iTunes library from an external HD...?

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by seenew, May 31, 2006.

  1. seenew macrumors 68000

    seenew

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    Brooklyn
    #1
    My startup disk is only 60GB and almost full. I have an external 160GB HD, and I was wondering if there was a way I could run my iTunes library from the external drive, the same way I set up iPhoto to pull from my external. I think I remember running into problems with this when I tried it a while back, some sort of piracy issue... I think it's stupid not to be able to store your music whereever you want, and I'm sure theres a workaround, I just haven't heard of it.

    Any help?
    (also, I'll need to be able to sync my iPod with iTunes, too, if that adds any problems)
     
  2. mad jew Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

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    #2
    In iTunes Preferences, go to the Advanced tab and with Keep iTunes Folder Organised checked, click on Change and pick a location on your external drive. This will mean your external drive must be mounted each time you open iTunes though.
     
  3. CntrySigns macrumors newbie

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    May 31, 2006
    #3
    Will not work with MacBook

    I did the above with my ibook and it works great! It doesn't work on my new MacBook. It shows that the library is pointed there but doesn't load the music. If anyone has any ideas I'd be glad to hear.
     
  4. mad jew Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

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    #4
    Is the external otherwise working normally? Can you transfer files to and from it without any hitches? :)
     
  5. x86 macrumors regular

    x86

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    #5
    After changing the organise music setting on your MacBook, did you import the music?
     
  6. Bobjob186 macrumors 6502

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    Laguna Beach
    #6
    Make sure the HD is ok

    I did this with my external HD and when it wen't to sleep and stuff it had trouble waking up and it drove me crazy cause i had to reset the stupid drive to make it work again. So hopefully it'll be good cause if it works its real convienient. Good Luck
     
  7. conditionals macrumors regular

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    Australia
    #7
    I run my 80GB music collection entirely from my external drive. It's ridiculously easy.

    As for your problem Cntry, you have to import the music first.
     
  8. Mitthrawnuruodo Moderator emeritus

    Mitthrawnuruodo

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    #8
    After this you also need to Consolidate the library over to the new location... :)

    I just did this, because my 60 GB HD was full and apparently failing (still works though). So now I have my iTunes music on an external USB2 HD (actually it's own 62GB partition of an external HD).

    I just followed Apple's advice to the letter.
     
  9. mad jew Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

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    #9

    Good point. I always thought it did this automatically though. Meh, it can't hurt either way. :)
     
  10. torid110 macrumors regular

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    Jersey City, NJ
    #10
    I did it a different way without even going into preferences. I just copied all my music to the external drive, then i created a symlink in terminal.

    ln -s /External/iTunes ~/Music/iTunes

    Just as the other poster said, you need to have the drive connected, otherwise itunes will not start.

    <edit> i did not have to do an import after doing this because to the system the files did not move. They are technically still in your original library location.
     
  11. seenew thread starter macrumors 68000

    seenew

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    Brooklyn
    #11
    So wait, someone detail each step to me.
    I have all of my music organized by iTunes in my user/music/iTunes foldr. I want to move it all to my external LaCie drive, but when I moved them and told iTunes where the folder was, they didn't show up.
    So please, step-by-step.
     
  12. balamw Moderator

    balamw

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    #12
  13. lexus macrumors 68000

    lexus

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    #13
    Just so you know it can be very slow depending on what drive you are using.
     
  14. etoiles macrumors 6502a

    etoiles

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    #14
    This is brilliant ! I will have to try this when I get back home...
     
  15. trainguy77 macrumors 68040

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    #15
    I did something like this. But I used the GUI the whole way. I used an alias pointing to the location.
     
  16. etoiles macrumors 6502a

    etoiles

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    #16
    what can I say... sometimes the solution is so easy...too easy :eek:
    Thanks

    P.S for the original poster: referencing the new location with an Alias or Symlink is definitely the way to go, because it lets you keep all your iTunes files (music, playlists etc.) in the same folder. If you use preferences to select an external location, your playlists etc. will still be stored locally... which is a mess when you want to do backups or transfer the library to a new computer.
     
  17. FragTek macrumors 6502

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    May 29, 2006
    Location:
    Fredericksburg, VA
    #17
    When I try and consolidate my library from my external hd (over a network connection) it tells me that it's going to copy all of my music to mhy iTunes folder, which I don't want it to do.

    Is there a way to just have it link to that folder on the external drive rather than copy it all over? I've deselected the option in preferences to do so, but it still tells me that it wants to copy it all to my iTunes folder when I go to consolidate the library.

    Does anyone know how to bypass this problem? Thx in advance!
     
  18. SamIchi macrumors 68030

    SamIchi

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    Aug 1, 2004
    #18
    Hmmm, I need to do the same thing. I've recently switched to a MacBook, and I have all my files in my external.

    I don't know what a symlink is so I made an alias, and placed it into my "iTunes" folder. I go and change the directory and nothing changes. Nothing shows up in the library. Am I missing something?
     
  19. etoiles macrumors 6502a

    etoiles

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    #19
    This is how I did it (on a MacBook): Copy your local iTunes folder with all the music to the external drive. Delete the local folder. Create an alias of the iTunes folder on the external drive and place it in your local 'music' directory (I also renamed it 'iTunes', not sure if you need to do that). Done
     
  20. SamIchi macrumors 68030

    SamIchi

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    #20
    That's exactly what I did. Made an alias of iTunes (and iTunes Music tried twice with different folders), and moved it into my MB's HD, in the iTunes folder. Changed the directory and click OK, and nothing happens. When I do change the directory to the alias, I notice that the directory is just to the exteranal, ending @ the iTunes folder, not the alias I placed on the MB's HD.
     
  21. etoiles macrumors 6502a

    etoiles

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    #21
    you shouldn't move the alias INTO the iTunes folder, it replaces the iTunes folder... or am I misunderstanding your post ?
     
  22. SamIchi macrumors 68030

    SamIchi

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    #22
    It's still named "iTunes Music alias", and it doesn't replace it. And I don't see why that would cause a problem since that's essentially deleting the folder like you said in one of your other posts.

    Could you maybe go step by step for what you did?
     
  23. balamw Moderator

    balamw

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    #23
    Some things are just better explained using Terminal. Note I have not done this, but it goes something like this
    Code:
    cp -ar ~/Music/iTunes /Volumes/External/iTunes
    mv ~/Music/iTunes ~/Music/iTunes.bak
    ln -s /Volumes/External/iTunes ~/Music/iTunes
    ... check that it worked ...
    rm -r ~/Music/iTunes.bak
    Seems like the difference between you two is that you made an alias to the iTunes Music folder, while etoiles intended for you to alias the parent folder that has the actual library database in it.

    B
     
  24. etoiles macrumors 6502a

    etoiles

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    #24
    1. copy iTunes folder to external HD
    2. make alias of said iTunes folder on external HD
    3. delete original iTunes folder from local Music directory
    4. copy alias of iTunes folder from external HD to local Music directory
    5. rename 'iTunes alias' to 'iTunes' (not sure if necessary)
    6. delete 'iTunes alias' from external HD
    7. in preferences, select the alias for the path...

    hope it works, fingers crossed
     
  25. SamIchi macrumors 68030

    SamIchi

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2004
    #25
    Yup that's what I've been doin. I did it again to make sure. Here I made some screenshots, maybe you can pick out what I'm doin wrong. Thanks for the help.

    I already had my iTunes backed up from my last computer so I didn't need to copy the iTunes folder to my external. I made the alias of the "iTunes" folder. Placed it in the MacBook's music directory, and deleted the original one. Then I clicked Choose on this screenshot.
    [​IMG]

    As you can see the directory just shows up as a link to the external, not to an alias. I dunno if that's the problem or not. But the alias wouldn't be necessary if we could pick the iTunes in the external in the first place.
    [​IMG]

    Then when I go click the change button it's path is initially through the external.
    [​IMG]

    Dag namit, I want my music. :D
     

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