Copying videos into iTunes from an external drive?


macrumors 65816
Original poster
Oct 10, 2011
I have an external drive loaded with videos that I want to use to copy some videos into iTunes so I can synch them to an iPad. When I try to drag the videos into the Home Videos screen it does not seem to work. Do I need to do anything in particular to copy the files since they are located on an external drive?



macrumors 68030
Apr 23, 2013
Make sure the file format is supported by iTunes. If it's not you can likely convert it using Handbrake.
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Check other libraries in iTunes. Any you've dragged into iTunes is probably in there now, but maybe under "movies" or "TV Shows" or something else. In short, video files are typically tagged as some kind of playback file: "home movies", "movies", "tv shows" etc. Tags are not set based on dragging them into a screen. My guess is that you'll find the ones you've already tried to drop into "home movies" in the "movies" screen, but they may be in one of the other sections too.

If you punch in the name of the movie in the "Search" field, it will likely show you in which category it's located.

If they are not showing up in iTunes at all, I'd start wondering about the format of the files: is it one of the video file formats iTunes supports?
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macrumors 68020
Apr 13, 2011
iTunes can be picky over how many files you drag into it at a time.
Try too many, and it may silently fail.
With some drives eg USB Sticks, you're more likely to have import success if you copy the files to a folder on the destination volume first.


macrumors G5
Mar 21, 2011
Australia, Perth
no one has mentioned what version of iOS and iTunes ...? This makes all the difference if one or the other is few versions behind. this won't help with not adding to itunes, but it may have issues with syncing..

iTunes supported formats : .MPEG-4 *.mov, *.m4v)

Play it in Quick time,, and usually it will work in iTunes if it plays.
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macrumors 6502
Jun 14, 2011
Peoria, IL
He said he made the files with Handbrake, and didn't mention adding MetaData using subler or anything like that. So it was probably put under home movies, and he is looking in movies or TV shows. He will need to go into the MetaData to change the type to get it to show up in the right section.
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