Default iTunes Media Folder (strange behaviour)

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by james-bailey, Dec 8, 2010.

  1. james-bailey, Dec 8, 2010
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2010

    james-bailey macrumors regular

    Nov 17, 2010
    Hey folks, I have 100% of my songs for iTunes stored on a USB Hard Drive.

    I dont let iTunes organise my library, nor copy to iTunes library when adding

    The default iTunes Media Folder is located on this drive where about 70% of the songs are (songs that have been ripped from CD or downloaded.

    Ive been using this system for 5 years now, so know it inside out.

    However I am new to the Mac scene and something strange happend today....

    My USB HD was plugged in correctly, but a song couldnt be I tried another and it found it straight away...odd

    I tried about 20 other songs, but only half of them were found....

    I then hit 'Get Info' on the bad songs, and the location that Itunes was looking in, was changed to a new Default iTunes Music Folder on my Macs drive

    Very strange as I have never known iTunes to change the location of a file before within the library?

    Ive come to the conclusion that it was only the files that were stored in the Default iTunes Media Folder that coudnt be found.

    So I then checked in preferences, to see where the Default iTunes Music Folder was, and it was on my Macs Drive, instead of the USB drive (possibly due to starting iTunes up, without my HD plugged in)

    Changed this back to location on my USB Hard Drive, and all of a sudden iTunes re-writes my library to show all the files in the correct position again! Ive never known it do this before on my PC, is it a new feature?


  2. james-bailey thread starter macrumors regular

    Nov 17, 2010
  3. DewGuy1999 macrumors 68040


    Jan 25, 2009
    I believe that iTunes creates a new library if one isn't available when starting up.
  4. velocityg4 macrumors 601


    Dec 19, 2004
    This is normal behavior for iTunes. If the media folder location was not found when iTunes launched it will recreate it in the default location, in this case you said the USB drive was not on. When you change media folder locations it verifies the database file against the new media folder.

    However as I recall the songs still have to be in the same place relative to the media folder or they will be seen as missing. So if in Media Folder A the song is located at ".../Media Folder A/Artist A/Album A/Song" then in Media Folder B it must be in ".../Media Folder B/Artist A/Album A/Song". As for music located outside your media folder as long as they do not move it does not matter where you change your Media Folder to.

    By the way I would recommend exporting your play lists and rebuilding your database this time with all the songs in your media folder. You can then import your play lists on with the rebuilt library. Also set iTunes to copy music to iTunes library. I say this because managing your library becomes much easier when it is all under one media folder.

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