Duplicate file analysis

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by CommonMan, Jan 4, 2008.

  1. CommonMan macrumors regular


    Sep 27, 2006
    Things have gotten a little complicated but I'm sure there is an solution.
    I have been haphazardly building up the songs in my iTunes. The songs that I have on my iTunes are "drawing from" at least 3 different folders (don't ask how this happened unless you really want to get off on that tangent).

    Many of these folders that the same exact songs. For example, one song, one might find displayed on my i tunes will be found in 3 different folders, all which are within the folder I set up for itunes to draw from. This, of course, wastes space on my drive.

    If I haphazardly delete a song from one of these folders, there are 2 additional copies of the song. However, when I go back to the i tunes display, I may find a little "!" mark next to the song which means that i tunes can no longer "find" the song in the location where it thinks it should be.

    I can go through and make a list of all of the songs in my i tunes and then "get Info" and identify the location of each and every song, write that down and then delete the song from the other folders but obviously, this would be very a very tedious and arduous task.

    I would have to do a "print screen" of all relevant folders, and go through each file to determine the exact location.

    I seem to remember having a problem with an excessive number of "!" marks way back when and somebody directed me to a tool that magically solved the problem. I wonder if that really happened?

    Does anyone have any suggestions?
  2. funkychunkz macrumors 6502a


    Jun 1, 2005
    Ottawa, Canada
    If I understand correctly you'd like to get rid of the duplicate songs completely and keep one copy of each song in one folder. Without even getting into the multitude of utilities that will automate this, itunes has it's own 'show duplicates' feature, which works perfectly fine so long as the track information in the duplicate files matches the original.

    1. While your music library is displayed, go to view> show duplicates
    2. Manually select all duplicates (use command-clicks to select non sequential items)
    3. Hit delete and select 'move to trash' from the resulting dialogue
    4. Go to preferences>advanced (tab)> general and set your library folder to a new folder and make sure that 'copy songs to libarary' is checked and click ok
    5. Go advanced> consolidate library

    That should deal with all the real duplicates leaving only songs imported from different media or albums in your new library. You can then delete what's left of your old music folders and be sure that you have a copy of all your songs in your library.

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