Help using aliases

Discussion in 'iPod' started by keyz, Aug 3, 2007.

  1. keyz macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 13, 2005
    #1
    I just got an external hard drive. What I want to do is to take all my video files (tv shows, movies) in my iTunes library and put them on my external hard drive while still having my music on my macbook pro and then have all of that in one library. I read that this wasn't really possible unless I used aliases.

    I copied the TV Shows folder in my iTunes folder to my external hard drive. Then made an alias of the TV Shows folder on my external hard drive and then copied that to my iTunes folder to replace the existing TV Show folder. I then deleted the TV Shows folder in the iTunes folder containing all my movies. I fired up iTunes expecting that it'd pick up the alias and start pulling the movies from my external hard drive. Instead, it pulled the movies and played the movies from the trash bin. :eek:

    I emptied the trash bin because all of my movies are on my external hard drive, but now in my iTunes tv show list it can't locate any of the files. What do I do now? How do I get this working properly? Many thanks.
     
  2. ChrisBrightwell macrumors 68020

    ChrisBrightwell

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    Apr 5, 2004
    Location:
    Huntsville, AL
    #2
    Rename the alias to drop the " alias" or whatever off the end of it so it's the same name as the folder it's replacing.
     
  3. keyz thread starter macrumors member

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    May 13, 2005
    #3
    I forgot to mention that I did drop the "alias" off the end.
     
  4. ChrisBrightwell macrumors 68020

    ChrisBrightwell

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    Apr 5, 2004
    Location:
    Huntsville, AL
    #4
    I'd recommend trying again, then.

    Quit iTunes, then:
    1. Copy the TV Shows folder to the new drive.
    2. Create an alias of the folder on the new drive.
    3. Move the alias somewhere and rename it to match the folder name.
    4. Delete the original folder.
    5. Move the alias into the place of the original folder.
    6. Launch iTunes.

    I just did it (as a test) and it worked for me. Are you using an NTFS external drive, by chance? That might be the issue.
     
  5. keyz thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 13, 2005
    #5
    I'll try that. Right now I just copied over the TV Shows from my external hard drive, but did it without copying it to my iTunes library. So it pulls the movies from my external. Seems to be working good, but got a question.

    When using my current solution, what happens when I download new TV Shows from the iTunes store? Will those TV Shows be placed in my iTunes library and then will I have to copy them over to my external?

    But what if I used aliases instead? Would newly bought TV Shows be redirected by the alias to be stored on the external hard drive or would they be made in a new folder in the iTunes library?

    Thanks for the help.
     
  6. ChrisBrightwell macrumors 68020

    ChrisBrightwell

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    Apr 5, 2004
    Location:
    Huntsville, AL
    #6
    I'm not sure. It depends on the specifics of what, exactly, you did. :)

    If you use aliases, the software won't know any better (they're an OS/file system feature) and will follow the alias to the external drive to find/store the files.

    Now ... If you try something and the other drive isn't connected, for whatever reason, you might screw yourself. I'm not sure how tolerant everything is in that sort of case.
     
  7. keyz thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 13, 2005
    #7
    ugh. I just tried what you said step for step and it didn't work. This is what I did.

    I recopied my Lost episodes back into my iTunes on my internal drive. I closed iTunes. I then found the "Lost" folder in my iTunes library and copied it to my external hard drive. I then made an alias of that folder on the external hard drive and then moved the alias to rename it. Then I deleted the original "Lost" folder in the iTunes library and emptied my trash (so iTunes wouldn't read the movie files from the "Lost" folder in my trash bin). Next I moved the "Lost" alias to where the original "Lost" folder was in my iTunes library. After all that I finally launched iTunes, went to my TV Shows and clicked on a Lost episode and it said the file couldn't be found.

    And my external drive is formatted as a Mac OS Extended (Journaled). It is not NTFS.

    Any ideas? Did I by chance miss a step? Thanks for your help.
     
  8. ChrisBrightwell macrumors 68020

    ChrisBrightwell

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    Apr 5, 2004
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    #8
    Make sure you deleted the space between "Lost" and "alias", so the name of the alias is "Lost" and not "Lost " (notice the extra space).

    If you're letting iTunes organize everything, the alias should be in:
    ~/Music/iTunes/iTunes Music/TV Shows/

    Also, make sure the external drive is connected. ;)

    If you did everything correctly, you should be able to right-click on the specific video in iTunes and select "Get Info" (or use the cmd-I shortcut) and see the new location on your external drive.

    This works because, to the OS, the alias is just a redirect. The alias is basically transparent to Finder and, as a result, to iTunes.
     
  9. keyz thread starter macrumors member

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    May 13, 2005
    #9
    Okay, before I try this massive undertaking again, do I need to make my file structure on external hard drive:

    ~/Music/iTunes/iTunes Music/TV Shows/

    When I tried, I would simply place the TV Shows folder anywhere on the drive, like:

    ~/TV Shows/

    Could this have been my problem?
     
  10. ChrisBrightwell macrumors 68020

    ChrisBrightwell

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  11. jsw Moderator emeritus

    jsw

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    Mar 16, 2004
    Location:
    Andover, MA
    #11
    Just out of curiosity, why don't you set the iTunes preference (Preferences...->Advanced) so it doesn't copy items to the iTunes library, then just Add to Library the files on the external?
     
  12. keyz thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 13, 2005
    #12
    That's what I've been doing, but I'm wondering how that will transpire when I buy new TV Shows from my library. If there is a way those could be downloaded to the external that would be great. I thought the aliases might be able to make that work.
     
  13. serge2k macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2003
    Location:
    Long Island, NY
    #13
    Thanks for the infor Keyz.... i did everything like ou and I was having the same problem like you, to fix it all i did was go to itunes and double click on the shows and when it asked me that it could'nt find the show I manually browse for it and told it where it was in my external drive. Obviously this is tedious but i gave up trying as it wasnt working any other way... i then tested to download a free TV show, and it downloaded straight to my external drive via the aliases... bingo it worked! hope this helps

    Update:
    Nevermind it didnt work how it was supposed to, itunes made a new tv shows folder in the external drive where i had specified where my music was.... i guess it didnt work... anyone else with any other ideas?
     
  14. Wookie Boy III macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2007
    #14
    I have the same problem. I submitted a bug report to Apple's website. Please do the same if you want this problem fixed.
     
  15. mcvaughan macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2007
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    #15
    Wouldn't that also create duplicate entries in iTunes?
     

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