iTunes Artwork Issue w/Ext Drive

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by GarrettL1979, Jan 2, 2013.

  1. GarrettL1979 macrumors 6502

    Feb 15, 2012
    I currently have a 2011 MBP, and I'm running iTunes 11 on it. We use home sharing for most of our media in the house (two TVs w/ATV 3s). Most of our iTunes library is on the internal drive-- a 1TB WD drive. We started running a little low on space, so I experimented with attaching a 250GB external hard drive to our Airport Extreme and moved over a bunch of TV shows and DVD rips over to it.

    This has worked well so far for the most part, and we've been able to save some space on our computer. I'm now considering adding a larger hard drive to the AEBS, but I'm having an issue with artwork that is holding me back from doing so--

    For whatever reason, our power has gone out temporarily in our neighborhood a few times in the past week. Every time this happens it has confused iTunes. I get the "!" next to everything I've moved to the ext drive. This is not a huge problem. I've just restarted iTunes, which fixes the problem-- except the artwork for the files on the ext drive no longer shows up. I have to manually go through each movie, click "Get Info", then "Artwork". The image is still there in the info, so I've just clicked "Cancel", and then artwork automatically reappears in iTunes.

    Is there a quicker way to fix this issue, or a way to prevent it from happening in the first place?
  2. Pyromonkey83 macrumors 6502

    May 24, 2009
    This is a current bug in iTunes. It happens when any external source is improperly disconnected such as a USB or network drive.

    A slight workaround is to ensure your iTunes library is fully working, then quit out of iTunes, and ensure all of your artwork is still correct. If it is, then go to File -> Library -> Export Library. Export the file on to your desktop, then quit and relaunch iTunes and you shouldn't have a problem anymore (you can trash the exported xml file).

    This is expected to be fixed soon.

    Also, if the power goes out, I recommend quitting out of iTunes, and not relaunching it until you reconnect your network drive. This should avoid the problem altogether.
  3. WhatAmI macrumors 6502a


    Sep 2, 2009
    Thanks, this has been driving me mad for "years". Just tried this and hope it works
  4. GarrettL1979 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Feb 15, 2012
    Thanks for the help! Glad to hear I'm not the only one experiencing the problem. How do you know the problem will be fixed soon? I only ask because I don't want to invest in a larger hard drive if this continues to be a problem.

    Also, I'm not sure I understand your workaround. How does exporting the library xml file to your desktop fix the problem?
  5. Pyromonkey83 macrumors 6502

    May 24, 2009
    First of all, I have absolutely no idea how exporting the library xml file fixes the problem. You don't have to do it to your desktop per se, this is just so you have easy access to trashing it later on. It is just one of those fixes that makes no sense in theory. but somehow works in practice. :p

    This is also a semi-recent problem and has been well documented on the Apple support forums. When Apple has this many people asking for a fix, they generally get it taken care of in short order. So me saying that it will be fixed shortly is more of an educated guess than actual knowledge.
  6. GarrettL1979 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Feb 15, 2012
    So let me make sure I understand this--

    Next time my external drive is disconnected improperly, i should quit out of iTunes, reconnect my ext drive, and then restart iTunes. At this point, confirm that the drive has been connected properly and the files from it will play in iTunes. Once this is confirmed, and if the artwork is missing from those files (like it has been), then export library xml file to desktop and restart iTunes. Missing artwork will then automatically reappear.

    Is this correct??
  7. Pyromonkey83 macrumors 6502

    May 24, 2009
    Not quite. Do the library exporting now while all of your album artwork is correct. Quit out of iTunes after you have exported the library file, then relaunch and ensure that all of the artwork is still correct. If so, this means the bug should not be triggered unless you try to play a movie without the drive being connected.

    From this point on, if your drive is ever disconnected improperly, DO NOT play a movie file. Quit out of iTunes as soon as possible, then ensure your drive is connected before relaunching iTunes again. At this point, when you have your drive connected and you launch iTunes, you should not have any missing artwork.
  8. GarrettL1979 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Feb 15, 2012
    Awesome-- thanks! I'll try it out.
  9. Zan5hin macrumors newbie

    Oct 17, 2010
    I am having a similar artwork issue with iTunes and an external drive.

    I noticed this problem previously in Windows with iTunes 10, and the same issue with my MBA with OSX and iTunes 11. The 85GB of music won't fit on my 128GB SSD.

    I tried the suggestion above, export the library, however it did not work.

    I keep total control of my music management, meaning that all the artwork is embedded directly in the files.

    When I open iTunes, I would say 30% of the albums show as missing the artwork, however the artwork will reappear if I double click on the album. If I single click on the album and then play a song from the drop down, the artwork does not appear.

    Also, the popup from the "YouControlTunes" app ALWAYS shows the artwork immediately.

    It seems to be some sort of caching issue? iTunes does not have the ability to automatically refresh the artwork upon startup. Maybe there is a script or something that can do this for me?

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