(Long) Keeping the iTunes library on a (wireless) external hard drive...

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by The Tsar, Sep 4, 2007.

  1. The Tsar macrumors newbie

    Sep 4, 2007
    Hi guys.

    I've tried many different ways after consulting a ton of web pages scattered throughout the web, so instead of summarizing all that I have done, I am going to try to tell you what I want to do, and maybe some intrepid soul can tell me what I can do to achieve it. Here is my situation:

    I am a recent convert from Windows, and have purchased a MacBook (loving it so far). I am also looking at the prospect of moving a lot in the next few years, and I would rather not pack and carry my 6 banana boxes (yes, six) of CDs around with me on every move. I decided to upload ALL of my music CDs onto iTunes. As you can guess, that won't fit on a MacBook, so I figured that I could get an external hard drive (1TB or 500GB).

    However, as I am also planning on buying an iMac at some point, I thought it would be nice if I could:

    a) share the iTunes library/files between the two computers, and
    b) keep my music files on an external drive as a backup (which I will then probably also backup...you can never be too safe).

    So, I rushed out and bought an Airport Extreme and a 1TB IoMega drive.

    Problem #1: Apparently, these drives won't work with the Airport Extreme... I say this because my crappy lil' WD 250GB external works just fine (and I can access it from my laptop), but the 1TB drive will simply not mount.

    Problem #2: I followed the instructions on this web page:


    Everything was working fine, until the very end. After the end of the "consolidation" cycle, which took nearly 4 hours, I got the following message:

    "Copying music failed. The disk could not be read from or written to."

    When I checked the Advanced tab, the iTunes library had reverted to the default location. All my files are intact (phew), but apparently they did not copy over successfully (even though I can see them on the WD drive).

    So....is there a way I can hook up an external drive to the Airport Extreme, and keep my iTunes library on the external....easily accessed from both my laptop and a future iMac? Without iTunes reverting to its default again and again?

    I can't believe that there isn't some easy way to do this, but so far, all my attempts have failed.

    If I have been unclear about something, please call me out on it, as I would really like to back up all my music before I get rid of my CDs, and time is of the essence. Thanks.
  2. ~J~ macrumors 6502

    Jul 27, 2007
    3rd Rock from the sun
    I do this... in a way. All of my music (~16GB) is on my MBP. BUT, all of my movies (~45GB) and TV shows (~166GB) are on an external drive connected to my AEBS. The way I do it, is to open prefs in iTunes, and under the Advanced tab, deselect "Copy files to iTunes Music folder when adding to library". Then I move the files manually to the external drive, and import them into iTunes after the move. Since its not actually moving the media, it just notes the storage location. You should be able to do this for both of your systems, works great for streaming media to a laptop throughout the house. Hope that helps!
  3. shoelessone macrumors 6502

    Jul 17, 2007
    Maybe this is stupid, but have you checked to make sure the drive is formatted properly?

    OSX can't write to a NTFS formatted drive, though I don't know if the airport device will act as a "translator".
  4. ~J~ macrumors 6502

    Jul 27, 2007
    3rd Rock from the sun
    You are correct... and the Airport Extreme wont recognize the drive unless it is formatted properly. You will need to plug the drive into your system directly to configure it before connecting it wirelessly.

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