Moving iTunes movies/TV shows to external HDD

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by jnyepu, Nov 12, 2007.

  1. jnyepu macrumors member

    Jun 5, 2007
    Dallas, TX
    Dumb noobie question.

    I want to move movies/shows I have watched from my internal HDD to my external HDD to free up space. What do I need to do to do this so that iTunes knows where the files are and free up the space on my internal HDD?

  2. mad jew Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

    Apr 3, 2004
    Adelaide, Australia
    Well, you could move all the relevant files across when iTunes is closed, and then make aliases of the files with exactly the same names and keep them exactly where the originals were. That should trick iTunes into thinking the files are actually on the internal, when they're on the external instead.
  3. synth3tik macrumors 68040


    Oct 11, 2006
    Minneapolis, MN
    In iTunes preferences you can select the external HD. In the external create a folder called iTunes or what ever and copy all the video and music files over to it. You will have to remove the songs from the iTunes library to make this easier on you. Then just simply drop and drag the file from the external. I would not erase anything off the internal drive until you know it is all working.

    BTW. Your iTunes library file and the playlist will remain in the iTunes folder on the internal drive. So I would make a back up copy of these to preserve your playlist/folders etc.
  4. czachorski macrumors 6502a


    Sep 24, 2007
    From your other thread, you asked: "Is there any way to just store movies/shows/video separately to the external HDD while keeping the music on the internal HDD?"

    Yes. Uncheck the box that says "keep iTunes library organized" and the one that says "copy files to library when adding". You will have to manually organize both your music and your other media from that point forward, since iTunes will no longer move them to your "music folder". You can then located your video files in the iTunes music folder (in folders in the library called 'TV Shows' or 'Movies'), and move them to your external. I think iTunes will automatically change the linkage (you can check by right-clicking on the item in iTunes and check the 'get info' for where the file points). If iTunes points the external correctly, go ahead and delete them from your internal HD. If not, you may have to delete them from inside iTunes, and then re-import them (with those 2 check boxes above unchecked, of course).
  5. jnyepu thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 5, 2007
    Dallas, TX
    Thanks to all for the advice.....looks like I have a little work to do to make this successful. :eek:
  6. kokonutmama macrumors newbie

    Nov 16, 2008

    My internal hard drive is also getting crowded with TV shows and movies and I found this thread searching for a solution. To test your good advice before investing in an external drive, I tried using a memory stick. What I found was that the solution is actually simpler than I thought. I moved the song I wanted onto the stick in a folder structure [stick] > iTunes Music > [Artist] > [Album] > [Song], deleted it entirely (had to empty the trash, too) from [My name] Music > iTunes Music ... etc and then found the song in my iTunes library through the iTunes application and told it to play. It popped up "can't play it because it can't be located; would you like to locate it?" So I showed it where to find it on the stick, and it played fine. The coolest part is that after ejecting the stick, quitting iTunes, and starting everything back up again, it can now find the song fine without being told. I tried making an alias and did not have success with that. I tried just dragging it onto the stick but that copied the file instead of moving it, maybe a full on external drive would be different. I did drag it to different places on the internal drive and iTunes followed it wherever it went.

    Thanks for your help. I just wanted to support any averagely savvy folks like me that it can be done and it's not complicated. Thanks Apple.

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