Transferring iTunes Library


macrumors 65816
Original poster
Aug 5, 2006
In the Depths of the SLC!
So I'm reinstalling my OS for a fresh start to the school year, just to sort of flush out all the useless programs and useless files that I have (I'm sooo used to windows, so it's a healthy habit). Now my thing is about my itunes library. Do I just copy the itunes main files (Itunes Library itl, Temp File, Itunes Music Library XML) or would I want to transfer the entire itunes library? (Would it keep my ratings, date added, purchased info, ablum art and stuff like that when I do it this way) I have it set so itunes automatically copies the files I import, so the whole library is in one folder rather than being all over my computer (So if I delete a file out of itunes, it asks me if I want to keep the file in the library or move it to trash).

I plan on putting the whole library on my external hard drive. So would that mean in the future of an OS reinstall, or a backup, all I have to do is just put my new library in with that and it will add the newer folders and update the older files? Now is there anyway that I can set itunes to just use the one off the external so I don't have to keep copying the huge folder (as it gets bigger and bigger over time) over to my external? Wut I am saying is, can I set itunes to use the external folder as its "home folder" rather than doing so on the mac?


macrumors member
Aug 15, 2006
In answer to your first question: I would just move the entire itunes folder to your freshly installed system under: users/"user_name"/music/ just to be sure you don't lose all of your ratings and such (I think ratings and the like are stored in the files themselves but you might as well be better safe than sorry)

in answer to your second question about keeping your music on a seperate drive
apple has the answer: