Skip navigation

Why is there and exclamation point beside some of my songs?

223 Views 3 Replies Latest reply: Dec 26, 2012 10:09 AM by turingtest2 RSS
slmiller1953 Calculating status...
Currently Being Moderated
Dec 26, 2012 8:44 AM

I rebuilt my computer and transferred everything from my old hard drive to my new hard drive--or so I thought.  I now have exclamation points next to some of my songs.  When I try to play the song, it says it's not available.  Why is that and how do I get those songs back?

  • turingtest2 Level 8 Level 8 (43,950 points)

    This happens if the file is no longer where iTunes expects to find it. Possible causes are that you or some third party tool has moved, renamed or deleted the file, or that the drive it lives on has had a change of drive letter. It is also possible that iTunes has changed from expecting the files to be in the pre-iTunes 9 layout to post-iTunes 9 layout, or vice-versa, and so is looking in slightly the wrong place.


    Select a track with an exclamation mark, use Ctrl-I to get info, then cancel when asked to try to locate the track. Look on the summary tab for the location that iTunes thinks the file should be. Now take a look around your hard drive(s). Hopefully you can locate the track in question. If a section of your library has simply been moved, or a drive letter has changed, it should be possible to reverse the actions.


    Alternatively, as long as you can find a location holding the missing files, then you should be able to use my FindTracks script to reconnect them to iTunes .



  • grandpaddy Calculating status...

    I have a similar problem.  The  music files are stored in My Docs/ I-tunes folder and I dragged them back to iTunes library.


    I now have shadow duplicates of each of the files in my iTunes which wont play.  However if I delete them to the recycle bin and then restore them... they remain as grey shadows but do play  !!

    How do I get rid of this 8G additional mass of files ?  Anyone with any thoughts ? Latest update of iTunes  has lost the ability to identify and eliminate duplicate files !

    Doesn't help slmiller I'm afraid... but this is my first post on Apple Communities

  • turingtest2 Level 8 Level 8 (43,950 points)

    Make sure you have updated to iTunes 11.0.1 (or later). In Music use the Songs view, or select the List view for other media (Edit > Preferences > General > Show list views for all media). Enable the menu bar with ctrl-b. Use View > Display Duplicates or, more usefully,  hold Shift and use View > Display Exact Duplicates.


    Keep one of each repeated group of files and don't send to the recycle bin unless you are sure that there are multiple files on the disc as opposed to multiple entries to the same file.


    There is also my DeDuper script if you don't want to do it by hand. This can preserve ratings, play counts, playlist membership, etc. which are lost in a manual clean up. Please take note of the warning to backup your library before deduping. See this thread for background on deduping and the script. 


    I have plans to extend the DeDuper script so that it can clean up when there are missing files but the current version expects all copies to be present. To clean missing files without trying to preseve ratings, playlist membership etc. try itunes_remove_notfound.




More Like This

  • Retrieving data ...

Bookmarked By (0)


  • This solved my question - 10 points
  • This helped me - 5 points
This site contains user submitted content, comments and opinions and is for informational purposes only. Apple disclaims any and all liability for the acts, omissions and conduct of any third parties in connection with or related to your use of the site. All postings and use of the content on this site are subject to the Apple Support Communities Terms of Use.