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Help! Just copied iTunes media to second external drive and now have broken links in the original drive??

1319 Views 15 Replies Latest reply: May 1, 2013 10:35 AM by turingtest2 RSS
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Dorso Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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Apr 23, 2013 2:48 PM

Hi everyone

 

I wonder if anyone can offer me some advice to rectify the problems I'm experiencing in my itunes?

 

I have been saving my media to an external hard drive since rebuilding my itunes collection, while keeping the library on the hard drive of my MBP.  This was working well with no problems but as my media reached 300GB on my external I thought I would copy it to another external hard drive as back up, and after that I decided to also make a copy of my library data to the same second external drive so I would have a full back up of itunes in case of failure of my main hard drive...

 

So after copying my media from my first external drive to the second, and then copying the library data from my MBP hard drive it seems the copy of my media and the copied library are working fine on my second external hard drive, but now when I open the first external drive where I originally was saving my media files I am suffering quite a lot of broken links???...I followed the copy process as I have done in the past although I did not tick the check box for renaming and moving my media as it was about to be copied,and I thought that was correct as I used the consolidate function to copy it..

 

Been trying to figure out how to rectify the problem tonight and am getting nowhere fast.  Can anyone offer suggestions as to how I can sort the issue on my original external hard drive as it's the one I prefer to store my media on and it was functioning perfectly before?? from having a tidy and clearly functioning itunes I now have a mass of problems....

 

 

I hope this is clear to someone.....as I was hoping to have it fixed in readiness for a new MBP...am I missing something obvious?

MacBook Pro (13-inch Mid 2009), Mac OS X (10.6.8)
  • turingtest2 Level 8 Level 8 (43,940 points)

    The best way to move an iTunes library is not to choose a new media folder, but to move the whole thing en masse. This only works however if the library is self contained to start with. See Make a split library portable.

     

    tt2

  • turingtest2 Level 8 Level 8 (43,940 points)

    When the library is organized as an iTunes folder containing the library files and an iTunes Media folder containing all the media it should relocate easily to another drive or computer. Running the entire library on the external drive is easiest from this point of view. It can be backed up by cloning the folder to a second drive, and the backup will be a fully working library.

     

    Depending on the size of the library and speed of the drives having the library files on an internal drive may make the library more responsive, although this is more likely to be a problem if you've moved the library to network storage. If this is the case then the library files alone can be copied into an internal drive leaving the media behind. When the time comes that you want to move things around first copy the library files back to the correct position on the external/network drive and connect to them there to reestablish portabilty, then move the whole thing as a unit again.

     

    tt2

  • turingtest2 Level 8 Level 8 (43,940 points)

    Assuming the media is already in place (which it should be since you it copied from there in the first place) copy the library file iTunes Library.itl, iTunes Library Extras.itdb, iTunes Library Genius and sentinel (hidden?) from the second (working) external drive and paste them into the library folder on the first external drive. Copy over the Album Artwork folder too unless you think it is unlikely to have changed. If the original library was split (sorry if I missed the details) then you can create a new iTunes folder for the library files and album artwork folder, then move the iTunes Media folder inside and open the library on this original external drive. It should all work.

     

    As long as you routinely connect to one or other copy you can then use a folder cloning tool to update the second copy of the library with any changes. If you can, avoid using the two independently otherwise you have to play catch up.

     

    Again having made this original version work again you can copy the library files to an internal disc and access them from there, but it means you have to do mode work to generate a fully functional backup. (In short: Copy library files out to external one, open and close library from external one, update clone of iTunes folder on external one to external two, switch back to using library on internal drive).

     

    tt2

  • turingtest2 Level 8 Level 8 (43,940 points)

    Here are typical layouts for the iTunes folders:



    If the two media folders are already identical you can save a lot of unnecessary deleting & copying by replacing the non-working set of library files (the stuff outside the red box, i.e. the library files and Album Artwork folder) with a working set from the other library. Copying everything across should work too, but ought not to be necessary.

     

    tt2

  • turingtest2 Level 8 Level 8 (43,940 points)

    You need to get your second library in the portable shape as above, with the library files in folder that contains the media folder. You can then clone that folder to any new path of your choice. Probably time to look at  Make a split library portable again. If you give me the paths to the library and media folders I can give you step by step instructions.

     

    tt2

  • turingtest2 Level 8 Level 8 (43,940 points)

    OK. I take it the drive we are looking at is called /Volumes/Backup. The active library files seem to be stored where we want them <Device>/iTunes, but the music should ideally be inside <Device>/iTunes/iTunes Media/Music.

     

    The trouble with the consolidate command is that it makes copies. That takes time, and then you have to manually delete the originals, and if you don't have room for two complete sets of the media it will just clog up the drive and fail.

     

    Let's do a little more fact checking before we get started. Is there anything at all inside /Volumes/Backup/iTunes/iTunes Media/Music? If you look inside /Volumes/Backup/Music do you just have artist folders or are there folders for other media types, e.g. Movies, Podcasts etc.? Or perhaps you only have music in your library?

     

    tt2

  • turingtest2 Level 8 Level 8 (43,940 points)

    OK, this should sort you out...


    1. Move the following files and folders from /Volumes/Backup/iTunes  up to /Volumes/Backup/
      Album Artwork (folder)
      iTunes Library.itl

      iTunes Library Extras.itdb
      iTunes Library Genius.itdb
      iTunes Library.xml
      sentinel (hidden)

    2. Launch iTunes. It should warn that the library is missing. Browse to the file /Volumes/Backup/iTunes Library.itl and open it.

    3. Go to iTunes > Preferences > Advanced and change the media folder location to /Volumes/Backup/Music. Let iTunes consolidate files if it asks, if not use File > Library > Organize Library... Tick Consolidate files and click OK.

    4. Close iTunes. Rename /Volumes/Backup/Music as /Volumes/Backup/iTunes Media. Start iTunes.

    5. Go to iTunes > Preferences > Advanced, check that the media folder location now reads /Volumes/Backup/iTunes Media. If necessary, change and then close and reopen iTunes.

    6. Go to File > Library Organize Library... and, if not greyed out, tick Rearrange files in the folder iTunes Media, then click OK.

    7. Delete /Volumes/Backup/iTunes/iTunes Media which now contains redundant copies.

    8. Move the following files and folders from /Volumes/Backup/ into /Volumes/Backup/iTunes
      Album Artwork (folder)
      iTunes Media (folder)
      iTunes Library.itl

      iTunes Library Extras.itdb
      iTunes Library Genius.itdb
      iTunes Library.xml
      sentinel (hidden)

    9. Launch iTunes. It should warn that the library is missing. Browse to the file /Volumes/Backup/iTunes/iTunes Library.itl and open it.

    10. Go to iTunes > Preferences > Advanced, check that the media folder location now reads /Volumes/Backup/iTunes/iTunes Media. If necessary, change and then close and reopen iTunes.


    Each time you change something and start iTunes just check that a track will play. If not, close iTunes and undo your last action.

     

    That should be it. You can clone this iTunes folder to any other drive and the clone is a functioning copy of your library.

     

     

    tt2

    Various,iTunes 11.0.2.26,iOS 6.1.3, Windows XP Pro, iPad 2,iPhone 4,iPod classic,nano
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