10 Replies Latest reply: Jul 8, 2008 8:13 PM by mminlalaland
justagrrrl Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
For some unknown reason, several songs in my iTunes now has an exclamation point next to it in the far-left hand column, and when I try to play it it says:

"The song __ could not be used because the original file could not be found. Would you like to locate it?"

Why is this happening and how can I stop it? It will take me forever to re-locate all these files! Thanks!

pc, Windows XP
  • 1. Re: iTunes cannot find my music files
    PGen98 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Just wanted to mention that I'm having the EXACT same problem.

    I've located the folder where the files are supposed to be (My Documents > My Music > iTunes), and they're gone! In my case I've got 2,740 songs (mostly ripped from CDs) just absolutely vanished. The ones I downloaded from the iTunes store shouldn't be much of an issue to replace, but we're still talking over 2,000 songs not from the iTunes store that are simply not there anymore.

    What's going on here?

    (Tried installing older backups, no use because the actual audio file is non-existent)
  • 2. Re: iTunes cannot find my music files
    ResidentEvil Level 1 Level 1 (15 points)
    Hey, If your using Windows XP and you music files files are stored on the C:\ drive then the default location is as follows: C:\Documents and Setting\User*\My Documents\My Music\iTunes\iTunes Music. (*User will be your dedicated user name)
    Also try searching for music files .mp3 with Windows search. You may have imported songs from a source no longer available i.e. ext HD. The original location of the song file has changed.
  • 3. Re: iTunes cannot find my music files
    PGen98 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Just a note to say that I fixed my own issue -- it was hardware related (power supply gave out, so it's been replaced). Also, the files were on an external hard drive which wasn't being detected because of the power supply issues.

    I would also recommend to justagrrl to check out other potential locations for those files.
  • 4. Re: iTunes cannot find my music files
    Caledonia Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Same problem. I have approx 16000 songs in itunes library, now some play fine, while a whole lot of others have the little exclamation mark next to them when I try to play them and message says "Song...could not be used as original file couldn't be found." Not entirely sure how to locate it?

    Also, the synchronizing speed is crawling, where it used to be reasonably fast. Something is clearly wrong but I don't know what. More confused as some songs play while others "can't be found".

    I use Windows XP, and did run Kaspersky Internet Security but it slowed the whole computer so uninstalled it, but itunes still same prob.

    Scared I may have lost a huge amount of music so any help would be appreciated.

    Thanks in advance...
  • 5. Re: iTunes cannot find my music files
    jbdaly Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    i got a new computer and my old one doesn't even turn on anymore....is there anyway i can get my itunes library on my new computer???
  • 6. Re: iTunes cannot find my music files
    PGen98 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Your best bet would be to extract the hard drive from the old computer, install it into the new one and transfer the iTunes files from the old hard drive to the new one (or keep the old one as a backup drive).

    Your other options would be to replace the Power Supply in the old machine in order to get the files directly from it. The first option is your more feasible bet.

    Hope this helps.
  • 7. Re: iTunes cannot find my music files
    PGen98 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Sounds like a similar problem to my own.

    If you've got more than one hard drive, make sure you're checking both/all of them. More than likely it's just a simple case of forgetting which folder you store your music in.

    Also -- the songs that do play, are they CD Rips, MP3 Downloads or purchased through the iTunes store?
  • 8. Re: iTunes cannot find my music files
    justagrrrl Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    I figured it out -- I had moved my music files to another folder so iTunes couldn't locate the songs. I didn't know moving the folder would affect it, but now I know!
  • 9. Re: iTunes cannot find my music files
    micetilly Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    i seem to be having the same problem. What folder did you move it to?
  • 10. Re: iTunes cannot find my music files
    mminlalaland Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    please see thread :
    Topic : itunes can't find my music


    http://discussions.apple.com/thread.jspa?messageID=7526294#7526294