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TD109 Level 1 (0 points)
My music is on an external HD, is there any way to create a Library from the HD to my laptop without moving all the music over. I just need to create a new Library on the laptop and keep the music on the external HD. Can anyone help me with this problem?

Gateway M-7315u Laptop, Windows Vista, Main router Linksys G
  • Katrina S. Level 7 (24,095 points)
    Press *and hold* the shift key while opening itunes. More detail:
  • TD109 Level 1 (0 points)
    Thanks for the prompt reply. I tried your suggestion and got as far as creating a new Library but how do I go about creating it?
  • Katrina S. Level 7 (24,095 points)
    Make sure the itunes preference to copy files is turned off.

    then just drag the top-level folder of music from your exHD (showing in Windows Explorer) over into the blank itunes library window. Alternatively, you can use file > add folder .
  • gc64 Level 1 (0 points)
    i created a new itunes library, but how do i get back to my original itunes library?
  • TD109 Level 1 (0 points)
    Thanks for trying to get me through this but one dumb question, where do I find the iTunes preference to copy files so I can check that it is turned off?
  • Katrina S. Level 7 (24,095 points)
    itunes menu > edit > preferences > advanced tab
  • TD109 Level 1 (0 points)
    Thanks Katrina. The box was unchecked. I'm sorry but I'm at a comlete loss on this thing. I don't know what you mean by the top-level folder of music from the ext.HD. Anything I go into for ext.hd (F:drive) all I get is a list of the artists. What makes this even more confusing is that for the past few years I worked with XP and now I am faced with Vista which I know nothing about.
  • Katrina S. Level 7 (24,095 points)
    OK, you're good to go on the copy files, then.
    Just drag the root F: over into itunes. That sounds like the top-level folder. You don't need to add each artist folder one-by-one, in other words.

    You'll get used to Vista, just give it time and read the helps. Hahaha. I am still on XP but my PC is slowly giving signs of hardware failure, so it won't be long before Vista & I get acquainted.
  • TD109 Level 1 (0 points)
    HI Katrina: Sorry for delay but had to work. I tried your suggestion and the stupid computer tells me that I don't have enough memory. I have a 250GB hard drive with very little on it as it's a new laptopabut it sounds like it wants to copy all the music over (says it needs 111KB). All I'm trying to do is create a new library on the laptop and leave my actual music on the external HD. I think you should do your best to stay with XP as long as possible because this Vista is a pain in the a__. I'm at the point where I'm ready to say screw it and forget iTunes. Thanks for your patience and your help.
  • Katrina S. Level 7 (24,095 points)
    That does sound like it is trying to copy the files to the laptop's hard drive. It should be leaving them on the exHD and just creating its database files that point to the exHD for all the songs.

    Are you sure the 'copy files' setting is unchecked?
    That article is still valid for itunes 8.

    Close itunes and when you reopen it, is that setting still checked? Maybe it is not saving that setting.
  • TD109 Level 1 (0 points)
    You are certainly a bear for punishment! I started iTunes again and went into advanced. The "copy files to iTunes music folder when adding to library" is unchecked. The "keep iTunes music folder organized" box is checked.
  • Katrina S. Level 7 (24,095 points)
    Well then the problem is perhaps your Vista permissions on the folder where itunes is trying to make its library file. I just noticed it was only trying to make an ~100 KB file, which sounds about right for some library files.

    Give yourself full control and ownership of this folder and all subfolders:
    C:\Users\ username \
    by using these directions
    How to Take Ownership and Grant Permissions in Windows Vista

    Relaunch itunes and see if it works now.
  • TD109 Level 1 (0 points)
    Hi Katrina: checked this out and seems to be ok as far as I can see. One problem with Vista is that you don't drag files over you have to copy and paste.
    I guess I gave the wrong info before as far as space required. When I try to copy and paste F drive (ext. HD) to new library folder I get the following error message: "not enough space on OS. you need an additional 2.11GB to copy these files. OS space free 64.5GB total size 111GB" As I said, I think it's time to say screw it and forget it. I don't want to waste any more of your time but appreciate all that you have tried to do for me. TD
  • Katrina S. Level 7 (24,095 points)
    No worries. You need to drag the F: drive into the itunes window - not some folder.
    Dragging it into a folder is what is trying to make copies.
    Just drag it into the itunes library windows. Or use itunes menu > FIle > Add Folder and browse out to F:

    Best of luck!
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