13 Replies Latest reply: Nov 18, 2009 5:29 PM by larrynyc
larrynyc Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
The Store for iTunes 9 has been heavily criticized as being a giant step backwards in usability, almost as bad as the "hocky puck mouse." Here's how to go back to the iTunes 8 Store.

( Before you begin, you must know the administrator password. )

( Download iTunes 8 for OS X. Don't install it just yet. )
http://support.apple.com/downloads/iTunes8_21

1. Open iTunes 9. *File > Library > Export Library...* This will save a Library.xml file. It contains the entire library and all playlists and smart playlists.

2. Go through Playlists on the left to see if you have any unpurchased songs (there will be a "Price" column, and a button next to songs that say "Buy Song.") Click the Price column to see unpurchased songs listed together. Unpurchased songs are the only things that iTunes doesn't save when backing up, so you have to manually take note of these files, by copying to a text file or taking screen shots. (If you don't care about unpurchased songs, go ahead and ignore this step.)

( On the Library pane on the left, click Music, then take a note of the number of songs. Do the same for the number of Movies, and TV Shows, Podcasts. )

3. *iTunes > Preferences...* Take note of your settings, particularly these:
General: Library name, General: CD import settings (particularly custom settings), Sharing: Library and password settings, Advanced: iTunes folder location.

( Quit iTunes 9. )

4. /Applications/Utilities, open Activity Monitor. Select iTunes Helper. Choose Quit Process, then Force Quit.

5. *Apple menu > System Preferences...* Click Accounts (under System). Click your username, then Login Items. If you see it, click iTunesHelper, then the little minus sign to delete it.

6. /Applications, throw iTunes in the Trash.

( Restart the computer. )

7. /Library/Receipts. (Note that this is the main root Library folder, not your user Library folder.) Look for files that have iTunes in the name, such as iTunes.pkg, iTunesAccess.pkg, iTunesX.pkg. Back up these files to a safe place first, and then throw these in the Trash.

8. /Users/YOURNAME/Library/Preferences. (YOURNAME is your user name.) Look for files that start with com.apple.iTunes in the name, such as com.apple.iTunes.eq.plist, com.apple.iTunes.plist, com.apple.iTunesHelper.plist . Back up these, then throw in the Trash.

9. /Users/YOURNAME/Library/Preferences/ByHost. Look for files that start with com.apple.iTunes in the name, such as com.apple.iTunes.0061acb72d0c. Back up the file, then throw in the trash.

10. /Users/YOURNAME/Music/iTunes. Back up these four files: iTunes Library, iTunes Library Extras.itdb, iTunes Library Genius.itdb, iTunes Music Library.xml. After backing up, throw in the Trash. Throw Album Artwork in the Trash as well.

( Run the *iTunes 8 installer*. )

11. Launch iTunes 8, go through the startup screens. On the second startup screen, it says "Find Music Files," select *"No, I'll add them myself later"* and press Next, then Done.

12. Ignore the New Version update notification, check the box "Do not ask me again" and *press CANCEL*.

13. *iTunes > Preferences...* and manually fix all of your settings, particularly these:
Library name, CD import settings, Sharing, iTunes folder location.

14. *iTunes > Library > Import Playlist...* Choose the Library.xml file from before. This will fully restore everything, including all songs, videos and your playlists.

( Compare the number of songs to what you had previously taken note of. Do the same for TV shows, movies, etc. )

( iTunes will sometimes mistakenly switch TV shows to movies. This can be fixed by choosing the video, File > Get Info, then Options. The second pull-down, "Media Kind," lets you choose TV show, Movie or Music Video. )

( Manually add your unpurchased songs back to your playlists, if desired. This is the only thing that has to truly be done manually. )

15. *Quit iTunes*. Relaunch, and you're done! If you're truly OCD, now's a good time to repair permissions with Disk Utility, may as well listen to some music while it's doing that. If I've made a mistake or left something out, please post in the comments.

( If you make a mistake and want to go back to where you started on iTunes 9, completely remove iTunes 8 by erasing the same types of files from the same locations as before, throw out iTunes 8 and reinstall iTunes 9, then overwrite the new library and preferences files with your backups. )

Mac OS X (10.5.8)
  • citron press Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    thanks so much! these instructions really helped me. version 9 ran super slow on my computer and i am happy to have version 8 back. i could have never figured it all out on my own.

    i'm only having one problem: all my songs fully imported when i completed step #14, but none of my playlists. Any suggestions to how i might get those restored?

    and one more question: the "date added" changed to today's date for all my songs. any possibility in restoring this info as well?

    Message was edited by: citron press
  • citron press Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    nevermind! i imported the wrong Library.xml file. everything is working beautifully. thanks again.
  • xxmrmacxx Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Thank you. My old mac just don't have the guts for 9. Should be a sticky.
  • BockOnTheRock Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Thank you larrynyc. This has also helped me out. There are some things I liked about 9.0, but I'll wait until they fix some of the bugs. Maybe they'll start answering support inquiries as well.

    Upon completing your list of steps, I wound up with a couple of duplicated playlists, and a synch warning that my iPod was synched with a different library. It probably won't break anything for me to "...erase everything on the iPod and synch with this new library...", as the number comparisons you so wisely recommended concurred with one another. But it makes me nervous. Any ideas what might have happened?
  • jrw1930 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Thanks. I have major problems with iTunes 9. I was hoping someone figured out how to get back to iTunes 8. Could I use Time Machine to go back to iTunes 8?

    john
  • jrw1930 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    I tried it and it didn't work for me. I haven't lost anything but I can't add any new music from CD's. Is there a way to revert to 9.0?
  • lizalu14 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Hi,

    When I click on the link for iTunes 8, I get an Apple page that says it is iTunes for G3. Can you use this for Intel Macs as well?
    Thanks!
  • larrynyc Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Looks like you already solved the problem below! The Library.xml contains everything; Playlists, Date Added, Ratings, and nearly everything else you can think of.
  • larrynyc Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    BockOnTheRock wrote:
    Upon completing your list of steps, I wound up with a couple of duplicated playlists, and a synch warning that my iPod was synched with a different library.


    The iPod sync situation sounds normal; it acts this way on purpose to prevent one person from using one iPod to simply load all of their friends' songs for free. Since you reverted to iTunes 8, the iPod thinks you're on a friend's machine.

    It should be safe to just erase and re-sync, it should put the same songs you've always put in there.

    But to be ultra-careful, I'd take the time to look at the number of total songs inside the iPod, and compare it with the total of new songs coming in (remember there may be other stuff not necessarily counted as songs, such as videos, podcasts, audiobooks). View by album, and just carefully make sure all the albums are the same on the iPod as on your computer. Sure it'll take a while, but if you're nervous it'll give peace of mind. If you 100% feel that the iPod has everything that's already on your computer, go ahead and erase and re-sync the iPod.
  • larrynyc Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    lizalu14 wrote:
    Hi,

    When I click on the link for iTunes 8, I get an Apple page that says it is iTunes for G3. Can you use this for Intel Macs as well?


    Yes, it's a Universal binary that has both an Intel-optimized version and a G3/G4/G5 PowerPC version.
  • larrynyc Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    citron press wrote:
    i'm only having one problem: all my songs fully imported when i completed step #14, but none of my playlists. Any suggestions to how i might get those restored?

    and one more question: the "date added" changed to today's date for all my songs. any possibility in restoring this info as well?


    Looks like you already solved the problem! The Library.xml contains everything; Playlists, Date Added, Ratings, and nearly everything else you can think of.
  • larrynyc Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    jrw1930 wrote:
    I tried it and it didn't work for me. I haven't lost anything but I can't add any new music from CD's. Is there a way to revert to 9.0?

    I'm not sure why it didn't work for you, or why the problem is for importing CDs; that's outside the scope of this thread. However, it seems that you possibly didn't follow the directions step-by-step.

    If you followed the steps exactly, you should already have a number of backup data files for iTunes 9.

    *How to start over:*
    *(A.K.A. Going back to iTunes 9 after trying to go back to iTunes 8 from iTunes 9):*

    Close iTunes 8.
    Use Activity Monitor to force quit iTunes Helper (for iTunes 8).
    Delete iTunes Helper (for iTunes 8) from your login items.
    In the Applications folder, throw iTunes 8 in the Trash.
    Restart.
    Run the SAME iTunes 9 installer you ran before.
    Make sure iTunes 9 is not running, then:
    Return the ".pkg" backup files to Library/Receipts.
    Return the ".plist" backup files to Users/YOURNAME/Library/Preferences.
    Return the "com.apple.iTunes.xxxxxxxxxxx" backup files to Users/YOURNAME/Library/Preferences/ByHost.
    Return the four backup files "iTunes Library," "iTunes Library Extras.itdb," "iTunes Library Genius.itdb" and iTunes Music Library.xml" to Users/YOURNAME/Music/iTunes.
    Launch iTunes 9. It should back back to where you were before.

    Since I'm on the topic, I must stress the importance of following the instructions to doing a careful backup of all the files you touch when doing any iTunes "surgery." With a full backup, you can confidently go back to where you came from with no problems.
  • larrynyc Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    jrw1930 wrote:
    Could I use Time Machine to go back to iTunes 8?

    I don't have Time Machine running, so I only can guess. In theory, possibly. You could use Time Machine to surgically extract the iTunes 8 data files to have as a backup.

    What I would do before touching anything is to do a manual backup of your iTunes 9. Go through the backup steps, and make a backup of all the iTunes 9 data files to a new folder to the side. (Receipts files, Preference files, ByHost files, and Library files).

    Then, I would dig through Time Machine to look for the same types of files, but for dates before iTunes 9 so you know they're for iTunes 8. You can tell they're from iTunes 8 by the date; just find the date just before you upgraded to version 9. Copy these data files to a new folder to the side.

    So now, you should have two sets of data file backups: iTunes 9 and iTunes 8. From here, you can try whatever method you'd like. Clicking Time Machine back sounds too good to be true to me, but hey, who knows, it may work. But it probably won't. Maybe, if you used Time Machine, you can use it to revert all those data files and the application itself. You're on your own with this one. At least now, you can rest assured you have the backup files to do it.