I have almost the exact same problem. Same library is damaged message...my album artwork goes away, I have to re-download the album artwork, re-sync with iPhone, etc. For me it's not the end of the world, but a complete pain-in-the-***, but I don't have podcasts, etc. so I can see how for you it's a bigger deal.
Similar problem here - only I appear to get a little further. I'm able to get iTunes to start and am actually able to begin playing content. However, after varying amounts of time, the content just stops playing. iTunes locks up, alerts me that it can't save to the library and becomes a brick I have to force Quit and then unplug the external HD.
I've had this happen quite a few times and can't see a pattern or any other things I'd have running that would cause a problem. I even went so far as to change the file permissions on the external HD and all its files to Read/Write for the Everyone user as well as all other users I have on my machine.
Really quite irritating - I have way too much content to store on my laptop harddrive - this needs to get fixed. Let's hope somebody from Apple picks itu p.
Same problem happened again this morning. I had completely rebuilt the iTunes Library file and imported all of the playlist information from the 'iTunes Music Library.xml' file. Everything was running fine last night before bed. This morning I wake up and open up iTunes and the same "Importing from iTunes Music Library.xml" dialog box comes up and then a message saying the iTunes Library was damaged and is created a new Library file and saved the damaged one as 'iTunes Library (Damaged)'.
Any ideas on what could be happening? Really frustrating. The problems started when I moved the iTunes library to a new, bigger USB hard drive so it's obviously something with that, I just don't know what to check.
I'm having essentially the same problem, where iTunes makes me recreate the entire database every so often (maybe every 3rd time I open the program).
I never had this issue on prior versions of iTunes -- it apparently started happening when I upgraded from version 9.x to version 10.0, and continues in 10.1.
This is a real pain in the a**, since I keep having to recreate my playlists, completely re-sync my wife's iPod and my iPhone. I've tried deleting the .xml file and starting all over, and that didn't help -- the library file still gets corrupted.
Same issue here: iTunes is rebuilding a new library every time I restart.
My Itunes library on an external drive on iTunes 10.1.
I don't have a answer, just a workaround:
backup all your files everytime you shutdown your computer from My music -> iTunes, especially the iTunes Database File (.itl).
When you have this error message, just Stop building the new library, stop iTunes and replace the newly created iTunes Database File (.itl) by your backup file.
This will fix your issue until next reboot !
I hope Apple will find a fix ....
Same issue with me; same work-around.
I think I am seeing a pattern -- I get the "iTunes is rebuilding library" message when I first boot up each day. If I follow what you suggested, then iTunes will continue working that day. I can quit and reopen iTunes and it is fine. But when I start the next day, then the rebuilding message appears again. I have not tested this sufficiently to be certain of this pattern, but that's what seems to be happening.
This is a real mystery because iTunes seems like it is working fine, then the library issue happens again.
I will post back with more info when I have it.
EDIT: I just noticed this is the Mac forum. My problem is on Windows XP. Sorry for the mis-post.
Message was edited by: John-in-CA
This just happened to me for the for the first time couple nights ago (just looking forward to making all the album artwork again). At the same time though I was having major issues with finder crashing during transfers of over 20 gigs. I ultimately decided to just reinstall the operating system, although halfway through the os install failed and I realized my drive my was failing. Not saying this is necessarily happening to you guys, but you should check your drives for errors in disk utility just in case. I guess try deleting the iTunes preference files as well or reinstalling iTunes before you reinstall the whole os.