8 Replies Latest reply: Apr 7, 2011 4:14 AM by beachfarmer
beachfarmer Level 1 (0 points)

I updated to iTunes 10. After the update, I downloaded music from the iTunes Store.

Sometime later, I noticed that my preferences changed and now all the downloaded music goes to Music/iTunes/iTunes Media/Music. All my previous downloaded music is organized in Music/iTunes/iTunes Music.

Could someone provide a quick explanation of why the new iTunes Media folder and what is the best practices here...i.e. should I keep the music in both folders or move all to a single folder.

Thanks in advance...j

Windows Vista
  • Spur52 Level 1 (0 points)
    I don't know what the media folder is as I have no such folder
    in itunes. In iTunes go to your preferences. Then to Advanced and from
    there you can see what folder iTunes is using. With that you can decide
    what folder to use for your music and change it there if need be.
    Hope this helps
  • beachfarmer Level 1 (0 points)
    Thanks...but i beleive you missed my q's. Why, after iTunes 10 was installed that the iTunes Media folder was created? Why did it direct my downloads there...i'm assuming there is a purpose. Also, what is suppose to be best practices here...I know i can easily change where my downloads go...i just want to follow the best approach...thanks anyway.
  • turingtest2 Level 9 (64,955 points)
    Here are typical layouts for the iTunes folders:

    If you have upgraded from version 8 (or earlier) to iTunes 9 (or later) at some point, then your media folder (everything inside the red outline) may still be called *iTunes Music* instead of *iTunes Media*. The extra Music folder inside the media folder is used if you have allowed iTunes to *Upgrade to iTunes Media Organization* (iTunes 9) or used *File > Library > Organize Library > Reorganize files in the folder "iTunes Media"* (iTunes 10). Depending on your choices for *Keep iTunes Media folder organized* and *Copy files to iTunes Media folder when adding to library* plus a little bug in which one build changed the name of the file storing the choice of layout it is quite easy for some of your files to be organized according to one layout and some the other.

    Assuming you're happy letting iTunes organize your files the following steps should tidy things up (should it be necessary):

    1. Select *File > Library > Organize Library... >* Tick *Reorganize files in the folder "iTunes Media"* and click OK. Skip if this option is greyed out (already upgraded) or you prefer the older layout.

    2. Select *File > Library > Organize Library... >* Tick *Consolidate files* and click OK. This will bring any files currently organised outside the designated media folder into it.

    NB This will create duplicate copies of any file that needs to be consolidated, and you will need to manually clean up afterwards. If space is at a premium try my scripts Unconsolidated to find out what would need moving and ConsolidatebyMoving to move rather than copy it.

    3. Select *Edit > Preferences > Advanced* tab, uncheck *Keep iTunes Media folder organized* and click OK.

    4. Select *Edit > Preferences > Advanced* tab, check *Keep iTunes Media folder organized* and click OK. This triggers iTunes into reorganizing everything according to your preferences.

    5. (Optional) Close iTunes, rename the folder *iTunes Music* as *iTunes Media* then restart iTunes. Check under *Edit > Preferences > Advanced* tab that the location has automatically updated. If you can't access the media for any reason just undo the folder rename.

    6. (Optional - Windows only) If Windows Media Player has ever had access to your files it may have liberally scattered folder artwork files about which iTunes won't tidy up when it reorganizes things, thus leaving behind a heap of folders with artwork and no media. I've written a script for cleaning this mess up which you can find at http://samsoft.org.uk/iTunes/CleanDeadArt.asp

    PS If you really prefer the older layout, but it is already in the new one then edit the file called *.iTunes Preferences.plist* in your media folder and change the integer from 1 to 0 before doing step 3.

    PPS If most of your media is still in *iTunes Music* I'd check that the media folder preference points there to start with, then consolidate so that iTunes is no longer connected to the copies of recent files in *iTunes Media*. You can then delete the now redundant iTunes Media folder before applying the steps given above.

  • beachfarmer Level 1 (0 points)
    TTS:..thanks for your great response. I followed your directions 1-4. The result of this was that only some of the music was consolidated/copied to the iTunes Media/Music/Music folder from the iTunes Music folder. Of the music (and folder structure) that was copied to the iTunes Media/Music/Music folder, only the folder structure (not the .mp3) remains under the iTunes Music folder.

    Is the above situation what your pps refers to? If so, I'm not sure what you mean by "checking the media folder preference points there to start with". Could you elaborate on this.

    If this is not what your pps refers to, I believe I will manually copy over the folders that were not consolidated; however, this will take a lot of time as the .mp3's were moved (as discussed 2 para's above) and I'll have to check every folder. I'll then have to recreate the library.

    Also, my fear of consolidating again with file/library/organize library/consolidate files (not greyed out) will duplicate files already copied. Thanks in advance...j
  • turingtest2 Level 9 (64,955 points)
    The typical location for an iTunes library under Windows is *<Profile's Music>\iTunes* where *<Profile's Music>* is *C:\Documents and Settings\<User>\My Documents\My Music* or C:Users<User>Music depending on the version of Windows.

    The media folder should be *...\iTunes\iTunes Media* for libraries created with iTunes 9 or later and *...\iTunes\iTunes Music* for older libraries.
    I followed your directions 1-4. The result of this was that only some of the music was consolidated/copied to the iTunes Media/Music/Music folder from the iTunes Music folder.

    Sounds like you might have set the target folder too deep.
    Of the music (and folder structure) that was copied to the iTunes Media/Music/Music folder, only the folder structure (not the .mp3) remains under the iTunes Music folder.

    When iTunes reorganizes media that is within the designated media folder it only moves the media and doesn't make duplicated copies. Supplementary files such as album artwork that may have been created by Explorer/Windows Media will be left behind with the folders that they are inside. These files are often marked as hidden system files so you may not notice them. If iTunes moves the last file out of a folder then it will delete the folder. My CleanDeadArt script is safe to use to clean out any such stray files & folders. By default all are moved to a new archive location and unhidden so you can review the content before deleting it.

    Again, I'm not quite sure why you mention a path of *iTunes Media/Music/Music*. Does this mean you have tracks at *iTunes\iTunes Media\Music\Music\<Artist>\<Album>\## <Name>.<Ext>* ? If so change the location under *Edit > Preferences > Advanced* to *iTunes Media* then turn off the *Keep organised...* option, apply, then turn it back on again. Using this method shouldn't create any duplicate files.

    Consolidating creates copies of files that are outside the designated media folder and brings them inside. Once all files have been consolidated, the originals are redundant (at least as far as iTunes is concerned) and can be discarded.

    Upgrading to *iTunes Media Organisation* or the less meaningfully named option to *Rearrange files in the folder <Media Folder Name>* will move files around without creating dupes, but again if WMP/Explorer have generated any artwork there may be redundant folders to tidy up.

    The PPS refers to a few people who had their library converted to the new layout but actually prefer the old one. Ignore it unless it applies to you.

    Sorry I got a bit lost in editing this as I was called away to a meeting and I'd starting tacking some of your points in the wrong order. I think I've picked up on all the main concerns but feel free to ask me to clarify anything.

  • beachfarmer Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks for all your help again...and you were right; I had and extras \music in the target path. I'm not sure how that happened.

    Anyway, I changed the path and the folder structure looks a lot more like the structure you have above. However, a 2 final questions:

    1. My current folder structure is Music\iTunes\iTunes Media. In your directory structure above, your iPod Games folder are under your audio books folder. My iPod Games folder is at Music\iTunes\iPod Games (same level as the iTunes Media folder. Is this correct?

    2. I have two Podcasts folders. One in the location as your folder structure above, and one at Music\iTunes\iTunes Media\Downloads\Podcasts. Why is there two locations....thanks again...j
  • turingtest2 Level 9 (64,955 points)
    I'm guessing the mechanism that reorganizes media within the media folder when you upgrade doesn't automatically pull stuff down from the top iTunes folder. By chance I'd already reorganized my library the "new" way for portability before iTunes 9 so I never actually went through the process except with test libraries to understand the behaviour for others. Consolidating ought to sort out any remaining anomalies or you could just drag the iPod Games folder into the "correct" location and then relink the apps by attempting to Get Info. on each app in turn.

    The downloads folder normally gets deleted after each successful download session. The fact that it is there suggests iTunes crashed during an operation. You should be able to delete this folder and all it's contents.

  • beachfarmer Level 1 (0 points)
    Thanks again...j