I'm looking to free up some space on my MacBook's hard drive. I've read the discussions about how to move your entire iTunes library to an external drive, but what if you want to pick and choose what to move? For instance: keep new music and old favourites on the MacBook; move played podcasts, videos and music I haven't listened to in over 2 years to the external. That way when I'm at home and the external is connected, I have access to everything. When I take my laptop on a trip I have access to essential content without also having to worry about the external hard drive and USB cable.
Is there an easy way to do this and to tell iTunes where to look for what content?
Yes, it is very simple, though it will take a little bit of work.
- iTunes prefs > Advanced.
- Set the iTunes media folder location to the external.
- Make sure Keep iTunes meida folder organized is checked and Copy files to iTunes media folder when adding to library is checked.
- Now select items in the library you want on the external.
- Right click - Consolidate. This will copy everything to a new iTunes media folder on the external.
- After you have done this for everything you want on the external, make sure to set iTunes prefs > Advanced iTunes media folder back to /Music/iTunes/. This make sure anything new goes onto the internal.
That was the simple part.
Now for a bit of work.
Go to /Music/iTunes/iTunes media/ folder on th einternal and delete the items that you consolidated to the external and iTunes is using these copies on the external.
iTunes should have an option to move items, not simply copy them when consolidating.
There should also be an option to use different locations for different media but there isn't.
So, I've had my library sitting on my hard-drive and wanted to move it to a new external hard drive. So I went into Advanced and changed my library location to my external (it is external and shared from another computer) drive. Then went under "file" and "library" and "organize library" and then "consolidate".
It copied over all my music. But it did NOT copy over BOOKS or VIDEO or APPs. Any idea how I can have the whole kit-and-kabootle moved without confusing iTunes (which seems to be very easy to do).
I'm sorry...but this response does not seem immediately relevant to my situation. I do not want a split library - and I've noticed that manually moving files using Windows Explorer (i.e., outside of iTunes) confuses iTunes. It does not seem to know where things are nor how to reconstruct them without harm to synchronization to the iPad or iPod.
in fact, in reading it - I'd say the advice is incorrect in the use of "non-fatal manipulations" as most of them, at least on Windows, is fatal to iTunes library. Specifically, this one: "You can move the library files and the media together if the media folder is a direct subfolder of the library folder." This would force me to manually add every song within my 40,000 song library again.
Perhaps if I called it "joining a split library" the intent would be clearer.
I thought this was a Mac forum. The techniques are mch the same but if we need to get specific it might be better to start your own thread in iTunes for Windows and invite me over there...
When you talk about changing the advanced preference for the media folder location and then consolidating, that leads to a split library. You are moving the media independently of the library files which stay put. If you have started this process but in fact want a portable library then the method I'm suggesting should be relevant.
Admittedly I didn't address the issue of why consolidate didn't copy over some of your content. iTunes can be notably silent when file operations fails so it could be a permissions problem. If you are running Windows then my scripts Unconsolidated and ConsolidateByMoving might be useful. The first can make a playlist of all unconsolidated files, the second can consolidate a selection of files by moving them instead of copying.
Regarding this point... "You can move the library files and the media together if the media folder is a direct subfolder of the library folder." the key factor is the relationship between the objects. When set out correctly you can move the entire iTunes folder as a unit and get iTunes to connect to the database at the new path. Although the absolute path to every file changes, the relative path from library file to media file is unchanged and iTunes effectively does a search and replace for old media path into new media path. I routinely run my iTunes library from E:\iTunes at home and switch to using a freshly updated clone of the same set of files at D:\iTunes when I'm at work. iTunes doesn't even blink at startup to check or correct anything, it just works.
You are correct; it is for Mac - but this thread was the closest to my issue - and i figured it was OS agnostic. Anyway...I've create the thread over there as you suggested.