And just to complete my question: My hope was that I could restore the iTunes library file from a couple of weeks ago, when the meta-data contain the composer data I've spent so much time adding, and have these sync to the cloud. When I try this, iTM overrides these data and replace them with the cloud's empty composer fields (at least for most tracks, again no consistency that I can see).
If time is the criterion, i.e., the latest edit is kept, I can understand that iTM sees the restored library file as older and thus flushes the cloud data back down. My next idea is; first turning off iTM, if I restore the library file, then use one of Doug's scripts to append a space character at the end of all composer fields, then iTM should see those edits as newer?
Afraid to mess too much with the library and risk losing more than I already have, I truly want to understand how iTM works before proceeding. So, any insights would be much appreciated!
In general, iTunes Match considers "the cloud" to contain the "master" data.
However, what I don't understand is which criteria iTM applies to determine which is the "master" meta-data to keep and which to overwrite. Some examples of cases:
- For the same track, I edit the meta-data on the master computer and my wife edits the same data from her computer, creating conflicts within the the track information. Which of the edits will iTM keep and why?
iTM will keep the most recent change in the cloud and push it out to all the devices. So whichever of you finishes last "wins."
- I edit a track while the iTM update is in progress (which is the troublesome situation many have seen), meaning the meta-data on my master computer is newer than those in the cloud. Still, iTM considers the cloud data to take presedence and syncs these back to the computer.
Yes, this is correct, unfortunately. Any changes to ID3 tags made while the service is actively scanning your library, or if there is an interuption in the connection between iTunes and the cloud servers will be ignored the next time the connection is re-established and the data from the cloud will be pushed to your computer.
What you and I might consider the "master" library (ie: our iTunes library on our computer) is not in the case of iTunes Match. It is only a "client."
If someone else should have the problem of lost metadata edits, I can confirm that my proposed approach works: Restore the library file from Time Machine backup, keep Match turned off, make a small change in a field, e.g., add a space in the comment field. Then your local data were last updated, so when you turn on Match, these changes will be uploaded...