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Confused / Corrupted iTunes Library Files & How to Fix

Discussion in 'Forum Help' started by Elliott, Mar 23, 2017.

  1. Elliott

    Elliott New Member

    This is a somewhat complicated issue; I've always run my iTunes Music Files from an external hard drive because I have an extensive music library (more then 1 TB). As my library has grown so have the number of iMac's and MacBooks in my office studio.

    I purchased a Drobo 5N NAS box and decided that since I work at different computers doing different tasks at different times, copying my ext h/d iTunes music files and library file to the NAS, all computers regardless of which one I was working from could play music. I setup the music library the same way on my NAS as it was on my ext h/d identical to the way it is setup on my MacBook h/d, (Music/iTunes/iTunes Media/Music).

    When I tried playing music from my MacBook with iTunes pointing to the *.itl file on the NAS, the music started skipping intermittently. Disappointed ( didn't allow for the NAS time to optimize, my fault). I moved my library back to my external drive off of one of my MacBook's. I rebuilt the *.itl file all over again. But what happened, with the NAS turned off, when I brought up iTunes, iTunes would open up a dialogue box stating the NAS was not mounted. I would close the dialog box and search for an album, and try to play it and get another dialog box saying file not found. After looking at my MacBook h/d and my external h/d, I realized that the *.itl file on my ext h/d was in kb and the *.itl file on my MacBook h/d was in MB. In other words, altho I pointed iTunes to my iTunes Media folder on my ext h/d, it was updating the *.itl file on my MacBook's iTunes Media Folder instead and this was the current iTunes Library File.

    To add to my own nemesis, I continued seeing a lot of duplicate music files. I use TuneUp as a support utility to keep my library clean and ran the "find duplicates" function. Lucky for me, it archives all duplicate files to a specified folder. When the utility finished running I continued to see duplicate music files and files not found in many albums so I did a CMD + I on the files and realized that it was looking at files in my ext h/d and in the NAS. Keep in mind that my NAS has been turned off all the time during this entire exercise.

    So 2 problems occurred. First I thought the *.itl file on my ext h/d was the current library db when it was the one on my MacBook that was being updated. So was I suppose to be pointing iTunes to the ext h/d *.itl file and not the iTunes Media folder? And second; I some how combined the the *.itl db on the NAS with the one on my MacBook *.itl drive and need to fix this.

    With all this explained, my problem is how to I go about fixing my iTunes Library (itl) file. And could I follow the initial concept of running my iTunes library from the Drobo NAS?
  2. kirk

    kirk Administrator Staff Member

    You can certainly run iTunes on a network volume, but, as you saw, if the NAS is off, iTunes gets unhappy. (See Make Sure Your Network Volume Is Mounted Before Launching iTunes.)

    You need to only move the iTunes Media folder to the NAS, and point iTunes to that folder. iTunes works a lot better if the library file - and other support files - are on the computer.

    This article may help:


    And listen to this episode of The Next Track podcast:

    ♫ Episode #39 – Storing Media on a Network-Attached Storage Device
  3. Elliott

    Elliott New Member

    Thanks for the link. It was a very interesting article. I didn't realize I was doing things in an anarchic way.
  4. kirk

    kirk Administrator Staff Member

    Not anarchic, lots of people do it that way, but I've found over the years that it's unreliable.

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