/ Technology

Moving Your iTunes Library

Okay, well this is my first official blog entry here as my post from earlier was just a sort of introduction to my blog. But this is the real thing, this isn't a test run, this is going to go live so fingers crossed it makes sense. I have actually read this through a few times now and can't see any typos so fingers crossed it's all fine! No doubt I have missed something though and I'm pretty sure more than one of you readers will even comment telling me there is an error somewhere, idiots.

About a week or so ago I purchased my very first Mac machine, it's a MacBook Pro. I have always been a fan of Apple.. actually that is a lie because up until a few months ago I hated the iPhone but I loved my iPod touch (I am now the proud owner of an iPhone and wouldn't have anything else) and knowing that Macs were good I asked a few people who I knew had one what they thought about them so I could get an idea of what I could expect, and I made the plunge.

So I get this box in the post, and there in front of me is my Mac and then one thing hits me and I get a bit sweaty..

What about my huge iTunes Library, along with my iPhone, iPod and iPad backups.. how do I even start to move that over?

Now I thought, Google will have the answer! Well, I found out some couple of days later that Google has loads of different answers and most of them were a few years old and we all know that iTunes will of changed by then so I needed to find out what I was going to do and then put it into practice and hope for the best.

The main problem that I came across was that on my PC I had my whole iTunes Library on an external hdd drive, and if there is one thing that's no good when it comes to moving your library, it's having the iTunes Preferences set to hold your music and other files away from their default location! I now had a major problem, a 50+ GB folder on my external hard drive with only 8GB on my C drive to copy it to, so there was no way I could copy it all back to my C drive... I had to find another way.

Another problem I found on my hunt for the answer was that I would have to alter the XML library file manually to change the path of the files so that once I copied everything over to the MacBook, iTunes could still find it. Now let me tell you, I have some 6,000+ tracks in iTunes and renaming the location path as a full path would take ages, evening using a 'find the replace' function on my Dreamweaver froze my PC and I had to force a shutdown on it. This wasn't getting any easier, and then I had my lucky break.

After a bit more hunting around on Google, and searching for the right things, I found out that iTunes 10 can automatically alter the iTunes Library XML file when you move from a PC to Mac. This was something that was in my favour, but I still needed to somehow figure out what files when where on the external hard drive so I could get it all on my shiny new Mac.

After I looked through the folder structure and copied the XML files from my C drive to my external hard drive, I was confident enough that I got it right and started the fill on hour transfer mission to copy everything from the external hard drive to my new iTunes folder on my Mac.

After waiting for around fifty minutes, the transfer had completed so I ran iTunes on my Mac and hoped for the best, once iTunes had loaded it looked identical as it did on my PC and I could breathe again! All of my apps were there which was a big worry for me, and all of the music was there too, I even found some music that I thought I had lost so I was a happy man once again.

One thing that I am still yet to check is that if I can sync my iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad to my new MacBook without having to set them up as a new device. I am not willing to even risk that just yes, simply because iOS 5 is round the corner and I will just update to that from my PC and then I shouldn't need to even hook them up to my PC again, well if I do then I will cross that bridge when I get to it.

The moral of this story is, keep all of your iTunes in your must folder so that it is easier to move if you should ever need to!