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What's the easiest way to move iTunes?

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What's the easiest way to move iTunes?

Postby clyde » Wed Dec 10, 2008 5:18 pm

I got a new (used) laptop and want to move my iTunes off my old crappy laptop onto this newer one. The instructions online from iPod are about 8 pages long, and I just don't believe it has to be that complicated.

Anyone else been successful in doing this?
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Re: What's the easiest way to move iTunes?

Postby fisticuffs » Wed Dec 10, 2008 5:23 pm

Is it mostly stuff you purchased from itunes or other mp3's? Mac or PC (new computer and old)?
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Re: What's the easiest way to move iTunes?

Postby boston_jeff » Wed Dec 10, 2008 6:08 pm

Itunes stores your music in a specific folder, you can use an external flash or hard drive to save this folder, then move it to your new computer's hard drive.

Open Itunes, Edit>Preferences>Advanced will tell you what that folder is. Go to my computer and find the folder (it stores all the files that make up your Itunes library), copy it onto your external drive, then save it to your new computer. Open Itunes on the new computer, Edit>Preferences>Advanced and set the folder where you saved the music as your default storage folder (from now on all new music you buy or copy will be stored here, where the rest of your music is). Now, in Itunes select File>Add Folder to Library. Browse for the folder and hit OK. itunes should begin importing all of your music files into the Itunes library on your new computer.
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Re: What's the easiest way to move iTunes?

Postby Ducatista » Wed Dec 10, 2008 6:49 pm

boston_jeff wrote:Itunes stores your music in a specific folder, you can use an external flash or hard drive to save this folder, then move it to your new computer's hard drive.

Make sure you copy the iTunes folder from the Music folder in your user folder, even if you store your music somewhere else (like on an external drive). If you don't, you'll lose your playlists, which are stored in the iTunes Music Library.xml file.
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Re: What's the easiest way to move iTunes?

Postby chainsawcurtis » Thu Dec 11, 2008 10:02 am

An alternative to the flash drive thing is to simply network the two laptops with a router and drag your iTunes music folder to the new laptop. Don't know about PC but on a mac it would be really simple - just drag the entire "iTunes" folder (it's in your old laptop's "Music" folder and contails the mp3s the artwork and the library of info) into your new laptop's "Music" folder. It'll still be on the old laptop so when you're satisfied that it worked you can delete the stuff on the old one.
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Re: What's the easiest way to move iTunes?

Postby Ducatista » Thu Dec 11, 2008 10:32 am

chainsawcurtis wrote:(it's in your old laptop's "Music" folder and contails the mp3s the artwork and the library of info)

It contains all that... unless you've told iTunes to store your music somewhere else. The iTunes Music folder in my iTunes folder in my Music folder on my startup drive is empty. All my MP3s live in a different iTunes Music folder on my external drive, and that folder contains just the MP3s, no library info.

Doesn't sound as though that's pertinent to the OP, but it might matter to somebody else reading this thread. It really sucks to lose playlists.
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Re: What's the easiest way to move iTunes?

Postby chainsawcurtis » Thu Dec 11, 2008 3:02 pm

Ducatista wrote:
chainsawcurtis wrote:(it's in your old laptop's "Music" folder and contails the mp3s the artwork and the library of info)

It contains all that... unless you've told iTunes to store your music somewhere else. The iTunes Music folder in my iTunes folder in my Music folder on my startup drive is empty. All my MP3s live in a different iTunes Music folder on my external drive, and that folder contains just the MP3s, no library info.


Yup, that's correct. He could also simply keep the old laptop with the files intact and add it (the iTunes library) to the iTunes on the new laptop by going to preferences and "Sharing - look for shared libraries and Share my library on local network"). Both computers need to be networked together but the old laptop will act as a server for the new one's iTunes saving a lot of space on the new laptop. Saves time and space.
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Re: What's the easiest way to move iTunes?

Postby clyde » Fri Dec 12, 2008 10:19 am

fisticuffs wrote:Is it mostly stuff you purchased from itunes or other mp3's? Mac or PC (new computer and old)?


All downloaded from cd's, none purchased from iTunes. And both laptops are pc's - the old one is an old ThinkPad and the newer one a two-year old Dell.

boston_jeff wrote:Itunes stores your music in a specific folder, you can use an external flash or hard drive to save this folder, then move it to your new computer's hard drive.


Thanks for the step-by-step instructions - I'll try this. I don't have too many playlists, so I wouldn't be heartbroken if those get lost in the process for some reason. This is my last step in phasing out the old laptop - finally!
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Re: What's the easiest way to move iTunes?

Postby boston_jeff » Fri Dec 12, 2008 12:00 pm

Good luck, if you have any trouble just re-post. I've done this 3+ times after I've upgraded and/or HDs have failed. I would recommend that if you do not hold onto your CDs, that you back up your Itunes folder on an external HD. I have mine backed up on two external HDs in different locations (in case of fire) and do the same with all my documents and photos.
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Re: What's the easiest way to move iTunes?

Postby clyde » Mon Dec 15, 2008 12:11 pm

Mission accomplished! It was fairly easy and took multiple flash drives to get the job done. I did lose my 2 or 3 playlists in the process, but like I said, its no great loss. As an added bonus, I didn't realize until I started poking around that the person who owned the newer computer before (someone I know) still had their iTunes library in there. I wound up with quite a bit of new stuff! Thanks again for the help!
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