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Topic: splitting itunes libraries

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Old 05-15-2018, 04:50 PM
#1
 
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splitting itunes libraries

I am in the process of digitizing all of my CD's (many, many, of them). My iTunes library is getting to be quite large, and I don't want to fill up my internal HD. I would like to split my library into two, with one on my internal drive containing the songs that I will be apt to play more often, and another one on my external drive containing those songs that I don't want to lose, but will play less often. (I will divide them by Genre.) I will have no problem keeping them straight and signing into the library that I want to use. I do not want either of them to be referenced - I want the total songs, metadata, etc in each library to be independent of the other.

To be sure that I have all of the information that is needed for each library, what I have thought of doing is to copy the total library to my external drive, and then delete the songs/playlists/albums that I want to maintain on my internal drive. Then, on my computer, delete the songs/playlists/albums that I wish to keep on my external. Are there any unforeseen problems with doing it this way? I have looked on line and found solutions involving exporting, and other ways of doing this, but some of them result in referenced songs, where I wish to have two totally independent libraries.

Thanks for any help
Nancy
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Old 05-16-2018, 08:27 AM
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You can do this just hold SHIFT while starting iTunes to get the prompt to choose or create a library.

There is no need to copy the old one across to the external drive. Just do the same procedure, hold SHIFT and start iTunes.
Choose Create Library...
Navigate to the drive and folder where you want the iTunes Folder to be stored
Name the iTunes folder, the default might be iTunes 1. You could make it iTunesOther or some other name.
Click the Save button and you will have an empty library.

Have fun with this and be sure to be in the correct library before importing a disc.

When you do iTunes backups, you will need to do 2 backups. 1 for each library.
Syncing devices will become challenging. You can only automatic sync to one library. So for the second library, you will need to use manual management to get tracks from that library onto your device.
Mixing playlists between the libraries cannot happen without duplicating tracks in both libraries.

Personally I would Consolidate the current library to the external drive, and put all the tracks in one library. 1 sync, 1 library, 1 backup.



Have you backed up your iTunes Library this week? If not, you are risking losing your music and playlists....
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Old 05-16-2018, 11:29 AM
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Thanks for your response.

If I create an empty library, then how do I transfer the music/playlists, etc to that library? And once I do that, I will then have to delete those files from the original library.

Syncing is not a problem as I don't sync. I manually transfer the music I want to my devices. My library is much larger than the storage on my devices.
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Old 05-17-2018, 11:14 PM
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If you want some of the playlists and tracks from the original library then duplicating it, and deleting as you suggested is the best bet.

Duplicate the library file to start the new library
Navigate in Windows Explorer to your iTunes folder, find the file iTunes Library.itl right click and choose Copy.
Use the edit menu to paste.
Rename the new one from iTunes Library - Copy.itl to Secondary Library.itl

Clean out the stuff you don't want in the new library without deleting the music files
Hold Shift and start iTunes.
Click Choose Library and select Secondary Library
Select the stuff you don't want in this library (probably in albums or genre), then press the Delete key
If it asks you if you are sure you want to delete it, answer Delete Songs (or whatever the positive answer is)
When it asks if you want to send the song to the recycle bin, click Keep File so your main Library does not lose it.
Delete playlists that are no longer relevant.
Repeat until you have the secondary library reduced to what you want.

Migrate the new library to the external drive
Now you want to move it to the external hard drive which I assume is drive E and is plugged in.
Using Windows Explorer make a directory on the E drive named iTunes
Using Windows Explorer go into the iTunes Folder and make an iTunes Media folder
Using iTunes, click on Edit->Preferences
Click on the Advanced Tab
Click on the Change button to the right of the iTunes Media Folder location
Navigate to E:\iTunes\iTunes Media and click Select Folder
Close the Preferences window by clicking OK
Click on File->Library->Organize library
Put a check mark into Consolidate Library
Click OK, wait for the transfer to complete.
Close iTunes

Here you can choose to leave the Secondary library file (not the songs) on the internal drive or if you want it with the songs, you can use Windows Explorer to Cut Secondary Library,itl navigate to E:\iTunes and paste it. It really doesn't matter which way you go.

Clean up primary library
Hold Shift and start iTunes
Choose iTunes Library.itl
Select the stuff you don't want in this library (probably in albums or genre), then press the Delete key
If it asks you if you are sure you want to delete it, answer Delete Songs (or whatever the positive answer is)
When it asks if you want to send the song to the recycle bin, click Send to Recycle Bin to eliminate the songs from your primary drive and main library.
Repeat until you have the main library reduced to what you want.
Delete playlists that are no longer relevant.
Empty the recycle bin to get disk space back if you need it.

Now you should be split.
You will have to hold SHIFT every time you want to switch iTunes libraries.
You have to be sure you are loading your music in the correct one.
You should back up both libraries regularly



Have you backed up your iTunes Library this week? If not, you are risking losing your music and playlists....
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Old 05-18-2018, 12:35 PM
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Thank you very much for your detailed answer. I have a Mac, but I think I can "translate " the directions without any problem.

Nancy
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