'Add to library' vs. 'copy to iTunes' - whatta mess I made :-P - ehMac.ca
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Old Mar 9th, 2008, 01:53 AM   #1
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'Add to library' vs. 'copy to iTunes' - whatta mess I made :-P

I like to name my .mp3 files in a particular way (artist - title.mp3). I know - iTunes doesn't do it that way. But I like it and I don't want iTunes dictating naming conventions to me and my way makes it very easy for me to load up a thumbdrive with .mp3s I want and take them to listen to at work (where we're not allowed to have iTunes) or on my Nokia N800 internet tablet.

I have the .mp3 Folder chosen in the Preferences -> Advanced -> iTunes Music folder location. However, sometime in the last year or so (perhaps when I had the flu or was stupider than usual), I clicked the 'copy to iTunes Music Folder when adding to Library' option.

Over time, I'd downloaded album artwork through a couple of widgets and using cut n' paste from websites, tried one of Doug's scripts to embed the artwork into the tag (I'm not sure how to tell if it works or not), tried to clean up titles and stuff... .

But I've also managed to 'copy to iTunes Music Folder' almost 9GBs of songs.

I'd really rather have *all* my .mp3s sitting in my .mp3 Folder and not in the iTunes Music one. And I'd like to save almost 9GBs.

I'd been fixing up my .mp3 files in TriTag, putting them into the .mp3 Folder and then manually dragging them into iTunes (I think this must have triggered the 'copy songs to...' and accounts for the 9-ishGBs).

1. Is there some script or application that will keep tabs of new files in the .mp3 Folder and automatically add them to the iTunes window so I don't have to try to remember every song I've just fixed in TriTag that I then have to drag to iTunes? I figure the songs in my .mp3 Folder should equal the songs (-podcasts) in the iTunes window and I figure I'm out about 200 So, obviously I missed quite a few

2. The iTunes Album Artwork folder is about 117MB in size. If I empty the iTunes Music folder, any guess as to how that'll affect the Artwork files since I'm not sure which music file the artwork's attached to; the original file I'd dragged from my .mp3 Folder or it would have given any copy in the iTunes Music folder priority so that I'd lose the link if I dump the iTunes Music Folder?

I'd just like to clean up my mess, get those missing songs into iTunes, not worry about losing songs into the abyss 'tween tweaking and listening in iTunes and make sure the pretty artwork I've found stays put, damned it

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Old Mar 9th, 2008, 04:01 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by Betty Woo View Post
I like to name my .mp3 files in a particular way (artist - title.mp3). I know - iTunes doesn't do it that way.
Actually, iTunes doesn't care one whit how you name your files. Seriously, it doesn't. What it DOES want is for you to fill out the TAGS *within* the file with the correct information so that it can file it properly.

So name the files whatever you like.

As for the rest of your problem -- if you're sure you have the same songs in the MP3 folder as in the iTunes Music folder, just delete the iTunes Music folder, turn off "copy to iTunes" and "keep music files organised" in the prefs, and then re-add the MP3 folder.

This is a bad idea in the long run, but you know what, it's not my computer, it's your computer. You do this any way you like.
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Old Mar 9th, 2008, 07:41 AM   #3
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I have to agree with Chas here. It's a bad idea. iTunes does a wonderful job of organizing. It doesn't get much simpler than /Artist/Album/songs/ structure.

For the thumbdrive, try this, just for kicks.

Create a playlist in iTunes. Put what you like in there. (As Chas mentioned, you can name them whatever you wish.)

Now, click on a song in the playlist and choose "Select All" or hit "Command+A" and drag them to a folder on your desktop. iTunes will copy all of the songs selected into that folder.. without moving them from their location on your harddrive. Copy to thumbdrive/Nokia.

Good luck.. I've let iTunes do its own thing for a long time.. I couldn't picture doing it any other way now.

Sorry if it's not the answer you're looking for, but I don't know of a way to do what you want.
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Old Mar 9th, 2008, 07:17 PM   #4
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Nah. I'm fine with my method. I really don't like the way iTunes organizes music. Just not my cup o' tea at all and until it lets me name files and organize according to my preferences... .

Think I'll just wait for a day I know my system won't be backing up with SuperDuper, create a playlist with 10 of the songs from the iTunes music folder that I know have artwork for, trash the iTunes music folder and see what happens to the playlist.

Then I'll re-add the .mp3 Folder to the iTunes library. Worse case scenario: I screw up royally and simply copy everything over from my backup drive.

Still have to figure out if there may be a script or app that'll automatically add new files to Itunes though. Maybe spending some time over at Doug's Applescripts will rustle up something good.
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