17 Comments

  1. André

    Good to hear that you finally solved it! Especially since I’m considering getting a MAC and such information sure helps. 🙂 Still not sure if I like the idea of converting all my files into a certain format. Sounds annoying to me.

  2. André

    Good to hear that you finally solved it! Especially since I’m considering getting a MAC and such information sure helps. 🙂 Still not sure if I like the idea of converting all my files into a certain format. Sounds annoying to me.

  3. Sebastian

    Well, it is annoying. But annoying to a degree I can live with. Especially considering the alternatives.
    As for the converting itself: my Mac runs 24/7 anyhow. I just let a batch converter do the job.
    Sure, it would be nice if iTunes would simply accept .avi files. On the other hand, I can understand that this would be a lot of work, since .avi ist nothing more than a container, which can contain… well… just about anything.
    Yeah, .mov, too, is a container format. But it’s a container the „Apple way“, which, probably, makes things easier.

    Then again: one has to think about what one really needs. For most users my solution „5“ is possibly good enough…

  4. Sebastian

    Well, it is annoying. But annoying to a degree I can live with. Especially considering the alternatives.
    As for the converting itself: my Mac runs 24/7 anyhow. I just let a batch converter do the job.
    Sure, it would be nice if iTunes would simply accept .avi files. On the other hand, I can understand that this would be a lot of work, since .avi ist nothing more than a container, which can contain… well… just about anything.
    Yeah, .mov, too, is a container format. But it’s a container the „Apple way“, which, probably, makes things easier.

    Then again: one has to think about what one really needs. For most users my solution „5“ is possibly good enough…

  5. jakob

    This does not work for me with iTunes 9 and current Snow Leopard OSX. The files are being copied from the external drive to the internal drive.

    Have you maybe deactivated the copy-files-to-iTunes-library in your iTunes settings? Because that would explain why your files are not copied. Deactivating that setting, however, makes no sense in my opinion, because I do want music to be moved to the library upon adding the to iTunes.

    Why the FUCKING HELL does iTunes not simply allow aliases in the library? It would be SOOO much easier to simply have an alias to „Movies“ or „TV-Shows“ on an external drive…

  6. jakob

    This does not work for me with iTunes 9 and current Snow Leopard OSX. The files are being copied from the external drive to the internal drive.

    Have you maybe deactivated the copy-files-to-iTunes-library in your iTunes settings? Because that would explain why your files are not copied. Deactivating that setting, however, makes no sense in my opinion, because I do want music to be moved to the library upon adding the to iTunes.

    Why the FUCKING HELL does iTunes not simply allow aliases in the library? It would be SOOO much easier to simply have an alias to „Movies“ or „TV-Shows“ on an external drive…

  7. Sebastian Schack

    Hey there.

    No, I did not deactivate the copy-files-to-iTunes-library-thingy, because I want iTunes to copy music that I drag into the iTunes window to the library.

    However, I invested some time to investigate your problem… I don’t use iTunes on my MacBook. Ever. I think I never really started it on the MacBook before the following test. I unplugged my external Movie HDD from the Mac Mini and plugged it into the MacBook. I then created a binary file on my MacBook HDD, just big enough to leave it with exactly 1GB of free space. I then started to drag a couple of movies from the external HDD into the iTunes window. As expected my Mac started to copy the files and after a few seconds shouted something like: GET A BIGGER HARDDRIVE!
    I deleted the files again, checked: 1GB of free space, okay.
    Then I selected the same movie files (about 13GB in total), held down the option key and „moved“ them into the iTunes window. The whole „import“ took about 10 seconds and the Mac did not complain about HDD space and I could play the movies from inside iTunes from the external HDD.

    I do not know what, but something seems to be wrong at your end here… sorry…

  8. Sebastian Schack

    Hey there.

    No, I did not deactivate the copy-files-to-iTunes-library-thingy, because I want iTunes to copy music that I drag into the iTunes window to the library.

    However, I invested some time to investigate your problem… I don’t use iTunes on my MacBook. Ever. I think I never really started it on the MacBook before the following test. I unplugged my external Movie HDD from the Mac Mini and plugged it into the MacBook. I then created a binary file on my MacBook HDD, just big enough to leave it with exactly 1GB of free space. I then started to drag a couple of movies from the external HDD into the iTunes window. As expected my Mac started to copy the files and after a few seconds shouted something like: GET A BIGGER HARDDRIVE!
    I deleted the files again, checked: 1GB of free space, okay.
    Then I selected the same movie files (about 13GB in total), held down the option key and „moved“ them into the iTunes window. The whole „import“ took about 10 seconds and the Mac did not complain about HDD space and I could play the movies from inside iTunes from the external HDD.

    I do not know what, but something seems to be wrong at your end here… sorry…

  9. Negrito

    Quick question: So your itunes is managing your files in the new way where its iTunes ‚media‘, and not iTunes ‚music‘ correct? I have iTunes since before the change, would you recommend switching to the new organization system, or does it not matter at all?

    • Sebastian Schack

      Partly correct.
      I’ve been using iTunes for a couple of years now. When Apple introduced the new organization scheme, I switched – without thinking about the consequences (I do Time Machine backups!).
      However, I found out, that the new organization scheme has absolutely no impact on my little trick. Everything still works.

      What I had hoped for my switching to the new scheme was, that it would be possible to tell iTunes that folder media/music is on Disk #1, media/tv shows on Disk #2, and media/movies on Disk #3 (and so forth) – that, of course, does still not work.

      The easiest way to split ones media collection across multiple disks still seems to be my little trick to drag those files into iTunes while holding down the option key.

  10. Negrito

    Quick question: So your itunes is managing your files in the new way where its iTunes ‚media‘, and not iTunes ‚music‘ correct? I have iTunes since before the change, would you recommend switching to the new organization system, or does it not matter at all?

    • Sebastian Schack

      Partly correct.
      I’ve been using iTunes for a couple of years now. When Apple introduced the new organization scheme, I switched – without thinking about the consequences (I do Time Machine backups!).
      However, I found out, that the new organization scheme has absolutely no impact on my little trick. Everything still works.

      What I had hoped for my switching to the new scheme was, that it would be possible to tell iTunes that folder media/music is on Disk #1, media/tv shows on Disk #2, and media/movies on Disk #3 (and so forth) – that, of course, does still not work.

      The easiest way to split ones media collection across multiple disks still seems to be my little trick to drag those files into iTunes while holding down the option key.

  11. Hal B Sure

    Based on your tip I scoured iTunes help for confirmation. At the end of the instructions for „Adding items to your library without copying them to your iTunes folder“ I found what I was looking for. „Tip: When dragging files to the iTunes window, you can temporarily reverse the checkbox setting by holding down the Option key while you drag.“

    The checkbox they’re referencing is that „Copy files“ checkbox. Thank you very much for the tip, you’ve made me a happy, happy man.

    • Sebastian Schack

      Glad I could help you out. And very nice of you to leave a comment here. When you get some feedback, sharing becomes real fun.
      Didn’t know that my little „hack“ was a documented feature, though. 🙂

  12. Hal B Sure

    Based on your tip I scoured iTunes help for confirmation. At the end of the instructions for „Adding items to your library without copying them to your iTunes folder“ I found what I was looking for. „Tip: When dragging files to the iTunes window, you can temporarily reverse the checkbox setting by holding down the Option key while you drag.“

    The checkbox they’re referencing is that „Copy files“ checkbox. Thank you very much for the tip, you’ve made me a happy, happy man.

    • Sebastian Schack

      Glad I could help you out. And very nice of you to leave a comment here. When you get some feedback, sharing becomes real fun.
      Didn’t know that my little „hack“ was a documented feature, though. 🙂

  13. Which HDD for my iTunes library? » blogable.eu | blogable.eu

    […] your iTunes library onto multiple HDDs isn’t that difficult, as iSchack describes on his blog. While RAID-drives such as the Drobo caught my attention, the lack of speed to view 720p or 1080p […]

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