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iTunes, Library, Playlists, after Windows XP Reinstall

Discussion in 'Multimedia' started by RJCaldwell, Apr 2, 2010.

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  1. RJCaldwell

    RJCaldwell Thread Starter

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    My Windows XP SP3 Crashed recently and a technician needed to do a fresh install on C: drive. Fortunately he was able to image the old C: and transfer the image and all of my data to my secondary drive, D: I had music in folders on C: drive and in folders on D: drive

    However, during the reinstall, all the drive letters were changed and my secondary hard drive (once D:) ended up as "J".
    I reinstalled a fresh copy of iTunes, plopped the old Documents and Settings\Chris\My Documents\My Music\iTunes\iTunes Music\ into the new Documents and Settings directory.

    However, iTunes starts, shows all of my 30 or so Play lists and shows my Library...but none of the music will play because iTunes can't find the music. The error "The song can not be used because the original file could not be found...would I like to locate it??? I can't locate most of them because they are in so many different directories depending on the dates that I obtained them and put them onto the computer, as well as being on a different drive now, etc.

    I have tried to point iTunes to the new drive in the Edit, preferences, advanced page but it doesn't help. I am also afraid to sync my iPhone for fear that it will lose track of all the music I had on it. Starting over again would be painful.

    What can I do to maintain the old library and the 30 play lists but allow iTunes to find them on a regular basis.
     
  2. cybersloth

    cybersloth

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    copy the music back to C:\docume..\'username'\mydocs..\my music\Itunes music..whatever...
     
  3. RJCaldwell

    RJCaldwell Thread Starter

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    The music was never actually on C:, I don't believe. I always had a seperate D: drive that I kept all data and most music files, including a directory for all Word and Excel files, the Outlook Express message store, and about 5 directories for various types and dates for music, i.e., Recent Downloads, Recent CD Rips, Beatles and Stones, etc.
    However, iTunes was set for the usual C:\D&S\User\My Docs\My Music\etc. and there was some music there as well as the data files. (at this point if I were to move all of the music to C:\...|... there would be 25 GB of music on C: which I don't believe was there b4.
    I do have a copy of the C:\D&S, ...\...\itunes\...ghosted on the D: drive prior to reformatting C:
    1. If I copied those files to the proper C: drive and overwrote the newly created files, I guess iTunes still would be looking in the wrong places for the music.
    2. If I took all of the music files and their directorys from D: and moved them to the C: itunes directory where they may not have been b4, what would iTunes do then?
    3. If I sync my iPhone now, what will happen to the playlists and music stored on the iPhone? What will happen to messages, contacts, etc.?
     
  4. gillard01

    gillard01

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  5. parasolution

    parasolution

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    From what I read, it seems like you didn't have iTunes organize your music and instead it was scattered in separate folders. That works for the interim, but when you have to change out drives or reinstall the OS, it typically becomes a problem. It's best to have iTunes keep your music organized. In preferences->advanced, you should have "let itunes organize" and "copy music to itunes folder" checked. This will let itunes move the music to one central location and keep the files organized. When you don't have those checked and add music to iTunes, it simply keeps the music in the original location you kept it. For example, if you import a file from your documents folder, the file will remain in your documents folder and not be copied to your central music folder. Same thing happens when you import a file that maybe on your desktop or spare drive, itunes will look for the music in the original import locations, instead of the central music folder. This of course becomes a problem when you start moving files around.

    For now, I would find all your music folders and dump them into one file folder. Whether you choose to keep it on the D drive or the default iTunes music folder in the C drive is your choice. Once you have found all your files, start itunes and go to preferences->advanced. Set the folder location to where you dumped all your music. Also make sure the let itunes organize and copy options are checked. Close iTunes and then restart itunes. When it restarts, it will go through your music library and try to organize, it may take awhile. Once its done you may have a mess on your hands, depending on how well your songs are tagged. If they are tagged properly, iTunes should sort the music by artist. At this point, you will most likely have to manually link the songs to the file. If you click on the song and it can't find it, it will ask you to locate the file. At this point, you should just have to navigate to the location of your central music folder and find the song (if all is properly tagged, it should be sorted by artist).

    All your music is still probably there, it just seems to be scattered. That's why it important to keep the files properly tagged and organized. It helps tremendously in situations like this. I've moved my library of 30,000 songs several times over the last year, never had an issue since all the music was always in one spot.
     
  6. RJCaldwell

    RJCaldwell Thread Starter

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    Sorry for not responding sooner but...Spring Break.
    I will try moving all music files to one new folder. May this folder have sub-folders by artist or, as you said "one folder"?

    Now, another side problem - where does iTunes store its iPhone files which are used to store Contacts, purchases, play lists, messages, etc.? Can I print-out the "contacts" and their phone numbers? How about the messages?
     
  7. parasolution

    parasolution

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    You don't need to worry about sorting the folder itself, iTunes will take care of that, as long as you have the correct preferences set ("keep iTunes music folder organized"). My advice about putting it all in one folder first was to just make sure you locate all your music.

    As for your data, not sure about iPhone data, as I don't have one. But playlist, playcounts are stored in your Music Folder->itunes.

    As I mentioned, this may take awhile to do. Just make sure your preferences are set correctly, sit back, relax and have a drink handy. There's another way to do it, but I think it may take longer.
     
  8. RJCaldwell

    RJCaldwell Thread Starter

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    Although this next question is probably in a different forum, it is what startrd my music/iTunes problem in the first place and caused iTunes to not find various music in various folders - Originally I had a C: drive, along with a DVD player (D:), a CDR writer (E:) and a seperate F: drive, Most of my music was in folders on F:. When C: was reformatted and Windows XP was reloaded I ended up with C: and D: hard drives, an E: DVD and an F: CD Writer.
    Is there a way to do drive renaming to the same naming as b4? or is it wirth it?

    And, again, does anyone know where the iPhone contacts and messages are stored?
     
  9. cybersloth

    cybersloth

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    Don't know about the iphone, sorry.

    to change your drive letters:

    R/click on '(My) Computer' icon and select 'Manage'. > On the LH side you will see 'Disk Management', click here. > R/click on the drive that you wish to change the letter for, and select 'Change Drive Letter and Paths'. > Click 'change...' button. > Use the dropdown to select a new drive letter. (only available drive letters are shown).

    :)
     
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