iTunes Migration Morning(s)

Lisa and I went out and bought a new desktop machine to replace the two old clunkers we had downstairs. Yes, one to replace two … which means we’ve been having weird, if slow and drug-out, fun migrating things over from the old clunkers to the new environment. It also means we’ve been having fun with setting up one CPU to be accessible by both of us, but at the same time kinda keep our own stuff to ourselves.

Overall, it kind of works.

The project to move all our music over has spread over several days, though, and was delayed a bit with my drive to get PEBA out the door. This is dangerous, really. I’m the kind of person who does best when he focuses on something until the end, especially if it’s a little complex–which migrating music from iTunes between machines, unfortunately, is. It shouldn’t be, of course. But it is. Alas. The main problem, of course, is that there’s no simple way identified directly in iTunes, meaning it’s not intuitive and you have to go do some research before you begin.

Here’s a nice little write up I found to guide my work. Maybe it will help you move along more quickly than I did.

Anyway, I did all the exporting of the default playlist and copying music files over to the new machine a weekend ago, and just sat down this morning to do all the real work–which consists of editing all the XML data to point to where I had copied the files over. This went well, and I even got a little creative and moved a few things around before the final import to iTunes. Once the editing was done, I was pleased to see the import was actually pretty slick.

Took five or ten minutes to complete the migration, and everything looks good.


The problem will be tomorrow when I try to do the same thing for Lisa’s files. It turns out that iTunes copies these files into folders in the user’s profile–which I guess makes sense except I wasn’t thinking about that. And so migrating Lisa’s files in will–I assume–create a similar set of files in her profile, essentially doubling the size of our music files on the disk and making for a bit of a management nightmare.

I guess this is a problem for tomorrow, though.

There must be a way.

If you know what it is, feel free to shoot me a note at ron (at)

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