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silvertonya
11-21-2015, 01:11 PM
Hi,

I bought a new Mac last week, having been on non-intel G4 for many years. Everything works like a dream except....iTunes.

I know a lot of people experience one or two problems with it but I have tons of problems with it. I was on iTunes 10 before and, although a little slow sometimes, worked like a dream.

I've transferred all my music and playlists over, 70000 tracks, and that worked but now everything is ridiculously slow:

1. Editing a song, bunch of songs or layout takes at least 10 minutes per edit.
2. Downloading a CD onto it just freezes and I have to force close.
3. Opening iTunes itself takes 10 minutes.
4. Playing a song just freezes iTunes up, it plays but you can't stop it. Going by bluetooth to my hi-fi? Forget it.

I've tried so many preferences based solutions and nothing changes, I've logged out the store, turned genius off etc and it is no better.

I've had to download Swinsian to play as a media player to play anything in the library, but all my music is stored via iTunes format so ideally I want to keep on using it. I know I have a lot of songs but it worked fine on the old Mac (and that was getting pretty slow). Plus, I need iTunes to keep my iPhone and iPod and iWatch up to date and synced.

Is this something everyone has experienced and do you think it will be fixed by Apple? If not, does anyone have an idea what I can do to fix this? It's driving me insane!!
Thanks

chas_m
11-22-2015, 01:00 AM
At 70,000 tracks, I have a feeling the database has gotten corrupted.

Try this: make a new iTunes library (you can make as many as you like, it won't overwrite the old one), add in let's say 1,000 tracks or so and see if that new library is suddenly much more responsive. If so, maybe import the rest of the old collection (or maybe divide up that library into several smaller libraries, perhaps by decade or genre or something). If not, the problem isn't with iTunes and I would start looking at the hard drive or some other issue.

silvertonya
11-22-2015, 07:07 PM
At 70,000 tracks, I have a feeling the database has gotten corrupted.

Try this: make a new iTunes library (you can make as many as you like, it won't overwrite the old one), add in let's say 1,000 tracks or so and see if that new library is suddenly much more responsive. If so, maybe import the rest of the old collection (or maybe divide up that library into several smaller libraries, perhaps by decade or genre or something). If not, the problem isn't with iTunes and I would start looking at the hard drive or some other issue.

Hi Chas, thanks for the reply. If I set up a new library would I have to create a new user? I don't understand why it is being like this, before I was on an old Mac G4 with the same amount of songs and iTunes was fine. This one takes an age to do anything I ask of it though. I've been told I can't delete it and download an older version either, as there are too many essential components attached....sure, I can find the programs to help me do that but it sounds too risky and I wouldn't be able to sync everything up.

Surely Apple knows iTunes 12 sucks, why aren't they doing anything about it??

Anyway, rant over. If I set up a new library and I get the same issue what can I do to fix this and check the hard drive?
Thanks

Slydude
11-22-2015, 08:44 PM
Are you saying that functions other than iTunes are that slow? That would suggest that the culprit is something other than the iTunes library file causing issues. If it is iTunes and other things use Disk Utility to check the hard drive. See here (https://support.apple.com/kb/PH22243?locale=en_US)

If it is only iTunes that is an issue try rebuilding the iTunes library as member Chas_m suggested.

silvertonya
12-05-2015, 11:04 AM
Hi, I've checked the Hard Drive and it says everything is fine. I've tried everything to speed it up but nothing works. I've tried all the suggestions that are thrown around to speed it up and nothing works. It won't even download a CD when I insert one, it just freezes up. Even changing the name of one track takes 5 minutes, it's ridiculous. This is a brand new Mac and everything else on it works fine. I had a G4 before this and no problems with iTunes (although it was non-intel so couldn't go above iTunes 10) and now I can't do anything without it thinking about it for ages or just not doing it.

When I got the Mac I was told the processing speed was 2.6 by the store but I have found out it is actually only 1.6. Will this be what the problem is?
Thanks for all your suggestions so far.

Slydude
12-05-2015, 01:02 PM
Can you go to About This Mac and, look at the system specs (processor, speed, memory etc) and post them here? That might give us a few bits of useful information. Is this a new Mac or simply new to you?

BTW Did you try creating a new library as member Chas_m suggested? If so what exactly happens when you do something with the new library (add cd, change track name)?

silvertonya
12-05-2015, 03:38 PM
Hi,
Yes, I tried creating a new library and user and even re-installed OS and nothing seems to work. It is a brand new Mac from store, the details are:

iMac 21.5-Inch, Late 2015)
Processor 1.6GHz Intel Core i5
Memory 8 GB
1TB SATA Disk

I'm guessing the processor speed has something to do with this but everything else works fine. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

IWT
12-05-2015, 06:05 PM
everything else works fine

Hi silvertonya

Far wiser minds than mine have commented already, but from your comment, it is ONLY iTunes which is misbehaving. Therefore not a computer problem. It's iTunes. May I ask how you transferred your music & playlists? The exact details - from where to where. Was it drag & drop, migration assistant, even the name of the Folder. I ask only because, although 70,000 songs is a lot, there shouldn't be a problem. The very first response to your post, chas_m, mentioned a corrupted database. The corruption may not be in the database as such (it worked fine before, you said), but in the transfer process. There may be a flaw there. Wrong or incomplete source, that sort of thing.

Over and above whatever the Forum can do for you, maybe AppleCare support has some ideas?

Ian

chas_m
12-05-2015, 06:22 PM
Hi,
Yes, I tried creating a new library and user and even re-installed OS and nothing seems to work.

You're really wasting a lot of time there -- nobody suggested you reinstall the system or set up a new users, because we've determined from nearly the outset of this discussion that the problem is within iTunes.

You say you created a new library, as I originally suggested, but you don't give any details. As you probably know, you create a new iTunes library very simply by opening iTunes with the option key held down, specifying you'd like to create a new library, and then populating the blank library with (some, not 70,000) song files. Is that what you did?

silvertonya
12-05-2015, 07:30 PM
Hi Chas,

I see. You'll have to forgive me for misunderstanding there, when you said new library I assumed I would have to set up a whole new user. My mistake. I just created a new library and downloaded a CD and it was instant. Everything worked fine with no problems.

So if I rebuild the library again I should do this piece by piece? Does it suggest to you that a file within the library is corrupt? How do I find out which one it is? I don't mind moving the whole library again and searching for artwork if the speed is normal but I just want to be sure how to do this. The problem is that I want to keep all the playlists intact so can you please let me know how I should rebuild this, I mean if I use this new library and move everything over will it duplicate everything or should I re-direct in the preferences to where the original library is stored? I'm a little confused, sorry for being a bit of a dumbarse.

chas_m
12-06-2015, 12:58 AM
Hi Chas,

I just created a new library and downloaded a CD and it was instant. Everything worked fine with no problems.

Okay, now we're getting somewhere! I'm very pleased to hear that worked as expected.

The bad news is that the best way to "fix" this is to re-import the songs in smaller batches and test for any problems. The good news is that (assuming it isn't the playlist files that are the problem), once you have re-imported the music into this new library, you can export the library file from your old library (under the file menu, this will result in an XML file) and them "import playlist" from the File menu while you're in the new library (File->Library->import playlist) and it will import all the old playlists.



Does it suggest to you that a file within the library is corrupt? How do I find out which one it is?

Yes, but I have no idea how to track down which one could be the culprit easily.

It is of course entirely up to you if you want to use the "I want to keep the folders where I can see them" approach or the "let iTunes handle it" approach, but decide that first, because changing your mind later will mean doing this work yet again.

Slydude
12-06-2015, 01:30 AM
The good news is that (assuming it isn't the playlist files that are the problem), once you have re-imported the music into this new library, you can export the library file from your old library (under the file menu, this will result in an XML file) and them "import playlist" from the File menu while you're in the new library (File->Library->import playlist) and it will import all the old playlists.

Nice tip. I forgot/didn't know that this was possible. I think the last time I had to rebuild my library I built everything manually.

chas_m
12-06-2015, 02:36 AM
I should have mentioned this move will also restore things like play counts, star ratings and so forth.

silvertonya
12-06-2015, 01:09 PM
I think the problem may be with the playlist XML file. When I imported the library the first time I did use the XML file and I've tried importing a few batches at at time and it seemed to work. I'm now transferring the library over agin from scratch to the external HD from my old Mac....this time I consolidated the files beforehand and it is doing it all now (only another 4 hours to go!) If it is the playlist file I really don't want to build every playlist all over again, I don't use the counts, ratings and all that stuff; just the artwork and playlist order is all I need. I hope it works this time, I've followed the iTunes walk through to the letter. I did notice before that, as I just dragged the music in before it was doubled up on smart lists....maybe that slowed it down (even though I disabled them). So this time I'll just hold the shift key and tell it where the library is.

The problem is, that I don't want to delete the library I first moved until I know the second move has gone through ok and the mac won't be able to store both. So I'll have to initially ask it to read the library from the external HD, will that be ok do you think?
Thanks for the help.

dbm
12-06-2015, 02:09 PM
I have my iTunes library on an external drive, connected via a Thunderbolt cable. It works fine, just takes a second or two to spin up the drive when you request media. I also have two full copies of my iTunes library after some issues with my library corrupting a few months ago. Like chas_m says, you can use the Option key when you open iTunes to select one library or another.

In my instance I had problems with a handful of music files in my library of about 11,000 tracks. I just added them 100 at a time and then, if I got an error message I used a 'binary split' approach approach* to find the ones with problems. After a few hours work this found the half dozen or so problem files!

* If you get an error message with a block of 100, try to process as two blocks of 50. If either of those gives a problem, chop into two blocks of 25 and repeat the process. You quickly narrow the problem down to a handful of files you can attempt to process one at a time.

silvertonya
12-06-2015, 05:59 PM
If I did that out of 70,000 tracks it would take forever though, and what if I did that and the problem is actually with the playlists XML file? Then I have to start all over again and create the playlists from scratch; I'd still be here doing it this time next year. I just transferred it all as iTunes instructed, consolidating etc, transferred it onto the new Mac and it's still as bad as it was, minus tons of artwork and I still can't burn CDs to it. I just do not know how to fix this without starting everything from scratch....iTunes sucks so bad.

I don't particularly mind adding a few tracks at a time, but I know when I import that XML playlist file it's going to be just how it was.

chas_m
12-06-2015, 11:13 PM
Well, maybe start with a more reasonable amount. If it takes an hour to play 12 five-minute songs, it will take you 5,833 hours of non-stop listening to hear all 70,000 of those tracks. Assuming you devoted a full six hours a day, every single day without fail, to listening to music, that means it would take you three years to get through it all.

So I'm suggesting maybe taking 10,000 of your favourite tracks, add them to a new library. Did everything go smoothly? If so, add another 10,000. Repeat the remaining five times.

Now, finally, with all 70,000 tracks functioning properly in a fresh new library, add in the XML file. There are a huge number of XML validity checkers on the net, so you can easily verify the XML file and even fix what might be missing.

It's worth noting that the XML file is not where where the artwork for various tracks is stored, but iTunes can restore the artwork for you (well, anything it can find the artwork for in the iTunes Store, and that's a pretty large library!), so that shouldn't be a concern. IIRC, this is one of the advantages of MP4/M4A (same thing) -- artwork can be stored within the file for MP4s, but MP3 artwork has to be stored separately. Anyway, point is that it's probably not a big deal.

The reason you can't burn CDs from iTunes is because you haven't investigated how to do so. It's pretty simple: make a playlist of songs (that don't exceed the rules for the amount of time burnable to a CD), right-click on that playlist, choose "burn Audio CD of this playlist." This is presuming you have a drive included or hooked up to the machine, obviously. :)

PS. If you'd ripped these tracks from CDs or bought them from iTunes, Gracenote or the iTunes Store would have added the art automatically. Just sayin' ... maybe this is an opportunity to go legit ...

dbm
12-07-2015, 11:21 AM
If I did that out of 70,000 tracks it would take forever though, and what if I did that and the problem is actually with the playlists XML file?

Start with a bigger chunk size then. If you add 1000 at a time that will be less operations, though it will still take a comparable elapse time as the same total volume of files will need to be processed irrespective of the bundle size. The trick is to settle on a bundle size which gives you a fighting chance of not having any errors in it, otherwise you aren't saving a huge amount of time. Adapt as you go. If you add five bundles in a row which give no errors increase the bundle size.

Bear in mind this is about getting a known-good set of files into your music library as opposed to anything else.

silvertonya
12-07-2015, 09:07 PM
Ok, I think I've found the problem. I managed to move all my music no problem, it all transferred and all played fine, I could download CDs onto them and it worked fine and all seemed well.

As it seems to muck up when I move the playlists XML across I thought I would just start from scratch and create the playlists again. Ok, it will take a little while but I was creating them very quickly....then I got to letter D and it started to slow down and when it got to H it was quite a bit slower. Obviously I can see the pattern and by the time I get to S it will be unbearably slow.

It seems that iTunes 12 is not catered for lots of playlists. It worked fine (and still does) on my old Mac with iTunes 10 (it can't go any higher as it is non intel) but just doesn't like it now. I create a playlist per band, which means over 2000 playlists. Yes, 2000 playlists.

So all along it was the playlists that screwed this up. What do I do now? My iPod is synced to these playlists so I can't sync that up again and it seems Apple don't want me to have loads of playlists. How can I get around this?? Is there a good alternative to iTunes? I have Swinsian, which is basically the same as iTunes except I don't think I can sync to the iPod from it.

Any suggestions? It doesn't seem fair that I have to abandon the way I've always done things just because Apple have decided I can't do this anymore.

chas_m
12-08-2015, 12:00 AM
Have you tried making a SMART playlist per band instead? That might scoot around the issue.

dbm
12-08-2015, 04:16 AM
If you have the meta data set up for your tracks you can just play music by an artist. So you shouldn't need a playlist for that.

Do you have the meta data set up for your tracks?