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  1. #1

    Member Since
    Dec 27, 2011
    Moving iTunes from PC to Mac. Playlists have gone :-(

    I am a brand new Mac User and just bought myself a new iMac, moving over from my old PC.

    I followed the instructions on the Apple website in migrating my existing iTunes library to a new computer. I copied my iTunes folder from my PC into the Music folder of the new Mac (replacing the existing iTunes folder of the Mac), and guess what?

    - None of the playlists have appeared when I started up iTunes on the Mac
    - I had to manually import all of the music into my library from my scratch
    - All of the metadata has gone so I have lost ratings of songs, number of plays, the checking and unchecking of songs has gone!


  2. #2

    mrplow's Avatar
    Member Since
    Oct 01, 2007
    Mac Mini i5 (2014 High Sierra), iPhone X, Apple Watch, iPad Pro 12.9, AppleTV (4)
    You definately copied the entire folder?
    Because the reason you're missing the playlists, library info etc is because you don't have the XML files held in the iTunes folder from your PC.

    How did you move the folder? External hard disk, network etc?

    Please use the reputation system if you think you've been helped - bottom left of this post

  3. #3

    Demapples's Avatar
    Member Since
    Apr 28, 2011
    Did you have a standard iTunes installation on your PC, or had you customized, which means some of your iTunes installation was somewhere else on your PC's hard drive and so did not get transferred over? I had that situation and had to be very careful. I first looked at the iTunes file structure on my new iMac immediately after installing iTunes and before copying any files from my PC. Then I carefully built a duplicate file folder structure on an external hard drive and went through my PC's hard drive to find and copy all the necessary files to the external hard drive. Then I copied those files to my iMac. I had to start over a couple of times until I got it right. These links helped:
    iTunes: Back up your iTunes library by copying to an external hard drive
    iTunes: How to re-create your iTunes library and playlists
    iTunes: What are the iTunes library files?
    Move an iTunes library from a Windows PC to a Mac | Macworld

    For what it's worth (your situation could be different), here are the notes I made to prepare for my successful iTunes migration:

    Check that you have the same version of iTunes on both the PC and Mac.

    On PC:
    Check contents of C: > Users > You > Music using Windows Explorer:
    Album Artwork
    iTunes Music
    Previous iTunes libraries

    Check location of iTunes Media folder:
    Open iTunes
    Edit > Preferences > Advanced: DiTunes (Should be called “iTunes Media”)
    Quit iTunes

    [Optional note from a non-Apple website: if your music isn’t stored in the default location on windows you’ll have a database and library files in the iTunes folder in the regular location, and an iTunes Media folder elsewhere. After copying the C:iTunes folder to an external hard drive, copy your D: iTunes Media folder into that the iTunes folder. Copy all of that to your Mac, and launch iTunes. As before, it should work fine.]

    Check DiTunes folder contents using Windows Explorer:
    Automatically Add to iTunes
    Mobile Applications
    Music (all my music)

    On Mac:
    Check contents of Music folder (all empty because it was a new iMac):
    Album Artwork
    iTunes Library
    iTunes Library extras.itdb
    iTunes Library genius.itdb
    iTunes Media
    Automatically Add to iTunes
    iTunes Music Library.xml

    Open iTunes on PC.
    Edit > Preferences > Advanced.
    Select Keep iTunes Media folder organized.
    Select Copy files to iTunes Media folder when adding to library.
    (After you click OK, iTunes copies any files that are added that weren't already in the iTunes Media folder and places the copies in the folder. The original files are left in their original locations. To save space on your hard disk, you might want to delete the original files after confirming import.)
    File > Library > Organize Library.
    Select Consolidate files.
    Quit iTunes.

    Open windows Explorer - three instances.
    . Locate iTunes folder in C: > Users > You > Music
    . Locate iTunes Media folder [on my D: drive, called iTunes but should be called iTunes Media].
    . Locate destination external hard drive.

    Drag the C: > windows > Users > You > Music > iTunes folder to external hard drive.
    Drag the D:iTunes folder into the iTunes folder on the external hard drive and rename it to iTunes Media.

    Quit iTunes on the Mac: iTunes > Quit.
    Open a Finder instance for the iTunes folder on the Time Capsule.
    Open a Finder instance for the Music folder in Users > Your user folder.
    Drag the iTunes folder from external hard drive to Music folder.

    Open iTunes while holding down the Option key.
    Select Choose Library.
    Select the new iTunes folder.
    Click Choose.
    iTunes should be restored.

    [Optional note from a non-Apple website:
    Launch iTunes on Mac.
    Edit > Preferences > Advanced.
    Click Change button next to iTunes Media Folder Location.
    Navigate to the iTunes Media folder and click OK.
    iTunes will now look to that drive for your content, and everything should be working correctly. If not, choose File -> Library -> Organize Library, and consolidate the library as above to fix any problems.]

    When you close down your PC for the last time, head back into iTunes and de-authorize that machine. iTunes library can be on up to 5 computers. If copied the iTunes library to the Mac, then the original remains on the PC as a backup frozen in time.
    Longtime Windows, then onto slippery slope with iPod/iTunes in 2006, then Apple TV, iPad, iMac, iPhone, rejuvenated a discarded MacBook and, finally, Apple Watch. Happy camper.

  4. #4

    Member Since
    Dec 27, 2011
    Demapples you are a legend!!! That is the most thorough and thought out reply I have ever had. Thank you for your help.

  5. #5

    Member Since
    Dec 27, 2011

    Some questions:
    - What is the Option key?
    - There is no "iTunes Media@ folder as such? Only an iTunes Music folder which holds all of my music in different folders, organised by artist name.
    - I have managed to manually export and import playlists. They contain the correct songs, but no metadata on number of plays, ratings and crucially...the checked and unchecked songs :-(


  6. #6

    Member Since
    Dec 27, 2011
    Ok, I've tried everything suggested and it still doesn't work.
    Had to import each individual playlist manually, and I have lost all the meta data!!
    All that time painstakingly unchecking all the songs I don't like has been wasted. Every song is now checked.
    This was by no means a simple migration process Apple!! :-(

  7. #7

    mrplow's Avatar
    Member Since
    Oct 01, 2007
    Mac Mini i5 (2014 High Sierra), iPhone X, Apple Watch, iPad Pro 12.9, AppleTV (4)
    I did exactly to same migration. PC to Mac. Lifted the iTunes folder from the PC, dropped it onto the Mac - flawless move. I know this doesn't help you but it's definately something you have moved from the PC to the Mac. As per my post it's likely the XML.

    You could update something (a rating, track info etc) on your PC then check the date and time of the file to ensure that the file your copying over is the one in use on the PC.

    The option key is the same as the ALT key and is next to the CMD key.

    You've never mentioned how you're moving the data. It could be that step that's failing. e.g. not copying hidden files etc.

    Please use the reputation system if you think you've been helped - bottom left of this post

  8. #8

    Member Since
    Dec 27, 2011
    I moved the data by copying the iTunes folder onto an USB key. I then copied it into my Mac in the music directory, replacing the iTunes folder that was originally there. I quit iTunes, reopened it and none of the music was there or any of the playlists :-(

  9. #9
    It sounds to me (I don't own a PC so I'm just guessing here) that the OP had UNchecked the box allowing iTunes to organise the files and had done it manually. This could explain the lack of a proper iTunes folder with the requisite XML files.

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