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How do i stop iTunes duplicating files?

This is a discussion on How do i stop iTunes duplicating files? within the Windows 7 Support, Windows Vista Support forums, part of the Tech Support Forum category. I deleted all the giga bites of duplicate files in the iTunes directory - this took about 5 hours. I


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Old 06-11-2010, 03:46 AM   #1
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I deleted all the giga bites of duplicate files in the iTunes directory - this took about 5 hours. I then selected edit -> preferences -> advanced and turned off 'keep itunes media folder organised' and 'Copy files to iTunes media folder when adding to library'. I then - heroically - added in the user folder to itunes and let it run for 15 minutes. Itunes has re-created the duplicates. I'm very unhappy (but am not expecting you to help me with this). But, can you tell me how i stop itunes duplicating all my files when i add in the root folder to iTunes? Please,

More details. When i add the music into iTunes, the files i saved were all the full music title. Itunes duplicates these in two ways. When it simply doubles the number of files, it does so by concatenating the artists name to the start of the track name separating it from the track name with a '-' and truncating the track name if required. When it triplicates the file name it adds a 1 to the end of the concatenated file name.

I'd really appreciate some help on this, even it it is simply pointing me towards an answer elsewhere on the web. Thank you very much!

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Old 06-17-2010, 03:51 AM   #2
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I had the same problem once.

How I fixed it (and you won't like this) was by manually getting rid of the duplicates, then deleting the Library file and importing all the songs from scratch. I also did not put any music in the root iTunes folder.

One shortcut in your case is that if the music is located in the iTunes folder you can block delete it from inside iTunes, saving having to open each folder and delete the duplicates folder by folder.

Good Luck!

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Old 06-17-2010, 08:07 AM   #3
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We had thousands of dead/broken tracks (had the little exclamation point next to them). Fixed it with this method. Took about 15 minutes. http://paulmayne.org/blog/2007/11/ho...s-from-itunes/

Sounds like your problem may be a little different though, so that may not help. There are some paid programs out there that will clean up your library and do so by examining actual song content and not be fooled by names, etc. I'm not aware of a free solution.

Once we got our library cleaned up we took the opposite approach from you and turned ON 'keep itunes media folder organised' and 'Copy files to iTunes media folder when adding to library'. This takes up a little more HD space, but puts everything in one place where it is consistently labeled and easy to manage. Most of our previous problems had come from having tracks spread out everywhere, inconsistently labeled, and accidentally reimporting or indexing them. It also makes it easy possible to move the library later, including the actual music content. We now have a library of almost 250GB, but it has no duplicates, and everything is labeled the same way.

I use iTunes, but I hate it. When it isn't crashing it's making a mess of things.
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