How to transfer iTunes songs from one computer to another
Move iTunes songs from one computer to another
So you have iTunes music on two computers and want to consolidate? It's happened to me, too. Bought a new computer, and also downloaded music on my work computer. Thought I could transfer them to my main computer at home with my iPhone. No such luck. But you can move songs legally and not run into problems with Apple or iTunes (in fact, an Apple rep is the one who told me how to do it). Here's how you do it.
Transfer iTunes music from one computer to next
If you are moving your music from, let's say, your home computer, to your work computer (so you can listen to music at work), then first, go to your home computer and move your iTunes library to recordable media, meaning a CD (if you have a CD burner), DVD (if you have a DVD burner), or flash drive (if you have one of those).
- Go to your iTunes Music folder on your computer.
Windows: (Documents & Settings > [your username] > )My Documents > My Music > iTunes > iTunes Music
Mac: [your home folder] > Music > iTunes > iTunes Music
- Copy this entire folder to a CD, DVD or flash drive. You could try zipping it and emailing it if you only have a song or two, but anything beyond that, and it will be too large.
- At your second (recipient) computer, insert the CD, DVD or flash drive.
- Open iTunes
- Choose File > Add to Library...
- Select the iTunes Music folder in your recordable media in the dialog box
- Give it a few minutes to import all the files
Still having trouble? Try this.
Before you begin adding files/folders to your library from another PC or a portable device or a network location, check the Copy Files setting in your iTunes. By default, adding items to your iTunes library places a pointer (a link only) to each file in the iTunes folder; it does not actually copy the song. According to iTunes Help, the original file remains in the current location (which would be your flash drive or whatever).
So, before starting the import, do this: From the Edit menu in iTunes, select Preferences and then click Advanced. Put a check in the the "Copy files" check box. From this point on, when you Add files or folders, iTunes will actually copy your music files to your new PC and not just a link back to the original location.
If this procedure does not work, then follow steps 1-3 above but these following steps afterwards:
4. Copy the entire folder of music files to your computer's hard drive. This could take a few minutes, depending on how many files you have.
5. Open iTunes.
6. Choose File > Add to Library...
7. Select the iTunes Music folder on your computer's hard drive in the dialog box.
8. Wait a few minutes for iTunes to complete importing all the files.
This Hub was last updated on April 26, 2012
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