How to re-create your iTunes Library

How to re-create your iTunes Library

Learn how to re-create your iTunes library and playlists.

Re-creating the iTunes Library file

Follow these steps:

  1. Quit iTunes.
  2. Locate your iTunes folder.
    • For Mac OS X the iTunes folder is stored in one of the following locations:


    • For Microsoft Windows XP and 2000 the iTunes folder is stored in

\Documents and Settings\username\My Documents\My Music\

    • For Microsoft Windows Vista the iTunes folder is stored in


  1. Open your iTunes folder.
  2. Drag the iTunes Music Library.xml to the Desktop
  3. Drag the following file from your iTunes folder to the Trash:
    • Mac OS X: “iTunes Library” (in versions of iTunes prior to 4.9 this was called “iTunes 4 Music Library”).
    • Microsoft Windows: “iTunes Library.itl” (in versions of iTunes prior to 4.9 this was called “iTunes 4 Music Library.itl”)
  4. Open iTunes.
  5. From the File menu, choose Import.

Tip: Do not add any music into iTunes at this point.

  1. Navigate to the iTunes Music Library.xml file on the Desktop.
  2. Mac users: Click Choose.
    Windows users: Click Open.

After re-creating your library, any devices that you sync with iTunes (Apple TV, iPod, etc) will see your iTunes library as a new library and will completely resync.”


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One Response to “How to re-create your iTunes Library”

  1. Have been having problems with iTunes freezing after completing a selection and not shuffling. Problem seemed to require recreating by library (as I describe below).

    Followed instructions to the letter for my Vista Home Deluxe Computer. Clicked Open as instructed in step 9 and beyond a screen of unknowable stuff, nothing happened. Is there something that is supposed to happen after clicking Open?

    Went back and recovered all files to their original positions so I am back where I started. Whew!

    It appears that the songs in my library are stopping three seconds short so the trigger to move to the next song in the shuffle is not tripped. This freezes everything and I have to turn the power off and restart.

    Can’t seem to find a solution for this on the Web.

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