Archive: September 2008
iTunes' "Show Duplicates" feature is helpful but you still have to examine every track to determine whether you want to keep or delete the tracks it finds. Smart Playlists are of dubious help and trying to locate all duplicates with them can be tedious as they can quickly crowd your Source list and slow iTunes down.
Now there's Dupin.
Dupin is your iTunes duplicates manager.
Dupin allows you to quickly find all sets of duplicate tracks in iTunes based on the criteria you choose. It can then automatically select the "Keeper" tracks from among a number of duplicates using your choice of a variety of versatile filter options. Tracks you decide not to keep can be purged from iTunes and their files optionally moved to the Trash. Dupin is flexible, fast, and easy to use.
With Dupin you can:
- Locate, sort, filter, and purge duplicate tracks
- Manage intentionally duplicated tracks
- Copy tracks to new iTunes playlists
- View duplicates in non-loaded libraries created with iTunes' multiple library feature
- View duplicates in iTunes libraries on other machines on your local network
- Sort tracks and view track info
- Export a list of duplicates to a text file
- Locate tracks in the Finder and in iTunes
- Audition tracks
In addition, Dupin features:
- Familiar iTunes-like interface
- Robust Help
- Ample keyboard shortcuts
- Visual progress feedback during operations
- Customizable toolbars
- Optional update checking
Updated in version 1.4:
- Recognizes Genius Playlists
- Adds "Refresh Playlist Popup" toolbar button and menu option to View menu
- Adds Preference to limit number of Dupe Groups fetched during "Get Duplicates"
- Adds Preference to toggle between deleting files immediately or moving them to Trash during Purge
- Trash alert sound muted
- Fixes a minor date formatting issue
- GUI updated
- Speed and performance enhancements
This update is free for registered users.
I got a follow-up email to my bug report to Apple regarding the iTunes 7.7.1 "whose clause" to-do: "Engineering is no longer able to reproduce the issue with iTunes 8." The iTunes guys put things back the way they were, more or less. An implied list (using "every" as the specifier or a range) returns a list or empty list, an implied single entity specifier ("first", "last", "some", and so on) returns a bare value.
iTunes Library Manager v5.2 is now available.
iiTunes Library Manager makes back up copies of the current iTunes Music Library database file and iTunes Preferences, allowing you to maintain two or more libraries each with its own preferences settings.
For example, you can have one "Main Library" which contains all your songs and playlists, and another which just contains your "Holiday Music" songs and playlists.
Additionally, because each library is saved and loaded with its associated preferences, you can create many different configurations for different uses. For instance, you can assign each library its own designated Music Folder, and keep a directory of audio files on your computer and another distinct directory of audio files on another volume, network drive or external drive; different libraries can have different Sharing, Burning or Importing settings, too. The flexibility is awesome.
Updated in v5.2:
- Compatible with iTunes 8
- Recognizes--but does not manage--iTunes' multiple-libraries; however, such libraries can be the basis for additional iTLM libraries
- Some GUI enhancements
- Speed and performance fixes
This is a free update for registered users.
Dan Frakes emailed me with a vote for maintaining Set Video Kind of Selected:
"One that I'd like to see kept alive, so to speak, in some fashion is Set Video Kind of Selected. Although iTunes 8 does let you bulk-edit many of these fields, Set Video Kind of Selected has one unique feature that's very useful: sequential episode numbering."
I had forgotten about that feature. Make Video Tags also has sequential track, episode ID, and episode numbering.
This Apple forums discussion post describes an error that many iTunes 8 users are getting:
"iTunes 8.0 gathers data about my music library well enough and sends it to Apple too; but then 10-15 seconds into 'processing' by Apple, iTunes stops and reports that 'Genius results can't be updated right now. An unknown error occurred (4010)'. I thought it might be overloaded servers and tried several more times in the hope of squeezing my request in between those of everyone else; but that didn't work; plus if it were a server issue I'd expect to see postings here from others with the same problems, and I'm not."
Several posters have tried removing dead tracks--tracks whose files cannot be located as designated with the encircled exclamation point--from the library using the script Super Remove Dead Tracks and trying again, and although this didn't work for everybody, several posters did get things working correctly afterwards.
I got several fretful emails regarding yesterday's post about the retirement of several scripts which iTunes 8 has rendered unnecessary. Of particular concern was the appearance of Make Bookmarkable on the list. This is somewhat typical:
"Just a quick note to vote for preserving Make Bookmarkable. Although the ability to change the Media Kind to Audiobook in iTunes 8 has been added to preferences, it is NOT possible to change the Media Kind of podcasts -- despite the fact that the majority of podcasts are MP3s. I listen to dozens of podcasts and most of them are spoken word audio. Many benefit from the ability to speed them up. Until Apple allows for regular MP3s to be sped up I will continue to use Make-Bookmarkable."
Additionally, changing the Media Kind of a track does not change its file's file type, so changing an MP3's Media Kind to "Audiobook" does not make the MP3 an AAC. It just allows it to be listed in the Audiobooks library playlist (by some hidden mechanism; AppleScript cannot emulate it). So, in consideration of the cases where one actually wants to change the file type with Make Bookmarkable, I suppose it will remain un-retired and updated when necessary.
As for the other scripts on the list, they will still be available on the site, just out to pasture in the Retro Scripts section.
Here is a list of AppleScripts which have been rendered "Old-And-In-The-Way" by virtue of new features in iTunes 8, particularly the new multi-edit features:
- Batch Set Tracks Sorting Tags
- Make Video Tags
- Set Video Kind of Selected
- Make Bookmarkable
- Make UN-Bookmarkable
- Selected Tracks Bookmarkable
- Set Selected Tracks Shuffle
- Enter Description Text for Selected
- Enter Long Description Text for Selected
I will most likely move these to the Retro Scripts category once I positively determine that their utility is superfluous with iTunes 8.
Dupin Users: The current version of Dupin does not accommodate iTunes 8 Genius playlists properly when they are selected for "Get Duplicates". Although I am concerned, it's probably not a big deal.
Here's the Thing: I am considering holding off the next update to Dupin (which will include the fix for Genius playlists) until some features I had been planning on adding are also implemented. While I could put up a quick fix quite soon (which would be version 1.3.5), I would only be releasing another update in a week or two with additional features (version 1.4). In either case, until the next update, you can avoid any issues with Genius playlists by not selecting them from Dupin's Playlist popup. Your "Get Duplicates" results under such circumstances will be inaccurate.
As I hinted at yesterday Genius playlists are a new "species" of playlist. Several scripts are affected by their inability to correctly distinguish Genius playlists from other playlist types. I will be working on fixes for them in the coming days. I think, in fact, that you can pretty much attribute any failings of AppleScripts that did work before iTunes 8 to the appearance of one or more Genius playlists. You may want to verify this by shutting Genius off and trying the errant script again. While some AppleScript behaviors have been updated/fixed in iTunes 8, I have not (yet) noticed any new AppleScript features that would otherwise cause scripts to error.
iTunes 8 now allows access to many more media tags when using the multi-edit Get Info screen. Also, note that you can convert any file type to Audiobook (M4B). Looks like the end of the line for Make Bookmarkable.
iLounge has an excellent overview of the new features in iTunes 8. Particularly good details on the Genius features.
As far as AppleScript is concerned, iTunes 8's Genius playlists are user playlists with a special kind of none and a smart value of true, and therefore they are indistinguishable from Smart playlists. I don't know if eventually there will be a special kind value of "Genius", but for now distinguishing a Genius playlist from Smart playlists will not be easy.
Switch off the iTunes 8 Genre browser via a defaults write command in Terminal.
Apple released iTunes 8 today at the "Let's Rock" event.
Happily, the "whose clause" bug from v7.7.1 has been fixed: a filter using an implied plural ("every" or a range) will return a list and one that implies singularity ("first", "last", "some") returns a bare item. As it should be.
More as it develops.