iTunes: all items are now "could not be used ... original file could not be found"

BudVitoff

Senior Member
#1
Running iTunes 12.4.2 under Win7 SP1. Recently, something happened so that selecting any song gives me "The song ... could not be used because the original file could not be found. Would you like to locate it?" The location attempt inevitably gets me nowhere. Can I recover from this?

Right now there are a few thousand songs in the library, but I'm going to start over with a new empty library, and (for starters) keep only a hundred or so of the original set, but I have to find out how to retrieve them from the old dysfunctional library.

FWIW, I have an adult daughter and four grandkids who like to charge their phones/iPods using a USB port on the PC. If iTunes happens to be running when they connect, it starts a synching operation that may get aborted. Their attitude is "it doesn't seem to hurt anything" when that happens. I'm skeptical about that, and looking for your opinions.
 


Neemobeer

Windows Forum Team
Staff member
#2
I'm not sure how iTunes maintains it's info but WMP uses a database to track the songs in the library, it sometimes gets corrupted and generally backing up the library, then delete it from the media application, in your case itunes, and move the library back have itunes re-add it.
 


BudVitoff

Senior Member
#3
Sounds encouraging, but the only problem is that I'm having trouble reading between the lines to see exactly what you're saying. Please allow me to play stupid for a moment and ask some dumb questions:

WMP = ???

"it sometimes gets corrupted and generally backing up the library..." Is this one thought or two? The first part I understand. In the second part are you saying "if I routinely back up the library" (which I do automatically with CrashPlan)?

"delete it from the media application" -- "the library" is somewhat ambiguous for me. Can you be more specific as to what I should do -- e.g., delete the entire list of songs as I normally see them when using iTunes, or is there one folder (or something) that IS "the library"?

"Move the library back" from where to where?

Have iTunes re-add it. How?

I 'm sorry, but I don't think I'm qualified to be in your world when nothing makes sense to me. :eek:(
 


Neemobeer

Windows Forum Team
Staff member
#4
WMP = Windows Media Player. Sorry I'm using very general terms for iTunes as I have never used it. I would make a backup of the actual songs so you don't lose them unless they are sync'd to icloud then you should be fine if they get deleted. In WMP you have the option in the settings menu to tell WMP where to look for music, I would assume iTunes has a similar ability you may need to dig for it. I would remove the playlists and library it is referencing and if possible tell it to repoint to the location the music is in in order for iTunes to "rediscover" the music and add it back into iTunes.
 


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