Can TuneSpan help find files after they have been moved?

ghstcls shared this question 7 years ago

Hi Pico

can TuneSpan help me correct a missing file problem when I moved files from an internal to an external drive?

As a precondition: I don’t allow iTunes to manage my files. I keep them in my own folders (some named after artist > album, others in collections or playlists). Therefore, I am afraid spanning exclusively after metadata isn’t an option for me.

I tried what has been discussed here:

but I don’t get the usual 'span dialog' instead a 'Files for 1,574 of the selected tracks could not be found.' notification with the 'span anyway' option. If I do span anyway, nothing happens.

Any ideas?

Comments (3)


Thanks for getting in touch.

But, I'm sorry to say that I'm not sure TuneSpan can help you with this without extra hassle.

TuneSpan doesn't go "hunting" for files. The instructions in that other thread worked, because the files were already organized in the exact way that TuneSpan was expecting.

With your custom folder organization, TuneSpan will not know where or how to find the files at the span location. It only checks the exact locations that it would use based on the tracks metadata.

I'm about the head out soon, but I'll check back later and write some more thoughts about this issue.

In the mean time... have you recently justified why you maintain custom folder organization? Do you use refer to the folders from other applications, or other shared devices or something?

I understand there are some good reasons for doing custom folder organization, but letting iTunes (and TuneSpan) organize the stuff according to metadata will relieve a lot of stress and manual maintenance when adding media.

If you want to at least let TuneSpan organize your stuff for you, one of the easiest approaches would be to revert this manual move that you did. Put the stuff back onto your internal drive where iTunes expects that it is, with your custom organization and all. And then, just use TuneSpan to span the stuff to the external location. It will use its own organization on the new location, but wont mess up whats on your internal drive, and will restore to your custom folder organization if you choose to move stuff back onto your internal. Does that make sense?


Thanks for taking the time and thinking about my issue. I understand the focus of TuneSpan.

The reasons for my folder structure are manyfold and only one is having a program-independent approach to syncing and pushing files to devices.

Eventually, I ended up going a different route. I copied all files to the desired location and imported them into the iTunes library (linked, not copied/managed) resulting in all duplicates. Then, I hunted for solutions to find and deal with them. Doug’s Applescripts is an excellent resource.

My constraints were:

- All files in a particular folder should remain in the iTunes library, all other files should be deleted (not physically)

- Metadata such as ratings and play counts must be copied from the deleted files to the ones keept in iTunes

- Playlist references must be kept intact

There are a couple of duplicate finders. In the end, I went with Dupin because it is clever in the ways it handles metadata. And because Doug deserve credit for running his site. I hope, it’s okay to mention his resources here. Dupin is a purchased app but I found the it well worth the money (hope it’s okay to post this here).



Doug's Scripts ( looks to me like one of the best duplicate finders out there. But, personally (luckily) I haven't had to extensively use any duplicate finders.

I'm more than happy to have that stuff referenced and linked from here.

So, you're saying that you solved you issue with the help of Dupin? You still have some files that are not properly located in iTunes?

I'm sorry that TuneSpan isn't suited to better help you with this, but, if you need to just locate a few files in a specific folder, TuneSpan may be able to update the locations for you. If you can drill down to a specific folder and set it as your span location, and then add those specific tracks to span in TuneSpan, you can turn off the "Organize Spanned Media" option so that TuneSpan would just be copying the files directly to your span location, but also, it would look for matching files at the span location if the files aren't found in the current location.

That technique would need to be done for each specific folder, so it would still be a fairly manual process. There is some customization to TuneSpan folder organization you can do, so for the music files that are organized by artist/album folders, you could set the span location to the folder those are contained in remove the "Media Type" from TuneSpan's organization, and maybe TuneSpan would find some of those. But, again, they would need to be exactly matched paths. TuneSpan would not find stuff if even one character was different in the artist folder you have vs what comes from the metadata. But, going folder-by-folder to just match the files without doing any folder organization is an option for those as well.

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