Dead PC. How can I restore my iTunes playlists?

1 reply [Last post]
Joined: 01/12/2004


My PC laptop died and I need to transfer my itunes and playlists to my new
machine. Luckily I saved the files on an external HD. I have been
looking online for ideas on how best to do this but thought I would run
it by you to see if there is a quick way to do it without having to set
up my playlists again?


Joined: 02/12/2009

My condolences, losing a computer is a big loss! Excellent that you have a backup of the files. Do you have backups of just the music files or the rest of your "My Music" folder too?

The iTunes playlists are tougher to resurrect. They are kept in the Library file:

Mac OS X
/Users/username/Music/iTunes/iTunes Library
/Users/username/Music/iTunes/iTunes Music Library.xml

Microsoft Windows
\Documents and Settings\username\My Documents\My Music\iTunes\iTunes Library.itl
\Documents and Settings\username\My Documents\My Music\iTunes\iTunes Music Library.xml

I'm not sure if the library file, assuming it can be recovered from the backup, will allow you to pick up where you left off. But it's definitely worth a try. If you can get to the old library file, try copying it and all the music to the same respective locations on the new computer before running iTunes.

In the future, you can also export playlists (as text files which can be imported into another computer's iTunes) to back them up or share them. This will only work if the new computer has the music files already.

Let us know how it goes!