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Ric Ford

MacInTouch
Apple has updated its special version of iTunes for people ("business environments") who still want features Apple deleted from its standard version.
Apple said:
Deploy apps in a business environment with iTunes
Apple offers Volume Purchase Programs and Apple Configurator on Mac to help enterprise environments manage and mass-deploy apps on iOS devices. But certain business partners might still need to use iTunes to install apps.

If you've already installed a newer version of iTunes, you can download this version of iTunes on your Mac...
Here's the download link:
 



I am not sure if I have a problem or if I am just confronting a further divergence between iTunes 12.6 ("business" iTunes) and 12.7 ("regular" version).

I have Home Sharing on for a MacBook Air with iTunes 12.6 and an iMac with iTunes 12.7. The MacBook Air (12.6) can load the library on the iMac (12.7) but the iMac cannot load the library on the MacBook Air.

The iMac "sees" the shared library on the MacBook Air and I can select it but iTunes throws up a message to the effect that "the library has no music", which is not correct. My iPhone running iOS 11 can see both libraries. I checked with another iMac running iTunes 12.6 and it can see the library contents on the MacBook Air.

Is this something worth troubleshooting or is this just punishment from Apple for my choice to stick with the iTunes 12.6 path?
 
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I'm running macOS Sierra (10.12.6). After updating to iTunes 12.7.4.76, iTunes warned me that my existing iTunes Library.itl (with about 29,000 tracks) had a problem and proceeded to try to fix it. Instead, after two hours of 'fixing', the result was that iTunes ate my existing Library files. All my music is intact, but iTunes now thinks I have a library with 0 tracks.

How can I point iTunes at my existing music hierarchy and get it to rebuild its Library (and other related files)?
 
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I'm running macOS Sierra (10.12.6). After updating to iTunes 12.7.4.76, iTunes warned me that my existing iTunes Library.itl (with about 29,000 tracks) had a problem and proceeded to try to fix it. Instead, after two hours of 'fixing', the result was that iTunes ate my existing Library files. All my music is intact, but iTunes now thinks I have a library with 0 tracks. How can I point iTunes at my existing music hierarchy and get it to rebuild its Library (and other related files)?
Hi Michael;

The quick and dirty way is to delete the iTunes Library.itl file. Launch the iTunes application, then drag the iTunes folder in the Music folder to the opened iTunes window and drop it there. If you have a lot of songs, podcasts, and videos, expect it to take a while. When completed, you'll have your listings back, but you may want to resort to your liking.

Good luck and please tell us how it went.
 
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I'm running macOS Sierra (10.12.6). After updating to iTunes 12.7.4.76, iTunes warned me that my existing iTunes Library.itl (with about 29,000 tracks) had a problem and proceeded to try to fix it. Instead, after two hours of 'fixing', the result was that iTunes ate my existing Library files. All my music is intact, but iTunes now thinks I have a library with 0 tracks.

How can I point iTunes at my existing music hierarchy and get it to rebuild its Library (and other related files)?
Launch iTunes by holding down the Option Key while double-clicking. It will open with a dialog titled "Choose iTunes Library" with "Quit", "Create Library..." and "Choose Library..." buttons. Click "Create Library" and point the file dialog to your music files (there's is a good chance it will default to them).

And yes, every time I've needed to use this, I have had to think hard to remember where they hid it....
 
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Since I don't want my Contacts info off in the Cloud, when I have changed it enough to do so, I sync the iDevice with my Mac via USB cable. I know I can do it via LAN also, so sometimes I do it that way.

Well, either since the new iOS update or iTunes update, when I look at info for a particular iDevice, the button to sync Contacts is no longer checked. I have seven iDevices of one sort of another; this was true for each and every one of them.

So if you are leery of sharing your Contacts with the Cloud and do so manually, you might check to see if it is still occurring as you want it to.
 


I also don't sync contacts via iCloud; rather, I sync my iPad Air and iPhone 6 via USB connection to my Mac via iTunes (12.7.5.9). I sync'd both devices just now. The contacts were sync'd.
 


I'm running iTunes v12.6.3.6 on my Mac Pro with Sierra 10.12.6. I prefer the older version of iTunes because of the way it handles apps. I have it paired with an iPhone 5s.

I've been looking at the current iPads to run some of the iOS apps that work better on a bigger screen. Apple's stated System Requirements list iTunes 12.7.3 or later.

Will these current iPads work with iTunes 12.6.3.6?
 


I'm running iTunes v12.6.3.6 on my Mac Pro with Sierra 10.12.6. I prefer the older version of iTunes because of the way it handles apps. I have it paired with an iPhone 5s.

I've been looking at the current iPads to run some of the iOS apps that work better on a bigger screen. Apple's stated System Requirements list iTunes 12.7.3 or later.

Will these current iPads work with iTunes 12.6.3.6?
I would update iTunes to 12.6.4.3 and also install Apple Configurator 2. Use Apple Configurator 2 for updating the iOS and iTunes 12.6.4.3 for managing the apps. So far, no problems.

My Mac setup:
Mac Pro 5,1
macOS 10.13.5
Apple Configurator 2
iTunes 12.6.4.3.

Hope this will work for you.
 



I have been regularly listening to an internet radio station through iTunes (WUCF, if it matters) and have it and several other internet radio stations listed in a playlist so I can get to them easily, but for the past few days when I select WUCF, a different station gets selected (Jazz FM91). I found WUCF on the web and I can stream it from there but even if I copy the url and paste it into iTunes (File > Open Stream) Jazz FM 91 starts playing. I can't figure out what is going on. Any suggestions? I have already tried quitting and relaunching iTunes and restarting my computer, both to no effect. I am on macOS 10.13.6 and iTunes 12.8.
 


… for the past few days when I select WUCF, a different station gets selected (Jazz FM91). I found WUCF on the web and I can stream it from there but even if I copy the url and paste it into iTunes (File\Open Stream) Jazz FM 91 starts playing. I can't figure out what is going on. Any suggestions? …
This may have been fixed, but if not, try opening
in iTunes. This is the URI of the music stream that the web-page player connects to.
 


This may have been fixed, but if not, try opening
https://peridot.streamguys1.com:7835/WUCF​
in iTunes. This is the URI of the music stream that the web-page player connects to.
Thanks for the reply. I tried it again just now, and it is not fixed. I also tried the link you provided, but when pasted into File > Open Stream, the OK button never becomes active, and all I can do is cancel. Is there a typo in the URI?
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
Thanks for the reply. I tried it again just now, and it is not fixed. I also tried the link you provided, but when pasted into File > Open Stream, the OK button never becomes active, and all I can do is cancel. Is there a typo in the URI?
Using macOS 10.12 Sierra, I just pasted the URI into Safari, and it opened the stream and played it.

When pasting the same URI into iTunes > File > Open Stream, the OK button never enables.
 


I just pasted the URI into Safari, and it opened the stream and played it. When pasting the same URI into iTunes > File > Open Stream, the OK button never enables.
The link from the WUCF website <https://tunein.com/radio/WUCF-899-s23356/> also streams the station and when pasted into iTunes, I get an active OK button but when selected, a different station plays.
 


Using macOS 10.12 Sierra, I just pasted the URI into Safari, and it opened the stream and played it.
When pasting the same URI into iTunes > File > Open Stream, the OK button never enables.
To add to the confusion, I pasted the URI into iTunes > File > Open Stream the OK button enabled, and it played the stream. macOS 10.13.6, iTunes 12.8.0.150.
 


Apple Configurator version 2.7.1 was released today. Was notified by the Mac App Store.
• Preparing supervised devices for management by Configurator now automatically allows USB accessory connections while the device is locked.
• Configure new supervised-only restrictions for iOS 11.4.1: Allow USB accessories while device is locked.
 


Using macOS 10.12 Sierra, I just pasted the URI into Safari, and it opened the stream and played it.
When pasting the same URI into iTunes > File > Open Stream, the OK button never enables.
So… there is a little weirdness when copying the link as posted here on MacInTouch; a look at the underlying HTML shows an additional character at the end of the link-string: &#8203; which appears to be a Unicode zero-width space and which comes along when copying and (sometimes) pasting and which may be confounding us.

Copy-pasting it to my iTunes (admittedly ancient v.11.4), results in a failure, but if I Open Stream > paste > backspace (to delete the zero-width space) > OK, it plays. I experienced the same behavior with Waterfox web browser and VLC.

I suggest typing the URI to avoid this problem, or maybe copying it from here: https://peridot.streamguys1.com:7835/WUCF
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
So… there is a little weirdness when copying the link as posted here on MacInTouch; a look at the underlying HTML shows an additional character at the end of the link-string: &#8203; which appears to be a Unicode zero-width space and which comes along when copying and (sometimes) pasting and which may be confounding us.

Copy-pasting it to my iTunes (admittedly ancient v.11.4), results in a failure, but if I Open Stream > paste > backspace (to delete the zero-width space) > OK, it plays. I experienced the same behavior with Waterfox web browser and VLC.

I suggest typing the URI to avoid this problem, or maybe copying it from here: https://peridot.streamguys1.com:7835/WUCF
That's a fascinating problem - thanks for tracking it down!

I confirmed the problem with the invisible character with copy/paste, but that character was not present in the actual source/data of the post, so it's apparently an artifact of the forum formatting/processing code.

I've subsequently tweaked the post to work around the problem and eliminate the extraneous character. And when I pasted the URI into iTunes without the extraneous character, it worked just fine, and WUCF started streaming.
 


That's a fascinating problem - thanks for tracking it down. I confirmed the problem with the invisible character with copy/paste, but that character was not present in the actual source/data of the post, so it's apparently an artifact of the forum formatting/processing code.
I've subsequently tweaked the post to work around the problem and eliminate the extraneous character. And when I pasted the URI into iTunes without the extraneous character, it worked just fine, and WUCF started streaming.
Thanks Simon & Ric, The URI now works, and I was able to add it to my playlist. I deleted the old link, which stopped working and just streams another station in the same playlist.

A follow up question: I have two other stations in my playlist that exhibit the same wrong behavior - they activate a different stream in the playlist. Where did you locate the correct URI for WUCF, so I can find the correct URIs for the two misbehaving stations - WJMX-DB Smooth Jazz Boston and Capital Public Radio - Jazz Stream? Pasting the URLs from their respective web pages does not work in iTunes although it streams fine from Safari.
 


I've been waiting for the appropriate moment to report this iTunes weirdness. For years, I've been listening to an MDR (Mitteldeutscher Rundfunk) classical music station, using iTunes 11.4 on a MacBook Pro running Mavericks. The stream URL is
http://avw.mdr.de/streams/284350-0_mp3_high.m3u

When I enter that URL in the Open Stream dialog of iTunes 12.6.3 (on a mini running Sierra), I get a different (definitely not classical music) MDR stream. And no wonder. iTunes 12.6.3 changes the URL to something similar:
http://mdr-284350-0.cast.mdr.de/mdr/284350/0/mp3/high/stream.mp3

Does that behavior mean that iTunes 12.6.3 cannot find the original stream and defaults to the next closest URL? If yes, why does iTunes 11.4 find the original?

Curiously, I cannot find the original URL at any MDR web site. I've just had it forever, and it works (I'm listening now!).
 


To Fred Kotler and Howard F.:

I hope to have some time to prep a how-to hack for stream connections, but in the meantime, because music is Important, below are links to the streams of interest:

WJMX-DB Smooth Jazz Boston
Capital Public Radio Jazz Stream

MDR (Mitteldeutscher Rundfunk)
(same as the URL Howard F. mentioned, but see below)

Answering Howard F.'s questions:
Files/URLs with extension .m3u are files that contain a forwarding link, so you could say they are links to links, among other things like metadata.

I looked at the .m3u file you provided, and it contains the same "different" MDR stream URL you mention (i.e., the "forwarding link"). On following the links (I tried both), they started sounding classical, but then not; now I'm listening to a DJ and I'm getting an "MDR Klassik" station ID and some classical music, so try again. (Maybe the station crossed its streams? I notice it has several.)

If you still have trouble, maybe pause/start the stream to see if that has any effect. If all else fails, try deleting the stream and re-adding it. One possible use for .m3u files is to make a varying stream URL available in a known URL. iTunes groks .m3u files, so that's probably a positive, in case the contained URL changes.

Oy. It's late.
 



Files/URLs with extension .m3u are files that contain a forwarding link, so you could say they are links to links, among other things like metadata.

I looked at the .m3u file you provided, and it contains the same "different" MDR stream URL you mention (i.e., the "forwarding link"). On following the links (I tried both), they started sounding classical, but then not; now I'm listening to a DJ and I'm getting an "MDR Klassik" station ID and some classical music, so try again. (Maybe the station crossed its streams? I notice it has several.)
Thank you Mr. Wagstaff for the excellent explanation. For what it's worth, apparently only iTunes 12 recognizes the .m3u extension as a link to a link. The latest versions of VLC and Clementine behave like iTunes 11.

The second URL ending in .mp3 probably is for a stream with classical music; however, when I connected yesterday, it was only talk. The first URL is for a 24/7 stream of music (obviously preferred), save for five minutes of news each hour.
 


That's a fascinating problem - thanks for tracking it down!

I confirmed the problem with the invisible character with copy/paste, but that character was not present in the actual source/data of the post, so it's apparently an artifact of the forum formatting/processing code.

I've subsequently tweaked the post to work around the problem and eliminate the extraneous character. And when I pasted the URI into iTunes without the extraneous character, it worked just fine, and WUCF started streaming.
I've been experiencing what appear to be zero-length spaces in, of all places, the Excel 2011 macro editor. I copy a line or selection of code from one part of a macro and paste it somewhere else. In some cases, no problem. In others, Excel objects, and after frustrating amounts of time dinking around, I parrot move and notice that the cursor doesn't move. Voila, an invisible character! Delete it and Excel is happy. The problem and frustration are compounded when there are more than one invisible. Grrrr.
 


I just noticed that VLC has trumped iTunes for all the iTunes movies and videos in my library as the default application, for the actual files. Is it just me, or does this seem a bit odd?
 


I installed iTunes version 12.6.5 late yesterday. Great that it can support installing iOS 12. Also I'm finding out that it's more responsive than 12.6.4. Usually switching between the apps and podcasts would have a 15-second lag, but iTunes 12.6.5 doesn't have this problem. Apple did well on this version.
 


...Apple did well on this version.
Well, mostly. It no longer recognizes folders whose names end in a period, folders created by an earlier version of iTunes ("R.E.M." in this case). It can no longer find/play the tunes in the folder, although, it still lists them. If you try to re-"Locate" or reimport them, it creates a new folder named "R.E.M_" I restored iTunes 12.6.4, but it has the same problem. Don't know when this crept in (APFS?).
 


Well, mostly. It no longer recognizes folders whose names end in a period, folders created by an earlier version of iTunes ("R.E.M." in this case). It can no longer find/play the tunes in the folder, although, it still lists them. If you try to re-"Locate" or reimport them, it creates a new folder named "R.E.M_" I restored iTunes 12.6.4, but it has the same problem. Don't know when this crept in (APFS?).
I checked on my machine. I have two music folders for albums with names ending in a period (e.g. "Radio K.A.O.S."), both of which are stored in a folder whose name ends in "_". These were last created by a previous version of iTunes in 2017, maybe 12.6.1. But it looks like the same folder name was used as early as 2012 - maybe even earlier, but I'd have to really dig to find earlier backups.

Are you trying to keep iTunes from naming the folders following its own logic?

This is normal iTunes behavior. Several reserved characters are stored as "_"; it puts the actual name in music file meta data and in its own database. If you have iTunes > Preferences > Advanced > "Keep iTunes Media folder organized" selected, then as far as actual folder and file name and structure, you're at iTunes' mercy.

For example, iTunes doesn't like the following characters in file or folder names (there may be others):

: ? / "

I suspect the restriction is: no Windows-reserved file system characters.
 


I checked on my machine. I have two music folders for albums with names ending in a period (e.g. "Radio K.A.O.S."), both of which are stored in a folder whose name ends in "_". These were last created by a previous version of iTunes in 2017, maybe 12.6.1. But it looks like the same folder name was used as early as 2012 - maybe even earlier, but I'd have to really dig to find earlier backups.

Are you trying to keep iTunes from naming the folders following its own logic?

This is normal iTunes behavior. Several reserved characters are stored as "_"; it puts the actual name in music file meta data and in its own database. If you have iTunes > Preferences > Advanced > "Keep iTunes Media folder organized" selected, then as far as actual folder and file name and structure, you're at iTunes' mercy.

For example, iTunes doesn't like the following characters in file or folder names (there may be others):

: ? / "

I suspect the restriction is: no Windows-reserved file system characters.
I am saying an earlier version of iTunes created the folder, "R.E.M." and the latest versions won't recognize it.
 





Well cr*p. I guess that means this branch of iTunes is end of the line. Does anyone know if you can sync an iOS 12 device with iTunes 12.6.5? The iOS thread seems to indicate not.
Syncing works fine for me with an older iPhone on iOS 12.
 





I encountered an odd iTunes bug today. macOS 10.13.6, iTunes 12.6.4.3. I was playing music to my stereo via Airport Express.

Display sleep is set to 5 minutes, computer sleep set to never. My display goes to sleep after 5 minutes, as it should, but 5 minutes after that iTunes stops playing. When I go back to the computer I hit the iTunes arrow button to start, and it takes up where it left off.

As a test, I set the display sleep to 1 hour and iTunes never quit playing. I set the display sleep back to 5 minutes, and iTunes went back to stopping the music 5 minutes later.

Any ideas? It used to work fine when I last used this months ago.
 


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