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How To Get Rid Of Duplicates In iTunes

One of the most annoying problems while creating a music collection on iTunes or for that matter any kind of software media player is that it is almost unavoidable that you might have duplicates of various songs in your library. This tends to happen quite frequently and it is something that you won’t notice instantly. Let us say for instance, you have forgotten that you have already shopped for a certain favorite song, from some other music service like Amazon MP3 and absent minded you purchase it again from Apple. So now, you have the same song but only in two different kinds of formats i.e. AAC and MP3.

Get Rid Of Duplicates In iTunes

On the other hand, copies of the same song can also be added into your music collection if you might have used other sources to acquire digital music such as by copying some of your archived music from some kind of external storage devices like flash memory, hard drives, etc. or by slashing out your old physical music CD’s.

This means that without any ordinary maintenance your iTunes music library could be congested with duplicate copies of songs that only occupy the precious space in your hard drive. There are many programs out there that will help you to find the duplicate files on your play list but not all of them are effective. But the latest version of iTunes has a built up feature that helps the user to identify and get rid of the duplicate files.

Here are some ways on how to get rid of duplicates on iTunes:

View the songs on your library first:

In order to view all the songs in your library, you will first have to be in the right viewing option. But if already known how to flip into to the music view mode, then you can skip this step entirely.

  • Incase, you are not in the song view screen, then simply tap or click the button that is close to the top left corner of the main screen and then select the Music Option. But if you are accustomed in using the sidebar in iTunes then you will find this alternative in the library section.
  • In order to see the entire list of your songs in library, you will have to ensure that the Songs Tab has been selected, which is placed on the top of your screen.

How to find duplicate songs?

iTunes has a secret inbuilt tool that helps the user detect duplicate songs easily without having to rely on any kind of other software tools. However, it’s quite untraceable to the amateurish eye.

  • In order to check out your music collection in the library that iTunes regards as duplicates, you need to simply select the View Menu option that is situated on the top of your screen and then click on the Show Duplicate option.

Subsequently, a list of all duplicate sound tracks will be identified by iTunes, even though some of these tracks are remixes or a part of an album or ‘best of’ compilation.

But what do you do if you have quite a large library and want precise results?

Finding the precise matches of songs with the Hidden Option

A secret option in iTunes is known as Lurking which is not known to many people. This option will help you to find the precise duplicate sound tracks in your iTunes play list.

This hidden feature is suitable if you have a huge music library or if you want to ensure that you do not delete songs that might be same but different in a particular way, for example, a remix or a live recorded version of the song. One would also want to make certain that every compilation album, which contains duplicates, also stay in one piece.

  • In order to shift into this precise mode of iTune in the Windows version, press and hold the Shift Key and then select the View Menu Option. At once you will notice the Show Exact Duplicate option and select this item.
  • If you have the Mac version of iTunes, then press and hold the Option Key and select the View Menu Option. From the drop down list, select the Show Exact Duplicate Item

Hope this article was helpful for you and helps you to clear out the clutter from your iTunes library.


After working as digital marketing consultant for 4 years Deepak decided to leave and start his own Business. To know more about Deepak, find him on Facebook, LinkedIn now.


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