Categories: AppleApplication

How to back up your iTunes or Music library- Save all your music!


With all our music online, it is quite easy that we lose them. So, it is necessary that we keep them safe by keeping a backup. The best way to backup all your music is in iTunes. But if you are confused about how to backup your iTunes library, you can choose to regularly back up. My music backs up all your music and divides them into tracks automatically. Here is how to back up your iTunes or Music library:

First: Locally download your entire library

In Apple‘s iCloud Music Library or the iTunes Store, all your music is stored in the cloud. If you want a complete back up of your music collection, you’ll have to download a local copy to your Mac. Here is how to download specific items in your iCloud Music Library to your Mac’s drive:

  1. Open the Music (or iTunes on Mojave and earlier) on your Mac.
  2. Select the desired Artist, Albums, or Songs to download.
  3. Click the … button, it brings up a pop-up menu.
  4. Click on Download present above ‘Add to Playlist’ to start downloading the songs.

To automatically download everything that on Apple Music library from this point forward, follow these steps:

  1. Open the Music (or iTunes on macOS Mojave and earlier) on your Mac.
  2. Click Music in the menu bar.
  3. Click Preferences from the menu (or press ⌘, on the keyboard).
  4. Open the General tab if you are in some other tab.
  5. Click the box for Automatic Downloads to turn it on.

Once that is turned on, any music you add to your Apple Music library will be downloaded automatically to your Mac’s hard drive.

How to back up your iTunes via Time Machine or another backup service?

There are obviously other ways to backup your music. Thus, you can sync your music with Apple’s Time Machine backup system which will cover your iTunes library. So if you want to restore your songs you can do directly from Time Machine’s History.

Manually back up your iTunes library

If you are not interested in Mac-wide backup service you can also manually back up your iTunes library separately. Here is how to do so:

Consolidate your library

By consolidating your iTunes library you can ensure that all of your iTunes files are in the same place when you make a manual backup. Here is how to do so:

  1. Check if you have downloaded a local copy of your music to your Mac.
  2. Open the Music (or iTunes in macOS Mojave or earlier) on your Mac.
  3. Click File in the upper left corner of your Mac’s screen.
  4. Hover your cursor over Library in the drop-down menu.
  5. Select Organize Library from the secondary menu present above ‘Export Library’.
  6. Check the box for Consolidate Files when the Organize Library window appears.
  7. Click OK.

This will make a copy of all files in the iTunes media folder, leaving the originals in their current location.

Copy your iTunes library to a backup source

  1. Connect your external hard drive to your Mac using a USB cable.
  2. Click on Finder to open a Finder window.
  3. Select your Mac’s Hard drive.
  4. Click on Music in the sidebar.
  5. Select the Music folder (or iTunes on macOS Mojave and earlier) and drag that folder to the external hard drive icon on your desktop or copy it to your online backup service.
  6. To give permission to make a copy of the iTunes folder click Authenticate.
  7. Enter your administrator password.
  8. Click OK.

The time to complete this depends on the number of songs you have or the size of the folder.

Desperate times call for desperate measures

If you are in an emergency and don’t have an external hard drive to take a backup of your Music folder, you can make a temporary backup on your Mac. This is not a solid backup plan, but can be useful in some situations.

  1. Click on Finder to open a Finder window.
  2. Select your Mac’s Hard drive.
  3. Click on Music in the sidebar present above ‘Pictures’.
  4. Right-click or control-click on the Music folder (or iTunes folder if you’re still on macOS Mojave or earlier).
  5. Select Duplicate from the drop-down menu present above ‘Compress iTunes’.
  6. The copy process will begin and will tale some time.
  7. Move the copied iTunes or Music folder to a new, easy-to-find location.
  8. Delete the copied iTunes or Music folder once you no longer need the temporary backup.


When you reset your device or get a new one, you would not want a hassle to create your playlists all over again. Thus it is good to keep a back of your songs on a hard drive. You can also back up your iTunes on Time Machine in your Mac and easily find any of your songs anytime you want. Also, with this, you won’t need to worry about losing your songs. Whereas you can also make a temporary back up on your Mac itself by duplicating your music folder.

Which is your favourite song? Tell us in the comments section below.

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