Top 4 ways – How to Delete Duplicate Files in iTunes on Mac

iTunes is an excellent music manager and has got updated recently to become much cleaner, faster and interesting. No matter how good of a music manager iTunes is, it still has a few flaws. For instance, the duplicates of the music files in iTunes are many and iTunes does not detect and delete them automatically but in fact, keeps saving them and piling them on.

At times, iTunes has multiple copies of the same music clip and sometimes an entire album is duplicated. Duplicates in iTunes are a form of a nuisance as they take up unnecessary space and make certain operations like searching very complicated. At times, the same song is played more than once due to the presence of its duplicate. This article is aimed at letting the iOS device owners know how to perform removing iTunes duplicates and keep it free from junk and unnecessary files.

find and delete duplicate files

1. Why There Are So Many Duplicate Files on iTunes

Before knowing about how to remove duplicates in iTunes, let's see why the duplicates get created on iTunes. The duplicates on iTunes occur when you download the same audio track from two or more sources. For instance, if you download a song from iTunes and your device already has the same track in the library, then iTunes will display this song twice. The song in front which you can see a cloud icon with a downward arrow, that is the version which you have downloaded from iTunes and the song in front of which there is a cloud icon with an "x" symbol in between, that is the one which is in your device library.

Let's have a look at the sections below which describe how to delete duplicates in iTunes.

2. How Does It Affect the Running of Your Mac If There are Many Duplicate Files

When there are too many duplicates on iTunes, the first and foremost annoying thing is that when you play any track, you will be forced to listen to the same track more than once. Unless you manually go to iTunes and click on the next song, this problem will persist. Leaving any work midway and changing the track can get very frustrating after a while. Also, duplicate files occupy unnecessary space in the Mac system. When this becomes too much, your Mac system can slow down and start displaying errors in performance. This is why it is important to know how to delete duplicate songs in iTunes.

3. How to Find and Remove Duplicates in iTunes

The updated version of iTunes makes it a bit harder to find and locate the duplicate files on iTunes. Refer to the below sections to know how you can find iTunes duplicates and delete duplicate songs from iTunes effectively.

3.1 How to Show all Song Duplicates in iTunes

Follow the steps below to know how to show all the song duplicates in iTunes.

Step 1: Launch iTunes on your Mac system.

Step 2: Click on the "File" option and then on "Library".

Step 3: From here, select the option "Show Duplicate Items".

show duplicate files

Step 4: If you want to know how to remove duplicate songs in iTunes, you can press the "Delete" key on the keyboard to delete the duplicate files.

This is how you can view the duplicates in iTunes.

3.2 How to Show Only Exact Song Duplicates in iTunes

If you wish to view the tracklisting of duplicates, select "All" and select "Same Album" if you want to view the duplicates from a specific album.

Click on the "Name" option to make the duplicates appear next to one another.

view song duplicates

4. The Best App to Find and Delete All the Duplicate Files on Your Mac, Not Only iTunes

Apart from iTunes, there may even be several duplicate files stored in different folders on your Mac system. All these duplicates together can occupy unnecessary storage space and cause hindrance in the performance of your Mac. To get rid of all the duplicates on your Mac system including the iTunes duplicates, the best tool which you can turn to is iMyFone Umate Mac Cleaner. This is the ultimate tool which deals with cleaning up duplicates and junk files on your Mac and thereby improving the system performance.

Advantages of Using iMyFone Umate Mac Cleaner

  1. Can delete all duplicates on systems including the iTunes duplicates.
  2. Performs the duplicate deletion within a few minutes.
  3. 100% reliable. It gives the smart selection of all the duplicates, and keep the original file for you in case of mistaken deletion.
  4. Very easy to install and use. Just choose the iTunes directory to scan, and then all the duplicate files will be displayed orderly.
  5. Works to optimize system performance.

How to use iMyFone Umate Mac Cleaner to Delete Duplicates

Here is how you can delete the duplicates from Mac using iMyFone Umate Mac Cleaner which is an excellent iTunes duplicate remover.

Step 1: After installation, launch the program on your Mac system and select "Delete Duplicate Files" option.

Mac version

Step 2: After that, select the directory which needs to be scanned for duplicates and click on "Scan".

scan system

Step 3: Select the duplicate files which you wish to delete and click on "Delete".

delete duplicates

In just three simple steps, you can easily delete all the duplicates from your Mac system.

5. How to Delete iTunes Duplicates on Mac Manually

Now that you have known how to find the duplicate files in iTunes for Mac, it's time to know how to get rid of these files as soon as possible. It is because the sooner you remove these files, you can add more files to the app on your Mac.

There are three ways to delete a duplicate item in the iTunes app on your Mac. Here we show you all the methods and you can choose the one that you think is convenient for you.

5.1 Delete a Duplicate Item from the Menu Bar

At first, you need to launch the iTunes app. Once you are on the list page, select the duplicates you want to delete, and click on the Song menu at the top followed by Delete from Library.

Then a confirmation message will appear and ask if you would only like to remove the item from the library or you would like to remove it from your Mac. Select the Move to Trash option to delete the file permanently.

delete itunes duplicate on mac

5.2 Delete a Duplicate Item from the Context Menu

When you select a file in the app, the context menu offers you a few options to apply to the selected file. One of these options helps you delete the file from the app. Right-click on the duplicate file you want to delete and then click Delete from Library. Confirm to Move to Trash to delete the duplicate file eventually.

delete itunes duplicates on mac context menu

5.3 Delete a Duplicate File Using a Keyboard Button

This is an easy way to delete duplicate files in iTunes. Once you have selected the files to remove from iTunes, press the Delete button on your Mac keyboard. You will get a confirm dialog box on your screen and just clicking on Move to Trash to realize the aim of iTunes duplicate file removing.

delete itunes duplicates with keyboard

6. Tip: How to Prevent iTunes from Importing Duplicate Music

With the new update, you can rest assured that iTunes no longer supports the import of duplicates. So unless you drag and drop an audio track into iTunes, the duplicates would not be imported. However, if you want to ensure that everything is running okay in iTunes, you can follow the steps given below.

Step 1: Launch iTunes and click on "Preferences".

Step 2: Go to the "Advanced" option.

Step 3: Ensure that the box in front of "Keep iTunes Media Folder Organized", and "Copy Files to iTunes Media Folder when Adding to Library" is ticked.

Step 4: Select the "Reset All" option and then click on "OK".

advanced preferences

This way you can make sure that the music files are being managed well by iTunes.


Finding duplicates on iTunes can really be frustrating. The above methods describe how to get rid of duplicates in iTunes effectively and improve the performance of your Mac system substantially. The best way to do this would be to use iMyFone Umate Mac Cleaner as this is a highly effective tool in removing all duplicates from the Mac system and not just the iTunes duplicates.

Mac version

top icon