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2 Free Ways to Restore Corrupted/Damaged iTunes Library

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Aaron Donald

March 23, 2017 (Updated: August 26, 2020)• Filed to: Transfer iPhone Media

3 min read

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Oh no! What did you do? Somehow, your iTunes library was damaged, and have no idea how to repair iTunes library damaged. Where did all your music go? Maybe you accidentally clicked on the wrong thing or you tried to do something shady on your computer and the iTunes.library.itl got messed up. If all you’re getting is a dialog box that says “iTunes Library.itl can’t be read”, then you have a few options still.

iTunes Library.itl

How to Repair Corrupted iTunes Library on Win/Mac?

1. Rebuild Corrupted iTunes Library from Older Library File Manually

Having a corrupted iTunes library can take you by surprise and you may not know how to approach it. You can try to repair it though by replacing the corrupted “iTunes.Library.itl” file with an older, non-corrupt version. Here’s how to do it:

Step 1: Ensure your iTunes is closed and not running any more. Or it may damage the older file when fixing.
Step 2: Find your iTunes library damaged on your computer and rename it, like “Damaged iTunes Library.itl”.

  • For Mac OS: /Users/username/Music/iTunes/iTunes Library.itl
  • For Windows 10/8/7/Vista: C:/Users/[User Name]/My Music/ iTunes/iTunes Library.itl
  • For Windows XP: Documents and Settings/[User Name]/My Documents/My Music/iTunes/iTunes Library.itl

Step 3: After you’ve renamed the previous iTunes library, look for the folder that says “Previous iTunes Libraries” in the iTunes folder that you’re in. Click on it.
Step 4: In there, you should be able to find a recent previous version of your library. Copy it and paste it to where “Damaged iTunes Library.itl” locates, and rename it to the generic “iTunes Library.itl” that iTunes will recognize.

Hopefully this one is not also corrupted, but if it is, repeat this process with previous libraries until you find a good one.
iTunes library itl

2. Restore Damaged iTunes Library from the Latest iTunes Library

If you restore your library to a previous version, as mentioned above, and find that you ended up losing files, this can certainly be disheartening. However, don’t lose hope! You can repair iTunes library from the latest iTunes library without even opening iTunes.

Umate Pro iphone data eraser

1,000,000+ Downloads

iMyFone TunesMate iPhone Transfer is an perfect iTunes library that can help you to restore damaged iTunes library directly from the newest library, or from iPhone/iPad/iPod.

  • Restore crashed or damaged iTunes library without losing data.
  • Enrich iTunes library from unlimited iPhones, iPads, and iPods, even in different Apple IDs.
  • Merge differnet iTunes libraries together, without any duplicates.
  • Share iTunes library to different iDevices, even to your friends.
  • Highly spoken of by hundreds of users and well-known media, like Geekreply,,, etc.

Try It FreeTry It Free

How to Repair Corrupted iTunes Library from the Latest iTunes Library?

Step 1: Download and install the free trial version of TunesMate to have a try. Plug in your iPhone/iPad/iPod.
Step 2: Go to "Transfer iTunes Media to iDevice". If you want to restore all the contents, make sure Entire Library is checked, and hit Transfer button to start. This will help you to transfer contents from corrupted iTunes library to your iPhone
Transfer iTunes Media to iDevice
Step 3: When it finishes, go to Transfer iTunes Media to Transfer iDevice Media to iTunes and check the files that you want to transfer to iTunes.
Transfer iTunes Media to iDevice

Or How to Repair Corrupted iTunes Library from iPhone/iPad/iPod?

You can use Transfer iDevice Media to iTunes to transfer all the media to corrupted iTunes library. Or you can selectively transfer files like below.

Step 1: Open TunesMate on computer and plug in your iPhone/iPad/iPod.

Step 2: Click on the “Music” tab near the top. You should see music from your device begin to populate the screen.

Step 3: Select the music that you want to restore to your library and click “Export,” then “Export to iTunes.”

Transfer iTunes Media to iDevice

In this way, you can selectively repair your iTunes library damaged. Or you may want to repair iTunes library in 1 click. Just go to "Transfer iDevice Media to iTunes" at the home interface.

Now, what is iMyFone TunesMate and how it can repair your corrupted iTunes library may be clear for you. Why does it seem to have all these great abilities? Well, you can think of it as an alternative to iTunes, one that gives you more control over your files instead of trying to impose restrictions. It has some incredible features, including:

  • Back up iPhone/iTunes music/movies and restore backups.
  • Transfer files to iPhone/iPod/iPad from computers/iTunes libraries/external hard drive/CDs/music players, etc.
  • Manage and transfer files of almost any kind of format, including pictures, music, video, playlists, and more.
  • Edit certain files on the fly before you transfer them.
  • Share files between many different iOS devices and computers, so you don’t have to comply with Apple’s restriction of 5 devices.
  • A tool that detects duplicate files so that you can get rid of them.

repair corrupted iTunes library

As you can see, TunesMate is a very feature rich application, and it belongs in the virtual toolbox of anyone who owns an iOS device. Not only does it help you get around Apple’s restrictions, but it can possibly save your files in an emergency. You may want to give it a free trial.

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