Find duplicates in iTunes

Instead of finding all potentially similar songs, you can find multiples of identical recordings to help clean up your library.

When building your iTunes library, you may have developed a number of duplicate items, some of which are simply higher quality versions of previous songs; or perhaps you imported a song and then ripped or purchased the entire album, containing the original song.

Regardless of the means, if you have duplicate items in your iTunes library, you can sometimes run into frustrating behaviors such as iTunes playing the song twice in succession, or it simply appearing more frequently in automatically-generated playlists.

To manage such duplicates, Apple includes a "Show Duplicates" feature in the iTunes View menu; however, if you use this standard feature, you will see all apparent duplicates of songs listed. This can include the original studio version, live versions, remixes, or even covers of the song, all of which you may want to keep.

While you can peruse through these findings to see which songs you would like to keep and which to remove, iTunes does support an option to reveal only exact duplicate songs, meaning it will only show two of the exact same recording, and not covers or other versions of a song.

To use this feature, simply hold the Option key when opening the View menu, and you will see the "Show Duplicate Items" option change to "Show Exact Duplicate Items." Selecting this will now be the same as the standard duplicates view, except for a more concise listing of revealed songs.


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About the author

    Topher, an avid Mac user for the past 15 years, has been a contributing author to MacFixIt since the spring of 2008. One of his passions is troubleshooting Mac problems and making the best use of Macs and Apple hardware at home and in the workplace.

     

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