With this iTunes Library, we consolidate…

There are times in life when you wish wholeheartedly for a Ctrl-z — or Cmd+z if you went Mac and never looked back…

Quick Undo

For instance when your external drive crashes and it contains an iTune Library larger than any single hard drive in the house. We took the whining beastie in for a quote to repair as we felt that it’d be heartbreaking to lose the data… and what we discovered was that heartbreak was easier to weather than the £800 we were quoted to repair. So we put old drivey away knowing that one day we’d have the technology…

That was almost three years ago and the sad little drive sits quietly still in a dusty drawer in a rotting box with immobile platters and reader arms waiting for an archeologist (or an enormous spider) of the future, to dig out all it’s little digital secrets. El iPod was also suspended from constant use, and remained quietly situated and used only for special occasions.

Now it may not sound like much of a story, but consider that this iPod contains every piece of music that Captain Kirk ever bought, all the way back in the day when we used vinyl records and players. All the originals remain locked up in a loft (for backup purposes haha)… boxes and boxes of vinyls and CDs from a time when playlists used to be on mix-tapes.

We tried at various points over the past three years, using a large external drive which we thought’d help… But when your route is “USB-In -> hard drive -> USB-Out”, you’re severely restricted with what you can do especially with an XXL music library … and when your local drive space is inadequate, there’s insufficient buffer space and basically – after several failed attempts (and bald patches) we resigned ourselves to waiting.

Then, we upgraded our home computer … we now have 1 big beautiful Terabyte … and thankfully also there’s TouchCopy 12. As I type, it’s been running for three and a half days and will probably run for three more … but it’s working! All the Doctor Who theme tunes ever recorded on vinyl, Captain Kirk’s songs from the days when he was in a band (of Musicians not Merry Men), every B-side, A-side, Goblin track and some truly weird stuff that’ll never see the laser optic light of a digital disk reader ever.

TouchCopy12 is brilliant because as it retrieves the file from the device, imports it into iTunes along with playlists and album art and so far the only quirk we’ve noticed is it hasn’t pulled across the double album information properly – but that’s relatively inconsequential. At least we don’t have to hire the organ grinder’s monkey to sit in a quiet room for a few years manually retrieving everything – the banana bill would be extravagant.

As for  music we’ve purchased subsequent to the big crash, it’s all available in the cloud and on Spotify, so although it’ll be a small phaf to get it all downloaded… we’re almost back on track. *holding thumbs* plus, a first for both of us, we now have a consolidated music library.

Back in my techie days I used to get cynical about backup systems that made large claims. It’s one thing, being able to backup the Universe (especially appending modified data — that’s a doddle), but after too many all-nighters, I know it’s quite another to be able to restore it …

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