Not many iTunes users know that it is possible to use multiple iTunes libraries on the same computer system. There is virtually no information about running multiple iTunes libraries once iTunes has been started.
Before we explain how to setup multiple iTunes libraries we should take a look at some of the reasons why someone would want to work with several iTunes libraries instead of just one.
It may be useful if you need to synchronize multiple devices with your computer as this enables you to sync a custom set of files, music, video, other files, to each device without running into any synchronization issues in the process.
The main reason however is to make a custom set of data available in each library. Think about one database for lossless and one for lossy audio files, libraries for specific occasions such as parties, for specific genres of music or different types such as live music.
It is also possible to use a library for an external device that you connect to the system every once in a while only.
Last but not least, it may also make sense if multiple users use the same computer account.
It is actually very easy to create a second iTunes library. All that needs to be done is to press the Shift key (Alt on Macs) before launching iTunes. A small popup window will be displayed asking you to choose or create a library.
Selecting the create a library option will create a new iTunes library that acts independently of all other iTunes libraries. It should also be noted that iTunes will always open the library that has been used the last time iTunes was executed. Switching libraries would again require pressing the Shift key during launch.
Note that the use of multiple libraries has been added to iTunes 9.2 and that it is available in all versions of iTunes that have been released ever since.
Advertising revenue is falling fast across the Internet, and independently-run sites like Ghacks are hit hardest by it. The advertising model in its current form is coming to an end, and we have to find other ways to continue operating this site.
We are committed to keeping our content free and independent, which means no paywalls, no sponsored posts, no annoying ad formats (video ads) or subscription fees.
If you like our content, and would like to help, please consider making a contribution:
Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.