Apple iTunes 11 has been released

Martin Brinkmann
Nov 30, 2012
Updated • Dec 3, 2012

The iTunes software is best described as a media player with library and store functionality. Most iOS device owners have iTunes installed to manage and transfer audio, video and apps between their devices. It is a big program that has been heavily criticized in the past for being bulky and installing all kinds of additional services and programs on the PC.

Lets take a look if that still holds true or if iTunes 11 turns it around for Apple. Before I start I'd like to point out that you do not have to enter an email address on the download page to start the download. Just click on download now and you are good to go.

First thing you will notice after installation and running the software for the first time is that it features a new minimalistic design. The sidebar is not displayed by default anymore so that all space available is used by the main pane.

The new albums view for instance displays album sorted by cover in the pane. There is a small menu at the top that lets you navigate to other media types, e.g.  TV shows, podcasts or movies, and a sorting bar to change the view from albums to songs, artists, genres and so on.

When you play an album, its contents are displayed right on the page making the selection process comfortable and easy at the same time.

You can display the missing menus again if you prefer that view. To do so click on the top left corner icon and select Show Menu Bar from the options or press Ctrl-B. Select View > Show Sidebar or press Ctrl-S to display the sidebar on the left side. The sidebar itself does not seem to have changed at all though displaying playlists, links to your libraries, the store and other options right there.

The iTunes installation adds two items to the startup of the system automatically on Windows. This is the iTunes software itself and Apple Push. I recommend disabling both items unless you are using iTunes all day long or using the Apple Push notification service.

The Task Manager lists quite a few processes by iTunes. Some only when the software is running, others running all the time on the system.

  • AppleMobileDeviceHelper.exe - Only running when iTunes is running, provides the interface to Apple mobile devices. You can't disable it, only uninstall it. Open the software control panel applet and uninstall Apple Mobile Device Support to get rid of it.
  • distnoted.exe - Seems to be spawned by AppleMobileDeviceHelper.exe. If you uninstall it, distnoted.exe will go away as wel.
  • iTunes.exe - the main process, only up and running when the software is running on the system.
  • iTunesHelper.exe - Listens to commands that help iTunes communicate with devices.

What's your take on the new iTunes? Do you like the new minimalistic design?


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  1. downlz said on December 1, 2012 at 7:52 pm

    As you mentioned not to enter your email address during the download process this is nothing new.I hardly put my mail during download in the last 2 yrs

  2. JohnJ said on November 30, 2012 at 6:53 pm


    Why do I update iTunes every time? Before all my music was in front of me as organized lists where I could drag and drop into playlists, I could “select all,” I could actually check a song and move to the next selection. I could use my right-mouse for almost everything I needed. I could fill my iPod with playlists in minutes.

    Now it’s all segregated and (as is) VERY album oriented and apparently designed for “I’ve got big image-icons, too” tablet use.

    (I must be shouting for everyone to get off my lawn cause everything these days looks like it is made for table use and I’m still a poor schlep using a desk-top with no need to computer everywhere I go.)

    No matter, i guess. I found how to revert the window layout to what it was in last version. Now I don’t have to re-learn how to use this lumbering and obese turd.

    Has anyone seen my Encarta CD?

    1. Bharat P said on December 3, 2012 at 1:44 pm

      I am not sure if this is going to help, but in iTunes 11 the moment you drag a selection of songs, playlist window automatically appears at the right hand side and you can add the songs to the playlist of your choice.

    2. Emrea said on December 1, 2012 at 2:39 am

      I totally agree that this has been an obese, tablet oriented big-icon-version. All the useful library features are hidden away or removed. I do not have any i-Device but nonetheless use iTunes solely for iTunes-U, which is really great. In this version, iTunes U seems to have got its share too – you cannot change the view to tiled view; you have a revamped album view with a big sidebar instead (or at least I couldn’t find it). I reverted to the 10.7 version.

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