I'm using iTunes on Windows 7 SP1 with a large music library (30+ GB). I've had no problems with this until recently...This problem only started within the last week, which is odd since I haven't applied any updates recently (within the last several months) that might cause this (unless it silently installed one in the background).

In the middle of a song, it'll stop playing that song and jump way down in the playlist and start playing a different one, putting a grey exclamation mark inside a circle icon to the left of all songs in between. It only happens maybe once every 2-3 hours of playing music, but it's often enough that it's very annoying, especially when I've got a big queue of songs I want to listen to.

Based on what I've been able to figure out, the exclamation mark means iTunes couldn't find the file, but that doesn't make sense to me since the files are there, and if I manually double click on them, they'll play fine; even going back to the one it skipped out of will play fine.

I interpret this to mean that iTunes somehow temporarily got into a state where it couldn't read files any more, and kept going down the list until it found one it could play again.

How can I stop this behavior/bug from happening so it just plays my music normally?

  • Is your hard drive set to sleep/spin down after X minutes? Maybe it's going to sleep in the middle of a song which wasn't fully cached, but then the drive wakes up and within those 5 seconds, iTunes has skipped XX songs till the drive is ready again. Just a wild conjecture. – Chris Paveglio Apr 16 '14 at 12:59
  • @ChrisPaveglio It shouldn't be - it was one of the first things I disabled when I got my computer years ago... – Krease Apr 16 '14 at 18:46

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