I currently use a mid-2012 MacBook Pro as my main laptop. I have replaced the HDD with an SSD and moved the HDD to the optical drive bay.

I also have a pretty large iTunes library - ~250GB, 12,000 songs, all Apple Lossless. I store this on the HDD, and iTunes is painfully slow to browse - upwards of 5 seconds often to open an artist, etc. I also have several very large box sets (100CD) which are around 2000 songs a piece. When I click on these albums, iTunes takes a good 40 seconds to load.

Obviously it would be ideal to store the iTunes library on the SSD, but this is not possible due to storage sizes. I believe the next best thing would be to have the actual media on the HDD, but have the iTunes index file (iTunes Library.itl) on the SSD.

Is this possible, and would it help? Otherwise, what can I do to speed up iTunes? Its truly painful right now.

Thanks for any help.

As a side note, I've tried using other media players, and they are much faster, but I am hooked on the iTunes interface.

  • Some questions for you: (1) Are you finding that iTunes itself takes a while to launch? (2) How long ago did you replace the HDD with the SSD? (3) What version of macOS are you running? (4) What version of iTunes? (5) Do you use iPhoto/Photos for your photos? (6) If yes to 5, is your photo library still stored on the HDD? (7) If yes to 6, are you finding that your photos also take a while to load?
    – Monomeeth
    Commented Feb 25, 2017 at 4:13
  • 1: iTunes itself loads quickly. 2: Maybe 6 months ago 3: macOS Sierra 10.12.3 4: iTunes v. 5-7: N/A - I don't use iPhotos for my photos. Commented Feb 25, 2017 at 4:30
  • Ok, how did you migrate data to the SSD? And did you reformat the HDD or just place it into the Optical drive bay as is with everything (including the OS) still on it? Also, have you had this problem since the SSD upgrade?
    – Monomeeth
    Commented Feb 25, 2017 at 5:28
  • 1
    Did you copy the entire iTunes folder wholesale, xml, itl files & all, then tell iTunes where it had gone? See apple.stackexchange.com/questions/157665/… & apple.stackexchange.com/questions/163594/… Though I've heard that breaking the itl file no longer works as it did. I'm going to run some tests this week & can report back later.
    – Tetsujin
    Commented Feb 25, 2017 at 15:56
  • 1
    In addition to the excellent suggestions offered by @Tetsujin another thing you could try (mainly because it's really quick to do) is to launch iTunes and immediately hold the Option key down. Then select your music library from its current HDD location and click OK. This may not make a difference in your case since you're saying iTunes launches just fine, but it's still worth trying nonetheless.
    – Monomeeth
    Commented Feb 25, 2017 at 23:55


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