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mac OS High Sierra 10.13.6 (17G65) and iTunes 12.8.0.150

I have a bunch of MP3 files on my SMB share (a Linux home server). The SMB server used to be named "sega-SMB" and I renamed it to just "sega".

The problem with iTunes is that if I don't connect to the "sega" SMB server and mount the share (its name never changed) in Finder before attempting to start playing any song that is on this "sega" SMB server, iTunes attempts to connect to the old "sega-SMB" name. It errors out saying that it can't connect to the server. It is not lying. The "sega-SMB" server is not on the network anymore. There's only "sega" now.

So, iTunes somehow cached the old SMB server name. If I first connect to the SMB server and mount the share via Finder and then try to play a song in iTunes, it has no problem figuring out the path to an MP3 file.

Basically, if I just logged in and started iTunes and want to play music it attempts to connect to my SMB server using old name that is no longer valid. If I connect via Finder and mount the share, iTunes has no problem playing the music.

I was wondering if there's a way to delete this cached record somehow, somewhere. I've been searching for a solution on Google but haven't been able to find anything yet.

I tried clearing all recent connections in "Connect to Server" dialog. I also tried deleting obsolete keychain entries. None of that helped.

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iTunes is bloated and willful (my opinion), but here's a counter-point to that. I'm posting this as an "answer" in the fervent hope that someone will downvote it, tell me how stupid I am, and reveal (at long last) the "true" answer to the question, "Why does iTunes persist in looking for my media in the wrong place?". That said, here's all that can be done:

  1. Start iTunes, select iTunes, Preferences..., then the Advanced tab.
  2. Click the Change button, and in the dialog navigate to the location of your media.
  3. Note that there are other options in the Advanced tab that will give iTunes greater autonomy over your file system than it already has. I've found them to be recipes for chaos, disaster and confusion, so I don't check them see this screenshot.

Finally, prepare to repeat this process frequently as long as you use iTunes. Frankly, the only reason I still use it at all is to a) store music on my phone, b) provide my playlists to Sonos. Again - hoping someone will strike me down, and we'll both be illuminated for it :)

  • Thanks for chiming in. I should have clarified that my music is located on remote SMB share only. It is never copied to local disk. I suppose changing "iTunes Media" folder location won't help me. I did a test and renamed the top-level iTunes directory and Music, which caused iTunes to create a new library. I added an album to iTunes, quit it and disconnected from SMB server. Then I started iTunes again and tried to play that album that I had added. This time iTunes connected to the SMB server using correct name, mounted the share and started playing the music. So, yeah, the old name is cached – ILIV Aug 11 '18 at 20:44
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    ?? I assumed it was a remote SMB share; that's where I keep mine. And yes, changing to that remote folder will help you (did me). As I mentioned, due to iTune's odd ways you'll likely have to repeat that procedure. As for caching the former name, I've run into something similar; all I can recall is that "persistence pays off". – Seamus Aug 11 '18 at 22:12
  • You were absolutely right. However nonsensical it may have sounded to me, it actually worked. I moved the "iTunes Media" folder to a random directory on my SMB share and iTunes was able to connect to the SMB server using the new name. I then moved via Preferences -> Advanced -> Change dialog the "iTunes Media" folder again back to the local disk into ~/Music/iTunes/ (I renamed/backed up the existing "iTunes Media" folder first) and iTunes can now connect to SMB server using the new name, mount the share and start playing music as it should. You, sir, saved the day. Thank you very much! – ILIV Aug 12 '18 at 6:44
  • That's good news; I'm happy you were able to work through my clumsy explanation. I've adopted a simple rule for dealing with iTunes: Switch off your "left brain" before you try to do anything. ... it also helps to take 3 deep breaths first. – Seamus Aug 12 '18 at 12:44
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The SMB server name is "cached" (e.g. saved) in the Keychain. You can use the Keychain Access app to edit/delete saved server connection credentials.

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