I have approximately 90 GB of music and it is taking up too much of my Macbook Air's 256GB internal SSD space. I see I can buy a 128 GB flash card which can be left in the MacBook Air's flash card slot. Can I just move my library on to the flash card? Has anybody done this? Any advice? Would it be backed up with Time Machine correctly?

  • How do you plan to squeeze 90GB of music onto a 16GB flash card? – nohillside Mar 10 '13 at 19:13
  • the 128GB version – timpone Mar 10 '13 at 19:17

Has anybody done this?

Not with a flash drive, but with an external drive. I've kept my iTunes library on a USB-attached drive for years now. Semantically, the situation is identical to storing it on the flash drive. The OS see's a remote disk in both cases.

Any advice?

Format it as Mac OS Extended (Journaled). Most flash media come pre-formatted as FAT32 these days. You don't want that.

For moving your iTunes library the correct way see: What is the safest way to move the iTunes Library from one hard drive to another?

Would it be backed up with Time Machine correctly?

As long as it's not listed in the Exclusions list in Time Machine, yes: it will be backed up. To check the exclusions list: System Preferences -> Time Machine. Click on the Options... button and make sure your flash drive volume isn't listed in that list. If it it, select it, and click the - (minus) button at the bottom of the list to remove it.

  • thx for info, need to run out but let me get flash drive and see if any issues – timpone Mar 10 '13 at 19:59

You are able to specify what gets backed up with TimeMachine, so if you want to backup just your music you can do that and use the flashdrive as your TimeMachine backup. However, this won't allow you to erase the music off of your harddrive.

I would suggest simply putting all of your Music files onto an external (as you mentioned) by simply dragging and dropping the files, and then deleting it all off of your harddrive (except for any particular music you still want on your machine for regular access). If and when you want to pull a song off of your flash drive, just plug it in and pull it off.

Another idea is to look into itunes match (stores all of your songs on the cloud for $20 a year and you don't need to keep the actual file on your harddrive).

  • Dragging and dropping your iTunes media is not the right way to move it from one location to another. The iTunes database won't update itself automatically and you'll be stuck re-importing all your content (and likely losing your meta-data in the DB in the process). – Ian C. Mar 10 '13 at 19:31
  • This is true, but it doesn't sound like he wants him music on his machine anymore; so I suggested to just drag it all off (then remove it all from itunes), and then reimport only what he wants on the machine. – david Mar 10 '13 at 19:32
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    He wants it on the external flash drive. And the right way to get it there is to move it from within iTunes. – Ian C. Mar 10 '13 at 19:33
  • could I just symlink my current iTunes media to this new location? Would like to keep things up-to-date in terms of play counts. I started using Tunespan about a month ago for movies; will look into how these might work together – timpone Mar 10 '13 at 19:58

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