iTunes Add To Library Hint

Let’s say that you happened to have a folder of MP3s somewhere. Perhaps on a disc. Perhaps on a drive. Perhaps it was on a friend’s computer. Perhaps there were literally tons of awesome albums that you would quite like. You know, for, erm, backup purposes.

Well you might get as far as importing those in to your library and they would probably work. But if the tracks/albums weren’t labelled very well, then your library would get ugly. And if you tried to use the CDDB iTunes “Get CD track names” functionality, you’d be presented with a message along the lines of “iTunes can only access CDDB track names for CDs that it imported itself, please reimport the CD” – or words to that effect.

Your options are to burn Audio CDs of all the albums and then import them, which is a time-consuming hassle, or to use one of the various iTunes Applescripts available to try and hack the names in from the various sources. My experience of these scripts/sites – it doesn’t work. (You could of course import them and name them manually… but, well, let’s not even go there.)

The way around this is through Toast and a variation on option 1. I have Toast Titanium 8, but I know this functionality goes back at least as far as 7, if not further. It’s a little fiddly, but definitely better than creating real CDs of these albums. It’s quite simple – create an Audio CD in Toast as usual, but rather than burning it to CD, look under File > for an option to “save as disc image” (or Apple + D). It’ll create an .s2df file, which, again using Toast, can be mounted as a disc image (under Utilities or Shift + Apple + M). As soon as you do this, iTunes will likely spark in to life and start importing for you.

Far quicker than creating CDs, and yes, it’ll quite happily query CDDB to get the track names for you. Job done.

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