XML me
February 2, 2011 10:01 AM   Subscribe

Is my dream of an XML file builder merely a dream?

Part 1 - I am no computer wiz. I can get from point A to point Z with moderate instructions, but I by no means understand any coding language.

Part 2 - I have music. I have lots of music. I keep my music on an external harddrive. This was lucky since when my house was broken into some months ago, the burglar took only my (super old) laptop, but proceeded to unplug my HDD, thus leaving me with my photos and music - yay! However, in taking my computer, s/he took my iTunes XML file (my master file was definitely located on the C drive).

Part 3 - I am very particular about the file format and thus the way my playlists are presented in iTunes (the desired program). In my file system, my music is set up as follows: artist>album>music files. The branch starts out with the artist and contained in each file are separate folders for each album. In iTunes, each playlist is labeled as artist>album.

Part 4 - Since I still have my HDD and file structure, I am hoping there is a program* that can build me an XML file that i can import into iTunes to regain my particular method of music listening.

Part 5 - The results i came to upon googling are often times programs that are 3-6 years old so I am weary of using them. If this exists, is there something more contemporary?

*please see part 1.
posted by wocka wocka wocka to Technology (4 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
*please see part 1.

Unless you're willing to roll up your sleeves and do a little programming, the best you could probably do is manually writing the XML file, either in a text editor or with a graphical tool, like EditX or jEdit with the right plug-ins. You'll also want to read about the iTunes XML schema. There's an older posting about its format that might help you get started.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 10:23 AM on February 2, 2011

Did you see the javascript posted in the last response to this forum question? It's old, but I don't think that much has changed about the scripting system in iTunes (for better or for worse). Back up your library files first and give it a try.
posted by bcwinters at 10:45 AM on February 2, 2011

I'm not sure I quite understand the question. If you don't tell iTunes to reorganise your file structure, it won't. So you'll be able to retain your folders and files just as they are.

So, what is the "particular method of music listening" that you refer to? No XML file you can build (unless you mean Playlists) will change the ways you can listen to music in iTunes.
posted by AmbroseChapel at 12:54 AM on February 5, 2011

Sorry, I realise now you do mean playlists.

In the nicest possible way, your post contains a lot of extraneous detail which distracts from your basic problem.

Is this a fair statement of that problem? "I spent a lot of time creating playlists for all my favorite albums and labelling them '[artist name] > [album name]'. I want this process recreated automatically rather than having to do it by hand again".

It ought to be easy to do, once you have a new master XML file. But I'm still a little puzzled. It's very easy to listen to albums in this way on iTunes anyway, without the need for playlists.

Send me MeFi mail if you like. I work with XML a lot.
posted by AmbroseChapel at 2:50 PM on February 5, 2011

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