Messed up my iTunes library, can anyone help?

Hi all, not sure where this would go since it involves both the Mac and phone. I added a huge folder of audio books to my library, just add to library, done. As i went hunting through, I noticed, though in order in the folder, in the music app and on itunes it wasn't. Besides the audio wasn't as good as I wanted to have it, so I thought i oculd delete it. Here's my mistake, I went in to the folder itself, deleted it from the itunes on the mac, then synced the phone only to have it still there both in the iTunes library and the phone. I don't remember when I put them on, it couldn't be more then two or thre weeks back, but without a resotre is there anything other way I can get this extra space back? It's a good five ro six gigs. Thanks all.

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#1 Delete the listings

First, I'm a Windows user, so your mileage may vary.

All that iTunes has in its library are pointers to files. If you deleted the files, the pointers now go to nowhere. I don't think there's a significant amount of space taken up by lines in a database. You can delete the iTunes listings and you're good.

Now, if you really do see slack space used by the files, it may be that they are in your deleted files folder taking up space there.

#2 The files are still here.

Hi. Here's what I did, navigated to the iTunes folder, then music, then Harry Potter, which contained each book in it's own folder. I deleted it, then after that, when I went in, the books are still on my iTunes and the phone, I can play them except the ones off my phone i started deleting, until I relaized it'd take eons to do it. :) I seem to have goofed up with Windows years back so this isn't new. Thanks for your advice, I guess i'll figure out another way. I appreciate all your help.

#3 Removing items from iTunes library

Club AppleVis Member

As you discovered, you cannot remove items from the iTunes folder in the Finder and expect iTunes to know what you did. I believe iTunes will resurrect lost files during a sync by transferring them from other devices that have them stored.

To delete the items properly, you must do it within iTunes. Select the items you wish to remove, then press the Backspace key. You will be asked if you want the files to be moved to the trash. Do that, then empty the trash from the Finder when you're done.

Note that if you are viewing the items in a playlist, you must press Option + Backspace instead of just Backspace, since pressing Backspace by itself will remove the items from the playlist, but not your library.

You can delete multiple items at once by selecting them all first, then pressing Backspace or Option + Backspace. For example, if you want to delete all of your audiobooks, you can bring up the list of audiobooks in iTunes, press Command-A to select all, then press Backspace.

Once you get the unwanted files out of your iTunes library, they will disappear from your attached devices the next time they are synced.