Duplicates in iTunes are real and capable of robbing you of significant space on your hard drive. Aside the storage space consideration, of what use are these duplicates anyway when you have the originals on the same hard drive as well? If you are currently having a problem of your iTunes creating duplicate files, the information presented in this piece should be helpful in overcoming the problem.
The problem of iTunes duplicates has been attributed to the method used in getting files into the media player. Dragging of files into your iTunes library is a habit that can lead to your computer being filled with duplicates. These days, iTunes is able to detect when a duplicate is about to be added to your library.
But that is only possible when you have all your media stored in the same location. So if you have files scattered in different locations, creation of duplicates may be unavoidable. Granted that Apple has now made it very easy to find and delete duplicates from iTunes, you are still better off preventing their creation altogether to preserve yourself from the stress of having to delete duplicates at all after they must have been created. You can even remove the duplicates automatically.
Preventing duplicate files in iTunes
It is pretty straightforward to prevent duplicate files from being created in iTunes. Simply perform the few steps described below and you are good.
Launch the iTunes application on your computer.
On a Mac computer, click on iTunes and select Preferences from the drop-down menu. Click on Edit and then on Preferences if you are running iTunes on a Windows computer.
Click on the “Advanced” button and check the box next to “Keep iTunes Music folder organized.” Also, you want to ensure that the checkbox next to “Copy files to iTunes Media (or Music) folder when adding to library” has a tick in it. Then click on OK to save the changes you have made.
Once you have done this, you are free to delete all duplicates that had previously been created. The changes made should help you prevent iTunes from creating duplicate files every time you try to add new files from then on. This is because all the files have been organized in a single folder or location. Any time you unknowingly try to add a particular file that is already in iTunes, you will be alerted about this before you go ahead with it.
Hope the steps described above helps you prevent duplicates from being created in iTunes when importing files.