–My computer crashed and I lost everything. But, due to the awesomeness of Backblaze, I have all of my files and libraries and music, so nothing’s lost. The problem is… all of my playlists that I’ve spent years tweaking, I don’t want to lose them! I’m wondering where the file is within iTunes so that I can recover it. But since my computer crashed and I had to install everything anew on the new computer, I don’t have the possibility to export the playlist from iTunes.

Where Does iTunes Store Playlists?

Technically, iTunes doesn’t physically store playlists onto your computer. The iTunes library will, however, contain related information about the playlists. For example, when you export iTunes library and import later, the playlists will be imported too.

However, the trick is, once you’ve copied your whole iTunes folder from your backup into its original location, to ‘spoil’ the iTunes Library.itl file, [with iTunes quit] then on next launch it will see the broken file & recreate it, restoring all your playlists.
You usually lose a few album covers, idk why, but they can be regained from
File > Library > Get Album Artwork.

You ‘spoil’ the itl file from Terminal.

  • First remove the old .itl from ~/Music/iTunes/iTunes Library.itl
  • Open Terminal & enter this touch ~/Music/iTunes/iTunes/Library.itl That will create an empty .itl file, broken enough for this.
  • Launch iTunes. It will now notice something is ‘wrong’ & start rebuilding the ITL file, using your existing XML file. The message is ‘Importing ‘iTunes Music Library.xml’ This will take some time, but should restore your old structure, intact.

How to Export iTunes Playlist ?

You can export your playlists as an TXT, XML, M3U files by selecting the playlists and using the File>Library>Export Playlist. 

export itunes playlist

Option 1: Export iTunes Playlist to M3U

The M3U playlist format was originally implemented in Winamp but it’s currently supported by most media players such as Songbird, MediaMonkey, iTunes and etc. As illustrated in the screenshot attached above, please select M3U from the Format drop-down list to export your iTunes playlist to M3U.

Option 2: Export iTunes Playlist to PLS

Unfortunately, you will not be able to export your iTunes playlist to the PLS format. But, you can still import your iTunes library to Songbird and then save your playlists to the PLS format.

How to rescan and fix iTunes Library?

Step 1. Download and install Syncios on your computer, then plug your iPhone, iPad, iPod into your computer. Launch Syncios, the program will detect and recognize your device automatically.

Download syncios windows Download syncios mac

Step 2 : Export music from your iPhone/iPad/iPod to the computer.

Go to My Device module, click Media on the left panel and highlight Music icon on the right column, choose the music you need and hit Export Button. Now, you’ve successfully transferred music from iPhone/iPad/iPod to your Computer.


Step  3. Import music to iTunes Library.

Open iTunes, click Edit > Add File to Library, select files that you need to transfer to the iTunes library by highlighting it and clicking on the ‘Open’ button at the bottom of the window. You finally successfully transfer music, video in your iPhone/iPad/iPod to iTunes Library.

transfer music to itunes

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