The iTunes curse strikes again

A little over a week ago I was pleased to notice that I'd posted to this blog eleven times in March. Anticipating a record-breaking month of activity I promptly sat back and did nothing. Curses. It's been seven months since iTunes destroyed my music library and since then I've been slowly working to restore all my track ratings so that my precious playlists will work again. Everything was going well until this afternoon when iTunes lost my library again.

This time, instead of losing about half of my tracks, it lost pretty much all of them. All but a handful of tracks had that evil little exclamation mark next to them, which is iTunes way of saying "I'm sorry, I've completely forgotten where I put this..."

Faced with two choice - relocate 14,000 songs one-by-one or re-import the library and lose my track data - I decided to find a third option. How about a new player?

Foobar 2000 looks amazing when you spend some time customising it but as I discovered when I downloaded it, it looks awful until you put the time in. It's a great idea: you start with no features and install only the ones you want. The possibilities are amazing. I might explore it later but right now I'm not sure whether I'll make the commitment.

The search for a media player that required less work brought me to Jajuk. It's a little scruffy looking but there are lots of nice features. The stats page and the album cover view are both very good. Still, it doesn't feel the same.

Like a man unexpectedly dumped by a girlfriend, I just wanted things back the way they were. I know I can do better. I know iTunes is no good for me. And yes, I know iTunes will probably betray me again. But you can't help your feelings can you?

So I bought CopyPod for $20. It turns out that this is what I should have done before. CopyPod can take the music and track data from my iPod and put it back into iTunes. Or at least it claims it can. The whole thing will take two hours and it hasn't finished yet. If it works my problem is solved.

Of course, if Apple weren't so obsessed with their bloody copy protection systems, they could have put this feature in iTunes themselves and saved me some money.