Fixed the “iTunes library.itl” bug that could not be read on Windows 10

  • There are two versions of iTunes on Windows 10: desktop version for Windows 7 and the Microsoft Store version for Microsoft Store.
  • Apple’s new version of iTunes 12.7 focuses only on music, movies, TV shows, podcasts, and audiobooks, but the built-in App Store, apps, and ringtones have been removed.
  • The error is not limited to Windows 10, but it can also happen with older versions of MacOS than Catalina.
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There are two different versions of iTunes on Windows 10: the desktop version, which is intended for use on Windows 7 but works well on Windows 10, and the Microsoft Store version, which is free of all the bloatware that the desktop version brings with it. Both versions are easy to use, but if you decide to change the version you use, especially if you switch from the Microsoft Store version to the desktop version, you may run into some problems. If you get an error that the library.itl file from iTunes can’t be read, the solution is simple.

Damaged Itunes Library

In my iTunes library, I have 20,000 songs. There is an error message saying that the library has been damaged. Can I repair the damaged library without resorting to backing it up? It would be a pain to rebuild from my backup, which is only a few months old. Is the damaged iTunes library (74MB) usable?

Itl Files

It stores song ratings, library files, playlists, how many times you’ve played each song, how you’ve organized your media, and much more. The iTunes ITL database includes information about your library files, songs, playlists, and more.

It was released in September by Apple with many new features, but users have expressed dissatisfaction with the latest version. Despite the fact that iTunes 12.7 does not include a built-in App Store, apps, or ringtones, it emphasizes music, movies, TV shows, podcasts, and audiobooks.

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In October Apple re-distributed iTunes 12.6.3 to users, reintroducing the App Store and ringtones, so that some business partners can install apps.

In case you’re one of the many users who downgraded iTunes from version 12.7 to 12.6.3, you’ll need to restore your iTunes library first after installing iTunes 12.6.3. If you don’t, you’ll get the following message: “The iTunes Library.itl file cannot be read because it was created by iTunes v. 12.6.3.

Itunes Locked Disk

Power your PC on. After it boots don’t open any other programs or folders.  Open the original iTunes folder (should be in My Music) and copy the contents (all of them). Go back to the Music folder, and create a new folder called iTunes 2. Paste the contents of the library in this folder. Press and hold the shift key and then double click on the iTunes program to launch it. Do not let go of the shift key, even as the iTunes interface prepares to come on. On the window that appears, you will be asked to either create a library or choose one. Select “choose”. On the browser, navigate to the place where your library file is located (usually at “C:\Users\<User>\Music\iTunes\iTunes Library.itl”) and click on it, this should be from the new iTunes folder you created. Click OK. That’s it! You can now enjoy your iTunes.

The same solution applies to all versions of macOS, including older versions before Catalina.


What is the cause of the “iTunes library.itl” error that cannot be read on Windows 10?

What is the cause of the "iTunes library.itl" error that cannot be read on Windows 10?

Here’s how I fixed the iTunes Library.itl file that was locked on Windows

It seems that the issue is caused by a mismatch between the library files. This can sometimes occur if you move between iTunes and a new computer or when you restore an old backup of your library. A number of users had to downgrade their iTunes version to get back the App Store after iTunes deleted it for a while. After reverting to the earlier version of iTunes, these users lost access to all of the library files they had created in the new version.

The File Itunes Library.itl Cannot Be Read

Reinstalling iTunes and retrying or continuing to repair the problem will fix the error reading iTunes Library.itl.

Changing the iTunes music folder back to what it should be is the best solution. The process locks me out of iTunes for up to an hour (depending on how slow the WiFi is that day) after iTunes scans the entire library (10000+ songs) and matches the songs in the library file to the actual song files.

“Library.itl cannot be read because a newer version of iTunes created it. This tells us that something went wrong. Here’s what to do if this happens to you.


How do I fix the read iTunes library.itl error on Windows 10?

Updated: March 2024

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How do I fix the read iTunes library.itl error on Windows 10?

You can move on to the next part if you do not succeed in downgrading iTunes and are still receiving the NotRead error on Mac or PC.

It is necessary to uninstall iTunes’ new version before you can proceed with the repair described below.

The File Itunes Library Itl Cannot Be Read

Please let us know if you have any questions or need any further assistance. In the comments section below, let us know if you have any queries. 

The Itunes Library File Cannot Be Saved

Whew! That was a lot of steps, but thankfully this only needs to be done once. Once you click the + button and click Close, your error should disappear. Now open iTunes and you’ll see your error has gone away!

I understand that you are receiving an error that indicates your iTunes library file is locked to disk. This sounds like you need to manually adjust the permissions for your iTunes library.itl file. This file can normally be located via this file path: C:\Users\username\Music\iTunes. Once you locate the iTunes library.itl file, right-click, choose properties and uncheck Read Only. If you see a security tab, make sure that permissions are set to Full Control and click OK. You may need to restart iTunes after processing these steps.

It’s important to read the instructions at the top of the script before renaming and executing the plugin so that you know what to do before assuming outputs.

On Windows 10 :
When you are using Windows 10, you can find iTunes under “Add or Remove Programs”. By clicking “Uninstall”, you are removing iTunes.

On MacOS :
If you are using a Mac, right-click iTunes and select “Get Info.” Then click the lock icon to unlock the app. Enter your administrator password and select “Sharing and Access Rights.” Now select “Read and Write” under “Privilege”. Drag iTunes to the trash.

Fix iTunes Library.itl file that cannot be played” on your Mac

  1. Command+Shift+G is the shortcut.
  2. Enter the path /Music/iTunes.
  3. By doing this, you will be able to access iTunes.
  4. The iTunes Library.itl file can be located in iTunes Library.itl folder and must be renamed iTunes Library.old.
  5. Go to the Previous iTunes Libraries folder and select it.
  6. You can copy and paste the most recent library file to your desktop if you find it on your computer.
  7. In iTunes to iTunes Library.itl, paste the file and save it.
  8. The error should still be present now if you run iTunes again.

The “iTunes Library.itl file cannot be played” issue on Windows 10 has been fixed

  1. In your Windows 10 file explorer, click the music folder and then iTunes.
  2. Replace .itl with .old in iTunes Library.itl.
  3. Once you have clicked on “Previous iTunes Libraries,” a new window will appear.
  4. The last library file can be found by searching.
  5. Your desktop should now have the file copied and pasted.
  6. The iTunes Library.itl file should now be in your iTunes folder.
  7. Verify if there are any errors in iTunes.

Renaming the old file to .itl will restore it to its original state if something goes wrong. A backup can also be created by inserting the file on the desktop.


RECOMMENATION: Click here for help with Windows errors.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Navigate to the location of the iTunes library itl file.
  2. Delete the iTunes library file.
  3. Start iTunes.
  4. Drag and drop the iTunes music folder and any other folders containing music files into the iTunes application window.

Check the settings and network connection on all of your devices: make sure that your devices have the latest versions of iOS, iPadOS, macOS, or iTunes for Windows. Make sure that "Sync Library" is enabled on all of your devices. Connect all of your devices to the Internet.

You and she want to know if you can remove them. The others you see are backups from when new versions of iTunes were installed, and they can actually be deleted. If all goes well when you upgrade to the latest version of iTunes, you should be able to remove the old files from your iTunes library.

  1. Click the Restore Files button (or Get Files in the Code42 version 6.8 app.) 2 and earlier).
  2. In the settings, remember to save the selected files to their original location. You can also configure naming and permission policies for your recovered files.
  3. Click "Forward".

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Mark Ginter is a tech blogger with a passion for all things gadgets and gizmos. A self-proclaimed "geek", Mark has been blogging about technology for over 15 years. His blog,, covers a wide range of topics including new product releases, industry news, and tips and tricks for getting the most out of your devices. If you're looking for someone who can keep you up-to-date with all the latest tech news and developments, then be sure to follow him over at Microsoft.