iTunes is a media management application developed by Apple; it's your one-stop solution for organising audio and video on a Mac. With iTunes you can transfer audio, video, and software to your iPod, iPhone or iPad. You can stream radio, share media via your home network or even import your entire CD collection, if you are so inclined.
In this tutorial, I will show you how to manage media using iTunes, and transfer files from your Mac to an iDevice of your choosing.
Every single file imported into iTunes is stored inside a virtual library that is split up into several categories: Music, Movies, TV Shows, Audiobooks, Podcasts, iTunes U, Apps, and Tones. From here, you are able to edit the metadata for each file, watch or listen to media and create a playlist of music to suit every occasion.
iTunes also includes an iTunes Store in which you can purchase and download music, movies, television programmes -- or whatever else takes your fancy -- that can then be transferred to your iDevice or played in-app on your Mac.
Before you can begin manually adding media to your iTunes library, you must first configure the app itself. Here's how.
Step 1: Launch iTunes
Click the iTunes icon in the Dock.
Click Agree to agree to the Software License Agreement for iTunes, or Decline to decline. Please note, however, that if you decline the agreement, you will be unable to continue using the application.
Step 2: Scan for Media
Click Scan for Media to allow iTunes to search your Mac and automatically add songs and music videos to your iTunes library, or select Go to the iTunes Store to make a purchase.
Selecting Scan for Media will grant iTunes permission to scan your Mac for media which can take a minute or so depending on the size of your hard drive. Found files will then automatically be added to your iTunes library, and configuration is complete.
Add Media to iTunes Library
Once iTunes has been configured, you can start manually adding media to your iTunes library.
Step 1: Prepare
Click File on the toolbar running along the top of the screen and then select Add to Library.
Step 2: Select File(s)
Select the file(s) you wish to add to your iTunes library and then click Open.
Step 3: Add to Library
Your selected file(s) will then be added to your iTunes library.
Tip: You can purchase music, movies and more from the iTunes Store by clicking iTunes Store situated under the Store tab. Downloaded content can then be accessed via Purchased, directly below iTunes Store.
Add Media to iDevice
Listen to music or watch a movie on the go by transferring media from your iTunes library to your iDevice.
Step 1: Insert
Plug your iDevice into your Mac. iTunes will automatically recognise your iDevice, and display it underneath the Devices tab on the sidebar situated on the left-hand side of the application.
If you are unable to view the sidebar, click View on the toolbar running along the top of the screen, and then select View Sidebar.
Step 2: Select File(s)
Highlight the file(s) you wish to transfer.
Step 3: Drag and Drop
Drag and drop the file(s) on to your iDevice on the sidebar. Your iDevice will then synchronise with iTunes and the selected media will begin transferring.
Import a CD
Importing a CD into iTunes enables you to listen to the CD in its entirety on your Mac without having to insert a disc each time, and is a great way of backing up your CD collection.
Step 1: Insert CD
Insert a CD into your Mac and click Yes when asked if you would like to import the CD into your iTunes library.
Step 2: Import
iTunes will then begin to import your CD. This process can take several minutes depending on the length of the CD in question.
CD's do not contain metadata, therefore iTunes requires an internet connection to connect to a database from which it derives the relevant album artwork and song titles.
Step 3: Listen
Once imported, your CD will appear in your iTunes library, ready to be listened to or transferred to your iDevice.
Create a Playlist
Compile a playlist of your favourite music using the audio stored in your iTunes library.
Step 1: Create
Create a new playlist by clicking the + icon situated in the bottom left-hand corner of the application and then selecting New Playlist.
Step 2: Name
Give your playlist a name by typing in the text box at the top of the screen.
Step 3: Compile
Highlight the song(s) you wish to add and then drag and drop it on your playlist under the Playlists tab on the sidebar. Here, you will find a number of playlists based on your iTunes activity, such as Top 25 Most Played and Recently Played.
Step 4: Enjoy
Once you have finished compiling your playlist, press the Play icon to listen.
Tip: Enabling the Genius feature (Store > Turn on Genius) will automatically generate a playlist of music based on a single song in your iTunes library. Simply right-click on your selected song and press Create Genius Playlist.
Organise iTunes Library
Occasionally, your iTunes library may get disorganised with some files displaying incorrect data. This can be rectified by editing the file information.
Step 1: Get Info
Right-click on the song you’d like to edit and then select Get Info.
Step 2: Summary
Click the Info tab.
Step 3: Edit
Enter or edit the track information such as title, artist, and genre and then click OK. Your selected media should now display the correct information and be filed accordingly.
Tip: Your iTunes library can be shared over your home network by clicking File > Home Sharing > Turn on Home Sharing. This will enable you to stream your library to other devices and transfer media to another Mac without having to use an external hard drive.
You Did It!
In this tutorial, I have shown you how manage media using iTunes, as well as how to transfer files from your Mac to an iPod, iPhone, or iPad. Did you find this tutorial helpful? Feel free to ask a question in the comment section below.