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How to recover from podcast URL corruption in iTunes Apps
Recently all my podcasts in iTunes had been showing the invalid URL warning. This had happened after I had used a wireless access point in a hotel. As it is common, when accessing a web page from that location, I was first redirected to the provider's site and logged in from there. While connected there, I also updated my podcasts.

Being home again, all my podcast URLs started, as seen via right-click: Show Description, with, the name of the access provider. I could even see the name of the hotel as part of the URL. Evidently, iTunes could not resolve these URLs.

Since it is impossible to change the URL from within iTunes (and since the URL does not seem to be stored in an easily accessible preference file), the official way is to re-subscribe to the podcast(s). If you have any old episodes, the most elegant way is to do this is to drag them all to the desktop, delete them (and the podcast entry) from within iTunes, drag them back into the podcast window area and click Subscribe. You will lose play counts and ratings, so you might want to take a screenshot before doing so. You can keep play counts and ratings by simply re-subscribing via the podcast directory, but then you will then have two entries for the same podcast.
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How to recover from podcast URL corruption in iTunes
Authored by: taxi on Oct 20, '06 05:39:34PM
This actually has some interesting implications. If it's possible to cause iTunes to think the location is different, as the wireless network did, then it should be possible to trick it back.

It also should be possible to trick it into thinking it's some other site, such as http://localhost/..., which would enable you to add other items to a Podcast (like older episodes, which have been converted from RealPlayer, or some other format, or just aren't in the RSS feed anymore).

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How to recover from podcast URL corruption in iTunes
Authored by: hamarkus on Oct 20, '06 11:15:49PM
As Doug Adams pointed out in a comment to a comment of mine a couple of months ago, this Applescript should do this:

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How to recover from podcast URL corruption in iTunes
Authored by: Whosawhatsis on Oct 23, '06 11:50:43AM
I thought of the same thing and came up with a process to make it work. I submitted it as another hint, but it looks like he decided not to post it, so here it is:

I recently saw the "How to recover from podcast URL corruption in iTunes" hint, which basically tells you to rebuild everything, and thought that it should be possible to fix these settings the same way they were broken. After a little experimentation, I came up with the following method. Depending on how much rebuilding you would need to do, it may be more effort, but it will allow you to get everything back exactly the way it was without re-downloading podcasts.

To do this, you will need to temporarily modify a few unix files, so you'll probably want to back them up first. You will need root access to edit them, so either use "sudo pico" from the command line, use a text editor like BBEdit/TextWrangler that can authenticate, or log in as root and use TextEdit.

What you need to do is provide a 301 redirect to the correct url when iTunes tries to access the incorrect one. To do this, first modify /etc/hosts to redirect attempts to access the incorrect url back to you. Whatever method you choose, you must add the following line:

Repeat this for each podcast you need to fix.

Next you need to edit /etc/httpd/httpd.conf. This also requires root access, so do it the same way. In this file, look for the line that says "RewriteEngine On", it should be near the end. After it, add the following lines:

RewriteCond %{http_host} ^ [nc]
RewriteRule wrong/path/to/feed.xml$ [r=301,nc]

Again, repeat for each podcast that needs to be fixed.

You need to (re)start your web server from the Sharing prefpane in order for the changes to take effect, then I recommend trying to access the incorrect url outside of iTunes to make sure that it resolves correctly. Once you're satisfied that it does, update in iTunes and it will replace the url with the correct one. When you're done, you should undo your changes to the two files and either stop or restart the web server.

I was offered a penny for my thoughts, so I gave my two cents... I got ripped off.

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