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The advantage of linking
Authored by: natethebobo on Feb 01, '05 10:25:24PM

Hi all, my first post... here goes.

The advantage of linking to separate libraries is the entirely separate listings: if my laptop is not connected to the shared library, I'd like to not have to wade through a screen filled with exclamation points in order to see what music is actually available. In addition, I'm pretty sure the iTunes Music Library file stores the location of the music folder, so there shouldn't be any "Oops, gotta swap back!" moments when the server share (or other external source) is unavailable.

Unfortunately, having separate libraries does mean that the consolidation process is not quite as easy. I suppose you could temporarily change the music folder location, consolidate to the new location, and then swap back, but I don't know if this would incur duplicates on the server.

One could emulate the "no exclamation point" advantage by judicious use of playlists (perhaps a smart playlist?), but that just doesn't seem as natural as simply not having them present at the base level.

Linking to separate libraries also allows for expandability: so far, we're looking at the "one laptop, one external source" scenario. What if (for whatever reason) the scenario involves multiple possible music servers, say one at home and one at work? Three or more music folders is going to require pointing to the correct one each time, not to mention cluttering up the listings something fierce (especially if the tracks are not all named the same way). Using a script such as this allows for automated selection. 'Course, I suppose the script would have to be modified to load the correct preference when multiple source folders are present....

(As an aside, I believe the existing code could be a little more clear if we used

tell app "System Events"
set home_path to the home directory of current user

to figure out where the link should live. This should also allow the script to get the path for any user, even those with home directories elsewhere.)

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