Apple to restore duplicate song search in forthcoming iTunes 11 update

“Though the ability to identify duplicate songs has disappeared with the release of iTunes 11, Apple is said to be working on reinstitution the feature in a future update,” AppleInsider reports.

“The departure of the duplicate song finder in iTunes 11 was noted as a ‘drawback’ in Walt Mossberg’s review of the software,” AppleInsider reports. “But the Wall Street Journal tech columnist also noted that Apple officials indicated to him the function will ‘soon be restored in a minor update of the program.'”

AppleInsider reports, “In previous versions of iTunes, users were given an option called ‘Display Exact Duplicates.’ This feature would help users to clean up their music library by displaying songs that had multiple copies.”

Read more in the full article here.

Related articles:
An in-depth look at iTunes 11; what’s new and what’s missing – December 3, 2012
CNET reviews iTunes 11: Complete makeover brings speed; Apple on the right path – November 30, 2012
Top 5 new features in iTunes 11: iCloud integration, new interface, Up Next, and more – November 29, 2012
Apple releases iTunes 11 – November 29, 2012


  1. An even bigger problem is that any media can be ‘removed’ from iTunes without erasing the media file from the iTunes file structure, so over time the total file size can become disconnected from the useable library. It would be great to have iTunes identify these orphaned files in the same way it identifies duplicates.

  2. I’d like to see a smarter “remove duplicates” that doesn’t rely exclusively on the song title but rather matches by rhythm signatures. Apple actually patented something like this quite a while ago – I’m remembering it being in the 2006-ish timeframe.

    1. My guess is they’re working on a really “remove duplicates” and it wasn’t done in time for iTunes 11. This is a nontrivial problem, but I’m sure they’ll do it correct this time.

      1. I hope that’s true. The 10.7 method basically sucked. Too time consuming to feret out the tracks that are not true dupes.

        Also, I too would like to see a way to identify orphaned items.

        1. Sure it does. If I’m trying to figure out which song/albums are lacking cover art then Cover Flow is extremely helpful. It’s also a good preview for how my songs will look on my Apple TV.

  3. When you’re streaming a huge esoteric shuffled playlist simultaneously to multiple speakers all over house, seeing the excellent artwork album cover on your HD TV as the songs fly by is a wonderful experience. Cover Flow made Steve Jobs proud and delighted as he showed it off. Beyond sad that Apple axed this wonderful feature.

  4. in the previous itunes, going back to the beginning, if in a playlist you used shuffle and clicked on the first column (the numbers) it would show the order in which the songs were to be played. i can’t get this to work now. why delete this function? also, searching takes longer and you have to hit the key at the end to have the results show up in the window. just one extra character, sure, but it never needed it before. it beats me why they insist on doing stuff like this.

  5. I figure there was some compromise in the release of iTunes 11:

    – Apple wanted it out in October. But after the Apple Maps mess, no way were they putting out a half-baked iTunes.
    – A month late, it still wasn’t finished. But it was finished enough to let it out the gate.

  6. The only solution I see is to use “show duplicates” in iTunes, then manually check every song, as iTunes sometimes showing incorrect dupes, which actually are not a duplicate songs. Or try to use some software for this job, but make a copy of .lib file.

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