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Up until recently, my music library program of choice was Windows Media Player.

However, then I got an iPod Touch which requires iTunes (iirc, one of the alternative programs for iPod Classic/iPod Nano has iPod Touch support in a nightly/beta, but apart from that, you do need iTunes).

My biggest problem is speed, my music library of 30GB on a network drive via Wi-Fi, is never going to be kind on any media player, but iTunes can at times take up to 2 minutes to respond to a click. And this is with CPU/RAM usage nowhere near full.

Is there any way of speeding up iTunes?

EDIT: Most (if not all) iPod compatible programs are NOT compatible with the iPod Touch/iPhone. Please double check that your program is compatible before suggesting it as an answer.

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I agree - I have issues with it being slow too... – kpoehls Jul 16 '09 at 15:06
Oh yes, the ongoing saga of iTunes for Windows. I don't know why Apple insists on punishing 95% of their iPod owners. My iTunes crashes daily, it is ridiculously bad programming. – Clifford the Red Jul 16 '09 at 18:04
@Clifford the Red - I don't think that your Windows experience with iTunes is necessarily representive of the majority of iTunes/Windows users. – Jay R. Jul 16 '09 at 18:08
@Jay: You'd be surprised. – Sasha Chedygov Jul 17 '09 at 6:50
It's stable for me, but dog-slow. – Rob Allen Jul 17 '09 at 14:44
up vote 2 down vote accepted

I have used MGTEK dopisp with great success (it is a plug in for WMP)
Version 4 supports iPhone and iPod Touch.

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ITunes for Windows is so bad programming, that it hurts. I love my Ipod Nano, but because of the ITunes requirement (no alternatives have the podcast-features), my next "Ipod" will be another brand (most likely Zune).

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For a while now, I've been using a program called SharePod. It is a standalone EXE that needs no install. It was built on top of the .NET SharePodLib. There is no need for the painful sync any longer. Copy files from your computer to your iPod, or from your iPod to your computer. Check it out:

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Try unmounting your network drive that contains your iTunes library. Don't try to sync your iPod or open any of the files. See if the user interface is more responsive.

If you tried the unmount network drive, then once it is remounted, check your iTunes preferences to make sure that your music library is still pointed at the right spot before you sync anything.

If the only time it seems slow is with the file access related interface items, then its your library not being located locally. You'll either have to move the library to a local disk, or upgrade the link speed to something better than WiFi. I'm hoping that you aren't trying this at 802.11b speeds. :) I'd recommend at least 1Gbit wired connection.

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Slightly better: 802.11n . I can't move to a local hard drive, and wiring the network is also not an option. – Macha Jul 16 '09 at 19:28
Is the network drive actually another windows box using windows sharing? – Jay R. Jul 16 '09 at 20:02
Nope. It's a Western Digital My Book World Edition – Macha Jul 16 '09 at 23:39
How is the normal windows file access to the remote disk? Is it fast? There is a known Vista issue that I thought was fixed in Vista SP1 related to this. I think it was KB931770. That might help if you haven't already installed it. – Jay R. Jul 17 '09 at 15:13
I have SP1. Normal file access is fine. – Macha Jul 26 '09 at 21:07

SongBird from Mozilla has some iPod support via plug-ins (search iPod on their site).

Other than that I can confirm what you are seeing with your Vista/iTunes experience. I am running iTunes 8.2 with a large (48gig) library on my media server (specs below) which is running 32bit Vista Home Premium. I think the issue is hard drive access since the iTunes library is a flat file on disc and I have plenty of RAM and processor time free (according to Vista's Resource Monitor) and get similar response times to button presses.

My specs:

  • OS: Vista Home Premium SP1 (32 bit)
  • Processor: Athlon X2 4050e 2.1 GHz
  • RAM: 2GB DDR2 800
  • Disc: WD Caviar 750Gb 7200 RPM SATA 3.0
  • MB: Gigabyte GA-MA78GM
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Unfortunately, it doesn't do the iPod Touch/iPhone, it only does iPod Classic/Nano/Shuffle. – Macha Jul 16 '09 at 15:20
it appears that the next release will have additional support. I have a 1st generation iPod touch. – Rob Allen Jul 16 '09 at 15:23

I don't know what it is that slows iTunes down so much... maybe the size of the music library. It might also be the "Genius" feature added not too long ago, which scans your music library to try and "suggest" playlists to you... maybe turning it off will help a bit?

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Genius is not enabled. – Macha Jul 16 '09 at 15:41
I'm sorry then - I have no other ideas why it's so slow. :-( – Keithius Jul 16 '09 at 15:51

You can use to sync your music with your iPod/iPhone. I would imagine that the latency incurred by the wi-fi network drive may be at fault.

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You could use itunes with the drag-and-drop feature. Don't keep the library in the itues, and drag albums/songs directly to your mp3 player.

That's what i do.

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Check my answer here Using Resource Monitor I caught iTunes reading all these temp files it created all the time. After deleting them all iTunes flies.

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