Let me preface today’s post by saying, “No, I’m not writing,” and “Yes, I know I should be.”

There, now that that’s out of the way… I spent a good deal of time today copying CDs into iTunes (which can be quite a laborious process if you’re anal like me and have to have everything organized and neat with the correct covers and all that). My latest experiment has been getting my iTunes library mobile on a tiny 1.8″ external hard drive. Pretty easy given iTunes’ built-in ability to choose what library you want it to run from, so no problems there.

However, the problems popped up when I decided I wanted to share my music library between my personal laptop (which happens to be a PowerBook G4) and my work laptop (which happens to be a Dell). I read up on how to go about doing this on a bunch of online forums and, as of iTunes version 8.1, there is no fast and easy way to do this. Because of some difference in the way Mac and PC utilize the iTunes xml library file, it has to be rebuilt every time I switch platforms (which, sad to say, takes a helluva lot longer on the Mac).

That’s okay, though. I’m a patient guy. I think I can live with that until Apple addresses the problem (whether or not they plan to, I have no idea). Screw that. Waiting is a pain in the ass.

Second problem: Windows NTFS file format is slightly retarded. It gets confused with long file names and long folder names. Its solution? Truncate the hell out of them. Whatever, so now my library functions perfectly on the PC. Bravo Windows. The problem is, when I connect the hard drive back to the Mac, start up iTunes, and rebuild my library.xml file, I end up with hundreds (maybe even thousands) of songs that can’t be found because either the names of the actual files have been truncated, the names of their folders have been truncated, or both. The “songs” that populate the iTunes library are like shortcuts/aliases.

So now I’m pretty much screwed and have to go through all the “lost” files relinking them one by one. Blow.