Home / Mac / [TECH TIP] To back up your music library in macOS Catalina

[TECH TIP] To back up your music library in macOS Catalina



With the Music app on your Mac, you can sync your library to store your tunes, but you should also make a dedicated backup.

To sync your music library:

  1. Launch the app
  2. Select Preferences top left of the screen
  3. Select Sync library
Mac Music app settings
By syncing your music, it can be accessed from all your devices

This shows all the music you have added, purchased and uploaded. The music on your Mac is displayed on other Apple devices (and PCs) after syncing with iCloud.

I would also suggest choosing Automatic downloads option so that when you add music to your library, it will be automatically downloaded to your Mac (as opposed to just being stored in the “cloud”), so you can play it offline. Of course, make sure you have plenty of space on your Mac hard drive to store all your songs. Otherwise, move the music library to an external drive.

Let’s now back up your music …

This is how:

  1. Launch the Music app
  2. Find the artist, albums or songs you want to download
  3. click on button to bring up a pop-up menu
  4. Select download to start the download.
Downloading all your music ensures that everything is included in the backup
Downloading all your music ensures that everything is included in the backup

Ok, so now we’ve stored your layers in iCloud and on your Mac. But let’s make sure we’m safe by having a third “hard” copy stored. If you use Apple’s Time Machine backup system and an external drive (and if you do not, you should), your music library and other important data should be backed up.

Related: Congratulations on World Backup Day! Do all your devices make regular backups?

You can also back up your files to a remote drive. First, consolidate your music folder files. Why? Depending on how you imported items into Music, some items in your library may be stored in different locations (for example, in a different folder or on a different storage device).

You can consolidate all the files in the library in the Music folder – for example, to make it easier to move the library to a new computer or back it up.

Consolidate music files

  1. Start music
  2. Select File> Library> Organize Library
  3. Select Consolidate files
Organize a pop-up window in the library in the Mac music folder
Consolidating your music files makes it easier to back up or move

Files remain in their original locations, and copies are placed in the default folder.

Now you can find your music folder on your Mac hard drive and drag and drop it to an external hard drive.

Voila! Now you have several copies of all your music.


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