iTunes .itc Album Art

/ 3 February 2007

In the recent update of iTunes (7.x.x) Apple added a view that flips though all of your album artwork. This view was purchased by Apple from a group who created it under the name “CoverFlow”. When Apple inserted the technology into iTunes, they messed up the album art formatting. They built converters in to convert their original album art format, but not converters to convert CoverFlow’s album art format. So, those of us who had iTunes without any plug-ins installed (like CoverFlow) got our album art converted and running perfectly in iTunes 7.x.x, but those of us who did have CoverFlow installed (I’m not one of them, but I did read one guy’s story) got all of our album art undone. The files were there, but their mark on what songs they went with got deleted. Also, each and every song in those sad libraries thought they had album art linked, so wouldn’t accept new album art for some reason. But, what’s in this format, when you copy the art from Google Images or the iTunes Store, where does it go? Well, here are the answers. As you may have found out there now is an “Album Art” folder within your “iTunes” folder in your “Music” directory (~/Music/iTunes/Album Artwork). Within this folder is are two folders, “Download” and “Local”. Both of these folders of a single folder of the same name in them, this name corresponds to the initial code number iTunes uses with the iTunes Store on your mac. In those folders are yet again the same listing of folders corresponding to the dates and tracks that the art within is associated with. Underneath a few more levels of folders is the actual .itc album art file. This file has in it a few of the album arts that iTunes uses. According to a few sources this file has only two apps that can open it, iTunes, and GraphicConverter. Although, I tried to open the files in GraphicConverter and could only open the ones with in the “Local” folder, suggesting that the “Download” folder is just data to link back to either the internet or your iPhoto library. That’s all I’ve been able to dig up so far about the odd .itc image format that iTunes 7.x.x uses.