How to Delete Unchecked Songs in iTunes

Here is how I delete unchecked iTunes songs from my hard drive with a script I wrote in Python. An executable version is also available.

Download the executable version here.

Download the Python script here.

Complete instructions are in the full version of this post.

First, you create a playlist with all the checked songs:

  1. File > New Smart Playlist
  2. Check ‘Match the following rule:’
  3. From the first drop down box select ‘Name’
  4. From the second drop down box select ‘Is not’
  5. Uncheck ‘Limit to’
  6. Check ‘Match only checked items’
  7. Press ‘OK’
  8. Rename the new playlist

Second, create a playlist with only the unchecked songs:

  1. File > New Smart Playlist
  2. Check ‘Match the following rule:’
  3. From the first drop down box select ‘Playlist’
  4. From the second drop down box select ‘Is not’
  5. In the box enter the name of the checked items playlist
  6. Uncheck ‘Limit to’
  7. Uncheck ‘Match only checked items’
  8. Press ‘OK’
  9. Rename the new playlist

Export the unchecked songs playlist by right clicking on it in the left pane and pressing ‘Export.’ Enter a filename and make sure the file type is ‘XML.’ Press ‘Save.’

Last step… Delete the songs:

  1. Download itunesdelete.zip (itunesdelete.py will also work if you have python installed.)
  2. Extract itunesdelete.zip
  3. Place your uncheck items playlist in the itunesdelete folder
  4. Open the itunesdelete folder
  5. Double click itunesdelete.exe
  6. Type the name of your playlist, incude the ‘.xml’ file extension
  7. Press ‘Enter’
  8. itunesdelete will go ahead and delete all the files in that playlist. Some errors may occur, verify that the listed files have been removed.

*WARNING* There is no undoing this! Use at your own risk.

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2 Responses to How to Delete Unchecked Songs in iTunes

  1. bluedog says:

    just click on the check icon in the table heading. it will sort all your music files with deselected files grouped at the end. then just grab them all and whack them.

  2. Dan says:

    You are my hero. After transferring my itunes library over multiple computers, it had built up multiple copies of the same song that would all sync to my phone. It was not an issue with my iphone, i just unchecked them. I recently switched to a samsung galaxy, and got an app that would sync my itunes, but it did all the copies. This saved me so much time. I though I would have to manually clear over 1000 songs.

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