Fix sync errors between Windows Phone and iTunes (Windows)

Technical Level : Intermediate

Summary
Technical Level: Intermediate Fix the most common iTunes/Windows Phone sync issues by clearing out bad iTunes settings.
Details

Update May 9 2016: As of iTunes 12.2, the XML file that the Windows Phone app uses is no longer generated by default. However, it can turned back on by following the instructions in this Apple support article.

Most sync issues with iTunes are the result of a certain bad file from iTunes. It’s a file that is safe to delete, so the best thing to do is to delete it and let iTunes make a fresh copy of it!

First, be sure to have disconnected your phone from your computer, have closed the Windows Phone for desktop app and have closed iTunes!


Remove bad iTunes files

1.  Delete the iTunes library.xml file in the iTunes folder. The iTunes folder is found in your Music folder by default.

a.       Sometimes, you may also find a file called iTunes Music.xml. Delete this too.

**WARNING**: There are two very similar files in the iTunes folder: iTunes Library.itl and iTunes Library.xml. Sometimes, the "other" file does not have the .itl file extension. Make sure you DO NOT DELETE the .itl file. ONLY delete the XML file. If you can't see any file extensions, make sure they're on for Explorer.

Reset the Windows Phone App for desktop

1.  Now we must find the settings files for the Windows Phone app and delete them

a.       For Windows 7, open the Start Menu, type %localappdata%\Microsoft and press Enter.

b.       For Windows 8, open the Search Charm, type %localappdata%\Microsoft and press Enter.

2.  Find the folder called Windows Phone and delete it.


Regenerate your settings

1.  Now, open iTunes and give iTunes up to half an hour to fully recreate the XML file. The larger your iTunes library is, the longer it will take to recreate this file. Usually, half an hour is a safe bet.

2.  Now open the Windows Phone App for desktop, setup a sync relationship with your phone and try syncing again. You should have no more iTunes syncing errors!

 

Forum Article Info


Last updated March 1, 2019 Views 8,147 Applies to:

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Hi there,

I've been trying to sync itunes media to my win 8 phone but was a futile attempt.

I tried the above method, but didn't work either! Also, I could only find 'iTunes Music Library.xml', no other xmls were found.

The first time I started the win phone for desktop app, it said - itunes is not responding. Make sure there is no dialog box open in itunes.
That warning was never given again, and the unsyncable condition remains the same. In the music folder of the app only thing it states is 'its lonely here'

I believe the win8 desktop app isn't aligned with the latest itunes update - ver 11.1.3.8

Kindly resolve the above situation please!
As stated in the guide, you might not see  the iTunes Music.xml file. It really depends on how long you've been using iTunes to see this file. The guide works so long as you delete the both iTunes Library.xml and iTunes Music.xml if they exist.

You did delete these files while the Windows Phone for Desktop app and iTunes were closed, correct? And you removed the WPfD's folder mentioned? And you gave iTunes enough time for the iTunes Library.xml file to come back before opening the WPfD app again?

I only mention all this because I can sync with iTunes 11.1.3 (8).
"No matter where you are, everyone is connected"
I also did all the steps you outlined, gave iTunes all night while I slept to reconstruct the xml file, and I do not get an active Sync button nor do I get an active Add button for ringtones???

Hi,

I tried this could not find either of the files for iTunes. I can find iTunes Music.xm and iTunes Library.xm, should I delete them? Managed to remove the WPfD's folder and re install but the problem remains

what should I do now?

Rather than deleting those files, try moving them out of the iTunes folder and follow the rest of the instructions. We'll see what iTunes does.
"No matter where you are, everyone is connected"

Hi

that made no difference still missing over half my music!

Is this music copy-protected? Can you post a screenshot of any errors?
"No matter where you are, everyone is connected"

Hi,

I did all this, but didn't help. In the Windows Phone App none of my music shows (no content) now after trying this fix. Syncing was fine until about a month ago when it stopped working. Everything seems to go well until I press the sync button. After that it says "syncing", but nothing happens after that, and nothing shows in the progress bar below. I have left the laptop waiting for sync to happen for hours, but nothing.

Hi,

I did all this, but didn't help. In the Windows Phone App none of my music shows (no content) now after trying this fix. Syncing was fine until about a month ago when it stopped working. Everything seems to go well until I press the sync button. After that it says "syncing", but nothing happens after that, and nothing shows in the progress bar below. I have left the laptop waiting for sync to happen for hours, but nothing.

hi

in the end i took my sd card out, downloaded all my songs from itunes (still missing about 50 songs) onto it, installed find my music 2 app on the phone, put the SD card back in and can manage my songs (although still cross about the missing 50)hope that helps

I know this post is very old. However with the new version of iTunes (12.3.3.17) and having updated my Nokia Lumia 1020 to Windows Phone 10, iTunes no longer uses XML files for storing libraries information.

It know uses .ITL files which seems not to be compatible with Windows Phone app for Desktop.

When opening Windows Phone app for Desktop I can see this error and there's nothing (really nothing) to do about it.

I can't follow this guide because I repeat, XML files are no longer used in the new version of iTunes.

Please help. Thanks in advance.

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