Sunday, August 14, 2011

Showing Half-Star Ratings in iTunes

beaTunes2 logoSome songs really aren't worth 5 stars. Nevertheless, they aren't quite 4 stars, either. How about 4.5?

Believe it or not, iTunes has supported half stars for a long, long time. But the feature is not enabled by default (for whatever reason). How do you enable it? Well, that depends...

Let the (half)star rise... on OS X

If you are using the OS X version of iTunes, first shut down iTunes, then open the Terminal.app. It should be in the Utilities subfolder of Applications. If you can't find it, simply start it via Spotlight.

Then, in the terminal window, type the following:

defaults write com.apple.iTunes allow-half-stars -bool TRUE

Note, that this is only one line, even if your browser chooses to add some line breaks. Once that's done, start iTunes and you should be set.

Pretty easy, right?

... and now for Windows

If you're on Window, first, shut down iTunes. Then find the file iTunesPrefs.xml. On XP it's typically in:

C:\Documents and Settings\username\Application Data\Apple Computer\iTunes

On Windows 7 or Vista, it's in:

C:\Users\Username\AppData\Roaming\Apple Computer\iTunes

Once you have found the file, open it with a simple text editor like Notepad (do not use Word!). Then find a section where it says:

<key>User Preferences</key>
<dict>

Underneath, add the following four lines:

<key>allow-half-stars</key>
<data>
dHJ1ZQ==
</data>

Now save the file and start iTunes. You're set: Half stars should be enabled.

Rating Support in beaTunes

Starting with beaTunes 3, beaTunes also offers support for half-stars. Furthermore, unlike many other applications, it makes an effort to import rating tags from other programs like Traktor.




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