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How to import your media library into iTunes on Windows 10

itunes on Windows
itunes on Windows (Image credit: Windows Central)

So you've got a fresh install of Windows 10 and you can't give up your familiarity with iTunes? No worries, as Windows 10 is open to everyone, even those who prefer Apple's (quite dominate) music service.

Here's the quick and easy way of getting the latest version of iTunes installed. We'll even help you make sure your music, photos, videos, and other media are identified by iTunes so you can start enjoying it right away. The process is very straightforward, and shouldn't take too long at all.

How to download and install iTunes for Windows 10

  1. Crack open your favorite web browser (maybe even give Edge a spin).
  2. Visit www.apple.com/itunes.
  3. Click the blue Download iTunes button in the top-right.
  4. Decide if you want to opt in to the newsletter and optionally provide location information.
  5. Double-check the system requirements to make sure your computer is up to snuff, but odds are very good that you can run iTunes just fine.


Downloading iTunes on Windows 10

  1. Click the Download Now button.
  2. Click on the download, once it completes, to launch the installer.
  3. Choose your install directory, and let it complete the process.

How to create an Apple ID account and log in on Windows 10

You'll need an Apple ID to buy music, download apps, and make use of device syncing. If you haven't already made an Apple ID on your iPhone or iPad, it's possible to do so through iTunes on Windows quite easily.

  1. Click the profile silhouette near the top-right of the screen. It's just to the left of the search bar.
  2. A prompt to log in will show up. Click the Create Apple ID button below.
  3. Click Continue on the next screen, then Agree to the terms and conditions.


Creating an Apple ID in iTunes for Windows

  1. Fill in required information, including e-mail address, security questions, and password. Optionally include a secondary e-mail address and opt in to newsletters. Click Continue when done.
  2. Fill in a billing address on the next screen, and optionally provide credit card payment information. Click Create Apple ID in the bottom-right.
  3. Check your e-mail for a verification message, and click the link provided to complete the process.

You'll need to add your payment information later if you want to download apps or music. Here's how to do it after your Apple ID has been verified.

Submitting payment information in iTunes

  1. Click the Apple ID silhouette in the top-right, log in, and click Account Info.
  2. Under the Apple ID Summary you'll find Payment Information. Click the Edit button to the right.
  3. On the following screen, select your payment method, input the required information, and click Done in the bottom-right.

How to import your media library into iTunes on Windows 10

iTunes should offer to Scan for Media the first time you launch it. Let it do its job and it'll collect together and organize all the music and compatible videos it can find on your system. If you prefer to do that some other time, or you add other media to your machine and want to bring it into iTunes later, you can do that too.

  1. Click File in the menu at the top of the iTunes window
  2. Click Add Folder to Library...
  3. Browse through your computer to where your music lives, and select it to make the addition.


Adding media to your library

Rinse and repeat for photos, videos, and any additional folders you want monitored.

How to buy from iTunes in Windows 10

Once you're logged in, you'll want to be able to buy music, TV shows, and movies in iTunes. Before getting started, you'll need to make sure your Apple ID has payment information included, as per above.

How to buy videos from iTunes in Windows 10

The easiest way to find something specific to download is by typing in the search bar in the top-right. If you're able to find your desired content through search, skip to step 5.

  1. Click the media icon in the top-left relating to the kind of media you're looking for, either music, movies, or TV shows. Additional options are available after clicking the three dots after these icons.
  2. Click the iTunes Store button in the center bar along the top. This will take you to the front page of the store for that type of content.
  3. Scroll down through the featured section to see popular content, or click All Genres on the right side pane to drill down into more specific types of content.


iTunes music store in Windows 10

  1. Click the Buy button next to whatever you want to purchase. 6 Enter your Apple ID password to confirm.

Your credit card will then be charged and your download will begin. When finished, your content will be available under My Music, My Movies, and My TV Shows. Check out how to sync your iPhone or iPad with iTunes in Windows 10 to make sure your iOS devices enjoy the new content too.

How to subscribe to iTunes Match in Windows 10

iTunes Match backs up your entire music collection in the cloud for access anywhere. It will scan your library and provide access to Apple's cloud-stored tunes, and if there's no match between your track and theirs, Apple will upload your music for remote access on iPhone, iPad, or other computers. Here's how to get started with it.

iTunes Match in Windows 10

  1. In iTunes, click Account from the top menu, and click iTunes Match...
  2. Click the Subscribe button at the bottom of the following screen.
  3. Confirm your Apple ID account and password to activate your subscription.

iTunes will then start pairing up your music with music that's available in the iTunes Store, and upload anything that isn't.

You can disable automatic renewal, since you're billed on an annual basis, if you don't want to forget before the next payment kicks in.

  1. Click the Acccount silhouette icon in the top-right of iTunes, and click Account Info.
  2. Scroll down to iTunes in the Cloud, and next to iTunes Match, click Turn Off Auto-Renew.

Read up more on what iTunes Match can do for you at the link below. Ultimately, this is a great way to have access to all of your music and movies all the time, without having to worry about local storage.

More help on iTunes Match

How to subscribe to Apple Music in Windows 10

Apple Music more like a traditional subscription service rather than a cloud content locker. With it, you can enjoy all of the music from the expansive iTunes catalog on-demand, so long as you're willing to fork over a monthly subscription fee. Here's how you get started using it.

Apple Music in iTunes for Windows 10

  1. Click the Music icon in the top-left of iTunes, and click For You in the middle of the same bar.
  2. Click Start 3 Month Free Trial.
  3. Click either Individual or Family, depending on how many people you want using the service.
  4. The following two screens will ask you to identify your music tastes by way of genre and artists. This will improve the quality of suggested music.


Apple Music in iTunes for Windows 10

  1. You'll want to disable automatic renewal of Apple Music to ensure you won't be billed after the trial period ends. Click the Account silhouette icon in the top-right of iTunes, and click Account Info.
  2. Scroll down to Settings on the following screen, click Manage next to Subscriptions.
  3. Click Edit next to Apple Music Membership. On the next screen under Automatic Renewal, click Off. A pop-up window will require you to confirm turning off Automatic Renewal.

Now you can dive into a bottomless pool of music curated by experts. Visit the For You tab again and you can start diving into available music. There's a lot more to Apple Music, but now you should be set to use it on your Windows 10 machine.

More help on Apple Music

That's it!

Hopefully that covers all of the basics of using iTunes on Windows 10. If you're having trouble anywhere along the road, leave a comment here, and we'll be sure to do our best to help out. Check out the links below for additional resources.

More Info!

If you are an Apple and Mac user make sure you check out our sister site iMore for all of their Windows 10 info. It is the best spot to ease your way into the Microsoft world if you mainly use OS X.

Windows 10 on iMore – All you need to know

Windows 10 on Mac: Help and discussion forum {.cta}

For more basic info on Windows 10, including some tips and our vast array of how-to articles, make sure you head to our main Windows 10 help page or jump into our forums!

47 Comments
  • Although I prefer Groove music for obvious reasons, I know quite a few iTunes die-hards who will make use of this guide. Hey, who knows, maybe a few Apple users will like and prefer Groove in the long run. To set them on the right path they need to take their first step. Is anyone here using iTunes on Windows? It's been ages since I tried. Curious if it's still 'meh' or it has improved.
  • I'm using iTunes on Windows, but only because the quality of the AAC-format used by Apple should be better then the MP3-format.
  • Groove reproduce Flac files, thats awesome!!
  • i dont use itunes as my default music program, i use media player except if there was another music extension that only itunes recognizes it...
  •  I  have always used itunes to create playlists because I found xbox music to be incredibly tedious that way. I'm willing to give Groove music a try (again) but I'm not extremely hopeful  
  • ITunes =bloatware
  • I started using iTunes again after using Xbox Music for a couple of years.
    Truth be told - there is simply nothing better for organising a music collection. It just works...and looks good too.
    I don't buy any Apple stuff, and don't have an Apple account - but this is one bit of software that I really can't replace.
  • GTK, thanks for the feedback.
  • Since windows 7 i use itunes to organize, and play my music. Why?! Easy to use, also, It looks more organized to me compared to media player and music on windows 8.1. Only problem?! It takes a while to load the program. Groove loads right away, and i think looks easier to use than itunes.
  • Thats what I wonder.... For all its good points it was poorly implemented and possibly the worst program ever written, hopefully they do a UWA and get with the times...    
  • I use iTunes because they keep their world music selection up to date not sure what's the reason why Microsoft hasn't done the same but it's definitely frustrating when I'd rather just buy music from them vs Apple all the iTunes updates have been ok but since I don't have Apple products I don't really use it very often to care but syncing can be a issue on media player if it doesn't detect new music I brought on iTunes
  • I use iTunes for 2 reasons. 1) I got this old iPod. 2) I make Playlists and burn them on CD.
  • Let me just be mature and say Apple sucks but I do like their iPod
  • Apple hatred is embraced here. Maturity not required.
  • Maturity not required, because I see a lot of whiny children who cannot stand that someone may like a different product. So they have to stomp their foot, throw a temper tantrum, and whine about "hatred". Try this - go to macrumors.com. Say something positive about Microsoft. Something simple and not in any way inflamatory, like "I think Windows 10 is nice." You will be eaten alive over there, called every name in the book, be likened to the worst of the worst from history who created the greatest atrocities towards others, and be told that your opinions are not wanted there. But people like you need to go to other forums, and whine about how others are so mean towards Apple, who has nothing but one goal and that is to give humanity of the greatest product they have ever seen.
  • Mmm...I see your panties got wedged up your ginny. Pull 'em out, it's making you cramp up and get grumpy. That was sarcasm sweetheart. My apologies for not giving the old /s \s or however you want to denote it. This is a Windows forum, hate on Apple all you want. Maturity not required. I fully endorse it, embrace it, I'll rub it in your face and give you a big kiss.
  • If you try that kiss with me, I'd report you to the Nigerian Police and they will arrest you and that Cook boy. It's 14 years behind the Swedish garden, so don't ever try to kiss a grand dad like me with your rotten apple lips on a Windows forum.
  • "Try this - go to macrumors.com. Say something positive about Microsoft. Something simple and not in any way inflamatory, like "I think Windows 10 is nice." You will be eaten alive over there, called every name in the book, be likened to the worst of the worst from history who created the greatest atrocities towards others, and be told that your opinions are not wanted there."   Bullshit, there has been fantastic discussions about Windows 10 at MacRumors. Many people over there say it works better than OSX. It's the members here at Windows Central that do nothing but bash competing platforms, over and over...it doesn't matter what it is. http://forums.macrumors.com/threads/windows-10-is-silly-fast-even-when-c... http://forums.macrumors.com/threads/windows-technical-preview-windows-10...
  • Read the second comment of the first link you gave. If I were to write "The gap between OSX and Windows is getting smaller," a back-handed comment towards Windows (much like if I were to say to a woman, 'only you could pull off that hair color') the people here would be screaming bloody murder over the hatred towards Apple. Of course, you picked one of the more relaxed threads. How about ones like these: http://www.macrumors.com/2014/09/30/windows-10-preview/ With quotes such as: "So forget windows 8 ever happened and then copy a bunch of stuff from osx?" "Trying too hard to be Mac OS X." "Every time I turn around, Microsoft is releasing another 'breakthrough' version of their operating system. The philosophy is embedded in renewed hope that one day, they won't release a POS."   Or how about: http://www.macrumors.com/2015/08/06/microsoft-launches-early-version-of-windows-bridge/ "Sorry M$, too little too late." (got to love how Apple fans brag about all the money Apple makes, but calls Microsoft M$) "I know we all hate M$, right?" "Microsoft, you are so dumb..." "An half-assed bridge of the old language." "Better to ignore them and they will go away. We will all benefit from no more Microsoft. And, yes, I've hated them since before I was a Mac user. " And there are people who complain about the hate over there towards Microsoft: "Oh the hate, the hate, the hate. For us, developers, that don't blindly hate, this is actually a good thing. " How about ones like these about O365: http://www.macrumors.com/2014/02/14/office-ipad-soon/ http://www.macrumors.com/2014/03/17/ms-office-for-ipad/ Where there is comment after comment about how they refuse to touch anything by Microsoft. But you keep thinking that it is only us here who have hate for another company...  
  • I like iPod too. I think it's only good Apple product. But my WP has replaced my iPod :)
  • I also like iPod and prefer listening to music on it. I have quite a number of them and, to my liking, I enjoy music output on them more then on any Lumia I had (now I'm on L830). And back to the topic... Yes, I use iTunes, been using since my first iPod around 10 years ago, and will repeat someone else's comment above that it gives you the best options to organise your music collection.
  • Shoot me. Listen to the damn people, bring back the Zune code, rename it Groovy-Poovy or what ever else dumb ass name you come up with, and then we dont need a ten page manifest on how to use Apple's crap. "Microsoft is listening" my ass. They only listen to what they want to listen to.
  • I kneel to you for you speaketh the words of the gods!
  • If only they would accept Paypal outside the US! I want to buy music from them because they have the releases I want.
  • If your country doesn't have a legal means by which to get music, I personally have no issue with torrenting the stuff.
    Just support the artists you like when you can (ideally by going to see them live).
    Given the choice, I reckon an artist would want their music played illegally rather than not at all.
  • I got a lot of music from iTunes and Amazon...before realizing Xbox Music was actually a digital store. Now my music is split between these three storefronts. Good thing OneDrive Music exists so I have zero reason to use iTunes ever again.
  • How do you get your pics from iCloud on Windows 10 when you no longer have a stupid iPhone?
  • You can download a program for iCloud from Apple and browse or synchronise your iCloud content.
  • Sorry to say but good thing that piracy exists :P As for iTunes I like the quality of music it produces apart from that meh!
  • Groove music at this point is useless for me since it is unable to utilize my beats configured laptop and the output is thereby just bland. I'll try iTunes, but at the moment Windows media player is doing its job.
  • Who uses iTunes? It's shit. Like using iCloud... why? They don't even give you access to your own files.
  • "Who uses iTunes?"
    I did a check. Turns out it is millions of people. Crazy, right? I bet even one or two of those people use Windows. Curious, do you just going around here and posting crap comments? Because it sure seems like it. Do better.
  • I tunes is the reason I went away from apple, the damn program is so restrictive and over complicated! Let it burn in hell! The only good thing is it has a very nice store..
  • Restrictive?! Only if you buy their stuff...
    Just use it to manage your media...for that, it is brilliant.
  • Because my battery lasted too long and my SP3 was running too cool, so I needed to install iTunes.
  • Opened up iTunes this morning, and there was two "featured" albums, Dr. Dre's Compton, and Dr. Dre's Compton. I guess you sell an underused streaming music product and horrible sounding headphones for a few billion, get put in charge of something (really, what does he do at Apple) and you get to make sure that everyone sees your new album front and center. And what would have happened if Microsoft were to hire a misogynistic, racist homophobe as an executive. How angry would the media be about that?
  • Ah yes because who we were in our 20s is exactly who we are in our 40s... you sound pretty jealous of his success. Meanwhile all royalties from that album are going to build an inner city art center for underprivileged children. What have you done for the world today?
  • Tell him how we roll when we're hitting the 50s. The boy ain't know shit. Dr. Dre 4 life, snoopy doggy Dog for eternity. If you don't like it, go and die bi asha Oshomole oko IIara baby.
  • Maybe Microsoft isn't invested in music or something but it seems to me that they had a iTunes competitor with wmp but appeared to have dumped it and did like they always do and started over. Couldn't it had been turned into a modern app and made universal or something. Use the groove music pass with Mixradio integration and there you have a true competitor
  • They dumped it because they listened too much to the "cool" kids that love to hate Microsoft. WMP has been an object of hate just as much as Microsoft itself.
  • I just sold my soul for Compton. Damn you Dr. Dre for this exclusive shit!
  • Do you know of anyway of not having to resync your entire iPhone's music collection after a clean install of Windows 10? It was saying that it was managed by another PC.I had to go through that arduous process after upgrading and don't want to have to relive that experience if I have to reinstall Windows.
  • Groove is much much better
  • Instead of going down the rabbit hole with iTunes, make sure you really need it.  In 2013, iTunes was the 5th most popular application that hackers used to install malware on Windows PCs.  - It has to do with the bundled framework components and Safari, which it uses as part of its content engine. Apple is slow to respond or even fix known iTunes exploits on the PC version. (It is almost like Apple doesn't mind PCs/Windows getting malware, I wonder why...?)   Windows Media Player is still the superior tool for organizing, ripping, and editing Music on Windows 10. Even being a bit older now, it still has more features for music management than iTunes, Zune, and Groove.  Groove is catching up and I can see a future where it will feature/functionally replace WMP.  
  • ITunes has individual song rating, nicer mini-player, easier to make playlists, syncs album artwork. Groove does some of those things but not as good.
    Tried Groove today and really want to uninstall iTunes once and for all but just couldn't. Hopefullyin The near future
  • I've been using Jriver's media center for a few weeks now, and have been extremely happy with it. It's not cheap, but it will play anything, looks awesome, and is a breeze to work with.
  • I switched to Groove Music because the moment I used the app I realised it is 10000000 times better than shitTunes