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This chapter is from the book

Working with Playlists

After you create playlists, you can work with them in a number of ways, as discussed in the following subsections.

Watching and Listening to Playlists

Perhaps the most obvious use for a playlist is to listen to or watch the content it contains. In this context, a playlist works just like the sources in your Library, such Music, Movies, or TV Shows. All the techniques you learned in lessons earlier in this book apply to playlists, as well.

Select the playlist you want to listen to or watch. Use iTunes browse, search, and other tools to find and organize the content as you want to experience it. Then, play the content using the iTunes playback controls.

Organizing Playlists in Folders

You might end up creating many playlists as time passes. Lots of playlists can clutter up your Source pane, making finding specific content you want more difficult than it should be. Fortunately, you can use folders to keep your playlists organized.

To create folder, choose File, New Playlist Folder. An empty folder appears in the PLAYLISTS section with its name ready to edit. Type the name for the folder and press Enter (Windows) or Return (Mac). The folder is renamed and is moved to its position in the Source pane according to its name. (Folders are listed alphabetically and appear at the top of the PLAYLISTS section of the Source pane.)

You can work with folders in the following ways:

  • To place a playlist in a folder, drag the playlist onto the folder's icon and release the mouse button. The playlist is stored within the folder. Within folders, playlists are sorted in alphabetic order. All the smart playlists within a folder are grouped at the top of the folder with playlists listed under them.
  • To expand the contents of a folder, click its right-facing triangle. To collapse the contents again so that you see only the folder icon, click its down-facing triangle. Figure 8.7 shows some collapsed and expanded folders.
    Figure 8.7

    Figure 8.7 You can expand and collapse folders to see or hide their contents.

  • You can nest folders to create a hierarchy of folders by dragging one folder onto another one. Or select a folder and choose the New Playlist Folder command.
  • To delete a folder, select it and press Delete. If you confirm the action, the folder and all the playlists it contains are deleted. As you expect, none of the content in your Library is impacted.
  • Double-click a folder to open it in a separate window.
  • You can see, listen to, or watch a folder's contents as if it is a playlist; the contents of a folder are the contents in each of the playlists it contains. When you select a folder, you see its content in the Content pane, and you can work with folders just like playlists. For example, you can sort their contents, browse and search, and so on.

Using Playlists for Other Purposes

In addition to enjoying the content they contain, you can use playlists for other purposes, such as the following:

  • Sharing specific content with others on a local network
  • Burning CDs or other types of discs
  • Creating collections of content to move onto iPods, iPhones, and iPads
  • Exporting content outside of iTunes
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