Downgrade or Revert from iTunes 12 to iTunes 10.7

Revert from iTunes 12 to iTunes 10.7 downgrade

Revert from iTunes 12.3 to iTunes 10.7

Are you finally upgrading to OS X Yosemite? You know the drill: each time you install a major release of OS X you automatically get an updated iTunes. As a die-hard devotee of iTunes 10.7 you’ll want to revert from iTunes 12 to iTunes 10.7.  Do you need a Yosemite download?  Search for it you will find it. 

You’ll want to rollback without loosing Mac App Store’s (MAS) functionality. MAS is Apple’s delivery mechanism for all its applications, system software and security updates.

Unlike most guides, this one shows you how to revert from iTunes 12 to 10.7 without loosing important functionality of Yosemite’s MAS. You will also learn how to cure any download issues that you may encounter.

Caveat:

You’ll only be able to sync pre iOS 7 devices with iTunes 10.7. On my computer, I prefer using iTunes 10.7 for my 3-terabyte music collection. Plus, I still have pre iOS 7 devices that are perfectly usable as is.

My wife’s computer has the newest iTunes. We use it with our modern iOS devices etc…

**For those with only one computer, it is possible to create two iTunes libraries.  Then switch between iTunes 12 and iTunes 10.7.  All it takes is 1) replacing the CoreFP.framework and back 2) holding option while launching iTunes to choose the correct library. But this is not cover here.

Don’t rollback to iTunes 10.7 the old way

The old revert methods developed for Mountain Lion break the Mac App Store’s (MAS) functionality. Note: the loss of MAS functionality after using old revert to iTunes 10.7 methods will typically manifest itself after the first post-install reboot.

And, you’ll stumble if you try to revert from iTunes 12 to iTunes 10.7 using the Dot-Method developed for Mavericks.

Revert from iTunes 12 to iTunes 10.7:  The Dot-Method

Learning how to do this took a lot of research. Creating this article was time consuming.

If you find the Dot-Method for Yosemite helpful, and you’d like to support https://aoxoa.co/, you can donate directly via PayPal. Contributions can be made in any amount from $1 on up. Your support of this site is appreciated.

This guide worked for me right after a fresh install of Yosemite and should work fine even if you did an Upgrade install.

As always proceed at your own risk.

The Dot-Method provides:

  • A working iTunes 10.7.
  • Normal update notices and working installs.
  • No error -42408.

You can:

  • Sync pre iSO 7 devices.
  • Sign in to the App store via iTunes.
  • Download apps in iTunes.
  • Sign in via App Store.app (MAS), etc.

When to revert from iTunes 12 to iTunes 10.7

The best time to revert from iTunes 12 to iTunes 10.7 is right after installing a new OSX and BEFORE you open the new iTunes.

If you open iTunes 12, it’ll convert your iTunes library files making them unusable with iTunes 10.7.  In this case you will need a backup of your 10.7 iTunes library files.

This guide assumes you will need to restore to your old iTunes library. In doing so, you will need to redo any imports you made with iTunes 12, etc…

Things you need

  1. A backup of the iTunes 10.7 library or better yet a clone of your entire hard drive.
    1. If you moved it and can’t remember where it is:
    2. The default location for the iTunes Library.itl file is here: Your HD > Your User > Music  > iTunes.
      1. Go to finder, press: Command + Shift + G.
      2. In the dialog box paste: ~/Music/iTunes.
    3. Some of you may have “iTunes Library” without the .itl extension.
  2. A copy of iTunes 10.7 (download directly from Apple).
  3. A copy of iTunes 12 (download directly from Apple).
  4. Pacifist 3.0.10 (use this specific version).
  5. Your user account password.
  6. Your Apple I.D. login info (for testing purposes).
  7. Know how to “Right Click” your track pad or touch mouse.

Steps to rollback from iTunes 12 to iTunes 10.7

Step 1: Prepare your Computer

  1. Disconnect all devices (iPods, iPhones, iPads, etc.….).
  2. Install the new release of OS X Yosemite.

Step 2: Rename iTunes 12 with a dot

  1. Rename the newly installed iTunes 12 from iTunes.app to .iTunes.app.

Notice the period at the front? That makes the app invisible in the Finder, and prevents it from showing up in Spotlight searches.

The goal is to prevent you from accidentally launching iTunes 12. Once launched, iTunes 12 will permanently convert your library indexes and playlists to the version 12 format. The version 12 formats are unusable by iTunes 10.

Here is how to rename it:

Enable root user.

  1. Go to System preferences > users and groups.

revert itunes 12

  1. Click the lock to make changes (if locked).
  2. Enter password if prompted.

revert itunes 12 to 10.7

  1. Click Login Options.
  2. Click Join…

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  1. Click Open Directory Utility.

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  1. Click the lock to make changes (if locked).
  2. Enter password if prompted.

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  1. Click the edit menu > Click Enable Root User.

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  1. Enter admin password/verify the admin password.

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  1. Close all windows.

Logout (you will now see another user to login as).

login as the “Other User.”

  1. Enter “root” as name.
  2. Enter admin password.
  3. If asked, Do not sign in with Apple ID. Click the Do not sign in Radial and continue. Yes, you want to skip.

Open terminal.

  1. Find the Terminal App by searching in Spotlight.

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  1. Copy/Paste the following line into Terminal: mv /Applications/iTunes.app /Applications/.iTunes.app
  2. Press Return on keyboard.
  3. Go to Applications folder. Check to see if the iTunes.app disappeared or turned into a hidden file. If not, you did not copy/paste the correct line or you typed it wrong.
  4. Close all windows.

Logout and log back in as yourself.

Disable root user.

  1. Go to System Preferences > users and groups.

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  1. Click the lock to make changes (if locked).
  2. Enter password if prompted.

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  1. Click Login Options.
  2. Click Join…

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  1. Click Open Directory Utility.

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  1. Click the lock to make changes (if locked).
  2. Enter password if prompted.

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  1. Click the Edit menu > Click Disable Root User.

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  1. Lock and close all system preference windows.

You are done renaming…close all open apps and finder windows.

Step 3: Use Pacifist 3.0.10

  1. Install Pacifist (version 3.0.10) in your Applications folder. Newer versions of Pacifist will not work with the Dot-Method.
    1. Double click the Pacifist_3.0.10.dmg file.
    2. Drag/drop app to the Applications folder.
  2. Open the Pacifist (version 3.0.10) app.
  3. If asked, do not allow Pacifist to check for auto updates AND do not install the plug-in.

rollback itunes 12

rollback itunes 12

rollback itunes 12

  1. Drag/drop the iTunes 10.7.dmg file onto the main Pacifist window.

rollback itunes 12

  1. Click the “Not Authorized” lock icon. Enter your user/admin password.

rollback itunes 12

  1. Type iTunes.app in the search field and hit return.

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  1. Find the iTunes.app location and highlight, click extract to…

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  1. Choose Applications for the location, etc…

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  1. Check box “Use Administration Privileges” if asked and click Extract.
  2. Enter admin password if prompted.

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  1. For all dialogs that pop up telling you a file already exist, check “Don’t ask again…” and click the “Replace” button.

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  1. When the install is complete: File > Close | Pacifist > Quit Pacifist.

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Step 4: Rename the 10.7 iTunes.app

Renaming the app makes it invisible to permissions repair. If you don’t change the name Disk Utility will assume the app is version 12. If you repair permissions, Disk Utility will mess up the permissions of iTunes 10.7 and it will not start.

If repair permissions ever messes it up, repeat Step 3 and Step 4.

  1. Open the Terminal
  2. Copy/Paste the following line into Terminal: sudo mv /Applications/iTunes.app /Applications/iTunes10.app
  3. Press return on the keyboard.
  4. If prompted, enter you Mac Password in Terminal. The curser will not move or show what is typed. Press return.
  5. Close Terminal

Step 5:  All about the CoreFP.framework

Use pacifist to extract CoreFP.framework from 10.7 and 12.

  1. Make a folder for each one on the desktop. You will use the folders in the next step.

downgrade itunes 12

downgrade-itunes-12

  1. Use the Pacifist extraction method from previous instructions to search for and extract the CoreFP.framework from the iTunes10.7.dmg and from the iTunes12.x.dmg files.
  2. If asked, do not allow Pacifist to check for auto updates AND do not install the plug-in.

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  1. Tip: close Pacifist windows, quit the application and re-launch after each extraction.  Otherwise, Pacifists might crash on you.

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  1. After coreFP.framwork extraction close pacifist

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Open the folder in which you extracted the iTunes 12 CoreFP.framework.

  1. Duplicate the CoreFP.framework
  2. Rename the duplicate to CoreFP.framework2

Go to:  Your Hard Drive > System > Library > PrivateFrameworks.

  1. Drag/Drop CoreFP.framework2 into the Privateframeworks folder

revert-itunes-12-Step5-11

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  1. Drag/Drop the extracted iTunes 10.7 CoreFP.framework into the Privateframeworks folder

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  1. Click Replace in the pop up window.

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  1. Drag/Drop CoreFP.framework back to the iTunes 10.7 folder. It will copy it and you can save it for later use.

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Step 6: Replace the iTunes Library

If you did a fresh install of Yosemite just before starting this process or your music folder is completely empty:

  1. Copy/Paste the entire iTunes folder from your back up to your new Music folder.

revert-itunes-12-Step6-1

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If you did an Upgrade install of Yosemite: Just replace the iTunes Library.

  1. Open your iTunes Music Folder.
  2. The default location is here: Your HD > Your User > Music  > iTunes.
  3. If you moved it and can’t remember where it is:
    1. Go to finder, press: Command + Shift + G.
    2. In the dialog box paste: ~/Music/iTunes.
  4. Find your iTunes Library file. It may or may not have the .itl extension.
  5. Delete “iTunes Library” file.
  6. Copy/paste your “iTunes Library.itl” from your iTunes 10.7 backup.

Step 7: Restart

  1. Restart your computer.

Step 8: Test iTunes10.app

If you use HandsOff or Little Snitch, you may have inadvertently set a rule that blocks iTunes functionality. Start with a clean slate: delete all rules concerning iTunes. You will want to accept iTunes call-outs, etc.. that HandsOff and Little Snitch may show you.

downgrade-itunes-12-test-1

If you get a bunch of stuff like this it is because HandsOff or Little Snitch is blocking something. Fix the problem in those programs and try again.

  1. Remove the iTunes 12 icon from the Dock.
  2. Place iTunes10 icon to the Dock.
  3. Launch iTunes10.app.
  4. If your music library is empty, don’t worry.
    1. Quit iTunes10.
    2. Go back to your iTunes folder.
    3. Add (or delete the) .itl extension on the iTunes Library file (depending on whether yours has the extension or not).
    4. Launch iTunes 10.7 again and your music should be back.
  5. Connect a pre iOS 7 iPod, etc…
    1. It should get recognized and be able to sync.
  6. Access iTunes store.
    1. Sign in, download an app or not. Works great.
  7. Go to iTunes Preferences.
    1. Uncheck Automatic Updates.
    2. Uncheck automatically start iTunes with Cd, etc…

Step 9: Test App Store.app

If you use HandsOff or Little Snitch, you may have inadvertently set a rule that blocks MAS functionality. Start with a clean slate: delete all rules concerning Apple. You will want to accept callouts, etc.. that HandsOff and Little Snitch may show you while testing MAS. Sometimes you may need to close and reopen the App Store after creating an acceptance rule with HandsOff or Little Snitch.

  1. Disable Automatic updates from App Store.  Go to  System Preferences > App Store and un-tick all check boxes.
  2. Search “app store” in spotlight.
  3. Click on App Store to launch it.
  4. You will be able to sign in.
  5. You will be able to get update notices.
  6. You will be able to install security and safari updates, etc.

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iTunes 12 to iTunes 10.7 | Issues

Downloads from the stand alone App Store.app (MAS) might give you errors.  You can fix it.

  1. Example:

    Downgrade from iTunes 11 to iTunes 10.7

    1. Directed me to try on the purchases page.
    2. Failed on purchase page too.

    Rollback from iTunes 11 to iTunes 10.7

Not to worry.  It is easy to restore lost functionality of the App Store (MAS) and back again.

Restoring lost functionality

This is the pain you sometimes get for hacking Apple. It is not that bad though.

Option 1:

Use a second computer with a more recent version of iTunes. This enables you to handle the newest iOS devices and downloads like El Captain. Use a flash drive to transfer over the new install apps like Yosemite or El Captain to your computer running iTunes 10.7.

Option 2:

Create a virtual OSX with the newest iTunes to compensate for lost functionality.

Option 3:

Since iTunes 10.7 CoreFP.framework causes the problem with the MAS, just replace it with an iTunes 12 CoreFP.framework. Then, restart the computer and use MAS. When finished add the iTunes 10.7 CoreFP.framwork back.

Important: Prepare two folders:

  1. Folder 1 contains a copy of the iTunes 10.7 CoreFP.framework.
  2. Folder 2 contains a copy of the iTunes 12 CoreFP.framework.

(If needed, use Pacifist to extract the CoreFP.framework from each .dmg file).

Steps to restore MAS functionality:

  1. Go to: HD > System > Library > PrivateFrameworks.
  2. Delete CoreFP.framework and CorFP.framework2.
  3. Click Authenticate to allow action.

Rollback from iTunes 11 to iTunes 10.7

  1. Enter admin password if prompted.

Downgrade from iTunes 11 to iTunes 10.7

  1. Drag/Drop iTunes 12 CoreFP.framework from your “folder 2” to PrivateFrameworks.
  2. Drag/Drop CoreFP.framework from PrivateFrameworks back to folder 2.

(It will copy it, leaving the original in the PrivateFrameworks folder. Now you’ll have a copy for the next time you need MAS).

  1. Restart your computer.

Now that you have MAS functioning properly it is time to get your El Captain or what ever it was that gave you the purchase error.

  1. Disable HandsOff and Little Snitch if you use those.
    1. Why? You might have inadvertently blocked a MAS function.
  2. Open App Store.
  3. Go to Purchase tab.
  4. Click Download.

Downgrade from iTunes 11 to iTunes 10.7

  1. Go to Launchpad, the OS icon should be there.
  2. Press and hold option key.
  3. The X symbol appears on the upper left of the icon.
  4. Press the X and accept the delete.

Downgrade from iTunes 11 to iTunes 10.7

  1. Close and Restart app store and start the download from the beginning.

Revert from iTunes 11 to iTunes 10.7

Rollback from iTunes 11 to iTunes 10.7

Steps to restore the iTunes 10.7 hack

Open the folder in which you extracted the iTunes 12 CoreFP.framework.

  1. Duplicate the CoreFP.framework
  2. Rename the duplicate to CoreFP.framework2

Go to:  Your Hard Drive > System > Library > PrivateFrameworks.

  1. Drag/Drop CoreFP.framework2 into the Privateframeworks folder

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  1. Drag/Drop the extracted iTunes 10.7 CoreFP.framework into the Privateframeworks folder

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  1. Click Replace in the pop up window.

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  1. Drag/Drop CoreFP.framework back to the iTunes 10.7 folder. It will copy it and you can save it for later use.

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Restart your computer

Make sure yo did not forget to disable Automatic Updates from App Store.  Go to  System Preferences > App Store and un-tick all check boxes.  This will stop Apple from trying sneak in a fresh new iTunes.app to replace the .iTunes.app that is hidden.

23 thoughts on “Downgrade or Revert from iTunes 12 to iTunes 10.7

  1. HI. Thanks for your advice. Wondering when the roll back to 10.7 to El Capitan will be available?

  2. Thank you Chris! You saved my life from the iTunes 12.
    This method also works on macOS 10.12, the only difference is that user need to turn off macOS system integrity protection in order to modified the PrivateFrameworks folder.

  3. Do you know how to do this hack on Sierra?
    I tried the method but it doesn’t work for me.
    Using .frameworks2 extension turns the .framework icon into a folder.
    I retitled folder to CoreFP2.framework after I had already confirmed App Store was broken, but that didn’t fix the break.

    I wouldn’t bother coming up with method for El CRapitan.
    I upgraded to Sierra because somewhere around EC update 3-4 Energy Saver and TechTool Pro SMARTcheck preferences were broken and couldn’t be fixed.
    I uninstalled apps for all login items to no avail, and upgraded to Sierra as last resort which fixed the issue as well as horrible issues in El CRapitan with external HDs.

    Now if I can just find a fix to keep from breaking App Store when downgrading to iTunes 10.

    • Things can go wrong if you don’t follow the instructions exactly. Don’t skim through it.

      Reports from a user in the comments say my instructions work on 10.12 Sierra. But you have to disable SIP to modify the Private framework folder, etc.. To disable SIP: https://www.igeeksblog.com/how-to-disable-system-integrity-protection-on-mac/

      Not sure why your “CoreFP.framework2” turns into a folder. Check that you renamed it correctly.

      I just tested it again and it worked fine. With your extracted (by Pacifist): right click “CoreFP.framework”, choose duplicate. Rename (get rid of “Copy” and add the “2” so it looks like “CoreFP.framework2” Should work.

      If you still get the folder try this: Right click it and go to “Get Info” > in the “Name & Extension” field you want it to say “CoreFP.framework2.framework” Also, I do have the “Hide Extension” ticked. If that doesn’t work you can try mine: https://aoxoa.co/CoreFPframework2.zip (but it is from iTunes 12.2 something).

      If that doesn’t help fix all the breaks, see these sections in the article:
      Tunes 12 to iTunes 10.7 | Issues
      and
      Restoring lost functionality

      Please report back if you succeed or not.

  4. Wow…..! ;=) Thanks! ;=)

    But–hate to ask–do you think this or something similar will also work for a bigger downgrade–like down to iTunes 6….?? Or do you think that’s too big of a jump…?? ;/

    Thanks!
    –Jackie

    • For El Cap or Sierra? It might. The weird thing is, as i understand it, newer versions of Pacifist won’t let you get the job done. That is why the instructions specify Pacifist 3.0.10. So, will Pacifist 3.0.10 work when dealing with iTunes 6 or will it require and older version???? I don’t know.

      Wish I could help. You might have to try it to find out. Stop back by and let us know.

  5. Hi Chris, thanks!

    Everything was going great up until Step 5, the CoreFP.framework. Apparently, the .dmg package for iTunes 6 doesn’t have that file there….?? The Pacifist 3.0.10 program gave me an error, or couldn’t find it, and I also searched manually.

    So I just skipped that step and tried to launch iTunes 6, but then I got an error that said iTunes 6 was on a locked disk or that I didn’t have permission…..??

    Any suggestions…..??

    iTunes 6 is a version that also works on PowerPC Macs, so is that the reason why….??

    I also downloaded iTunes 9.2.1 (which works on PowerPCs), but do you think that would have the same prob….??

    I’m trying to use iTunes 6 because I have an older iPod and also a PowerPC Mac.

    Thanks!
    –Jackie

  6. FWIW instead of disabling SIP i booted up from a different drive and copied the framework files from there. SIP only applies to the system currently running.

  7. I am trying to installed itunes 10.7 on OS Sierra,
    It went well , until move the coreFP.framework2 , Basically it does not allow me to modify private framework folder located on System/library/
    I tried to open with command I and check the padlock , but only allow read an write to system,
    Any idea how to over come it ?
    sorry maybe is a silly question
    many thanks for the very good guide

  8. Dear Chris,

    my name ist Thomas from southern Germany. I’m a DJ since about ten years running my gigs with an early 2008 Mac Book Pro and two external AudioFire sound converters. Im intensively bound to iTunes 10.7. My music library contains more than 1600 albums with about 25.000 tracks. But much more. The music I manage with this system contains more than 1500 hours of work and more than 3.000 Euro of bought music. It is a nightmare for me to see that my Mac with OS 10.7.5 does not support any more current versions of browsers, dropbox and onedrive programs.
    So i decide to go El Capitan Version 10.11. Since some days I fight to get my 10.7 running on this system..
    Your description to downgrade is now my last chance I see to get the tings running.
    Precisely I followed every detail in Your description “The Dot-Method”. Now i get stuck on page 19 of 29 in You phantastic description. I was able to create the two folders with the two versions of iTunes 10.7 and iTunes 12.x CoreFP.framework.
    So far so good, I can do what I want I can’t succeed to copy them to the /System/Library/PrivateFrameworks folder. It seems that this folder ist write protected. So the drag and drop has the drawback when letting the mouse free over the targetfolder. The small window does therenot appear “Modifiying “PrivateFrameworks” requires an administrator name and password”.
    It does not change whether I switch to Root User or not. If I have a look on the information section of the finder it tells me that the folder is only readable to me.
    Do You have any help for me?
    Be sure that I will donate additional 20 $ like I have done It right now if I will succeed.
    So I’m lookinf forward any help wit a lot of thanks in advance.
    With best regards from the wild German South
    Thomas

    • This guide for Yosemite is almost the same for El Capitan. With El Capiton, you can’t drag/drop the coreFP.framework unless you first disable SIP. I imagine the same thing will apply to Sierra.

      To disable SIP ion El Capitan:
      1. Shut down
      2. Restart hold cmd+R
      3. Load terminal (menu bar > utilities > terminal)
      4. csrutil disable
      5. Hit enter

      Repeat: you have to disable SIP to modify the Private framework folder. To disable SIP: https://www.igeeksblog.com/how-to-disable-system-integrity-protection-on-mac/

      Let me know if it works for you.

  9. Chris,
    Your article may be the godsend I’ve been needing.
    I have been running my small FM radio for years w itunes, always replacing the current itunes on new mac minis w/ 10.7—until the last one – I couldn’t get it to work – what a bummer.
    Like you we have a huge library and the new itunes sucks for how we liked to do things.
    I think your instructions will work, and I will gladly pay for it.
    but have a Q:
    The OSX currently is 10.9.5, should I update before proceeding?
    (the current offending itunes is version 12.6.2.20 btw)
    Don Ashford
    KTRT 97.5 ‘The Root’

    • The best time to revert from iTunes 12 to iTunes 10.7 is right after installing a new OSX and BEFORE you open the new iTunes.

      If you open iTunes 12, it’ll convert your iTunes library files making them unusable with iTunes 10.7. If that happened, you will need a backup of your 10.7 iTunes library files.

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