iTunes 11 is out, and most people seem to think it’s great. You and I are different, however. We hate it, and we have our reasons. (Mine happens to be the inability to skip tracks while Repeat One is on. Yup, deal-breaker for me. UPDATE: Fixed that!) So let’s make things right again.

First, you’ll need a backup of your iTunes Library.itl file, found under ~/Music/iTunes. Fortunately, I backed my library up right before installing iTunes 11. Note that any new songs, apps, etc. that you may have added since installing 11 will need to be replaced. In my case, I used the “Date Added” feature in iTunes to find which files I had added since November 28, and copied those out into a separate folder. When the downgrade was complete, I simply copied them back in.

Let’s get started:

1. Back up your iTunes Library.itl file, found under ~/Music/iTunes

2. Now you need an iTunes 10.7 dmg file. Download it from Apple here.

3. Delete iTunes 11. There are different ways to do this. One is to use an app called AppZapper. The method that worked for me was this: Open and run these commands, one at a time:

killall iTunes
killall "iTunes Helper"
sudo rm -rf /Applications/

That last one will need your password and will probably take a minute or so.

4. Now we have to reinstall iTunes 10.7 using an app called Pacifist (shareware, free). Download Pacifist and run it. (Mavericks: download Pacifist from the link at the bottom of the post instead.)

5. Choose the Open Package option. Browse to the iTunes 10.7 dmg file.

6. You’ll get a list of files. Select “Contents of Install iTunes.pkg”, and from the top left corner of the app, choose Install.

7. Be careful here! Every time Pacifist tells you a file already exists, make sure you check the “always” box and choose Replace (not update). This should happen around three or four times.

8. You’re almost done. Before running iTunes again, make sure you have recovered your “iTunes Library.itl” from a pre-iTunes-11 backup. After that, you should be good to go. But as ever, your mileage may vary.

Mavericks (10.9) Update

I was dreading Mavericks because it automatically updates iTunes to 11, and this is frankly unacceptable for some. Thank goodness this method worked like a charm this morning! I had 10.7 back in about 5 minutes.

There was only one hiccup: Use this version of Pacifist (3.0.10)! For some reason, the latest version (3.2 as of this writing) would not install the package.

Also, if you just installed Mavericks, don’t open iTunes! If you do, it’ll update your iTunes library files, and you’ll have to restore your old ones from a backup after you install iTunes 10.7. But if you never open iTunes 11, they won’t be changed, and you won’t have to restore a thing.

*Mavericks Update #2

So it appears that after downgrading to iTunes 10.7, the Mac App Store may become borked in the process — apps will neither update nor download from it. I’m not sure if this is just because Mavericks is fresh and will get updated by Apple or what. I use the Mac App Store just about never, so I don’t really care, but you might! More details as they become available.

If you’ve already installed 10.7 and want the app store back, installing iTunes 11 again fixes the problem.

17 replies

nuno baptistasays:

hi Aaron

& thank you VERY MUCH for this post ! much appreciated

i’ve used Mavericks a few times, generally liked how it feels ( i DO like changing for better, not simply for ”marketing driven different”.. ) but was dreading updating my M.Lion OS because i DEFINITELY want to retain iTunes 10.7 !

w/ my rather large 3TB Library ( 40 years buying music WILL do that to you..) using iTunes 11 is enough of a PITA for me to actually consider dropping Apple & Macs altogether if push came to shove.
what can i say ? i DO like to view my artwork, determine what size it will display in my 27” iMac, open multiple windows, etc…
+ my eyes hate the searing, high contrast white background iTunes 11 uses ( thought we had gotten rid of that one for good, ages ago.. ) AND i don’t get too excited reading ENDLESS Lists & unrecognisable 15mm X 15mm album cover thumbnails/colour smudges
call me crazy…..

besides, in my case displaying it in Artist creates ENDLESS scrolling through THOUSANDS of albums :
my Magic Mouse would develop a Grand Canyon in no time from the wear & tear & i would certainly cramp out – not worth it !! 😉

over the years i have tweaked & fine tuned iTunes 10.7 to a state nearing perfection FOR MY SPECIFIC use, likes & dislikes & iTunes 11 doesn’t even come close

since i DO like Macs, it’s good to know i can still use 10.7 thus ”hang out” w/ Macs for perhaps a couple more years ?



Toastmaster Generalsays:

Amen to all of that, Nuno. Like, every single point.

[…] a keyboard and monitor I loaned to a friend. But in the meantime I found this very relevant post: Awesome Toast! | How to downgrade to iTunes 10.7 from iTunes 11 [OSX – Even Mavericks!] Since these days I mostly use A+ in Playlist mode, I can do my ML/Mavericks comparison without […]


have the same problem with MAS. but, if u don’t reboot ur Mac after downgrading, all upgrades and downloads from App Store will work.


have found that problem with MAS is caused by replacing CoreFP.framework during installing itunes 10.7 via pacifist. After pacifist have replaced that framework MAS doen’t work.

But if we don’t replace CoreFP.framework we get an error -42408 which doesn’t allow to sign up iTunes Store, iTunes Match and etc in iTunes 10.7. But MAS will work fine.

So, the problem is in that framework. May be somebody knows how solve this problem?


Works perfectly (itunes 10 + Mac App Store) using the solution posted by Art.
Thank you !



If apple gives me any more trouble Im SWITCHING BACK to Windows and Linux

Yours Truly
All of us POWER USERS !

Peter Burkimshersays:

If you just hate the new MiniPlayer, I rewrote the old iTunes 10 MiniPlayer open-source! This should work for all future versions of iTunes.


My kids have all changed to windows and i am going to look them over this year.
Apple have gone way too far, too much trouble, problems. UNfunctionality. list getting longer and longer.
Music vids will not play landscape mode (iPhone)
Movies have no names on them (iPhone)
Custom labels in contacts all mixed up (iPhone)
Itunes makes folders for Musicvideos but you can not view them.
iTunes folders not respected.
Local synch for iPhone GONE
Open window in new window???? Mavericks, what happened to that.
and now…
You HAVE TO HAVE icloud for your contacts
No options to synch without the cloud.
All contacts gone from Mac but still on iPhone????
Absolutely fed up.
just gone too far now.

Now i start to check out the microsoft stuff.


new itunes is singing errors!!! to syncing ancient iPads …


Does this work with Windows 8? I just got a new laptop and want to keep itunes 10.7 or transfer itunes 10.7 from my old laptop to my new laptop.


Confirming that this works to fix a messed up iTunes 10 after permissions repair (I forgot this will mess it up if you don’t rename.)
Reinstalled via Pacifist and replaced files. Back in business on 10.9.


THANK YOU, with 10.7 my Mac lives again, this worked absolutely great and it was easy to do 🙂

My very best from Sweden


Config : Mac OS 10.10.5 with iTunes folders located on an external hard-drive
I switched back from iTunes 12.2.1 to iTunes 10.6.3 on a clone of my system on another external hard-drive
Everything seemed to work fine, I could open iTunes and all was there.
Though, when I copied the clone to the original hard-drive on my Macbook pro, I realised iTunes was not opening anymore : the icon jump a few times and that’s all.
After tests, it seems that if I clean all then re-install iTunes 10.6.3 AND don’t make a “Repair permissions” in Disk utility, all works fine. But if I repair permissions, I get a long list of issues concerning iTunes and then when I try to open iTunes, it doesn’t open anymore.

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