Disable CDDB track information

Q: Aside from simply disconnecting from the internet while importing, is there a way to disable iTunes’ CDDB track information feature? I’m not happy with the quality of the tags I’ve been receiving, and I’d like to begin tagging on my own, from scratch.

– Sean

A: Before version 5.0, there was an option in iTunes’ preferences to prevent iTunes from connecting to the internet when needed, but this option no longer exists.

To prevent iTunes from accessing CDDB in version 5.0 or higher, you must block data traffic to CDDB’s website using a firewall.

On Windows XP, this can be accomplished using a third-party outgoing-traffic firewall such as ZoneAlarm or Sunbelt Keiro. Configure the firewall to block access to “http://service.gracenote.com”. Note that Windows XP’s built-in Firewall cannot block outgoing traffic.

On MacOS, you can use this AppleScript from Doug’s AppleScripts for iTunes to configure the built-in firewall service to do the same task in one click.

Note that, in either case, this will only work for new CDs that iTunes encounters, as iTunes caches CDDB information as it receives it.

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