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HOWTO: Make iTunes Read Ogg Files

After downloading the only available torrent of Hang Drum music I could find, I was shocked to discover that iTunes wouldn't read the Ogg files it contained. I was so close to losing a ton of respect for Apple until I searched Google for a solution. Hooray for the xiph.org open-source community! Simply visit their site and download QuickTime Components binary package. After opening the .dmg file (Windows users should be able to just download and run the .exe file), copy XiphQT.component to ~/Library/Components (user-only) or to /Library/Components (system-wide).

Update: Randy Cox noted in the comments that on Snow Leopard the path to copy the file is actually /Library/Quicktime/ If iTunes is open, restart it and viola! You've got .ogg support in iTunes!

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  1. To be blunt, the fact that you need to install a third party application like this into an AUDIO PLAYER should make you lose a ton of respect for Apple anyway. What you have after all is a work around. There’s no reason Apple should not have included this in the first place except their own desire to vendor lock you into their own DRM laden codec.

  2. I agree that it’s lame Apple didn’t add Ogg support to iTunes, but I’m not going to dwell on it. The fact that it was so easy to add Ogg support tells me Apple didn’t intentionally try to prevent it from being possible.

    Microsoft, Apple, and Linux/Unix all have their strengths and weaknesses. Sticking to only one and refusing to use the others is being ignorant at best. I was anti-Apple for a long time, but I’m happy I opened my eyes to all my options instead of judging each one by using the other as a starting point. Microsoft and Apple are businesses. I expect there to be things I don’t like or disagree about with them.

  3. Hey, thanks for the link to Xiph. I too had an song I scoured the net for and when I finally found it realized I couldn’t play OGG files in iTunes. One exe download and I’m up and running. Awesome! Thanks again!

  4. I followed instructions, but it’s still not working. I have a newer machine, and I’m not an idiot. What the hell?

    • Hi Mike,

      Are you getting an error? Were there any problems installing the package? Any other troubleshooting information you can provide would help in finding a resolution.

  5. hey, just tried to follow the instructions to get some ogg.s playing on itunes on my mac, but i didnt work (thanks for the work around by the way!) can you help?

    i downloaded the Xiph files and put them in the /library/component directory (which i created), and then opened itunes, but nothing seemed to happen. do you have to link the file type to itunes somehow? have i done something wrong?

    any help would be appreciated!


  6. hey, it is the next day, and they work!??? hmm, maybe the traditional “shut down and leave it overnight” technique works? errrr .. anyway, thanks for the advice! πŸ™‚

    • Hi James,

      If you’re on a Mac, simply open the .dmg file that you downloaded. After opening it, you should see XiphQT.component. Drag this to your desktop.

      Now go to Finder -> Applications -> Utilities -> Terminal and open Terminal. Now type the following commands, pressing Enter after each one:

      cd Desktop
      cp XiphQT.component /Library/Components/

      If you get a permission error, add “sudo” to the beginning of the second command and type your Administrator password when prompted. I hope this helps!

  7. To install the XiphQT component in Snow Leopard, the path is a little different. In Snow Leopard there is no /Library/Components directory. Instead, copy the file into /Library/Quicktime.

          • re: “Perhaps you could provide the correction?”

            The correction was provided by Randy Cox. Martin was simply pointing out that you copy-pasted the wrong path into your article update. Instead of the correct ~/Library/Quicktime/ path, you merely repeated ~/Library/Components/ path, which does not work for Snow Leopard.

            As of right now, your article update says:

            “Update: Randy Cox noted in the comments that on Snow Leopard the path to copy the file is actually /Library/Components/”

            which should be:

            “Update: Randy Cox noted in the comments that on Snow Leopard the path to copy the file is actually /Library/Quicktime/”

  8. I’m glad there are unpaid Apple gurus such as yourself… But now that I can load OOG files into iTunes, how do I burn a CD with them. When I try the error message I get is something like: “The Playlist is empty — you need to select the box next to the track…” If I had a mp3 file in the playlist then that is the only file that gets burned on the CD.

    Any clues?

    • My guess is that iTunes doesn’t support recording OGG to a CD. I’m not sure if there’s a way around that, but if you have a lot of OGGs, converting them to mp3’s might actually be the only option!

  9. hi, i downloaded the dmg file but don’t know how or where to paste the stuff. what do you mean by ~/Library/Components?

    • David, you need to go into Finder, click on your main system drive, then browse to Library -> Components and then paste the stuff into the Components directory.

  10. Hi Roam,

    Any news on iTunes 10.5? I am getting dialog boxes saying a movie requires Quicktime and this is not supported. Have they deprecated ‘.mov’ files? Seems impossible, but it’s Apple.

  11. once again, it takes third party support to fix another apple product.

    THANK YOU FOR YOUR HELP! Now I have Stan Getz, George Shearing, and Oscar Peterson on my phone. =]

  12. Hi, I’m trying to do this on windows 8 and it’s not working? Ive downloaded the Xiph file and have ran the .exe file, and now have a XiphQT.qtx file in my Quicktime/QTComponents folder.

    I just don’t understand what to do now and it still doesn’t work

  13. You can use Avdshare Audio Converter to convert OGG to iTunes supported AAC, Apple Lossless ALAC, M4A, MP3, WAV, AIFF etc for successfully playing OGG on iTunes 12/11/10/9, iPhone, iPod, iPad etc