Set half-star ratings directly in iTunes

iTunes has long supported the ability to rate (and display) half-star ratings for songs, but until recently, you had to use an AppleScript to actually set those half-star ratings. Now, thanks to a hidden iTunes preference, you can set half-star ratings directly within iTunes.

To enable this feature, first quit iTunes, then open Terminal. In Terminal, enter this command, then press Return:

defaults write allow-half-stars -bool TRUE

Now relaunch iTunes, and nothing will seem to have changed. But click-and-drag (slowly) on a song’s Rating field, and you’ll see little ½ indicators as you drag across the rating. (You can also try clicking directly between stars, but I find this more difficult than dragging to a half-star position.) If you found the five-step ratings scale too limiting before, you can now rejoice in the new ten-step version.

If you ever tire of the half-star steps, quit iTunes, open Terminal, and repeat the above command, but replace TRUE with FALSE. Today’s hint has been covered in a few spots on the web, including right here in the discussion thread for our hint on finding hidden preferences by reader ScottBayes, but I felt it useful enough to share as a general hints blog.

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