Ask the iTunes Guy: When a large iOS update won't fit your iPhone

In these columns I sometimes deal with questions that have complex answers—using AppleScripts or other workarounds to get iTunes to do what you want, for example. This week I’ve chosen some very simple questions that, nevertheless, perplex many iTunes users. I look at updating an iOS device to iOS 8 if you don’t have a lot of free space, using an older iPhone as an iPod, sorting songs alphabetically, and a way to keep iTunes Match from messing with your tags.

Not enough free space

Q: I want to update my iPhone 5 to iOS 8, but it tells me there’s not enough free space. It says I need 4 GB of free space to install the update, and I only have 1 GB free. What can I do?

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Ask the iTunes Guy: When is it better to store apps and music in the cloud?

Recent news is dominated by the iPhone 6 and iOS 8, but not everything in the Apple universe revolves around its latest releases. I have three burning questions in this week’s column that may interest iTunes users regardless of which devices they use. I look at a question about deleting all the apps in an iTunes library, discuss setting up iTunes Match and then deleting all your locally stored music, and look at a way to catch up on old episodes of podcasts.

Should I delete all my apps?

Q: I’m considering deleting all the apps from my iTunes library and removing the huge Mobile Applications folder in my iTunes Media folder. That folder and its contents take up a whopping 22 GB and I can’t see the point of having it around. If I want to add an app that I’ve already purchased, I search for it on the App Store or go to the Purchased tab. I never sync apps through iTunes and I only update apps in iTunes occasionally. As the iTunes Guy, what do you think?

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Ask the iTunes Guy: Re-download audiobooks, watch Netflix offline, and more

I’ve been getting lots of questions about lossless music files recently, and in this week’s column I answer another one. I also remind you that you can’t re-download audiobooks purchased from the iTunes Store, show how you can find songs that aren’t in any playlists, and look at a question about offline storage of Netflix videos.

Lost and not found: audiobook library

Q: I had a hard disk problem, and lost my iTunes library. I went to re-download my purchased music and audiobooks, and found that I couldn’t download the audiobooks at all. All the music was available, but not the audiobooks. Does this mean I’ve lost the more than 200 audiobooks I bought from the iTunes Store?

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