You may notice two Serato folders in the music directory on Mac and the My Music folder on Windows. A main "_Serato_" folder, and a backup "_Serato_Backup" folder.
The _Serato_ folder will be created the first time you start Serato applications on your internal drive and also on the root level of any external hard drives you may have connected/imported music from. If you rename or delete the _Serato_ folder, another one will be created the next time you open the software.
The _Serato_Backup folder is a duplicate of your _Serato_ folder and will be created when ticking the "Backup Library" checkbox upon exiting the software. This can be replaced with the _Serato_ folder in the event of any major corruption occurring in your main _Serato_ folder. It will also prompt you to backup if your library is over one week old.
Data is written to these folders on exit.
What is in the _Serato_ folder?
The _Serato_ folder contains the following files and folders:
Auto Import folder
Dragging tracks or folders into this folder adds them to your Serato DJ, DJ Intro, Scratch Live or ITCH library. All folders and tracks move to the Imported folder.
This preference file remembers the state of the users subcrates / crates (ie collapsed or not). Close Serato software and remove this file if you are having issues, the file will be rebuilt the next time you launch the software.
This folder exists for backwards compatibility reasons. If you are running a later version of Serato DJ or have never run Scratch Live you may not have this folder. Not to worry, all your crates are saved in the Subcrates folder. In versions older than Scratch Live 1.7.0 Crate files are written here (not subcrates). Do not panic if all your crates are not listed here, they may be in your Subcrates folder.
A very important file, the database V2 contains information for all the songs added to a library i.e. Song location / name / bitrate / length. For more information on the Database V2 file, please see this article.
This encrypted preference file remembers Serato DJ information and is stored here as Anonymous usage data.
Self-explanatory - a log of dropouts. Masked dropouts are audio dropouts that the software has attempted to mask. Unmasked are regular, audible dropouts that will illuminate the dropout indicator in the software.
Tracks move to the Imported folder from the Auto Import folder when the software is launched. Single tracks are added to the latest import sub folder, Whitelabel files are added to the whitelabel.net sub folder. Whole folders of music added to auto import stay as their own folder of the same name in the Imported folder.
This folder also creates crates of the same name.
Contains ID3 information for files that we cannot currently write directly to i.e. *.mov video files. You will notice the folder structure inside the metadata folder refers directly to location of the files on the computer. If the files are moved, the metadata information will not be updated and the information will no longer relate i.e. overviews/cue points will not remain with the file. The xml files for each track contain artist name, album name, song name, cue points, loops, BPM tags etc. The .ovb file is the track's waveform overview.
Contains user saved midi presets. Midi Presets are not cross compatible between Scratch Live and Serato DJ.
This is the preference file for the order of your crates. If the order of your crates is not retained, this file may have become corrupted. Close Serato software and remove this file if you are having issues, the file will be rebuilt the next time you launch the software.
A troubleshooting tool to identify corrupt files that are causing the software to crash or hang. The overview-builder adds files to this log as they get built, so you can identify the last file to be built; and therefore the corrupt song. The log file is cleared on each startup.
Any recordings made are saved here by default. The recording location can be changed in the recording panel of the software.
Recording temp folder
Any unsaved recordings are stored here temporarily. They will be written over the next time a recording is made.
A troubleshooting tool for identifying corrupt files that are causing the software to crash or hang. Relocating lost files adds files to this log as they are found, so a user can identify the last file and therefore corrupt file. The log file is cleared on each startup.
This folder contains the smartcrate files. Smart crates will only appear in the default _serato_ folder on your internal drive. This is because smart crates are rules-based and do not contain information about individual tracks like a regular crate.
Contains crate files. Despite the name Subcrates, this folder contains all crate / sub crate files for versions of Scratch Live 1.7.0 and up and all versions of Serato DJ, ITCH and DJ Intro.
NOTE: In some very rare occasions, particularly when using a computer with very low remaining free storage space on the system drive, crate files may get sent to your computer's recycle or trash bin. If a specific crate or crates goes missing, and they are not restorable from your _Serato_backup folder, please check the recycle or trash bin.
This is the preference file for each users window size, columns (order and width) etc. In the GUI. If your window size, order or width is not saving, this file may have become corrupted. Close Serato software and remove this file if you are having issues, the file will be rebuilt the next time you launch the software.
Note: We do not recommend storing other files or music in the _Serato_ folder (other than using the Auto Import folder) as this is critical to the stable running of the software. If you rename or delete the_Serato_ folder a new one will be rebuilt the next time you launch the software. This will create a fresh database and will not retain crates, music library or other settings from your old _Serato_ folder. Make sure you have backed up your information if you need to rebuild your _Serato_ folder. Read this article on backing up and restoring your Serato library