If you use iTunes, you’ve probably spotted those little arrows in circles that appear next to certain columns in the currently selected track. When you click them, you’re taken to the album or artist on the iTunes Store:
If you remember, iTunes 7 and earlier gave you a Preferences option to turn them off. And rightly so – they clutter up the UI in my opinion.
However, for some bizarre (no doubt marketing-related) reason, Apple removed this option from the Preferences dialog in iTunes 8. Thanks guys.
Fortunately, there’s still a way to turn the arrows off. Quit iTunes, open a Terminal window, and type:
defaults write com.apple.iTunes show-store-arrow-links -bool false
Now relaunch iTunes. The arrows will be gone. To turn them on again, type:
defaults write com.apple.iTunes show-store-arrow-links -bool true
Not so fast…
Before you turn the arrows off, though, you may be surprised to learn that they do, in fact, do more than just take you to the iTunes Store.
This post on macosxhints.com contains a couple of comments which taught me something new: You can actually Option-click an iTunes Store arrow to find stuff in your library. Option-click a track name column or album column arrow to get a list of all tracks in an album; Option-click an artist column arrow to view all tracks by an artist.
So those arrows are actually useful after all! In fact, by changing another hidden preference, you can swap the behaviour of clicking/Option-clicking:
defaults write com.apple.iTunes invertStoreLinks -bool true
Now clicking the arrows takes you to the album or artist in your library, while Option-clicking jumps to the Store.
Obviously, you can revert back to the original behaviour by typing:
defaults write com.apple.iTunes invertStoreLinks -bool false
And there you go! The hidden delights of those little arrows.