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Old July 9th, 2022
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I would suggest the newer iTunes will not do any damage. However if you were to revert back to an older version of iTunes, there is a reasonable chance of some kind of unpleasant side-effect as a result.

If you have some kind of back-up storage with sufficient space, it would definitely be worth backing up your iTunes Library first. At least on MacOS, iTunes has one or more hidden settings files which control the library and playlist listings. These are vital to retain (and to backup.)

* I would recommend asking this same question here at iTunes forum
I'm also a member but probably haven't posted there for many years. If you still use your old iPod, it would be worth asking about that as well in regards to a newer iTunes version.

Personally I have had the occasional issue with iTunes. But it has been many years since that happened. Issues were either the playlists losing their files and needing to redo them from scratch. Or the entire iTunes Library not loading properly and needing to reload from scratch. But I cannot recall the circumstances upon which these things occurred. During the first decade of the century for a period of time I kept my iTunes library on an external drive for a couple of years, only to discover the drive was buggy from the moment I purchased it. I was having constant issues before I returned to internal HDD storage. Nowadays I have an entire HDD dedicated to iTunes library.
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