There are two things Apple doesn’t like to tell you before you buy an iPod:
- You can’t copy songs from the iPod back to the computer
- Like any disk, the iPod must be formatted for either Windows or Mac, and while the Mac Finder will recognize the Windows disk, iTunes won’t
But on the eighth day, God created the iPodLounge forums, a place where workarounds could live and multiply.
This morning I have finally managed to consolidate my music from my PC at home and my G4 at work. My iPod is still happily Mac-formatted. I am a happy woman.
Here’s what you need to make it work:
- iTunes for Windows
- XPlay (or MacOpener, or some other app to make Windows read a Mac drive)
- iPodRip, to get the songs off the iPod and back onto the computer
Both XPlay and iPodRip are shareware apps with free trial periods.
How to do it:
- Install XPlay on the PC and iPodRip on the Mac.
- Attach the iPod to the PC. iTunes will bug you about reformatting the drive; click “cancel.” Open the task manager and find ituneshelper.exe. Kill it. (But don’t delete the file from Program Files. iTunes will throw a fit.)
- Open iTunes and sync your music with the iPod. If iTunes doesn’t recognize the iPod, undock it and try again. (Mine took about 4 tries. No idea why.)
- Move the iPod to the Mac. Use iPodRip’s SmartSync function to move the iPod’s songs back to the Mac, unless you feel like dragging them individually.
That’s it. This assumes that you want all the music on the Mac; if you wanted to put it on the PC, poke around iPodLounge and find an app that works like iPodRip for Windows.
Not that I would condone circumventing Apple’s cheesy copy protection or anything.