iTunesiPodSo you have a new computer and you want to copy all of your songs over from your iPod. Seems simple enough. You hook up your iPod, open iTunes, and grab the songs and drop them into your iTunes music collection. Except it won’t drop. It gives you the red circle with the slash when you bring your music over to iTunes. Maybe import will work? Nope. You can’t import from your iPod either. So how do you get your music to your new computer? There is software that you can download from the internet and some of it even costs money but you don’t need any of it. It’s actually easy, although unsupported by Apple.

Your iPod is just like a hardrive and when you open up “My Computer” your iPod is right there. It will be listed under “Removable Disk”. When you click on it, it will open and display a few folders but none of them will be your music. That’s because your music folders are hidden. But that’s not a problem. Go to the Tools menu item and select Folder Options… and a box will open with several tabs. Select the View tab. In the Advanced Settings section there will be an option for Hidden Files and Folders. Select the Show hidden files and folders radio buttton and then hit OK.

A new folder will now be displayed named iPod_Control. Open this folder and several new folders will be displayed including one named Music. Copy this folder to your \My Music\iTunes folder under your My Documents folder on your C: drive. This could take awhile depending on how much you have on your iPod. It took about 15 minutes to get all my music downloaded to my PC.

Right click on the folder you just created and select Properties. At the bottom of the window that opens, make sure that the Hidden and Read-Only checkboxes are unchecked, hit OK, and when it asks if it should apply this to all subfolders and files, hit OK. Almost done… Now open iTunes and from the menu select Menu>Add Folder to Library. Navigate to the folder you just downloaded and hit OK and iTunes will start loading your music. A couple of minutes later and you are done. Your computer now has a copy of every song that was on your iPod.

If you use these instructions, let me know how it goes by leaving a comment.