How to fix your iPod, and how to reset your iPod as a USB Disk
My iPod Classic stopped working properly a couple of weeks ago.
My trusty iPod Classic
It wouldn’t sync with iTunes.
I’d plug it in to my laptop and the iPod display would read ‘connected’.
But after about 15 seconds, iTunes would freeze.
If I unplugged the iPod, iTunes would immediately become responsive.
But plug the iPod back in, and once again iTunes would lock up.
If I opened Windows Explorer I couldn’t see the iPod as a device, even if it was plugged in.
The unhelpful information on Apple’s help webpages suggested that I reset the iPod back to factory settings.
But in order to do that, you need to plug the iPod in and then access iTunes.
Except that never worked; iTunes became unresponsive every single time I tried.
I managed, on one occasion, to plug the iPod in and update the Apple USB driver, but that didn’t get me anywhere.
After playing with this problem, and a lot of googling, I came across a random piece of badly meta-tagged information that showed me how to reset my iPod in to USB Disk mode.
I figured why not, I had nothing to lose.
So I performed a hard reset of the iPod, then went straight in to switching it in to USB Disk mode.
Stone me, that worked.
With the iPod thinking it was now a USB Disk, I plugged it in to the laptop, then right clicked on it, and selected Format Disk.
That didn’t work
Then I right clicked on the iPod and selected Scan and Fix Problems.
The laptop thought about this for a while, showing a very slowly-moving progress bar.
After a while the progress bar sped up and then lo and behold, my iPod appeared in Windows Explorer.
My iPod was in iTunes!
I did a full factory reset in iTunes (just in case), and then the iPod came back as a clean/vanilla device.
I syncd my iTunes library (7,173 tracks and 400 podcasts), and within a couple of hours, I had my iPod Classic back in full working order.
Now for the $60,000 question.
How do you reset your iPod in to USB Disk mode?
We all know how to restart our iPods, yes?
You just hold down the middle button and the menu button like this:
How to reset an iPod to USB Disk 1
But, if you want to restart your iPod as a USB Disk, as soon as you’ve done this, and the screen has gone black, you need to hold down the middle button and the next track button, like this:
How to reset an iPod to USB Disk 2
After a few moments your iPod display will look like this:
How to reset an iPod to USB Disk 3
Then you just plug your iPod in to your USB port and do the kind of disk housekeeping that I have described above.
And that’s it.