Recovering a corrupt iPod
Ask iLounge offers readers the opportunity to get answers to their iPod-, iPhone-, iPad-, iTunes-, or Apple TV-related questions from a member of the iLounge editorial team. We'll answer several questions here each week, and of course, you can always get help with more immediate concerns from the iLounge Discussion Forums. Submit your questions for consideration using our Ask iLounge Submit Form. We reserve the right to edit questions for grammar, spelling, and length.
Q: My iPod nano recently went funny and iTunes said that it was corrupt. The first thing that I don’t understand is that I don’t know what corrupt in an iPod means, and I dont know how to solve it. I went to another site and they said to send the broken iPod in to them, but I dont know if I can trust them or if I even need to do this. Any suggestions?
A: Generally, an error message in iTunes telling you that your iPod corrupt does not by itself indicate a physical problem with the iPod. The good news is that this means that this is very likely a problem you can solve yourself without actually having to send the iPod in to any kind of a repair service.
Essentially, an iPod nano stores information in much the same way as a computer hard disk or USB memory stick. If the information (ie, the music files and library database) on the iPod becomes damaged or unreadable, iTunes will detect the iPod as being “corrupt” and advise you to restore the iPod back to its factory settings.
A restore will erase everything on your iPod in much the same way that formatting your computer’s hard disk would erase everything on your computer. However, since you’ll be starting with a clean, empty iPod, generally any “corrupted” information will no longer be a problem (since it’s been erased).
If you have been using automatic synchronization and all of your music is still in your main iTunes library, this process is normally quite simple, and no actual data is going to be lost (in this case, your iPod just holds a copy of your music tracks anyway). In this case, simply connect the iPod to your computer, select it in the iTunes source list on the left-hand side of your iTunes window, and then click the “Restore” button which will appear in the main “Summary” screen. Once the restore has been completed, iTunes will take you through the iPod Setup Assistant in much the same way that would for a brand new iPod, and you can reload all of your content in from iTunes.
If you have been managing your iPod content manually and it does not exist on your computer, then you may be at risk of losing your media content, since it would only be stored on the iPod. In this case, you might be able to recover your content before restoring your iPod, depending on how badly corrupted the iPod is. Our iPod 201 tutorial on Copying Content from your iPod to your Computer provides more information on this.
- Will removing a credit card from Safari also remove it from Apple Pay?
- Can I mute Handoff calls coming into my Mac from my iPhone?
- How do I keep my iPhone calls from ringing on my Mac?
- Why doesn’t Traffic show up on my Today Notifications Screen?
- Why doesn’t my iPhone reconnect to Wi-Fi after I turn it on?
- Why can’t I see the iPad-style landscape view on my iPhone 6 Plus?
- Photos hint at improved battery for new Apple Watch
- Spotify penalizing artists who release Apple Music exclusives [Update: Spotify responds]
- Apple releases new round of iOS 10 and tvOS 10 betas
- Report: 2017 iPhone to eliminate home button
- Apple to add payment technology to iPhone for transit passes, Apple Pay in Japan
- Apple releases iOS 9.3.5 ‘security update’
- Report: Apple developing its own Snapchat-style social video editing iOS app
- Apple announces Apple Music Festival lineup including Alicia Keys, Britney Spears + more
- Universal calls an end to exclusives amid criticisms that Apple Music is hurting the industry
- Apple reveals some of its upcoming AI advancements for the iPhone
- Western Digital My Cloud (OS 3)
- Distil Union Stanley Stand
- Philips Sonicare FlexCare Platinum Connected Bluetooth Toothbrush
- Audeze EL-8 Titanium Over-Ear Headphones
- Defined Corp Dome Stand for Apple Watch and iPhone
- Speck StyleFolio Pencil for 9.7” iPad Pro
- Audeze Sine On-Ear Headphone
- First Alert Onelink Wi-Fi Smoke + Carbon Monoxide Alarm
- Logitech Create 9.7” iPad Pro Keyboard Case
- iDevices Outdoor Switch Power Outlet
- Inside the betas: iOS 10 Photos gets Advanced Computer Vision
- Inside the betas: iOS 10 Music app delivers ‘clarity and simplicity’
- Inside the betas: iOS 10 Maps gets a major redesign
- Inside the betas: iOS 10 shakes up the user experience
- Inside the betas: watchOS 3 promises a real speed boost
- Inside the betas: A sneak peek at what’s new in tvOS 10
- Filling the Gap: A look at third-party HomeKit apps
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of tvOS 9.2
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of iOS 9.3
- Opinion: Why Apple needs a dedicated HomeKit app