Splitting iTunes library across two iPods
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: I currently have an 80GB iPod classic which is nearly full (18,702 songs). I am considering purchasing a 160 GB iPod classic to augment my 80 GB. I still have about 4,000 CDs to import to iTunes. Is there a way to operate two iPods with completely different iTunes libraries? Essentially I want to make one iPod totally independent from the other and its associated library, ie. one iPod for rock, country and blues and the other for jazz, classical and world music.
A: Yes, there are a few different ways that you can do this. If you really want to maintain two completely separate iTunes libraries, you can do this by holding down the SHIFT key (Windows) or OPT key (Mac) when starting iTunes, and you will be prompted to either create a new library or choose an existing one.
You can switch between iTunes libraries as often as necessary by using this technique. Note, however, that your iTunes preferences are stored separately, and will apply to both of your iTunes libraries, so you may want to be careful about settings such as your “iTunes Music” folder path.
If you’re a Mac user, you may also want to check our iTunes Library Manager which is an AppleScript that automates this process for you, optionally providing the ability to use different preference settings for each library. An iTunes 8 compatible library manager for Windows is not available, unfortunately.
Note that you do not necessarily need to create two separate libraries simply to separate your iPod content. Alternatively, you could set each of your iPods to sync only selected playlists and store all of your music in a single iTunes library. If you’re basing the separation on genres as you describe this is even easier, as you can create Smart Playlists for your genre groupings and then choose those as the playlists to sync to each of your iPods.
Each iPod that you connect to iTunes is treated as its own distinct device, and you can therefore have different synchronization settings for each one, so you could set one iPod to sync your Smart Playlists for rock, country and blues and your other iPod to synchronize your Smart Playlists for jazz, classical and world music.
Note that you can either use one Smart Playlists for each genre, or you can combine genres into a single smart playlist simply by specifying additional criteria and using the match “ANY” option.
- 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?
- Apple’s new ‘Echo rival’ may feature a camera
- Apple ‘working rapidly’ to extend Apple Pay to more countries
- Report: Apple’s Siri-based Amazon Echo competitor will be a new Apple TV
- Report: Apple SVP Eddy Cue proposed bid to buy Time Warner
- Beta testing for Pokémon GO begins in the U.S.
- Apple’s plan to open stores in India hits a snag (Update: India’s finance minister ratifies ruling)
- Apple looking into charging stations for electric cars
- Apple hires hint at improvements in encryption, health monitoring
- Hyundai adds CarPlay support to more vehicles
- Plaintiffs file new motion to keep ‘Error 53’ Touch ID lawsuit alive
- OtterBox Symmetry Series Hybrid Case for 12.9” iPad Pro
- Logitech Logi BASE Charging Stand for iPad Pro
- Twelve South TimePorter for Apple Watch
- August Doorbell Cam
- August Smart Lock HomeKit enabled + Smart Keypad
- ecobee3 HomeKit-enabled smart Wi-Fi thermostat
- Zagg Now Cam
- Yantouch EyE Portable Wireless Speaker
- Netatmo Wind Gauge
- Incipio Stashback for iPhone 6/6s
- 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
- Inside the betas: What’s new in iOS 9.3 and tvOS 9.2 (Updated)
- Life with HomeKit: Our experiences with Apple’s home automation system
- Under the Radar: 10 ‘hidden’ details about the new Apple TV
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of iOS 9.0
- Under the Radar: A closer look at smaller iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus changes
- A First Look at iOS 9’s Transit in Apple Maps (Updated for watchOS 2)