Updating firmware on 4G 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: I recently got my old fourth-generation iPod out of retirement. I plugged it into my PC and it was recognised and iTunes started up. iTunes then recommended an update for my iPod and I had that installed. A plug icon then showed up on my iPod so I plugged it into the mains. The plug icon will not go away, when I try to reset my iPod the Apple logo comes up, I press play and then a battery with an exclamation mark comes up. I’ve been told it’s a battery issue. Have you ever come across this?
A: This was a actually a pretty common problem with the old fourth-generation iPod. Early iPod models only charged over a 12-volt FireWire connection, and the fourth-generation iPod was actually the first model to allow for both USB synchronization and charging. Unfortunately, for whatever reason Apple didn’t extend that USB power compatibility to the actual firmware update process.
Basically, the second stage of the firmware update requires that the iPod be connected to a power source to ensure the battery doesn’t go dead while it’s flashing the internal ROM chips, however the update process fails to recognize a USB connection as a valid power source, accepting only the 12-volt FireWire connection. Originally, this wasn’t a big problem as these iPod models shipped with a FireWire-based charger that could be used to complete the restore process. The plug icon essentially meant, “Connect your iPod to the wall adapter” which would have been a 12-volt FireWire connection.
Of course, with every iPod released since 2005 now using USB charging only, FireWire cables and adapters have become much more difficult to locate. Sadly, finding a FireWire power source is still the only solution to completing the firmware update process. You will need to find a Dock Connector to FireWire cable and either a FireWire plug adapter or a powered FireWire port on a computer. It’s also worth noting that many older accessories such as speakers also have Dock Connectors that provide 12-volt FireWire charging power, so this might also be worth a try if you have one of these accessories around.
- 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 Music to supply content to Musical.ly
- Apple now withholding royalty payments to Qualcomm as dispute escalates
- New Puff Daddy Documentary will be another Apple Music exclusive
- Apple releases fifth beta of iOS 10.3.2
- Report: Apple’s Jimmy Iovine still has ambitious video plans for Apple Music
- Apple executive talks using AI to boost human memory
- Apple rolling out ‘Today at Apple’ educational courses starting in May
- Smart home device maker iDevices acquired by Hubbell
- Apple delays ‘Carpool Karaoke’ release to ‘later this year’
- Dutch court rules Apple can’t replace broken iPads with refurbished models
- FABRIQ AirPlay and Bluetooth Alexa-Enabled Speaker
- Advanced Evo X & M4
- Advanced Mezger aptX Bluetooth Receiver
- iDevices Wall Switch
- iDevices Wall Outlet
- Koogeek Wi-Fi SmartSocket for Apple HomeKit
- Sony MDR-1000X Wireless Noise-Canceling Headphones
- FiiO i1 Lightning to 3.5mm Headphone Adapter
- Blue Ella Headphones
- Apple iPad (Fifth-Generation)
- Top Five: The Best Products for Building a Smart Home with HomeKit
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of watchOS 3
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of tvOS 10
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of iOS 10
- 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