Copying Music from iPod to Computer

Q: I went to a friend’s house and put plenty of his songs onto my iPod. How can I put these songs into my iTunes Music Library?  iTunes doesn’t seem to let me.

– Palmi

A: Quite simply, there’s a reason Apple has made this difficult… they don’t want the iPod to be an easy enabler for mass piracy. So we’re going to assume the unlikely – your friend also sold you all the CDs for the songs you transferred, so you’re not doing anything wrong.

The iPod’s music is available on the iPod if you “Enable Disk Mode” in iTunes and enable “View Hidden Files” in Windows Explorer (PC) or the Finder (Mac). Look in the iPod’s “iPod_Control” folder, and you’ll see more folders which contain music files, but it will be difficult to find what you want. Because this isn’t very elegant, many third-party software developers have stepped in to make the copying process easier:

If you’re on a PC, try iPodAgent, CopyPod, or iPod Access.

If you’re on a Mac, try PodUtil, iPodRip, or Senuti (Free!).

Furthermore, we’ve written a complete tutorial on the process using PodUtil here.

Jerrod H. is an iLounge Contributing Editor, with frequent contributions to our iPod 101 and 201 tutorials, plus occasional hardware and software product reviews.

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