Deleting iPod tracks while away from iTunes

Q: I will soon be away from my iTunes Library for many months, and I’ll be taking my nearly-full 60GB iPod.
 
While away, I will want to gradually delete music tracks from the iPod as I load it up with photo storage over the period I’ll be away from my home PC. How can I delete certain iPod tracks either directly on the device or on a typical cyber café PC without iTunes? Upon my return, the pictures will be downloaded and, of course, the songs can be re-synchronized then.
 
Thanks!

– Jim

A: You have two options. First, you’re always free to mount your iPod on any computer, and delete random *.mp3 files from the X:\iPod_Control\Music\FXX folders on your iPod. The iPod_Control folder is hidden by default, but is easily viewable by selecting “View Hidden Files” in Windows Explorer’s options. This option clearly requires no additional software, but will not update your iPod’s table of contents, meaning that tracks whose source files have been deleted with still appear but simply fail to load when selected in the iPod’s interface.

Alternatively (and preferably), you could utilize a small, lightweight iPod song management program that can be installed and run on the iPod itself. Good news – to our knowledge, at least two such programs exist. In the past, we’ve had success in doing this with both Ephpod and vPod. Give them a try… both are free!

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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