Q: I have a 60GB iPod (photo), and my iTunes library is bigger than 60 gigs. I also want to leave to room on the iPod for photos. How can I manage my iTunes library so I can still sync at least a portion of a library that is too large to fit on the iPod? Is there a way to do this, or am I stuck manually managing songs and playlists?
A: This is an increasingly common problem, as people become familiar with using their iPods and buy more music, adding it to their iTunes library. Apple would probably like you to buy another iPod, but you don’t have to do that. First, open the iPod preferences when your iPod is connected to your computer. Click the Music tab, then check Only Update Checked Songs.
Next, in your iTunes library, select a few albums that you’re pretty sure you won’t want to listen to in the near future and uncheck their songs. (You can uncheck or check multiple songs by holding down the Command key on Mac, or the Control key on Windows, and clicking a single checkbox in an album list or playlist.)
When you want to put these songs on your iPod again, you’ll have to recheck them and uncheck others. In this manner, you can automatically sync your iPod, keep all your ratings and play counts, and have more music on your computer than on your iPod.