Q: My laptop crashed and I replaced it. When I plugged in my iPod I was told that my iPod was already linked to another machine and could not be synchronized. I bought CopyPod and have already moved all my music into a folder on my new laptop, but I still cannot sync. Do you have any idea how i can get around this? Should I reset to factory settings and then re-register with this laptop?
A: As discussed in an earlier question above, iTunes keeps track of which iPods are synced with the current library database. This is based not on the computer itself, nor on the music tracks, but is rather a value stored within each individual library database file.
In this case, even though the music has been recovered with CopyPod and presumably reimported into the iTunes library, this is essentially a new database, and iTunes therefore does not recognize this iPod as belonging to it. It is therefore warning you that synchronizing your iPod to this library database is going to result in the content already on it being erased, and then replaced with whatever is in the current iTunes library.
Since you have recovered the content of the iPod with iTunes, then in reality your iTunes library should already contain the same information that is on your iPod. Therefore, selecting “Erase and Sync” will simply replace your iPod with the same content that was already on it previously, based on what is in your iTunes library.
If for some reason you are not being presented with the “Erase and Sync” option, doing a full restore of the iPod certainly won’t be an issue either, since again you’ve already recovered all of the data from the iPod itself. A “Restore” in this case will simply erase everything on the iPod, returning it to factory settings, and you can then set it up as if it were a brand new iPod, transferring your recovered music back onto it in the process.