How to extract songs off your iPod using iTunes


Question ” How do I extract songs that are on my iPod into my music library on my computer? “

Well, for this problem, we are going to use a software application which you should/would have if using an iPod, the good ol’ iTunes. Below is a simple 4 step process in which we can accomplish our goal.

Step # 1: Convert your iPod to act as a drive on your computer

As soon as you plug in your iPod to your computer, the OS would recognize the external device and install the drivers needed for it. Now go to ‘My Computer’, and see if your iPod is being recognized as a disk drive. Your iPod should fall inline after any extra hardrives or Cd-Roms and should read ‘Removable Disk’. If your iPod is showing up, great! You have completed step 1.

iPod as a drive on your computer

Step # 2: Enable ‘View hidden files’ on your iPod

This next step requires us to actually see what is on the iPod through windows explorer. Double click on your iPod icon.

Once it’s opened, go to Tools > Folder Options and click the View tab. You’ll see a bunch of different options for the way Windows displays files. In the Hidden files and folders section, select “Show hidden files and folders”, then click OK. Then close that window. Now we are able to view hidden files.

It is a little bit different if you are using Windows Vista

First double click on your iPod icon in Windows Explorer. Then click on Organize ->Folder and Search Options. In there click on the View tab then enable the show the hidden files and folders option and click OK.

Enable hidden file view in Windows Vista

Step # 3: Enable your iTunes to view the hidden songs on your iPod

After you enabled the ‘View hidden files’ option, you will see a new greyed out folder in your iPod drive. The folder name is Ipod_Control. Once you enter this folder, you will see three hidden folders: Device, iTunes and Music. The Music folder is the one storing all the music on your iPod. However the files are also hidden and your iTunes can’t see hidden files. So, right click on the Music Folder, and select properties. There should be a section that says attributes. Uncheck the hidden box and click apply. It will then ask you how you want to apply these changes. Select the “apply changes to selected subfolders and files” and click ok. Now your files should be visible for iTunes to see them.

Enable iTunes to view hidden mp3

Step # 4: Import songs through iTunes

We are going to now import the songs through iTunes using the consolidate feature in iTunes.The consolidate option is under file tab in iTunes, then Librarywith a little arrow beside it. Move mouse over that and you should see the option to consolidate library. This will copy all you songs in your iTunes Library to My Music->iTunes->iTunes Music, so if you ever need to find any songs file from your iTunes Library you will go to My Music->iTunes->iTunes Music.

Before we do this, if you are using iTunes 7, make sure that your iPod is set to manually update. If not, click on Edit tab, and click preferences. Choose iPod and first tab, Music. On the third selection you can tell your iPod to manually update. Now we are ready.

Manually update songs on iPod

Next choose file from top menu, and add folder to library… Now browse to the iPod that is acting as a hard drive, click and open iPod control, and you should see a music folder now. When music is blue select ok, and watch all your songs from your iPod be imported into iTunes. Now that these files are in iTunes you see that the funny letters and numbers for each song do not show up anymore. Now we have our songs in the library and the actual song files are still on the iPod.

Note: If you were to disconnect your iPod the songs would not play in iTunes.

To copy all songs in your iTunes library to your computer we will use the consolidate feature, which will bring all songs from your iPod to your My music/iTunes/iTunes Music/ folder and sort the artists into folders nice and neat.

You are all set… congratulations!

Update from our user RS

By using the technique outlined in this article, if you copy the songs from your ipod to your itunes library you have to consolidate your library after. And this means you have to make a copy of your entire iTunes Library and most people have over 20gb of songs and they only want to copy the ones from their ipod.

To copy only the songs from your ipod.

After you checked off the box to see the hidden files in the Ipod_Control Properties. Go back to iTunes and click on Edit->Preferences->Advanced and check the box Copy files to iTunes Music folder when adding to library.
After this you can continue the steps above and click on File->Add Folder To Library->My Computer->Removable Drive (iPOD being regonized as a hard drive)->Ipod_Control->Music and then click OK.

The songs from your iPod will be in iTunes and the names of the songs will appear eventually. And you will be able to play the songs without your iPod plugged in.

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245 replies to this post
  1. as soon as i try to open my ipod as a drive it dissapears from my computer, as itunes detects it and swoops it away….so i have to keep disconnecting it and reconnecting it as it only appears for me for about 10 seconds, can i save the ipod files onto a flash drive and then transfer them onto my computer without it being connected to my ipod?

  2. When I get to step 4, the controls I’m supposed to use I don’t see them. I went back to the fist step and everything was followed correctly. Did any one else have this problems?…can someone please let me know if they had this problem and how did they fix it.


    • Hi Mary, when you use an iPhone you’ve got two options. If you purchased the songs in the iTunes store, you can use the “Transfer purchases” option in iTunes. Connect your iPhone to your PC, right-click on the iPhone in iTunes and click “Transfer purchases”. If you didn’t purchase your music in iTunes, you’ll have to use a third party app. Some of them can be found here:
      Not all, but most of them support the iPhone.

  3. everything was going fine until i got to step 4. I still can’t get the music onto itunes, nothing comes up. The only way I got a song was by clicking it individually, and I’m not doing that with more than 1000 songs. :/

  4. weird question. i have an ipod gen 5 (i think, the one with video).. whenever i play the ipod, all songs are there, great. but when i connect it to my laptop (running on windows) or when i connect ipod to my car’s USB, i can’t find the songs i want!

  5. Hey another way to get the songs off your iPod using these steps is to just open the music folder, open all the folders within this one, copy and paste the music there into your own music folder and transfer it that way.
    Thats what i did and it transferred perfectly, and onto itunes without having to change any settings.

  6. i have done the show hidden files thing etc but i still cannot see the files…. i have 2 ipods it works on one and not the other.. its an ipod touch can anyone help??

  7. I was able to get all of my music onto my computer, and then onto itunes just fine. The song titles and artists show up properly in Itunes, but not on my computer. In the file I made so I could transfer my songs over, they all come up as random letters. Is there any way to fix this?

  8. i formated my ipod and i lost all my ipod controls,how can i get those because it say 0 music but i learnt that there is a file called ml_iPod 3.01. Version 3.02.

  9. Awesome thing to know, and very easy to follow. I had to factory restore my computer, so I lost all of my saved iTunes songs, but I still had them on my iPod. Good to have them back on my iTunes. Thanks a ton!

  10. This worked perfectly for me with the update on my new IPOD touch getting music from someone elses ipod into my library. Thank you!

  11. i have a 64g ipod touch and am trying to get all my files from my ipod into my new itunes, which i lost when my computer crashed. i have windows vista.
    i tried to do this. i get to the part to enable hidden files but i have no folder that says ipod_control.
    all of my purchased items were restored to my itunes and everything else is still on the ipod.

  12. hey i have an ipod classic and windows 7, when i plug it in, it installs the drivers and itunes recognizes it but when i go to my “computer” it does not show up at all. what can i do about this?

  13. dude im so confused in my ipod i only have “internal storage” thats it. after i go through this method, it still it only “internal storage” it doesnt change, and based on the other tutorials ive looked at its not just supposed to say “internal hardrive” alone >_< someone help?!

  14. i jus did a simple copy and paste from my computer and it worked fine now im uploading them 2my other ipod.. i thought it would b much more of a task then it was… the transfer takes longer then ne thing… thanks for the infor askstudent!!!!!

  15. Thanks worked great i always knew there was some way Apple was able to make this impossible to do now i don’t need any bull crap programs like IPod to computer to extract my music from multiple IPod’s. Great info man thanks a lot!

  16. is there any way to do it if the ipod you’re using is not synced with the laptop that you’re trying to get the music onto? It keeps on being removed as a ‘removable software device’ from my computer? “/

  17. When I tried to click on _Ipod_Control File, it wouldn’t let me acess it. It came up with this message saying that the computer didn’t know how to open it, and it gave me a list of programs. I clicked to open the Ipod Control file with Itunes, and it didn’t do anything. What should I open the Ipod Control file with?

  18. Thank you, thank you, thank you! My tower pc and my laptop had completely different iTunes libraries for almost a year before I got fed up and tried to fix it myself. Now it all gets to be on my iPod.

    Thank you, thank you, thank you!

  19. Does this work for the Ipod Touch?
    Or is there a different set of steps? Because when I go to click on the iPod folder it shows it as a Digital Camera and I can only download pictures/wallpaper off of it. There doesn’t seem to be any hidden folders either.
    Please help! :(

  20. ok ive done all the steps and everything works out. But is there a way to make it so you can eject the ipod and still listen to the music that you’ve transferred to iTunes. The main idea i did this is because i got an new computer and new ipod and i just wanted to use the old ipod as a “memory card” to put it one the new computer and then on to the new ipod. sounds confusing but the help would be VERY apreciated. Thanks

    • Did anyone ever get an answer to the question posted by “Dude”? I’ve followed all of the steps and it worked in moving all of the music to my itunes library, but once the ipod has been disconnected, when I try to play one of the songs I get the following message: “The song “***” could not be used because the original file could not be found. Would you like to locate it?” Then, if I click “locate” it just takes me to all of my files and I’m not really sure what to do, as none of them open? HELP!
      Thanks so much

      • I have the same situation. I cannot get the files off of my library on to my new Ipod which is what I wanted to do because all of the songs have exclamation marks next to them. How do I get them to play and how do I transfer them on to my new I pod. PLEASE X X

        • u haven’t read the last bit of this article but ill copy and paste it for u in this reply , it works ive just done it and wen i take my iPod off i can still listen to the songs wen the i pods not connected

          Update from our user RS

          By using the technique outlined in this article, if you copy the songs from your ipod to your itunes library you have to consolidate your library after. And this means you have to make a copy of your entire iTunes Library and most people have over 20gb of songs and they only want to copy the ones from their ipod.
          To copy only the songs from your ipod.
          After you checked off the box to see the hidden files in the Ipod_Control Properties. Go back to iTunes and click on Edit->Preferences->Advanced and check the box Copy files to iTunes Music folder when adding to library.
          After this you can continue the steps above and click on File->Add Folder To Library->My Computer->Removable Drive (iPOD being regonized as a hard drive)->Ipod_Control->Music and then click OK.
          The songs from your iPod will be in iTunes and the names of the songs will appear eventually. And you will be able to play the songs without your iPod plugged in.

  21. idump is much faster for doing this and it will retitle all the songs and arrange them all in their own foders by artist in my music

  22. hey, it is either im stupid or you are dumb. in fact at least 40-50% of the guys here couldn’t get a schit. only the first portion was clear as crystal, but right after the part where you explain on how to “add the library” everything is so unclear like rubbish. if you want people to learn something, please put it in point form for everyone. don’t type so many words, very confusing, hope you will learn one day.

  23. for the love of god! it doesnt have a consolidate option! only options in file library are export library and organize library. im gonna assume that its export?

  24. I have extracted music using this method twice now and both times i have had some songs come up with the names of the songs as 4 random letters. Does anyone know a solution to this problem?

  25. I am trying to do this, but my computer is showing my iPod touch as a digital camera and it only recognizes the pictures. I went into the folder options and clicked for it to show the hidden files, but nothing changed and I have no idea why the music isn’t showing up because it shows up in iTunes when I plug my iPod into my computer. Can you help me?

  26. My Music seems to be everywhere !!! Itunes, My Music, Documents, Documents and Settings and to top it off I just lost all my music on itunes 9 and had to reinstall my music back into itunes but it copied all my music at least 3 times so now i have to delete Duplicates which is going to be time consuming. S—. !!!! Im lost with this and not sure what to do, I want itunes music and want a complete back-up of all my music. Can someone please Help Me. Thanks. Randall

  27. Hi Thanks for process details .

    for me I could not find consolidate directly it was like

    Library -> Organize library

    in the message box then check the check box to consolidate the file

    this is very helpful thank again

    • The one step that was tricky was finding the consolidate option. You can find it by going to File > Library > Organize Library > Check Consolidate Library….

      Thanks again!

  28. My hard drive crashed, I had all my music in it (Itunes), but also on my Ipod. I’m about to receive my computer with a new hard drive (no back up), but I want to recover all my music from my Ipod to my computer (to Itunes)

    How can I do it without losing all the info in each song?, I have 6750 songs, all of them with artwork, lyrics, composer, album name, etc.

    It is Windows Vista

    Someone could help me?


    • You have a back up. the original hard drive. Place it inside of an enclosure and extract its data (restore) to your new laptop.!!

  29. Thanks a ton! It seemed nearly impossible to find a tutorial for vista online. My old computer crashed and now that I have my new one I wanted my tunes back. thanks again :)

  30. Thanks so much…oh, I was going crazy trying to get this done because I got a new laptop and iTunes wouldn’t accept my music. This helped a lot!

  31. Hi there, well this is fun, your steps are really consices, thank you BUT I’ve done all the steps up to “Now browse to the iPod that is acting as a hard drive, click and open iPod control, and you should see a music folder now” which is all good but my music folder only contains folders with names like “F00” and “F01” and so on.
    When I click into these I get “No Items Match Your Search”.
    I’m using an ipod nano with 4GB of music on it – I’m using stupid Vista 32 bit version (not for long) and itunes 8, any ideas what is going on?!

  32. OMFG!!!!!!!! U ARE A FUCKIN LIFE SAVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    My Ipod is over 4 years old… its the first generation Ipod Mini and its dieing…
    its been good to me over the years but the ship is sinking….
    and i desperately needed to make sure the situation didn’t go the same way as the titanic did!
    So thank you for allowing my songs to JUMP SHIP! before it was too late! THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    cause it would have been one hell of a tragedy if 4,000 songs went down with her…

  33. Well, it worked for me for the most part, just wasn’t able to get the entire folder so I had to do it manually XP But nevertheless, this was rather useful, thanks!!

  34. Unfortunately nothing happened after I followed all the files were copied from my iPod…is there a reason for this?

    Many thanks! It seems this is a great technique for most people!

  35. I am currently attempting this and I sincerely hope it works…I will never go so delete crazy on my computer again; lost almost everything, so I’m desperately hoping your method works. But it looks like it will, so I’m not sinking into despair yet, haha.

  36. your advice has worked well so far up till the consolidate library part i get an error window that says: “Copying files failed. The file name was invalid or too long” any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanx guys

  37. Dude I love you. I downloaded some bs program that i didn’t realise only worked for like ten songs and then you had to buy it and I was like:
    There must be a more obvious and program free way to do this.


    there was! WOOOOO

  38. Hi,
    I followed all the steps and everything worked until i tried to add a folder to library and nothing happened. I am working with a vista dell laptop and a ipod nano. Any help would be really appreciated as I am about to throw both my laptop and ipod out the window!!!!!

  39. u are a fucking dumbass….. this is bullshit…. it doesn’t fucking wr…. sock my cock… hijo de la gran puta

  40. I tried to do everything but when going to File/Add folder to library/My cumputer/Drive E /Ipod/Music…. and click ok… nothing happens… did I missed something I did absolutely everything you guys told me… my laptop crashed so i lost all my music from itunes so i just have my music in my ipod.. and i wanna trasnsfer them to my mew laptop… pls. HELP..!!!

    • Thank you so much!
      This is one reason I dislike iPods, but you made this process so simple, it’s not even an issue anymore. I just purchased a new laptop because my old one (containing all my music) crashed. I was really upset because I thought I had lost all my music and was going to have to pay, on top of the cost of a new computer, upwards of $150 for extraction software. But no-sir-ee. This is absolutely wonderful. Thank you so much! (:

      • Don’t sweat it. Find out how to manually remove your hard drive from your old desktop/laptop and place it inside of an enclosure. And restore your files as an external drive. Cost: less than 20 dollars!!

  41. Awesome, it took me a while but it worked out at the end. THANKS. YOU ARE THE BEST! I would buy you a beer if i could :)

  42. To all the people having problems at the ‘click add folder to library’ step, make sure you are clicking on add FOLDER to library, and not add FILE. Evidently, if you use add file and you select a folder, nothing happens. The two options are one above the other.

  43. Thank you so much, holy hell. This is so helpful. My ipod has been acting up and it thought that i was going to loose thousands of dollars worth of music off of my ipod but now it is all safe. Thank you so much once again.

  44. When I try to consolidate my iTunes library I get the error message:

    “There is not enough room on “C:\” to copy all of the requested files.”

    How do I get around this? Thanks!

  45. I got it! vista is a little different. The last step so that you dont have to play the songs in your comp without having to connect the ipod is to go to file>library>consolidate. Whoa! You are done!

  46. i am on the last step. I want to consolidate it. But when I click the tad advance, there is not consolidate as compared to my other itunes on my other laptop. I just downloaded to newest itunes on my wife’s comp and the consolidate is not there. How will I consolidate it? TY

  47. When I go to consolidate my library, it says theres an unknown error (-69). Does anyone know what that means or what to do about it?

  48. The problem with this technique is that if you copy the songs from your ipod to your itunes library you have to consolidate your library after. And this means you have to make a copy of your entire iTunes Library and most people have over 20gb of songs and they only want to copy the ones from you ipod.

    To copy only the songs from your ipod.

    After you checked off the box to see the hidden files in the Ipod_Control Properties. Go back to Itunes and click on
    Edit->Preferences->Advanced and check the box Copy files to iTunes Music folder when adding to library.
    After this you can continue the stepd above and click on
    File->Add Folder To Library->My Computer->Removable Drive (IPOD being regonized as a hard drive)->Ipod_Control->Music and then click OK.

    And you Songs from your Ipod will be in itunes and the names of the songs will appear eventually. And you will be able to play the songs without you Ipod plugged in.


  49. To Consolidate you Library

    File -> Library-> Consolidate Library

    This will copy all you songs in your iTunes Library to
    My Music->iTunes->iTunes Music, so if you ever need to find any songs file from your iTunes Library you will go to
    My Music->iTunes->iTunes Music.


  50. I have an ipod touch 2g with 2.2.1 software. I am able to find my ipod in the my computer section but that is as far as I can get. I have set it to show hidden folders but there is still nothing there. Could someone please help me!? I am using Windows Vista. I would appreciate any help you can give me!

    • I am having the same problem. I have Itunes on my laptop, but my brother just got a laptop and its his Ipod Touch. I cannot find the hidden folders even though I turned them on. Did you get a solution to this problem?

  51. its easier just to copy the removeable disc folder and paste it into your documents, then just unlock the hidden files like said above and then when you put the songs on itunes, they still work even though the ipods not connected.

    your welcome =]

  52. Hey It worked great- but i want to consolidate my library now, and ive done it before and im wondering if it will copy all my music again or not? im hoping it will just copy the ones which arent allready in it – i dont want 2 copies of everything…
    Can anyone tell me what happens?

  53. I can’t seem to complete step 1 because whenever I go to my computer I don’t see my iPod as a disk drive, even though my ipod is plugged in. I have an iPod Touch g2, I have tried to enable the disk drive, but I don’t see the option. I go to the Summary page and scroll down but it doesn’t say anything. I also tried to look at the preferences, but it doesn’t say anything about enabling the disk drive.

  54. Worked great thanks, saved me heaps of stuffing around. I had a ipod mini from 2001 and had heaps of albums i have lost now.. Transfered it over to my iphone now, all is sweet… had a little trouble consolidating but got it sorted all with the current software… The consolidate function is in the file tab in itunes, then library, then consolidate library… If that helps anyone… Peace out

  55. Hey…..this has worked up until i try to consolidate….i am unable to do it as i get an error msg saying unable to find original file??
    Plz help!!

    • If it says unable to find original file that means you must have deleted that song out of your library folder. Delete it off of your library.

  56. I just finished extracting the songs off my wifes i pod (Her computor crashed). Thanks for the tips, she only had about 200 songs on hers. Now I need to extract from my i pod. I have over 5,000 songs @ about 20 gig. How can I transfer them to an external hard drive because I don’t have enough room on my computor.

  57. So once you consolidate your library to your iTunes Music folder, that means you can delete all the doubles off your iPod and change names if need be? Because I deleted the doubles out of my Music folder from the iPod disk drive folder, but they’re still on there. Help please?

  58. Hey guys! For all of you who are having a hard time finding the “Consolidate” option…i really had to search for it….it’s under file, and then when you look down there’s an option that says Library with a little arrow beside it…mouse over that and TA DAAAA there’s the option to consolidate! You’ll know its working because a little thing pops up that says copying and has a progress bar on it. It does take a while, especially if you have a lot of stuff on your ipod…but now that I know this, I’m going to start getting music from my friends! 😉 I hope this helps! other than that this worked great! I feel dumb that it took me this long to do! haha!

  59. didnt work for me. i was at step 4 where you had to press File and Add folder to library… my iPod was a drive, just like you said in step 1, but it wouldnt show up in the “Add to Library” menu. can u help me?

  60. these steps were great until i came to step 3. even after i told windows to view all hidden files, the file (ipod_control), didn’t come up i also went to itunes and checked the box,(manually manage music and videos) i don’t know if im missing something or not…..please help!!!!!!

  61. I had trouble with the consolidate thing.

    Just go to File/Library/Consolidate Library

    It takes awhile at first…so hopefully you have a fast computer :)

  62. Thanks everything worked fine except the titles of the song, some didn’t have their original names back. If anyone knows how to get it back, tell me =)

    To find the consolidate libarary, go to File->Library>Consolidate Library.

  63. TAT
    I couldn’t get very far. ‘Folder options’ didn’t appear when I clicked on ‘Tools’. I followed all your instructions to the letter; actually there’s not much prior to clicking Tools as you can well imagine so I couldn’t have done something wrong. Would you have any ideas about what’s wrong?

  64. this worked up until consolidate library. when i try that, it says the file name is too long. i don’t know where to go from here.

  65. hey thanks! this is awesome. couldnt find my songs as they were hidden, although i already changed the setting for them to be visible. so in the end i just searched for all mp3 /m4a files in my comp and there they were!

    hahah thanks once again

  66. I followed these steps up to Step 2. Worked like a charm. I have a 60 GB Ipod, and since I’ve had it, I’ve gone through numerous HD formats, basically losing all my music every time. Now, I’ve bought myself an External HD, and was trying to figure out how to get my music off my Ipod. This worked like a charm. Once I was able to unhide all the folder I found the music folder, and copied those files/folder to my HD. Once you do this, select all those folders from your HD, right click & double click “read only” & “hidden” making sure both are unchecked afterwards, and hitting “apply”. added all those folders to my Itunes, and did a convert to MP3. This tutorial saved me a lot of time and hardship. Now to figure out where the videos are.

  67. ThankyouthankyouthankyouTHANKYOU! My stupid computer totally wiped out my music and my backup disk kept getting stuck on one song (no clue why…) This is an awesome solution, without having to get that 30 dollar software. A similar situation happened to a friend with her system, but she has a lot of videos/shows on her ipod. Would this work with those files?

  68. For some reason with vista i coulnt open the files on itunes and import them that way. I copied the unhidden music file to my desktop and dragged in whatever songs i wanted. the only thing you can do it delete the folder from the desktop, put them in the music folder in my computer! worked for me !! :)

  69. Thanks
    this was a great help absolutly fantastic, wprked perfectly! i was a bit scared that i might lose my files from my ipod aswell but didnt experience nything lyk dat!

  70. This was a great step by step example. Everything worked perfectly. These instructions were easier to understand than the directions on the Itunes website.Thank you so much!!!!!!

  71. how do you separate music on your ipod like for example one file for my brother and one for me…how can i do that?please help

  72. once I un-hid the music files, I dragged and dropped (aka copied) the folder to my desktop, then uploaded that folder through iTunes and it worked!

    thanks for the info on how to un-hide everything!

  73. It works perfectly fine for me except that after I consolidate, the file names are still weird letters, although it shows as the real song title on iTunes.

    How do I get it to be consolidated with the real title? :(

    • “Now browse to the iPod that is acting as a hard drive, click and open iPod control, and you should see a music folder now. When music is blue select ok, and watch all your songs from your iPod be imported into iTunes. Now that these files are in iTunes you see that the funny letters and numbers for each song do not show up anymore.”

  74. this guide works to the letter if you just read the directions very carefully and do what it tells you to do, not that hard. a great big THANKS! from a greatful college student 😀

  75. Thanks for the clear instructions. Worked a treat. Finally found how to consolidate my library under File Library Consolidate Library. This worked as well. Now ready to start putting more music onto my ITunes and then IPod.

  76. Followed the instructions. All went well up until consolodating the library. After doing so, all files were erased. Using ITunes Is there any way to recover? Thanks

  77. this shit sucks. it uploaded fine. and i went to go edit my library, so i did. then i thought. if i delete my ipod files on the ipod and not the files on the computer, i can just resync it. no. thats not the plan. this doesnt tell you to save the files. you must save the files. now all my shit is gone. thanks a lot. fuck this program. and fuck itunes. and fuck apple

  78. I followed all the steps above, but when it came time to go to File > Add Folder to Library… then I select the device, I click on iPod_Control and I highlight the Music folder. When I click OK nothing happens O_o any ideas?

  79. this might be the dumbest thing ever. what is the point? When you plug your ipod you can listen to those songs via itunes anyway! Why would you want to import the song files into your library? Now all you have is a grip of songs listed on your library that you can’t listen to without your ipod.

    This is pointless, useless, time consuming and I can’t imagine any of you who read this can come up with one reason why this is a good thing.

    Seriously, I am livid as to why you would suggest that anyone do this. F@$&ing idiot.

    • if its someone elses ipod who has a bunch of decent songs, if your hard drive has been wiped but your ipod still contains your library, if you lost your itunes library for any reason… didn’t really think it through did you.?

  80. thank you so much for putting this up! you saved me from endless hours of useless work. this just worked perfectly!! thank you!!!!! especially for the vista instructions, this was easy and informative.

  81. This didn’t work for me, well it sort of did.

    instead of going to import file i just opened up the hidden folders
    and then dragged them into itunes, since the other way didn’t work.

    this way it saved them all, without me having to have my ipod plugged in for it to work.

  82. i was able to extract songs from my ipod but after i connected another ipod i wasn’t able to get them out anymore. after i enable the show hidden files it doesn’t show the hidden files. someone please help. thnx for any feddbacc.

  83. i was able to extract songs from my ipod but after i connected another ipod i wasn’t able to get them out anymore. after i enable the show hidden files it doesn’t show the hidden files. someone please help. thnx for any feddbacc.

  84. ok ok ok ok…i reallyhope this works cause i tried the i-copy thing and it didnt work…..i havent consolidated yet but the other steps ran through like a charm =]

  85. I also get this message – ‘ cannot be transfered because the original file cannot be found.’ after I try to sync songs back to ipod nano. Please Help!

  86. ok so i did all that..
    and it seemed ot be working great
    butwhen i go to add folder to library, it just says that it is unable to do so , the parameter is incorect….
    any idea what that means and how i can fix it?

  87. Hello, I am wondering if instead of saving songs into the iTunes library (and on the hard drive of my pc) can I instead save them onto a thumb drive? I need to free up memory that is taken up by all of the songs I have on my pc and I am thinking that if I save music to my thumbdrive, I can open them up again in iTunes, and manage what I place on my iPod through that rather than take up space on my hard drive. Please advise. I have saved all of my songs to a thumbdrive as well as iTunes (actually I have saved the entire My Music folder) and I want to test this theory by deleting the songs from iTunes library so I can have more memory available. Will this work? Help! Thanks

  88. thanks for this it helped a lot. ive been trying to figure this out forever and i finally got it. the only thing that i had a problem with at first and others may have the same problem is that i had to go back and click the unhide checkbox again and then it worked. thanks again

  89. Thank you so much!
    I’m still waiting on the consolidate thing
    You were the only one who had the steps for Vista since I couldn’t find the “Tools” thing
    Thank you sooo much again!

  90. I have i tunes the latest version for an i pod nano. In the music tab i dont have the option of manually syncing my music onto the i pod. How do i enable this button to work???? please help this is very frustraiting

  91. Few problems had first, but after following the instructions fully worked perfectly, thanks alot. Took about 30minutes for over 15GB of music. Thanks again.

  92. My girlfriend just got a computer with Vista and I can see her music through the reveal hidden files and all her playlists, but with I consolidate the library nothing happens. What am I doing wrong?

  93. I have tried thismethodandit works perfectly! but not all my are in my library, I have 67 song missingeven though I unlocked all the hidden files, how do i find the 67missing tracks?

  94. OK, sooo I am using Windows Vista & the newest version of iTunes with my black 5th gen iPod….

    When I try to add the highlighted music folder into iTunes, I click “ok”, and yet nothing happens! I have gone thru the steps three times to try and fix this problem but it’s not working. I’m not sure how to fix this as I am not a tech junkie :(

    Any help is greatly appreciated!

  95. you dont need to consolidate your music what i did was went to edit- prefrences then under the advance tab then the general tab within that tick copy files to itunes music folder so when you add the wired named files into itunes it will copy to your itunes music folder on C: drive and it will be named properly aswell.

  96. This was a huge help! I was thinking I’d have to transfer all my music files on a flash drive or use some 3rd party software, but this worked great!

  97. Thanks so much putting this info out I was freaking out thinking thtat i would be able to transfer all my old music from my old ipod to my new one. i recently had all my cds stolen out of my car ;-( so i was straving for a way to get music!

  98. thank you soooo much for this!!
    it’s worked a charm so far, although i’ll wait ’til it’s finished consolidating until I breathe easy
    i thought it was impossible to do this without third party softwear, but evidently not. THANK YOU

  99. Thanks so much for these step-by-step instructions and kudos for adding the Vista info! In all of 30 mins I have added all the songs on my ipod to the new drive in my laptop – worked like a charm!!! Works so well in fact that I was tipped off to this posting when I called an iStore and was told to come here!!!!!

    I need to set up a PalPay acct, but think I will be buying you a couple of beers. Good luck at school.

  100. I did all of it but now I can’t edit my song info in ipod. i have vista and i right click on a song in the ipod section on get info. then it shows the info like the artist and song etc. but then i can’t edit it anymore it’s just grey.

  101. hi.. now i think i followed your steps…. but i have experienced a slight hicup… after reformating my ipod.. when i try to tranfer the music back to the ipod…. i get a message saying ‘ cannot be transfered because the original file cannot be found.’

    do you know what i’ve done wrong?? is there anything i can do to access my music????


  102. Thank You soooo much! I’ve been trying to figure this out for a long time. This was so easy and helped me 100%. Thank you again, i really apreciate this lol

  103. good job friend! nice and easy. thks for the sharing. for once i thought i would lose all my music and videos from my ipod video and thought i had to re-convert and re-download them all over again.

    but one tip here after u’ve done it sucessfully, i.e. nv change the funny-lettered file names, ur ipod would not be able to play them. i thought after renaming the file names i could easily locate my videos and songs in future, after doing so, my ipod just dun play the video at all (i din try on the music yet tho). and never try to minimize the no. of folders (F00, F01, F02, etc..). i tried to put all the files into 2 folders, 1 for music and 1 for videos, this might hv been one of the reasons why my videos didnt play. but thank God i kept a backup of the funny-lettered files. now i’m in the midst or re-importing them into my ipod.. 😀

    thanks again dude..or babe.. keke.. :B

  104. This message is for those having trouble extracting their songs into the pc after adding the files to itunes… after you add the folder and your ipod finds the songs and adds them to the music file then u must go to advanced> consolidate and click on that…this will copy all of the songs into the music folder of the itunes library…it works i just did it and it works so Ian stop being an asshole and follow the instructions… consolidate your songs and u will be able to play the songs without being plugged in… by the way it worked with the latest Itunes and Ipod software…


  106. Hey,
    I did all the steps word for word but on that final step I highlight music, then I click ok, nothing happends. I tryed moving each file seperatly but that doesnt work either. If anyone can help, that would be great.

  107. Follow the directions completly and you will be able to play the songs using Itunes without your iPod connected.

    The only problem with this method is the files on your computer still have the cryptic “TXCV” file names. Even some of the files in the itunes library have the cryptic name.

    I wanted a way to extract the songs with the names to my hard drive. I wanted to be able to play them without loading Itunes. I found a free program called Music Rescue. It loads directly on your iPod and runs directly from your iPod. No software gets installed on the host computer. There is both the Windows and MAC version in the same download. I do not have the web site. Search Google and Yahoo for about 15 minutes and you will find several other FREE utilities out there that do the same iPod extraction.

  108. i did everything and all of the songs went into my library, when i sycned the songs, it wiped them from my ipod then said it could not locate the songs anymore, and they werent in the folder where i got them from origonally!. im really upset, can you help me
    thanks :)

  109. Dan, are you sure that when you plugged your iPod in, and opened iTunes, that you clicked Manually Update? If not, it’s right on the main menu of your ipod in itunes. everything is working so far, i’m waitint for everything to upload so i can consolidate. the next question i have though is i’m working off of a second library in itunes for my external hard drive and i don’t know how to manage those songs just for my itunes library on my external hard drive, not the library on the desktop computer. anyone have suggestions?

  110. Hello

    I can’t get past the first step of this. When I connect my ipod to the PC it doesn’t show as a separate drive in My Computer. Can you tell me why this might be?


  111. To Miranda- Are you using Vista? I was, and i couldn’t find the “Tools” button anywhere. But then I started looking around and you just have to hit the “ALT” key when you are at the page and then a new toolbar will come up. Hope that helped.

  112. Hello everybody!
    This guide is great, I did this a couple of years ago but it was on an really old version of itunes and I guess apple just try to make this process harder with the new versions.

    anyway, a lot of folks are asking about the “consolidate” function. It is found under the Advanced tab in iTunes. It simply puts iTunes up to date with the files on the iPod. It gathers the library, which is the translation in the swedish version of iTunes :)

    However, when I consolidate, it works for a while then an error occurs (-50) and I have to restart the process again. The files that were transfered before the error occured are safe in iTunes, but I have to consolidate over and over again until I get all the stuff from the ipod. Could this be caused by some strange files on the ipod, and when itunes try to import them, the shit hits the fan?


  113. Hey this is for the guys who cannot finally put thier songs from thier ipod onto thier itunes files

    all you need to do is go to ipod control then to music and it comes with all these different files (F00 F01 etc) drag the folders which are hidden onto your library (the ones which are transparant)

    KTHXBI x

  114. […] take the music out, just go to the original article and follow their steps. But be warned that this method probably doesn’t work with the newest […]

  115. You Shit hawk moron, I wasted time doing this and yes it works UNITL YOU REALIZE THE TRACKS ONLY PLAY WHILE YOUR IPOD IS ATTACHED……….what good is this???????

    As I thought, YOU ARE NOT ABLE TO “EXTRACT” songs “OFF” your Ipod thru itunes asshole

  116. Hey everybody! I suggest to all of you that have some kind of trouble following the steps to review very carefully what you’re doing. In fact it’s really easy what we’re doing here (I don’t know why I didn’t think to do it this way before!!!) Even tought the files (.mp3) are encrypted on everybody’s iPod with funny names, the mp3’s IDTag that is within any mp3 file in this universe keeps all the info we store from iTunes…

    After all this, we’re calling itself every file from the iPod itself into de iTunes library, and all you need is to tell iTnes where those files are!!! (E.g. n:\iPod_control\Music, where “n” is any unit asigned by windows to your iPod acting as an external massive storage drive). Then, to to finish this great job what we do when we Consolidate the library it’s like if we were telling the iTunes: Please, copy all this music from wherever it is to my iTunes music folder, and we actally know where exactly are those files: On our very same iPod!!!

    Now, if some of you are having some trouble with this, I leave some tips:

    1- If you DIDN’T activate the iTunes’s checkbox Manually manage music”, I’m sorry, in the moment that you connected your iPod to an empty (or diferent) iTunes’s library you replaced anything that was on your iPod with that (nothing or new music, but you replaced the files!!!)

    2- You MUST remove the hidden attribute from the Music folder (and all subfolders and files contained by it) in order to add those files to the library.

    3- The most imporatnt thing!!! Configure windows to see hidden files (Top menu on My PC, Tools, Folder options, Show bla bla bla…) Open iPod_control folder, open Music folder and get sure there’s something on it!!! If the folder is empty or its content does not correspond to the music files you’re looking for (for any reason!)… forgeit, there’s no simple way you can get those files back to your hard drive, sorry.

    Well, I hope this info will be helpful for someone ñ_ñ

  117. (using Vista)…clicked on MUSIC and OK and nothing happened. i see where others have had this problem but some haven’t. has anybody found an answer to this problem? if so, please let me know! THANKS

  118. Thank you so much! This is working cute. With this trick, I retrieved all my songs from iPod and loaded into my new computer’s iTunes. Thanks a ton!!

  119. My son wants to transfer to his music to his own computer. Mine crashed (which is were it was stored) itunes is not even loaded on his yet. Should we load itunes first or move the music off first?

  120. I need to “UNhide” my files, but i cant find “TOOLS” anywhere, and im getting really upset!!!

    Where the heck is that thing

  121. Open iTunes, go to File, go down to Add Folder to Library

    I didnt consolidate library i just added a folder

    works great

  122. i did everything u told, and i double checked it.
    but when i click consolidate to library, nothing really happens. It doesn’t take long time, but no time.
    is there answer to this?

  123. To Benz: I double checked it and i did everything u told. unlocking hidden files and all the others. but when i click the “conslidate to library” nothing really happens. it doesn’t take any LOOONg time, just nothing. hmm.. is there answer to this?

  124. after i click on the “music” folder in the “add folder to library” step, nothing happens! nothing gets added to my library?! any ideas?!

  125. I could not find another website that had such user friendly steps! This worked perfectly, and I’m so glad I found this page! I’m also thrilled that you included instructions for Vista, because that became a big problem trying to find instructions to match it. No one has anything published for Vista yet, but you! Thank you so much! You saved me an eternity of time!

  126. Everything works perfectly for me until the last step, when I am suppose to click on the ipod_control icon…I cannot click on it, and it doesn’t expand. I try just clicking on it to highlight it, and then doing the add folders to library action, but nothing happens. I should mention that this is my brother’s ipod which he gave to me after I lost mine, so it is not registered to my computer…is that a problem?

  127. Benz, you didn’t read the last part of the instructions, you need to “Consolidate” from iTunes to actually transfer the songs (you just transfered shortcuts to the songs on your ipod). I think it’s in Advanced> Consolidate Library. It takes a really long time.

    good luck.

  128. Could you tell me how to play the songs which have been extracted from the ipod to itunes using the computer. Every time I go into a song previously extracted I need the file. The song only plays from the computer when the ipod is connected.

    I´ve got other songs already stored into my computer and the files are on my hard drive.

    do I need to save the songs onto a seperate hard dirve? If so, how?

  129. Thanks for the rundown of how to transfer songs from my ipod to my library. I worked like a dream! I was a little scarred that the file names of the songs wouldn´t change but they did eventually.

  130. Hey Izaiah, I would recommend the new Microsoft’s Zune. For $250 you get a 30Gig video as well as mp3 player unlike apple’s video ipod which is almost $100 more.

  131. Hi everyone.
    What's a good alternative to the IPOD?
    I'm wondering if any of you can recommend a good MP3 player that is comparable to the IPod but WITHOUT they hype and price tabe to go with it.
    I was at the apple store a few days ago, and really liked the new 40GB or 80GB IPods that also show video, but was wondering if I could get the same kind of funcationality without that heftly price tag.

    • any creative is well worth your money, without all the itunes hassle – very simply, sony walkmans are a good bet but are more prone to malfunction =D

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