swedish_chefYesterday my iPod died. The following is an account of it’s demise and eventual resurrection.

Note: Internal monologue and swearing is in italics. This post is rated PG-13 and contains gratuitous use of the words fuck, bugger and banana. But not necessarily in that order.

I had just downloaded an iTunes 8.1 and plugged in my 2G iPod Touch to sync up my podcasts. I have the 32GB model, so with about 20GB of music, 3GB of Video and various other bits and bobs, space hasn’t really been a concern yet. I was a little puzzled to discover that the content bar on the iPod summary looked different – reporting my apps, photos and 24GB of “other”  content.

What? “Other”? Where’s my music?

Starting to feel a small twinge of worry, I hit the sync button, hoping that iTunes would magically fix everything. To my horror, iTunes threw up an error dialog complaining that there wasn’t enough space on the device to sync my library.

Uh oh.

As far as I could see, all of the content was still on the iPod, but iTunes didn’t seem to recognise it as music, which meant that it was trying to re sync the 24 odd GB of content that it thought was missing, but was balked by the actual content which it no longer recognised.

My brain hurts.

Thinking that the iTunes upgrade may have had something to do with it, I plugged the iPod into my desktop computer which was still running the previous version of iTunes, but the problem remained. I then tried syncing to this version of iTunes (which was empty) but the content remained, due to the iPod’s inability to manage “other” type content.


And of course, now I had just told the iPod that it was empty, so it no longer recognised the music either.

Fuckity fuck fuck.

After several deep breaths I right clicked the iPod and selected restore from backup. No effect.

After several more deep breaths, meditation and a calming yoga position or two, I completely lost my shit. Giving up all hope of recovering my data slapped the “restore” button on iTunes … only to discover that this requires reinstallation of the firmware (which for some reason known only to Jobs was not copied when I first setup the iPod) requiring a 300GB download.

Bugger this for a bunch of bananas. Oh, and fuuuuuck.

After an unpleasant commute to work where I pretended to listen to my now thoroughly borked iPod (so that the crazy guy with the rubber boots wouldn’t try and strike up a conversation) I discovered that by navigating through Settings > General > Reset I could select Erase All Content and Settings.

What have you got to lose stupid? Just do it™.

3 hours later (how can it possibly take that long to delete content?) I had a bright shiny new out-of-the-box-ish iPod. I plugged it into iTunes, which then helpfully offered me the option of restoring my settings from backup. So a mere 16 hours after I discovered the problem I had my iPod back in it’s pre-borked glory. Huzzah!

Except, technically, I think it might be a zombie iPod now. But that’s kinda cool too.


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