iTunes library and external HDD

Chubby Cox

macrumors member
Original poster
May 2, 2004
40
0
Hi everyone-

I have a 5G iPod, a G4 Powerbook and a firewire external hard drive. To free up disk space on my Powerbook, I was considering moving my iTunes library over to the external drive (and updating all settings/preferences accordingly). I was wondering, though- what would happen if I then connected my iPod (to charge it, for instance) and my external drive wasn't connected? Would it just give me a message, or would it erase everything on my iPod so that I'd have to copy it all back over the next time I connect the external drive?

Thanks!
 

Eraserhead

macrumors G4
Nov 3, 2005
10,409
11,695
UK
It sometimes deletes everything and sometimes doesn't, it depends if iTunes realises the songs are missing or not I think, you can always use manual syncing.
 

jTreu

macrumors 6502
May 20, 2006
318
0
i was thinking of doing a set up like this for my ibook, you can still play songs on itunes without the hd being conenct with it set up like this right?
 

balamw

Moderator
Staff member
Aug 16, 2005
19,366
978
New England
jTreu said:
i was thinking of doing a set up like this for my ibook, you can still play songs on itunes without the hd being conenct with it set up like this right?
In manual sync mode, yes.

To the OP, all iPods still charge over Firewire, but no data unless it's a 4G or older. So a simple workaround is to get a FW dock cable and charge with that so there's no risk of data corruption. Another plus is that the iPod charges faster than over USB...

B
 

kyleaa

macrumors regular
Jun 20, 2006
244
2
balamw said:
In manual sync mode, yes.
I don't think you understood jTreu's post - he is asking if he has all of his music on an external hard drive, and then disconnects the drive, if he can play music in itunes that resides on the disconnected drive, and I can see no reason why this wouldn't be a resounding "no". Correct me if I am wrong, I am just not seeing this as being correct.
 

Eraserhead

macrumors G4
Nov 3, 2005
10,409
11,695
UK
To be honest Apple really need to get iTunes to handle external drives properly, and let you play music on your iPod if that's plugged in but your external isn't.
 

killmoms

macrumors 68040
Jun 23, 2003
3,721
13
Washington, DC
Eraserhead said:
To be honest Apple really need to get iTunes to handle external drives properly, and let you play music on your iPod if that's plugged in but your external isn't.
But the iPod IS an external hard drive. Why play off that external HD instead of the other?

You have to decide what matters more—having your music without having to connect something, or having space. If you decide for the latter, move your music library to an external and just accept that it's not quite as convenient. S'what I did. (Of course, come springtime, it'll move onto a tricked out Mac Pro, and then I won't give a damn one way or the other.)
 

Eraserhead

macrumors G4
Nov 3, 2005
10,409
11,695
UK
killmoms said:
But the iPod IS an external hard drive. Why play off that external HD instead of the other?
Because it's smaller in size (and doesn't require a power outlet.) also my library's too big to fit on my Macbook HD with all the other stuff I need.
 

Thanatoast

macrumors 65816
Dec 3, 2002
1,007
177
Denver
It would be great if they created a way to plug an external HDD into the Airport Express and had it be a network iTunes library, or even just storage. One would think that with the limited upgrade options for HDD's (post-purchase), that creating an easy way to store massive amounts of media for iTunes to access (Steve's obvious goal) would be a priority.
 

Le Big Mac

macrumors 68030
Jan 7, 2003
2,610
187
Washington, DC
Eraserhead said:
To be honest Apple really need to get iTunes to handle external drives properly, and let you play music on your iPod if that's plugged in but your external isn't.
I'm not sure what external drives have to do with that question. Apple should allow iTunes to play what's on your iPod if it's connected. Period.

And to avoid the DRM problems, they could still block syncing from iPod to computer (and I know there's lots of 3d party apps that allow this).
 
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