iPod Need to reformat music drive... don't want to lose iPod contents!


macrumors newbie
Original poster
Nov 10, 2010
Ooooookay. Here's my problem. I keep all of my music on an external harddrive (because while I don't have massive quantities of music, I do have enough that I don't want it all on my main computer.)

Problem is, thanks to some unknown thing, my mac partition has become corrupted. I can read it, thankfully, but I can't write it.

So. I need to copy all the data off, reformat it, and then put it all back on. That's not my problem.

My problem is the last time I had to do something like this... even though I rebuilt the library in iTunes, it completely wiped all the music saved on my iPod.

This isn't a problem with my newer one (I just have to rebuild playlists, which are mostly genius-generated anyway) but my older 3G model is a pain... it's only an 8 GB, so my husband only syncs certain stuff. It's really tiresome to start over from scratch.

Is there a way to keep this from happening? I'm not going to be changing any file structures, just moving it off, moving it back on. Why can't iTunes be smart enough to match identical files in different locations?

Suggestions? Commiserations? Help?


macrumors 65816
Dec 16, 2010
Frist off don't try to sync or hook up your iPod to your computer until you are done with your transfer. THIS IS THE MOST IMPORTANT PART!!!! Next link your iTunes library to your new drive and then it should be ok if I understand this right. My guess is everything is on the drive and your iTunes library is linked to the drive. So as long as the file system is the same all you need to do is direct iTunes to the right drive. I believe this can be done in your preference settings in iTunes.


macrumors 65816
Aug 29, 2011
First, you should back up your music ASAP, I have a feeling your drive is damaged and will fail any day now, so back it up to DVDs and keep a copy for iTunes, then format and get on with your business. and like the guy above me said, DO NOT PLUG IN YOUR IPOD OR IDEVICE.
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