Partition iPod?

AmbitiousLemon

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Original poster
Nov 28, 2001
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down in Fraggle Rock
Hello folks.

I was wondering if it is possibel to partition the iPod hard drive. I would like to keep osx separate from the mp3s. but im worried about how the ipod software would handle this. when i insert the ipod would it appear as two ipods, or two normal hard drives? or as an ipod and a hard drive? i guess after i partition it i would need to send the ipod software back to it? so would all i have to do is install this software on one of the partitions. this would make that partitrion show up as an ipod and the other partition show up as a drive? has anyone done this? any suggestions?
 

King Cobra

macrumors 603
Mar 2, 2002
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I haven't seen any sort of iPod partitioner. Besides, I don't think it's necessary.

iTunes reads the mp3s exported to the iPod via the program completely separate from the rest of the iPod. The iPod that appears on the desktop acts as a separate hard drive. This iPod that appears can be used as a Hard Drive to copy and transfer data, just as you would from a computer hard drive to a LaCie Hard Drive, or what have you. But you cannot delete songs from the iPod from the iPod icon that appears on the desktop. I am not too sure how iTunes incorporates the files into the iPod, but I would guess that these music files are invisible, or something.

So if you wish to transfer songs and ONLY songs back and forth, use iTunes. If you wish to copy data back and forth, just copy it to the iPod that appears on the desktop. (What I did was create a folder inside it for all my data to prevent confusion.) I don't see the need for partitions.
 

G5orbust

macrumors 65816
Jun 14, 2002
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an ipod is a formatted HD like any other. You could probably use a partitioning software on it and it might work. But then again, u might lose ur MP3 playback ability because of it. Apple doesnt have any software just incase anyone want to tinker with the iPod so u can restore formatting and Mp3 playback. Find a partitioning software that works with firewire HDs and ull probably be able to do it.

Good luck and keep us posted on how u do.
 

rootuser

macrumors newbie
Jun 27, 2002
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Why on earth would you use an iPod for Mac OS X?? It uses up more than a GB of space, and that is a lot on a five or ten GB drive. Also, partitioning would probably mess up iTunes and mp3s on your iPod in mp3 player mode. If you didn't mind this, you could store mp3s on the non-Mac OS X partition in hard disk mode if you didn't mind having to use a computer to listen to the music on your iPod. However, it would then be pointless to have an iPod if you were just using it on your computer. You might as well buy a 100 GB external firewire disk for a lower price and back up Mac OS X and store your music to your heart's content on that.
 

AmbitiousLemon

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Nov 28, 2001
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down in Fraggle Rock
o thank you for explaining why it would be so very stupid. [sacasm]

if you are really such a complete and utter idiot as to not understand what i am asking please dont waste anyones time by posting. go away. i really can not imagine why someone whos seems to know so little would posts a reply to someone asking a question just to say something as ignorant and offensive as you just did. get a life buddy.
 

G5orbust

macrumors 65816
Jun 14, 2002
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Originally posted by AmbitiousLemon
o thank you for explaining why it would be so very stupid. [sacasm]

if you are really such a complete and utter idiot as to not understand what i am asking please dont waste anyones time by posting. go away. i really can not imagine why someone whos seems to know so little would posts a reply to someone asking a question just to say something as ignorant and offensive as you just did. get a life buddy.
sorry for root's behavior. hes one of my good friends and he just goes a little overboard sometimes. dont hate him, he knows one hell of a lot about macs.
And, he has a life, just its somewhere on his 80 gig hard drive. ;)
 

Mal

macrumors 603
Jan 6, 2002
6,253
17
Orlando
Why Bother?

You should be able to just install OS X on the iPod and use iTunes for the music. There's no need to partition it, the iPod keeps it seperate with it's own software.
 

firewire2001

macrumors 6502a
Apr 2, 2002
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Hong Kong
You should be able to just install OS X on the iPod and use iTunes for the music. There's no need to partition it, the iPod keeps it seperate with it's own software.
well.. technically the music isnt as a different partition, therefore a lot of fragmentation can occur -- slowing down the OS.
 

firewire2001

macrumors 6502a
Apr 2, 2002
718
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Hong Kong
AmbitiousLemon is a moron-
what are you talking about? yer gonna get flamed, n00b... he asked a question he didnt know the answer to.. does that make me a moron too, when i ask questions?...

thats the name of this section - "Mac Help/Questions"... i think yer a moron for saying that..
 

AmbitiousLemon

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Nov 28, 2001
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down in Fraggle Rock
:) cablejump is referring to another post that his attention span did not allow his to finish. or perhaps it so sickened him he didnt want to read on. although several people mentioned he missed a critical piece of the post but he seems to have missed those as well.
 

mc68k

macrumors 68000
Apr 16, 2002
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Well, I'm actually going to answer your question, unlike most others here.

The answer is yes, it just transfers the iPod control data to the first part and the second is left as a plain storage drive.

Heres a pic:
 

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AmbitiousLemon

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Nov 28, 2001
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thank you mc68k. i was getting tired of reading posts by people who didnt understand the reason behind wanting to do it who felt they needed to insult me.

glad there are a few helpful people left here. you rule.
 

mc68k

macrumors 68000
Apr 16, 2002
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I got some bad news, I tried to boot my iPod and it was a no-go. Wierd how it works on the comp, but not by itself.

I just did a factory restore and it's all better now. But partitioning/erasing it does something so that it can't operate by itself. I tried replacing the iPod_Control invisible folder with the original, but that had no effect.

I think that the iPod is set up in such a way there can only be one partition for it to operate correctly by itself. I can't think of any way to hack it to make it do otherwise— it must be something at a lower level than I can't tamper with.

There might be more info on this issue at the ipod sites.
 

G5orbust

macrumors 65816
Jun 14, 2002
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bummer, man. And it seemed sooo easy too.

Maybe there is another way to do it through disk copy. we'll figure out how to do it eventually.
 

G5orbust

macrumors 65816
Jun 14, 2002
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Originally posted by mc68k
I got some bad news, I tried to boot my iPod and it was a no-go. Wierd how it works on the comp, but not by itself.

I just did a factory restore and it's all better now. But partitioning/erasing it does something so that it can't operate by itself. I tried replacing the iPod_Control invisible folder with the original, but that had no effect.

I think that the iPod is set up in such a way there can only be one partition for it to operate correctly by itself. I can't think of any way to hack it to make it do otherwise— it must be something at a lower level than I can't tamper with.

There might be more info on this issue at the ipod sites.
will being root user help you make this thing work for u?
 

rootuser

macrumors newbie
Jun 27, 2002
15
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root user can't help away from the comp, only on the comp. It acts as an mp3 player away from the comp
 

sprocklingcat

macrumors member
May 4, 2002
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0
KS
ipod partitioning

while thumbing through mac mags at my school computer store, i remember coming across an article on the very thing you are trying to do, install os x on an ipod...the mag offerred an easy way to do so, i think it is in Mac Home or something of the sort, i dont remember for sure
 

mc68k

macrumors 68000
Apr 16, 2002
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Roadblock…

Once again even if trying to be helpful, if you don't know what the thread is about or don't have anything useful to add, don't post.

The question posed was if the iPod could be partitioned or not, not if OS X could be installed on it.

The iPod is basically set up in this way— 3 partitions: a Partition map, a 32MB Firmware Partition that the iPod uses for its proprietary OS, and the rest of the space is for mass Storage of mp3s, data, and iPod/iTunes preferences (see picture for partitioning scheme).

Now the problem that arises when you partition the iPod is NOT imaging the FW part, but rather the fact that there is no way to format the 32MB FW part to Apple_MDFW— the FW most likely standing for Firmware. The iPod is fine on the computer after partitioning, but the FW needed for standalone operation is not there so it gives a system folder icon meaning that it can't boot.

So the only problem is formatting the firmware partition. In theory, if you imaged the FW and were able to reproduce the Apple_MDFW format, then you could partition it successfully. I used the the dd Unix program to image in this way:

dd if=/dev/disk#s# of=~

if means input file, and of means output file and # is the disk/part to image. So if I could successfully format the 32MB part to Apple_MDFW, all I would have to do is switch the arguments so that the ouput file is the new input file:

dd if=~ of=/dev/disk#s#

So, in theory, all the pieces are there except the proper format for the FW and the only program that can do it is the iPod FW updater with its Factory Restore option.

I researched this and nobody seems to have partitioned it, so we're stuck the MDFW conundrum. :confused:
 

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AmbitiousLemon

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Original poster
Nov 28, 2001
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down in Fraggle Rock
how about using a disk utility such as hard drive toolkit to partition without wiping the FW partition? i know hard drive toolikt and chnage partition sizes without wiping data from adjacent partitions but im nto sure if the drive originally must be partitioned with hd tool kit for this to work.
 

iwantanewmac

macrumors 6502
Oct 24, 2001
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I can't really find it now, but I thought I read something about a warning that you should never attempt to partition the ipods HD.
I'll try and find it...........
 

mc68k

macrumors 68000
Apr 16, 2002
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Originally posted by AmbitiousLemon
how about using a disk utility such as hard drive toolkit to partition without wiping the FW partition? i know hard drive toolikt and chnage partition sizes without wiping data from adjacent partitions but im nto sure if the drive originally must be partitioned with hd tool kit for this to work.
I was looking for something that would do this. But it seems that the partition map is Apple, hence Apple_partition_map. If HDToolkit can access this, then cool but I don't think that any third-party utility can rearrange an Apple partitioning scheme w/o formatting the parts first. I'm not going to sacrifice my iPod to HDToolkit, just 'cause this is my 3rd iPod. :)