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macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
Appleinsider claims that the 'Home on iPod' will return in an upcoming incarnation of Mac OS X 10.3.

Most of the information about the Home on iPod feature comes from Apple itself, when it left the description up on one of the Panther information pages.

Home away from home

Ever thought you could carry your home in the palm of your hands or in your pocket? You can. Panther's Home on iPod feature lets you store your home directory — files, folders, apps — on your iPod (or any FireWire hard drive) and take it with you wherever you go. When you find yourself near a Panther-equipped Mac, just plug in the iPod, log in, and you’re “home,” no matter where you happen to be. And when you return to your home computer, you can synchronize any changes you’ve made to your files by using File Sync, which automatically updates offline changes to your home directory.

The feature is not available under Panther as described, and this description was quickly removed from Apple's site after Panther's release. A cached copy of Apple's page is still available here.


macrumors member
Jul 18, 2002
this sounds like an awsome feature as i currently use my iPod to cart our chapel presentations onto my friends panther equipped powerbook. i wonder if it would let you choose which folders from your home dir would go with you, and if fonts and all that good stuff could go, since i only have a 10gb iPod i cant fit my home folder on that considering 3.62 gigs are taken by music alone.


Administrator emeritus
Jun 28, 2002
North Central Colorado
I agree with millhouse - this is definitely a cool thing. Wasn't there rumored to be another panther build to come out soon (i.e. 10.3.2) - if so, do any of the developers have it yet, and could they, um, hint at a yea or nay without breaking an NDA.


macrumors regular
Dec 10, 2002
LA la land...
i use 2 macs @my office and at 1@home - been hoping this feature would come around soon... would work well on my 30 Gig ;)


macrumors 601
Jan 14, 2002
totally cool
I think this is great feature. If think about what computers will be like in the future, they will infiltrate into every facet of our lives. So in order to interact with the environment we'll have to "log in" everywhere we go (house,car,office, store). This iPod feature along with the multi-user feature in osx seems to be moving away from the personal computer paradigm toward an 'everywhere computer'.


macrumors member
Jul 18, 2002
good point, i think this mobility thing will be great, and will make the mac more friendly towards life, the fact that i can be at home working, sync some folders on my iPod, then go to a friends house, plug in and im right where i left off is great, no longer do i have to copy this file and that and make sure i copy it back to my home computer.


macrumors 604
Jul 4, 2001
1 Block away from NYC.
Hm... that would be a little hard for me... becaue I have like 50 GB of data in like One Folder...

But I guess to store Documents or pictures that would be great.




macrumors 6502a
Nov 11, 2003
In the Bowels of the Cosmos
Point to Note

This can work with any firewire drive. True it wouldn't be as fun as moving your ipod around but a hard drive is easier to carry around then a desktop.

Also in 3-4 revisions of the ipod its capacity could be in the 80-120GB range so this would be quite feasable for future ipods.


macrumors 6502
Feb 22, 2003
hmm it might take a little management for those with over 40gigs in their home directory (me). I'd have to put them somewhere they wouldn't get picked up by the ipod.

But otherwise it sounds unreal. Would you plug it in and just fast user switch to your account? Not just have the files available, but all your settings as well. Fantastic


macrumors 65816
Oct 9, 2003
A Higher Level
I'm wondering if you could take some files (mp3s) from your home folder, and dump them on the computer you have your iPod connected to.


Mar 1, 2003
I MUST HAVE this feature. I am buying an old B&W G3 for the office just in anticipation of using this with my iPod (I'm sure the G3 will compare very favorably to my home computer...Dual G5).


macrumors regular
Apr 3, 2003
What happens if you:

1]. don't have .Mac?
2]. have to work on a PC at work? I know, obviously syncing don't work but I just want to point out not everyone are fortunate enough to have both Macs at work AND home

That's why this is only useful to a small sector of Mac users


macrumors 6502
Jul 17, 2002
Does it have to be on an iPod?....can't this feature be used with any portable firewire HD. I really don't want to use a very expensive $400-500 HD for this kind of work.


ITR 81

macrumors 65816
Oct 24, 2003
10.3.2 is slated to come out sometime this month because Apple has asked all it's developers to make final corrections on the seeded copies. "Home on iPod" feature will not be included in the next update but could be included in the 10.3.3 update.

So I would say look for it around 2nd qtr of next yr. if Apple comes through and doesn't axe it for some reason.


macrumors member
Jun 23, 2003
Originally posted by Mudbug
I agree with millhouse - this is definitely a cool thing. Wasn't there rumored to be another panther build to come out soon (i.e. 10.3.2) - if so, do any of the developers have it yet, and could they, um, hint at a yea or nay without breaking an NDA.

I don't see it in 7D15 (Last reported 10.3.2 build).

I'm not 100% sure where to look though...

Any ideas?


macrumors regular
Jun 23, 2003
Brisbane, Australia
Does sounds like a very cool feature. Actually I've found I've really appreciated having my iPod as a backup firewire drive too - a feature which I didn't think I'd use much but has turned out to be very useful.

The only thing I'm yet to do is update the firmware to v2.1, as I kept hearing reports of problems with it - oh well think I may just do it anyway!


macrumors 6502a
Jan 24, 2003
I dont own an iPod but i would use this feature without a doubt for a lot of work ...


macrumors regular
Nov 3, 2003
This does indeed sound like an insanely useful feature. It also sounds like it's a great way to sell new iPods, since a) the smaller capacity models aren't going to hold most people's home directory, and b) using your iPod to serve up your home directory is going to seriously strain its hard drive -- my understanding was that the HD in the iPod isn't really built for this kind of constant use. (When playing music, the iPod's HD isn't spinning for most of the time.)

Maybe the "Home on iPod" feature is just a way to get people to burn out their iPods so they'll buy new ones...


macrumors regular
Apr 27, 2003
I am possible going to get an ipod for x-mas, so I am quite happy about this. I have only one question. I have a mac at home (of course). But I have PC's at school or mac's with 9. So my question is that would you be able to access the files in you home via like USB 2.0? becuase I always do all my work on the computer and if I forget somthing I would love to just be able to get the file.

This is alot easier than selecting the files you want on you ipod. With the home on ipod I could just have all my documets and all my every thing with me all the time.
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