How to Add Music from iTunes to an iPod: 12 Steps (with Pictures)

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How to Add Music from iTunes to an iPod: 12 Steps (with Pictures)
How to Add Music from iTunes to an iPod: 12 Steps (with Pictures)

There's nothing more frustrating than when you have a lot of great music on your iTunes account, but can't figure out how to transfer it to your iPod! iTunes can be quite a challenging and difficult program to work with, especially when you connect an iPod with your computer's account to it for the first time. Don't give up if you get stuck! This guide can help you get your Apple apps aligned in no time. To learn how to transfer music from your iTunes library to your iPod (as well as learn how to do this "without using iTunes"), start with Step 1 below!


Part 1 of 2: Add music to your iPod

Add Music from iTunes to iPod Step 1

Step 1. Connect your iPod and open iTunes

To start the procedure of adding music to your iPod, you need to open iTunes first. If you're not already connected to your iPod, do so once iTunes opens. After a few moments, iTunes should recognize your device; A small 'iPod' button with an image of an iPod should appear at the top right. Click this button.

Note that for iPads, iPod Shuffles, and other iTunes-compatible devices, the procedure won't be much different, although the button image will be different

Add Music from iTunes to iPod Step 2

Step 2. On the next screen, click on 'Music'

After pressing the 'iPod' button, a screen will be displayed with information about your iPod, including its name, storage capacity and many other options. We need not deal with these here. Simply click on 'Music' at the top of the screen to continue.

Add Music from iTunes to iPod Step 3

Step 3. Choose whether you want to sync the entire library or select some songs

When it comes to putting music on your iPod, you can choose from two options: iTunes can automatically transfer your entire library to your iPod, or you can check the bell next to "Selected playlists, artists, albums, and genres" if you want the songs manually to select.

At this point you can also choose to check different boxes below for all kinds of options. For example, if you want to add music videos from your library, check "Include music videos", and so on

Add Music from iTunes to iPod Step 4

Step 4. If you chose to add manually, select your playlists/artists

If you prefer to manually add songs to your iPod, use the menus in the lower half of the iTunes window to select the songs you want to add. Scroll through the menus for playlists, artists, genres and albums and check the boxes next to the things you want to add to your iPod.

  • For example, if you want to add all of Al Green's songs to your iPod, you'll have to scroll through the list of artists until you find Al Green, then check the box next to his name. On the other hand, scroll through the list of albums until you find 'Greatest Hits' by Al Green and then check this box if you only want to add the songs from that album.
  • Don't worry if some of your choices overlap; iTunes will never add the same song to your iPod twice.
Add Music from iTunes to iPod Step 5

Step 5. Click on 'Sync' to add your songs

Whether you choose to add your songs automatically or manually, you will in any case need to press the 'Sync' button (short for 'Synchronization') at the bottom right of the screen to add your songs to your iPod. iTunes should start adding the selected songs to your iPod immediately. You can view the progress via the progress bar that should appear at the top of the iTunes window.

Do not disconnect your iPod during this procedure. This will break the synchronization procedure and not all of your songs will be added. In addition, it can cause iTunes to freeze or stop working properly

Add Music from iTunes to iPod Step 6

Step 6. Enjoy your music

Congratulations! You managed to add songs to your iPod. To play the songs you need to disconnect your iPod, plug in headphones, select a song from the 'Music' option at the bottom of the iPod's main menu and start listening.

Note that this guide describes how to add music to your iPod, but the procedure is almost identical for other types of media. For example, if you want to add movies to your iPod, click "Movies" at the top of the iTunes window after pressing the "iPod" button, then do the same as above

Add Music from iTunes to iPod Step 7

Step 7. Deselect your sync options to delete songs

To delete songs from your iPod, you need to connect the device to your computer and proceed to the Sync screen as you normally would. Click the bell next to the 'Manual' option to add songs, if you haven't already done so. Now scroll through the windows of artists, playlists, etc. and check the boxes next to the selections you want to remove from your iPod. When you're done, click "Sync" to apply your changes.

Part 2 of 2: Connecting iTunes for the first time

Add Music from iTunes to iPod Step 8

Step 1. Download and install iTunes

If you don't already have iTunes, you'll probably want to download and install it before you get started. While it's possible to add music to your iPod without using iTunes (see above), it's much easier to use iTunes. In addition, iTunes is free, simple to download and install, and has many useful features such as accessing the iTunes Store from within the program and options to automatically sync your iPod's library with the library on your computer.

To download iTunes, simply visit and click "Download iTunes" at the top right. Enter your email address and click 'Download Now' to start the download

Add Music from iTunes to iPod Step 9

Step 2. Connect your iPod to your computer

Your new iPod should come with a white USB cable. This cable makes it possible to transfer media between your computer and your iPod. Connect the thin, flat end of the cable to your iPod (there should be a matching port on the bottom of the iPod) and plug the other end into a USB port on your computer to get started.

Note that iPod models other than the standard version (such as the iPod Shuffle, for example) will have cables with different plugs. However, all types of iPod cables have an end that fits into a USB port

Add Music from iTunes to iPod Step 10

Step 3. Wait for iTunes to recognize the iPod

When you connect your iPod, iTunes should launch automatically. After a few moments, iTunes should recognize the iPod. You will know this has happened when you see the Apple brand logo appear on your iPod. You will also notice a progress bar at the top of the iTunes window indicating that iTunes is downloading data necessary to interact with your iPod. Wait for iTunes to finish this before continuing. This may take several minutes.

  • If iTunes doesn't recognize the device automatically, don't worry. iTunes is known for having frequent problems with new devices. Try disconnecting and then reconnecting your iPod, try closing and reopening iTunes, and restarting your computer before contacting iTunes support.
  • If your iPod is running low on power, you may need to wait a few minutes for it to charge through your computer before iTunes will be able to recognize it.
Add Music from iTunes to iPod Step 11

Step 4. Follow the prompts on the screen

Eventually, iTunes will automatically display a large welcome message. Click on 'Continue' to continue. After this you will see a screen with 'Sync with iTunes'. Click on 'Get Started' on this screen. You will be taken to a screen with all kinds of options, including:

  • Update your iPod's software to the most recent version. If your iPod is not up to date, you will need to click "Update" to download and install the latest version of the software. This will keep your iPod up-to-date with all features and security patches.
  • Back up the data on your iPod. If this is your first time using your iPod, there won't be any data to back up yet, but by selecting a location for an automatic backup (on your computer or the iCloud) you don't have to. don't worry about this in the future.
Add Music from iTunes to iPod Step 12

Step 5. Click on 'Done'

To exit the current screen, simply click the blue 'Done' button at the top right of the iTunes window. When you do this, you will be returned to the place in iTunes where you were before you started this.

From here you can add music to your iPod as you normally would (see the 'Using iTunes' section above)


  • Use the iTunes Store to buy new songs. You can reach the Store via the button at the top right of the iTunes window.
  • Consider listening to song previews before purchasing. You can do this by double clicking on a song in the Store.

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