I just finished making a Christmas playlist in iTunes when I moved my laptop and iTunes thinks I removed my iPod without ejecting it properly first. I think I'm using a crappy USB cord but that's besides the point. So at this point I ejected it from "MY COMPUTER" on Windows and disconnect it from the USB cord and the iPod says "NO MUSIC" and shows none of my playlists etc; it looks like everything is gone on xmas EVE! :(

So now I plug it back into iTunes on my laptop and it says "iTunes cannot read the contents of your iPod. Go to summary tab in iPod preferences and click restore to restore this iPod back to factory settings."

But I know that will erase everything for sure and I definitely don't want to do that.

When I go into "MY COMPUTER" on windows it still shows that's there's 15GB of SOMETHING on my iPod (I had about that much music on my iPod) but iTunes cannot recognize it.

What can I do? I've spent hours in the past reorganizing, renaming files and making various playlists and I don't want to have to do all that again, especially not on Christmas eve.

When I go into "settings>about on my iPod, it says 133GB free" on a 160gb iPod so SOMETHING is there.

I'm on Windows 7 Home Premium.

  • Classics are not good at that kind of disconnect 'oops' - couple of times I've had that happen, a full restore has been the only 'fix'… not a quick process, but ultimately successful every time, for me.
    – Tetsujin
    Dec 24, 2014 at 19:17

2 Answers 2


It sounds like your database is corrupted. This has happened to me twice and I did this to fix it both times:

  1. Plug your Ipod into your pc / mac
  2. Find the Ipod in Windows Explorer / Finder
  3. "Unhide" Hidden files & Folders in Windows (if you have Mac follow these instructions: http://www.macworld.co.uk/how-to/mac-software/how-show-hidden-files-in-mac-os-x-finder-3520878/)
  4. Go to: iPod_Controls > iTunes (the hidden folders).
  5. Locate "itunesDB" and rename it: "itunesDB.old" (this is the newly corrupted database).
  6. Locate "itunesDB.old_mlpmp" and rename it: "itunesDB" (no file extension). This will restore the automatic backup of your database.

If you added music since your last sync, you'll probably have to add the music again, but this is way better than restoring and syncing your entire library.

  • Very helpful solution. I didn't have the same problem as OP (mine was iPod simply not seeing the music inside it even while iTunes was showing it), but this fixes that too. Not having to go through the "reset/sync everything" from scratch is a huge time-saver.
    – Esoppant
    Jan 5, 2023 at 22:35

To find out why its not reading the music, first enable hidden files on your laptop, then look for hidden folder "iPod_Control" in the main directory of the iPod. All your music SHOULD be in there.

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