My parents were digging through some stuff looking for something and found an old, classic iPod. I'd like to get the music off of it (I use a small mp3 player, so ideally I'd just take the music off and download it onto my own device). The problem is that it's been sitting in a box for probably around 7 or 8 years, and it's got a 'very low battery' screen and won't charge (as in, I left it for twelve hours, and no dice).

Searching around, I was able to put it into disk mode, but the 'restore iPod' that gives you would put it back in factory mode...presumably meaning the loss of all the music on it, even though it would probably fix the device.

What are my options here? Is it even possible to do what I want at this point? Thanks!

  • Isn't the original iPod just a 2 1/2" hard drive inside? Maybe just buying a new enclosure and connecting it to you computer? Jul 1, 2019 at 19:51
  • @StephenCollins yeah, I'm pretty sure it's just a hard drive...I guess that's one option, I can check eBay for a new enclosure. Is there a way to connect the hard drive without a new enclosure, you think?
    – auden
    Jul 1, 2019 at 20:56
  • I guess as long as you have the right cable you don't need it. Lord know I have had bare hard disks hanging out of enough open cases to know you don't need the enclosure. Jul 2, 2019 at 19:16

1 Answer 1


It depends on wht you mean by "iPod Classic." Which is why we recommend people include model numbers in their questions. That said there is an iPod called the iPod Classic which was the last click wheel iPod Apple sold.

Yes you might be able to get the songs off if it, depends on how much effort and $$ you are willing to expend.

The iPod Classic (A1238) came in a variety of HD sizes but they are all about the same for getting into. EG difficult and finicky. Once open it is possible to replace the battery. It may even be possible to extract the HD and plug it into some kind of external (USB) case if you can find one with the same connector as the HD. I think it is a non-standard connector. Other folks here will no doubt correct me on this...

Lots of places online have instructions on how to do this. YouTube is one, there are others. My favorite is iFixit.com that has instructions for replacing both the battery and HD.

It does not look simple but if you are adept at this sort of thing it looks like it is quite possible to do.

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