I recently moved computers and don't have all my music in my iTunes (and honestly don't need it there anymore). I have all my music on my iPod and while I know how to get the music files off of it, they are encrypted. Is there a way to decrypt my music files to their original names so I can then back them up to my external hard drive?

Currently all the file names are seemingly random 4 characters.

I'm currently using Windows 7.


These files are not, in fact, encrypted. The id3 tags are still intact. If you re-add the files to iTunes, the proper names and artists should show up, assuming they were tagged correctly in the first place.

If you have "copy files to iTunes media folder when adding to library" and "Keep iTunes Media Folder Organized" checked in advanced preferences, it should rename the files and put them in folders by artist in your music folder when you add the files to iTunes.

  • See I didn't have that option checked when I first started doing Itunes so none of my media was backed up to Itunes media. If I wanted to go this route, wouldn't I have to re-add all my music to Itunes? Jan 8 '13 at 15:05
  • Yes, this will re-add all the music on your iPod to iTunes, but they will be copied to your computer, and you can back them up from there.
    – Chris A
    Jan 15 '13 at 19:20

I know this was asked long ago, but maybe this will help someone in the future. In 2018 I created a python utility to fix this (it changes any m4a files to mp3 however because that's the only way I could readily read the id3 tags). It also takes all of your songs from into their respective F## (eg. F12, some default storage for the ipod) folders and sorts them by the artist according to the id3 tags.

It works in Linux, the utilities probably work for Mac users as well. there's no GUI so you'd have to runthe instructions from a terminal. I hope it helps whoever out there.

EDIT: I added an executable that allows this to be used on Windows systems (linked in my repo below)


Music sorting and renaming in action


Turns out there's Senuti for Mac Users (Trial into a Paid Version) and a Free Open Source version for Windows called Sharepod.

I ended up using Sharepod and it was crazy simple and extremely fast. No BS. I haven't tried Senuti, but that's just what I found.


If you're using Windows De-Itunify can sort out the file names easily for you.

I used it when I took a few thousand songs off my iPod (since the battery stopped working). Had about 50 folders each with about 40 songs with names like FHRK.mp3 in it and this sorted them out into folders by artists with the actual songs name and band in the filename.

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