Reinstalling the Firmware on your iPod

If you are a harassed iPod owner, this article is for you. iPods don’t always behave the way we want them to. If your iPod is behaving funnily and you have tried everything possible to repair it, without success, then a firmware re-installation might help your case.

Firmware software re-installation is an extreme measure that you should resort to only if nothing else sets your iPod right. You will have to erase your iPod for successful re-installation. It is therefore advised that you backup all your iPod data before you start this procedure.

Step 1: Erase your iPod

The protocol you implement to erase your iPod will differ based on the operating system of your computer.

1. MAC OS X. If your computer has OS X, proceed to Disk Utility (DU). DU can be accessed as follows — Macintosh HD> Applications> Utilities. Once you have the Disk Utility window open, look for your iPod in the list. Select it and then click the repair button. Next, select the Erase option to erase your iPod’s memory.

2. Windows XP. If you use XP on your computer, erasing your iPod is a straightforward procedure. Open “My Computer” and select your iPod. It will be located alongside your “C” drive. Place your mouse’s pointer on your iPod’s icon. Right click and select “Format.” From the different options that show up on the Format screen, select “FAT 32,” and then click on “Format.” Formatting will erase all the data on your iPod. Once formatting is completed, you may be prompted to reboot your computer – that’s an optional step that you’ll most probably not need to do.

Step 2: Restore your iPod

After it has been erased, your iPod is as good as new. You will have to restore it to its former glory. Start by connecting your iPod to the computer using the USB cable or FireWire that you had bought it with. Open iTunes on your computer after the iPod is connected. iTunes will automatically find the connection. It will then prompt you to install the software necessary to get your iPod up and running again.

If iTunes does not prompt, look for the “Source” column in the left half of the iTunes window. Choose your iPod in the “Source” column. Next, select the “Summary” option for your iPod. You will find it at the top of the iTunes screen along with other tabs such as “Music,” “Contacts” and “Photos.”

Click on “Restore” in the “Summary” window. If you are asked for your username and password, type them in and confirm the restore process. Your iPod’s factory settings will be restored. After restoration, remove the USB or FireWire cable from your iPod. On disconnection, your iPod will prompt you to reconnect. Use the cable and reconnect again. Your iPod will now update and restart. After your iPod has restarted, you will see a “Do not disconnect” message flashing on its screen.

iTunes will then prompt you to name your iPod. Type in a name and select “Done.” iTunes’ main window will now be displayed. Wait until you get an “Update Completed” message. You can now quit iTunes. Remove the USB or FireWire cable from your iPod. A few seconds after disconnection, your iPod will display “Language” options. Choose the language you want. You are done. If your iPod does not turn on, it might help to leave it unused for a period of about 24 hours. Try this procedure again. If it still doesn’t work, you’ll need to get professional help. If the iPod’s warranty is valid, you can contact Apple via their support page. If it isn’t, get it repaired from an expert.