Ipod “product red” under linux

I wanted to write a little about my experiences with Ipod under Linux, which may help some people out there.

I’ve got an Ipod Mini which was initialized using ITunes, and then worked just fine under Linux. I’ve also got an Ipod Nano 3rd generation (video-capable), black, which worked, but now that I think of it, I did have a little trouble getting the Artwork (covers) to work with it. Yesterday I finally opened my Ipod ‘product red’ which my sister bought me for my birthday (thanks Orit!!).

The Ipod was uninitialized, so I attached it using USB, and opened gtkpod. It offered to initialize the ipod and asked me to choose a model. Unfortunately, ‘product red’ was not on the list, and my model number (A1236) was not there either. Eventually I found a post that said it worked with the ‘nano 3rd generation, silver – 4gb’ model. So I chose that, my ipod was recognized and all seemed well.

I usually use Amarok to transfer music to the ipod (and also to listen to music – I really like Amarok). I transferred a few records, but checking the ipod, the covers were not working. I run on Ubuntu 8.04, where gtkpod is version 0.99x, and libgpod is 0.6. I played around quite a lot until it worked; tried (in Amarok) to go to the ‘ipod’ menu -> update artwork; didn’t take.

I think what eventually helped me is when I changed the ipod model IN AMAROK to ‘nano video 3rd gen red xB257’. Then I did ipod->update artwork, and uploaded another album, and they all had covers; after that, the artwork worked. So it seems like I needed to use the Silver 4GB model under gtkpod to initialize the ipod, then under Amarok choose the Red 8GB model – I guess Ipod Product Red might use a similar song database to that of the silver 4GB model, but the artwork datafiles are formatted like in the xB257 series.

I hope this works for you – feel free to comment if you’ve had other experiences with this.


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