I've found a lot on the web about being able to manage your iPod through Ubuntu. Is it possible to take songs off the ipod onto disk in a usable form, as my song drive has crashed1 and that's the only back up I have.

The closest question I found has the answer using gtkpod (Same with this one), but looking in the software centre reviews, that seems busted in 12.04 and I don't want to throw something buggy at my iPod.

If it makes a difference, it's an iPod classic.

1Yes, I know I should have been taking regular back ups to either the cloud or another disk.

2 Answers 2


The standard Ubuntu music player, Rhythmbox, is able to do that. Just select all the songs/artists you want to copy from your iPod and drag them to the Music tab under Library (all on the left hand side). Once it's done, you can find them in the folder that's under "music library" (edit > preferences > music). Rhythmbox also syncs. I don't use that myself but that might be even easier.

  • just did a quick test and it seems to do the job fine! :) The only thing I couldn't work out is how to see the progress of the copy off? Oct 11, 2012 at 21:27
  • sorry for the late response @NikolaiDante. i thought there was a progress bar in the right bottom corner, is there not one there? i'm fairly certain there's a progress bar when transferring TO an ipod..
    – duxk.gh
    Oct 18, 2012 at 8:23
  • Thank you for this answer. At first I dragged the songs from Rhythmbox to a folder, instead of the 'Music' tab in Rhythmbox, but then all the files had obscured names. However dragging them to the 'Music' didn't gave me obscured names.
    – WG-
    Jan 27, 2014 at 17:15
  • @WG- Songs transferred to an iPod get these ridiculous names and are put in seemingly random folders. I'm not sure why; perhaps to deter copy/pasting music from an iPod to a computer. Rhythmbox transfers them to you music folder with the right metadata.
    – duxk.gh
    Jan 29, 2014 at 19:24

Songbird Media Player is a media player which can manage iPods on Linux but they discontinued their stable Linux version. So you may be able to manage your iPod with Songbird on Linux by using an old stable version (the last one is 1.4.3 if I remember well) or by using a more recent but unstable Linux build of Songbird. Have also a look at Nightingale, a functionnal fork of Songbird on Linux and which might handle iPods too.

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