ipods on ubuntu

Leif Gregory ldgregory69 at gmail.com
Mon Dec 29 19:17:43 UTC 2008

On Mon, 29 Dec 2008 13:30:49 -0500
"Michael Haney" <thezorch at gmail.com> wrote:

> I'm considering an iPod Touch.  Has anyone tried using an iPod Touch
> with any of the iPod friendly software on Ubuntu (ie; gtkipod, Amarok,
> Songbird, etc)?

Yep. I used Amarok with my iPod Touch for a while. It's been a few
months though. It worked pretty good, but it was a semi-rough
experience. Every once in a while it'd get all confused and I'd have to
delete the iPod folder on the computer for it to work again. Every time
I updated the firmware I'd have to blow away the SSH keyring and do it
again. Neither of those were biggies, just irritating.

It'd transfer music and playlists just fine. Once nice piece was that
I could synch my music over wi-fi. No cable needed.

I was missing out on podcasts, never could get GTKpod to put videos on
there right, and every once in a while the music DB on the iPod Touch
would get corrupted and I'd have to restore the iPod. Couldn't do
"single-click" updates to all my apps like I could in iTunes (had to do
them one at a time on the device).

It was fine for me, but my wife and daughters didn't like the downtime
and difficulty in getting their music, videos, podcasts and apps where
they wanted. Set up the only Windows machine in the house to handle the
iPods and it's been pretty smooth sailing. Sucks that I have to use
Windows and iTunes, but unfortunately, it just works so seamlessly. A
little messy with some older jailbreaks, but the last two went pretty

iPod firmware 2.0 has encryption on the music DB (maybe video and
others too) which prevents it from working. You can transfer music, but
the iPod won't recognize it. You can jailbreak it and use PwnPlayer
though. Might want to check into this a bit more. I had switched back
to Windows to manage the iPods before firmware 2.0 came out so I don't
know if it's been worked around yet.

All in all, unless you like the hassle and the satisfaction of finally
getting it to work after hacking around on it, then go for it. If you
just want it to work and have access to all the other fun stuff like
videos and podcasts and whatnot, then virtualize Windows and do it that
way through iTunes.

One note, if podcasts are important, the latest firmware (haven't
upgraded myself yet) allows podcast syncs directly on the device. 

I've played with a lot of MP3 players (or rather, portable music
players) and while I don't particularly care for Apple, it's ethics,
or it's lack of openness, I have to admit I love my iPod Touch. It's
sexy, it's fun, and jailbreaking let's me use it the way I want to
(except for the Linux part). I haven't bought an iPhone because I just
can't bring myself to lock in like that. I'll wait a bit longer and go
for an Android based phone. Just didn't like the G1.

The how-to I used to set mine up is here:

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