Sync videos to iPod on Ubuntu


The only gadget which I had to render kaput years ago when I decided to move on solely with Ubuntu was my 120 GB iPod Classic. I have realized now the iPod was a bad investment 😉 but I couldn’t give it away either. At that time I did not find a reliable way to transfer my files from my laptop to iPod on Ubuntu or for that matter, Linux. After some months I searched and found that I could transfer only audio files but not video. It was not until recently I tried once again to find a solution to transfer videos when my wife asked me to load some movies in the iPod for her to watch from time to time. Luckily, I have found a solution now.

I tried with Banshee on Ubuntu 12.04 and I could transfer videos to the iPod. As I was afraid of accidentally deleting the already existing videos on the device I synced only the Unwatched videos from my library and they were synced fine. I could play them from the video playlist and could delete them from the device as well. Though I could not find the already existing videos in the iPod from Banshee I could browse and play them in the iPod just fine.

As far as I remember the iTunes installer was around a 80 MB garbage when I last used it on Windows. Thanks to Banshee I have a much simpler solution now which does let me access the iPod as a mounted storage device in parallel!

Update: I could sync a 1st gen 512MB ipod shuffle using Banshee as well. The additional step required was to fix the playlists using script that comes with rebuild_db package. I had to run the following as root:

# mkdir t
# mount /dev/sdb1 t //sdb1 is my ipod. being root is necessary
# cp t/
# chmod +x t/ //make sure sdb1 is not mounted by any user
# t/

That’s it!

5 thoughts on “Sync videos to iPod on Ubuntu”

  1. hi… i did not agree with some of the things, nevertheless i did appreciated the article overall… this post was actually suggested to me by a friend at facebook and she ended up being right. quite good read! Take care! 🙂

  2. Hands down, Apple’s app store wins by a mile. It’s a huge selection of all sorts of apps vs a rather sad selection of a handful for Zune. Microsoft has plans, especially in the realm of games, but I’m not sure I’d want to bet on the future if this aspect is important to you. The iPod is a much better choice in that case.

  3. @Matthew: iPod is surely a good choice. But I would always love to have a native Linux client. Anyway, nowadays there are so many devices available in the market for music lovers. iPod was the pioneer but today it’s not the only one walking the way :).

  4. I’ll gear this review to 2 types of people: current Zune owners who are considering an upgrade, and people trying to decide between a Zune and an iPod. (There are other players worth considering out there, like the Sony Walkman X, but I hope this gives you enough info to make an informed decision of the Zune vs players other than the iPod line as well.)

  5. Had tablets been out the time I bought the iPod, I won’t even consider buying a gadget only for listening to music. The same applies to my past craving for a chess gadget as well. Now I can play on my Android devices and that too against a strong engine like Stockfish. Today I don’t even bother about a gadget for playing chess on the go.

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