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Playlist Only Plays In Alphabetical Order On Shuffle

7080 Views 14 Replies Latest reply: Aug 16, 2013 8:28 AM by krumplijozsi RSS
Roseyf16 Calculating status...
Currently Being Moderated
Oct 16, 2012 5:49 PM

Here is what I'm doing:


1) Plug in Shuffle

2) Under "Devices," I click on "Music.

3) Under "Edit" at the top, I click on "Select All." This highlights my playlist currently on the Shuffle.

4) Click on "Delete" and the music disappears

5) Right click on the name of the playlist under "Music" under "Devices." Click "Delete." The shuffle is now completely clean

6) Pick new playlist to upload to shuffle in left column and right click on it. Then, click on "Copy to Play Order."

7) Drag playlist over "music" under "devices" and drop

8) Window at the top shows my new playlist songs downloading in the order I want to hear them


After I complete the above process, I safely remove the Shuffle from my computer. When I go to listen to the playlist, the songs only play in alphabetical order. No matter what I try, I cannot get the songs to play in the order I want to hear them.


Can anyone help me with specific step by step directions that will help me fix/solve this problem?


Thank you!

iPod shuffle, Windows XP
  • planb77 Level 7 Level 7 (32,255 points)

    Double check the ordering of this playlist in iTunes.  The numbers to the far left of each track indicate what position the track is located within the playlist.  Resort if necessary.  Then remove and resync the playlist over to your device.


    Another thought I just had.  Are you sure you are under the desired playlist on the Shuffle and not the main Music playlist?  Use VoiceOver to switch playlists using the instructions described in this Apple support document.

    iPod shuffle (4th generation): Enabling and using VoiceOver


    If you don't own a 4G Shuffle, please clarify what generation Shuffle.



  • planb77 Level 7 Level 7 (32,255 points)

    Sounds good. Best of luck.



  • runmusic Calculating status...

    Hi Rosey

    I was having exactly the same trouble as you.  Even though I was using Copy TO Play Order, and they were being synced in the order I had them listed, they would just go onto the iPod Shuffle in whatever order Music was sorted as (i.e. artist or album).  Even though on the playlists under Devices they were in the right order when you clicked on Music under Devices, they could not be sorted by song order number.  there was no column of numbers for some reason?

    So I just restored my iPod settings, and once it was re-started it worked perfectly first time and when I clicked on Music under Devices, that column of song order number had come back.

    Also check that in your iPod Summary Screen, you have Manually Manage Music checked.

    Hope this helps - i can't train without the music in the right order!

  • planb77 Level 7 Level 7 (32,255 points)

    Thanks for sharing what worked for you.



  • runmusic Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)

    This has put a huge smile on my face - so glad I could be of help and to a fellow runner as well!  Best of luck for March.  I need some new music for running - want to swap some tunes?



  • runmusic Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)

    I can't believe it.  Upgraded to iTunes 11 and now, every time I connect my shuffle to the computer to recharge, the play order disappears and it reverts to artist alphabetical order.  Of all the bugs...


    I can't Copy to Play Order either - my reset solution above doesn't work - I am in trouble.


    So - every time I charge the shuffle, I completely clear it, reset it (just in case) and then manually add (45 songs only) the songs one by one to Music in the right order, so they will play as I want to hear them.


    Thanks iTunes 11 - is anyone else having this problem and does anyone have a solution?




    Found my own solution - obsessively persistent!  It is only the All Songs playlist that has the above problem.  For some reason, the other playlists do not revert.  They behave themselves.  If I use the VoiceOver button to move through the playlist as below, they are all there in the correct order.


    Press and hold the VoiceOver button ( ). Press Next/Fast-forward (‘) or Previous/Rewind (]) to move through the playlist menu. Press the VoiceOver button ( ) or Play/Pause (’) to select a playlist. Press and hold the VoiceOver button ( ) again to exit without making a selection.



  • shoesfromla Calculating status...

    I realize I'm late on this thread, but I just started experiencing this issue. Nothing above or anything else I tried helped me.

  on your iPod in iTunes, of course the playlist will appear to be in the correct order, but under music it's not. While under music, right click on the top headers that show song name, artist, date added, bpm, album, etc... And check "comments." I then put the order numbers of my playlist in the comments section for each song (for 1-11 to show up correctly, you'll need to name them 1,11,111, and so on). When I was done, I sorted it by comments and synced the iPod.


    This is the only thing I've tried that has worked. I only have one playlist on the iPod though because I only use it for running and realize how tedious this would be for multiple playlists. Hopefully the other suggestion worked for others.

  • runmusic Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)

    Hi Shoes from LA


    Do you have a playlist (that you created and named) on your iPod?  Or just all the songs you want to run to?  From your post, it looks like you just have songs under Music which is what the iPod recognises as All Songs. 

    Without another Playlist, the iPod always defaults to All Songs and you cannot get this in the playorder you want - it always goes alphabetically by Artist or Song.  This has only happened since iTunes 11 - did you just upgrade?

    The way around it (without re-numbering everything) is to create a playlist.  e.g. I have one called TimeTrial which has songs I want to run to in order.  Then, I use the VoiceOver button to get off All Songs and into the Time Trial playlist, which always stays in the order I've put it in.


    Create and Name a Playlist

    Add the songs you want in the right order

    To get the playlist when you go running:-

    Press and hold the VoiceOver button.

    Press Next/Fast-forward or Previous/Rewind to move through the playlist menu.

    When the Voice says TimeTrial, press Play/Pause to select that playlist

    Listen to your songs in the right order!


    Hope this works for you.  Nothing worse than having lungs and legs burning and a slow song comes on!



  • shoesfromla Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    May 22, 2013 11:52 AM (in response to runmusic)

    I do have a playlist on my iPod (that I made in iTunes, not on the iPod) and only one playlist, but using the voice over to select the playlist does not work for me. It does not actually change to the playlist even though I've selected it. It will only play as all music no matter what. I thought it was a problem with my iPod, but a google search shows so many people complaining about the same issues. I wonder if removing the voice over commands from the iPod will help as I see it was an optional install.


    Regarding the update, I'm not sure when I was updated, but I just started experiencing this issue a couple of weeks ago. I guess I'm satisfied with my bandaid solution because I've had pretty much the same playlist for years and only use it for running.


    I hear supplements the mental component of running and there is nothing as unmotivating as songs you don't want to hear!

  • krumplijozsi Calculating status...

    i had the same problem but u can easily handle it. just push the mid little alu-button at the top of ur ipod long and during this the "song switcher"... u can switch to other playlist with this trick... so example from all songs to ur playlist (running,training.. ect..) and push 'play'.. after it songs will come in the right order... 100% successful..
    sorry for my bad english.. bye


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