Skip navigation

How do I connect my new iPod Touch to my Ubuntu laptop?

2461 Views 10 Replies Latest reply: Mar 26, 2014 3:26 AM by stonehold RSS
anichols2000 Calculating status...
Currently Being Moderated
Dec 26, 2012 4:34 AM

Normally I'd just use iTunes, using a windows based machine, but since that particular OS has gone in directions I find undesirable (aka Windows 8's new interface and the 'enhanced' BIOS that restricts the hardware so much you cannot properly use it anymore), I've switched to using Ubuntu 12.04.1 LTS 3.2.0-30-generic (32 bit).  Trying to load iTunes via WINE (which makes the laptop pretend to be a windows machine again) is a massive headache...there seems to be no way to make it install properly.  Similarly having issues loading it through VirtualBox (where I actually run all the windows executables in a virtual machine environment).  And since there's no Linux-native version of iTunes around that I can see...


Is there a way to get the iPod to make itself recognized as a USB file storage device, so I can push my music onto it that way?  Or a way to get iTunes to work in Ubuntu (right now I'd be glad to use a web interface via Firefox, if one existed, that's platform-neutral).



anichols2000 - New Apple User, thanks to Santa Claus

iPod touch, Other OS
  • LexSchellings Level 5 Level 5 (5,510 points)

    maybe you should post this on linux forum(s), there you will have a lot more chance to find help.

  • the fiend Level 5 Level 5 (6,935 points)

    anichols2000 wrote:


    Is there a way to get the iPod to make itself recognized as a USB file storage device, so I can push my music onto it that way?



    There is no version (as you've probably noticed) of iTunes that works with Ubuntu. You will probably have more luck working out how to "make the laptop pretend to be a Windows machine" if you try a forum specifically designed for Ubuntu.


    Sorry that I can't be more help. It's not that we don't want to solve your issue, but as Windows and Mac users, the chances of finding someone here who knows enough about what you are trying to do, with Ubuntu, is small.

  • alanroth Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    itunes doesnt play nice with Wine in my experience.


    i ended up installing virtualbox (and  the extension pack) and loading up a virtual windows xp.


    create a usb filter in virtualbox for the ipod.  that'll send the ipod directly to xp when plugged in.


    i also created a rule in a program "gDevilspie" to load the virtualized windows xp on a 2nd workspace/desktop as soon as linux is done booting.


    also in the virtual windows you can install the "guest additions" too..... that way i share my mp3 directories between linux/virtual windows


    what problems are you having with virtualbox? cuz ive had no issues with it at all

  • Leon C. Level 1 Level 1 (130 points)

    It's basically impossible to use it as an usb drive because whenever you connect it, it will never show the system files and other files. It is hidden unless you use something like this:

    But it's not for linux

    Good luck anyways and try searching some linux forums just in case someone knows how to do it.

  • alanroth Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    Leon, no offense... but it obvious that you don't understand what we're talking about... we dont want to use the ipod as a usb drive... just trying to pass the usb connection to the virtual windows.... and i'm trying to help him


    to the problem at hand, since linux can see the device with the lsusb command,  i think its a permissions problem. but first, did you install virtualbox from the website? or from the software center?


    if from the software center.... purge it... and download the .deb from the website:

    sudo apt-get purge virtualbox

    (or i think it may be virtualbox-ose)


    did you add yourself to the vboxusers group as instructed?

    sudo usermod -a -G vboxusers anichols2000


    of course you would replace anichols2000 with your linux username and make sure its a capital "-G" and reboot the system for changes to take effect. if that doesnt work...trying adding yourself to a couple more groups.. im guessing...


    sudo usermod -a -G disks anichols2000

    sudo usermod -a -G plugdev anichols2000


    side note: im not happy with Ubuntu 12.04, the they took out some very useful gui tools such as "users and groups" and "Synaptic package manager". i would suggest re-installing them... you could add yourself to the groups through the "users and groups" gui instead of the commands above if you prefer after installing the gnome system tools...


    sudo apt-get install gnome-system-tools

    sudo apt-get install synaptic


    hope that helps..... good luck

  • Leon C. Level 1 Level 1 (130 points)

    alanroth, no offense taken

    I was not realizing he was talking about a virtual windows sorry

  • alanroth Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    actually i should apologize, because his original post was asking about turning the ipod to a storage device. we did move from that but i'll admit your post was relevant and i snapped at you.... so i apologize... hey it was 4am here, my bad

  • stonehold Calculating status...

    Thank you SO MUCH alanroth!  Adding myself to 'vboxusers' and 'plugdev' groups fixed everything!


    I got my machine preinstalled with Windows 8 and absolutely hated it.  So, I got rid of it in favor of Ubuntu.  Unfortunately, I didn't do enough research and could no longer sync my iPod Touch 5g (The lack of research was my fault).  Eventually I learned how to install Windows XP on VirtualBox, but my iPod still wasn't being recognized.  Adding my username to those two groups fixed it!


    For the record, I am running Ubuntu 13.10, and downloaded to VirtualBox package from the main repository using Synaptic (sudo apt-get install would have worked, too).  VirtualBox is version 4.2.16.  Here's a list of additional packages I installed relating to VirtualBox:









    Cheers everyone, I'm one happy geek again!  Thanks! 


More Like This

  • Retrieving data ...

Bookmarked By (0)


  • This solved my question - 10 points
  • This helped me - 5 points
This site contains user submitted content, comments and opinions and is for informational purposes only. Apple disclaims any and all liability for the acts, omissions and conduct of any third parties in connection with or related to your use of the site. All postings and use of the content on this site are subject to the Apple Support Communities Terms of Use.