14 Replies Latest reply: Nov 17, 2012 7:13 PM by david1235102
courteousgal Level 1 (0 points)

Hi, I've read lots of questions and answers but none of them have solved my problem. Thanks in advance for any help you can provide.


I'm suddenly getting the following dreaded message when I try to sync my iPod Touch with my PC: "This iPod cannot be used because the Apple Mobile Device service is not started."


Here are my details: iPod Touch running iOS 5.1.1

Desktop PC with Windows 7 64-bit



I've done the following several times!


Went into my PC services and stopped and started the Apple Mobile Device

Uninstalled these programs in order:

  1. iTunes
  2. QuickTime
  3. Apple Software Update
  4. Apple Mobile Device Support
  5. Bonjour
  6. Apple Application Support

Reinstalled iTunes

Restarted my computer

Hard reset of iPod

Turned off services as directed here: http://support.apple.com/kb/HT2292

I've tried all 6 of my USB ports


All to no avail. I still get the same message: "This iPod cannot be used because the Apple Mobile Device service is not started."


This iPod is a very expensive and now almost useless toy and I've spent hours on trying to fix it so I can load music and movies onto my iPod Touch 4th generation. Is there any other help available without paying for Apple Support? I can't even find any working 3rd party applications allowing me to sync my iPod with my PC. I do not have access to another computer. Thanks again for any and all assistance.

iPod touch, Windows 7
  • lllaass Level 10 (176,034 points)

    Have you tried another computer to verify that it is problem with your computer?

    If so then try a repair of your WIndows OS. To do that insert your Windows installation disk and start a installation. Yu shuld be told it found am ionsrallation of windows and would you like to repair it.

  • courteousgal Level 1 (0 points)

    Hi lllaass,


    Thanks for your response. I don't have access to another computer. My Windows 7 OS was installed at the factory and the so-called "restore disks" can only do a complete reformat and reinstall on my PC. I'm not able to do that at this time because I'll need a new external hard drive to back up all the graphics and videos I've created.  I tried a Restore Point on my PC and that didn't work either. Any other suggestions?

  • lllaass Level 10 (176,034 points)

    Do you have a friend's computer to connect to just as a test?

  • courteousgal Level 1 (0 points)

    I don't have access to another computer.

  • just219 Level 1 (120 points)

    go to control panel> administrative tools> services> ipod service --- and make sure the service is started

  • courteousgal Level 1 (0 points)

    Hi just219, Tried that, thanks. Didn't solve my problem. I even did a repair install of Windows 7 as instructed on this site: http://www.sevenforums.com/tutorials/3413-repair-install.html but to no avail.   


    Same error message.

  • row74 Level 1 (0 points)

    I made this account to answer your question

    so I really hope it helps.


    I had the same problem. I found this page and

    the suggestion Control Panel > Adminastritive

    Tools > Services > iPod Service. But it already

    said started. I assume you had the same problem.

    Well that's because it's not iPod Service you go

    to, it's Apple Mobile Device. It's the 4th one on

    the list, (for me anyway).


    I hope this works!

  • Hawkes inda sky Level 1 (0 points)

    Hi I've got the same problem VERY cross have u fixed it yet thanks

  • Olliec_98 Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks "row74"but

  • sw1ft Level 1 (0 points)

    ok this what you have to do exactly what row74 but a little more

    Control Panel > Adminastritive

    Tools > Services > iPod Service. But it already

    said started. I assume you had the same problem.

    Well that's because it's not iPod Service you go

    to, it's Apple Mobile Device.

    right click go to properties, then make sure its on automatic then click on start then apply then ok.that should do it

    you should be able to fix this problem.

  • courteousgal Level 1 (0 points)

    I just want to update everyone after all this time. I spent months (off and on) trying to solve my problem to no avail. However, I want to thank everyone for their responses. I read and tried them all.


    I also visited the Apple Store 3 times to speak to the geniuses and called Apple Care twice, but nobody could solve my problem. My iPod worked on the Macs in the store and I finally found another PC to try and it worked, so there is something amiss with my PC. Rather than chuck out my iPod or sell it, I finally found a workaround solution that may help others.


    It's a 3rd party app called Air Sharing. It's not free but it works great. I can use my iPod as a drive on my PC so I can drag and drop pictures, documents and videos over without iTunes.


    Good luck to everyone else with the inability to use iTunes! I feel your pain.

  • Eduardo1057 Level 1 (0 points)

    It is very easy and very simple to fix


    Let's get started on your computer at startup. Make sure nothing is open when performing these steps.


    Steps to fixing problem:


    1) Go To Start

    2) Select Control Panel

    3) On the Top Right corner where there is a box that says "Search Control Panel" type in the following

    "AD" the screen should change to a couple of sections

    4) Double Click on "Adminstrative Tools" a new window should pop up

    With new sections

    5) Now find with in the sections the word "Services" Double Click on it

    The Service Window should pop up. More sections should appear!

    6) Now with in this sections find "Apple Mobile D..." Highlight it

    7) Check to see if it is "Disabled" if so continue reading:

    8) Double Click on it Now a window should pop up "Apple Mobile Device Properties"

    9) With in the window find the section where it says "Startup type:" there is a scroll down box where the word

    "Disabled" should be click on it to bring down the drop down menu.

    10) In the Menu Select "Automatic" then Click "Apply" and Click "Ok"

    11) Find the highlighted "Apple Mobile D..." in the "Services" window make sure the in the

    3rd row it says "Started" if not Right Click it and Select Start



    This should fix the problem. After you done that. Open iTunes and plug in your iDevice it should not have that error message any more. Problem Solved.

  • Awills Level 1 (0 points)

    Thank you, Eduardo1057! I had this problem when I logged in, today. Your suggestion fixed it the first time. I was a little worried when "owner's ipod" did not show up once I followed the directions. It was because I had iTunes open while "starting" the service. All I had to do (as per your instructions) was close iTunes after making the changes, and re-open it. Thank you so very much!

  • david1235102 Level 1 (0 points)

    This didn't work for me. Apple Mobile Device was already set to automatic but was stopped. I right-clicked it and started it and immediately after it started, it popped a message on the screen that said, "The Apple Mobile Device service on Local Computer started and then stopped. Some services stop automatically if they are not in use by other services or programs."

    iTunes is open and the iPod is connected.