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iPod & iTunes: The Missing Manual, Fourth Edition by J.D. Biersdorfer

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Varying the Auto-Transfer Theme

The beauty of the iTunes/iPod system is that whatever music you add to your Mac or PC gets added to the iPod automatically, effortlessly, and quickly. You’ve always got your entire music collection with you. Just plugging in the iPod inspires iTunes to open up and begin syncing.

It’s conceivable, however, that you won’t always want complete and automatic syncing to take place whenever you connect the Pod. Maybe you use the iPod primarily as an external hard drive (Chapter 9), so you don’t especially care to have iTunes jumping up like a West Highland terrier every time you plug in the iPod. Maybe you want to synchronize only some of your music, not all of it.

Fortunately, you’re in complete control of the situation.

Stop Auto-Opening iTunes

If you like, you can command your jukebox software to open only when you want it to, rather than every time the iPod is plugged in. Just open iTunes, plug in the iPod, and, in the Source list, click its icon.

Then, click the iPod-shaped icon in the bottom-right part of the iTunes window (circled in Figure 2-6, left). The iPod Preferences box appears. Click the Music tab in the box to turn off the “Open iTunes when this iPod is attached” checkbox. (Older versions of iTunes keep all these preferences in one box, so yours may look a little different if you haven’t updated lately.)

Left: Click the circled button to call up the iPod Preferences dialog box. (The second button takes you to equalizer settings; the third controls screen displays. The last button dismounts the iPod from the computer.)Right: On the Music tab of the iPod Preferences box you can choose to have the iPod update everything automatically, or just certain playlists. “Manually manage songs and playlists” lets you move just the songs you want to the iPod.

Figure 2-6. Left: Click the circled button ...

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