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iPod Hardware and Accessories All iPod hardware discussions.

20g iPod doesn't work with USB PCI card on PC?

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Member Since: Aug 28, 2004
Posts: 234
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Hey I need some help. I have a 20g iPod and a PowerBook 12". I always use the iPod with my PowerBook no problems. I have a Dell Dimension 8100 but it only has the 4 standard USB 1.0 ports. To transfer very large files I've been using a program called TransMac which lets me select the iPod on my Dell and copy files to and from. I recently purchased an ALI USB 2.0 Pci card for my Dell. It has 4 external and 1 internal ports. Everything works on it fine, with other devices and memory keys. The only thing is with the iPod, transmac usually says Error Reading Mac Disk. The only port that works is if I connect the iPod to the internal port. However, it's SO slow. It transfers around 1mb every 30 seconds and then usually fails. When I plug it into the internal port iTunes pops up saying I need to use the CD to install my iPod. If I attach it to the external ports, windows detects and shows it but that message never appears. I can't access the iPod either, only from the internal one. I installed the iPod software and let it format and install it as FAT32 to see if that would help. Doing this let it work on all of the ports, but I still have the same problem. If I transfer a file TO the iPod, it goes very fast, USB 2.0 speed. But transfering FROM the iPod takes forever and freezes and stops. Has anyone else encountered this? The USB card was only $13.99cad from TigerDirect so I don't know if it's just a piece of junk or what. It's just weird copying to is so fast but from only does about 1mb then stops. Really need help! I have updated drivers etc, dunno what's up with it. Also itunes doesn't auto load when I plug it in, it seems like usually only the internal port will work with it well, the external ones only work sometimes. They usually show the iPod in My Computer but itunes says no ipod connected. Again just to clarify I'm not trying to get the ipod to work, it's for my mac and works. I'm just trying to use it as a 20g firewire drive to transfer files but it's so slow copying from only on the PC. Thanks!
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As you probably know, the Mac & the PC use different file structures. I have setup my iPod on a PC with iTunes. I believe it was formatted for PC use the first time I connected it. Also, iTunes wants to associate the iPod to ONE and only ONE computer. Check the iPod docs to change computers. I believe you have to essentially start over.

All that being said, I am not familiar with Transmac but my guess is that it is software that lets you read/write to a Mac disc from a PC. Check the docs for Transmac and find out why it can't use your USB2 ports.

I couldn't tell from your desription if you are using Transmac to read and write to the iPod. If you format the iPod as a FAT32 windows partition, I don't know if you'll be able to write to it from your Powerbook.

My suggestion would be not to use the iPod as an external disc drive as it is a very expensive solution for that purpose. For example, I purchased a 200 gb Maxtor drive last week at Staples for $60 and installed it in a $25 external USB2 case. So for less than $90, I have an external drive I can use on my PC's and Mac mini. One 100 gb partition can be a Mac OS X partition and the other 100 gb partition is used as a Windows NTFS partition. That way both systems can write to their respective partitions and both systems can read both partitions.

Hope this helps.

Royal Oak, MI
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Member Since: Aug 28, 2004
Posts: 234
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Hi thanks for your help. I don't transfer files too often so it's more just an occasional thing. The iPod was set as mac file system that's why I was using Transmac to read it in Windows. I formatted it as FAT32 and set it up on the PC after. I can access it on the mac no problem and it's set up for itunes on the mac. I don't want to be able to access music on both, only itunes on the Mac. When I plug it into the internal USB port, it shows up no problem and I can access it, but the thing is it only runs at USB 1 speed for some reason. Transfering files from it always freezes as well. Any of the back external ports never work. My ipod is called Lee's Ipod. On the internal ports it shows up as Lee's iPod and if I load Realplayer I can play music off it, even though its set up for itunes on my mac. If I plug it into the back ports it shows up as Apple iPod and when I try to access it windows says this device is corrupt, and Realplayer says error with database, 0 files on device and such. So I'm not really sure. I just don't understand why it would only work on the internal port, and when it does only run at USB 1 speed or freeze. Any memory keys I have work on the internal and external and run at full speed. I tried to format and set it up again on the PC but like I said the only port it works on is the internal port, external does nothing so if I run iPod updater it says please plug in an ipod. I dunno..
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Member Since: Feb 08, 2005
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It may be a power problem. I was running into a similar situation using an external 2.5 usb 2.0 drive powered from two usb ports. It would transfer data for a bit then just fall off the bus. When I powered the drive externally, it works ok.

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