Itunes sync of smart playlist podcasts update

I now have my itunes syncing unheard podcasts into a smart playlist – my smart playlist is no longer empty on my ipod. Although I didn’t get a direct answer from a variety of places, Thanks go to GotKnowHow that gave me the final key to getting things to work.
I had to do the following:-

  1. I ended up deleting all of my old podcasts (that has given me a lot of disk space back).
  2. Created/modified my smart playlist called Unheard Podcasts to ensure I have the following set –
    • Playcount is less than 1
    • Kind is MPEG audio file (removes video)
    • Genre is podcast
    • Live updating is on
    • Smart playlist for unheard podcasts in iTunes 9 (by absoblogginlutely)

  3. I selected my ipod in itunes, then the podcasts tab and unchecked “automatically include all unplayed episodes of all podcasts”.
  4. Down the bottom of the screen under “include episodes from playlists” I made sure my “Unheard Podcasts” playlist was selected. Fixing iTunes smart playlist to include my podcasts. (by absoblogginlutely)

After a sync it all seemed to work.
I’m not sure what the final step was, but this combination seems to work.

iTunes 9 = empty smart playlists on portable devices

I upgraded Itunes to version 9 last week, synchronised my ipod nano, took it to the office and found no music in my “unheard podcasts” playlist. This is a playlist that consists of podcasts with a play count <1 and that are of type audio so it doesn’t try to sync the unwatched video podcasts.

It turns out that this seems to be a bug and all “smart” playlists can be blank on portable devices.  Thankfully it is easy to tell if you are affected – just create a smart playlist with content, sync it to your device and then look in itunes under the smart playlist for the device to see if it is empty.

There is an update to Itunes 9.01 – although this hasn’t fixed the issue – I see that they didn’t rename the playlists feature to “stupid playlists”. The other work around of turning of the liveupdate function in the playlist setting didn’t work for me either.

For those of you who are wondering why I even have this playlist, it’s so that I have all the unheard podcasts in one location so when driving it will automatically switch to the next podcast (or I can skip to the next one). If I use the podcast feature and get to the end of the podcasts from that particular author, I would have to switch to the next podcast manually – not something that is easy or legal to do whilst driving.

In another rant, why did they make the option to mark items as new/not new now watched/unwatched? I don’t know that many people who watch mp3’s and I think most people have far more mp3’s than they do video files.

Oh – and stop offering me the iphone configuration utility, safari4 and MobileMe. If I’ve unchecked it once that probably means I don’t want it – grrr.

Ipod reboot

My ipod locked up this morning – it would not respond to any buttons but it would detect the lock being slid across as the lock icon would appear or disappear on the screen. I got to work, mentioned it to my colleague who promptly started to google it. Much to our amusement the first result after typing in reboot and then a space was reboot ipod.
Top result in Google when searching for reboot followed by a space. (by absoblogginlutely)
After pressing the menu and center buttons twice, the ipod unfroze and I was able to listen to my podcasts in the car this morning.

Kristens ipod works!

I’ve finally got Kristen’s ipod to work after several days (a week on and off). The symptoms were that upgrading the ipod (at itunes prompting) would just result in a hang of itunes as would a restore. I was also getting messages such as The ipod “Ipod” cannot be updated. The required folder cannot be found. The ipod “Ipod” cannot be updated. The disk could not be read from or written to.
I solved the problem by doing all of the items below. (Note that if you are going to follow these instructions, make sure you have a backup of your ipod or don’t mind loosing the data on it!)

  • Copy the data from the ipod drive in windows to a temporary location on the pc’s hard disk and then format the ipod by right clicking on the drive in explorer, choosing Format and then doing a quick format (You may need to ensure that the drive letter that Windows sees is a unique one to the drive. If this is needed, right click my computer, choose manage and then go to disk management. Right click the larger ipod disk and choose change drive letter)
  • Uninstalled itunes and rebooted
  • Deleted %appdata%\Apple Computer\Itunes and %temp%
  • Reinstalled itunes
  • Delete the temporary copy of the ipod data

When I launched itunes it all seemed to start working properly – Kristen will be pleased.
Interestingly is that when I formatted the ipod, after the pc reboot there were files and directories back in the drive -I guess the ipod autoloads its OS from the hidden partition on the disk.