How to View an iPod As an External Device in Windows Explorer

By Theodora Pennypacker

If you own an iPod, you can only transfer audio and video tracks onto the device through iTunes. This media management program for all Apple devices was designed to help users organize files on their devices. While iTunes accepts video in the MOV, MP4, M4V formats and audio in the MP3, M4A, AAC, AIFF and WAV formats, it does not accept graphic or document files. Even so, you can still store such files on your iPod if you configure the device to act as a removable disk drive. Once you make this change, the iPod essentially behaves like an external flash drive that you can open in Windows Explorer.

Launch iTunes. Connect the iPod to your computer using the device's USB cable. When iTunes recognizes the iPod, it will be listed under the Devices menu.

Select the iPod from the Devices list and its storage information will display in the main iTunes window.

Click the “Settings” tab in the main window and check the “Enable Disk Use” box. Exit iTunes.

Open the “Start” menu, select “All Programs,” “Accessories,” and open Windows Explorer. The file system browser will load.

Expand the “My Computer” tab on the left menu pane of Windows Explorer. The connected iPod will be listed in the “Devices with Removable Storage” section.

Double-click the Windows Explorer listing for the iPod and its content will display. Drag and drop any files you want to store on the iPod into the window.

Right-click the Windows Explorer listing for the iPod and select “Eject” from the fly-out menu. Unplug the USB cable from your computer to disconnect the iPod.


Apple iPad and iPhone devices cannot be configured as external storage devices.