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iPod Classic 6th Generation. Model A1238 / 80, 120, or 160 GB hard drive / black or silver metal front

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Recover iPod hard drive

I have an iPod classic 160gb, the hard drive has been removed as one of mine was broken and managed to salvage by using an SD adapter, the other is completely dismantled and I'm wondering is there a way to recover files and music on this hard drive?

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There are adapters which you can use to convert the PATA or SATA ZIF connection the drive uses to a standard PATA or SATA connection or better yet a USB interface adapter.

So the first step is to identify which drive you have and what style of ZIP it has. Then the fun of googling begins! As these tiny drives have long since stopped being made, most of the adapters once available are likewise hard to find. But, with some effort you should be able to get something worked out!

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Thanks again, I believe it's a 40 or 50 pin zif it's an mk1634gal Toshiba drive, and as you've suggested, adapters used to exist but can't find much currently


@Adam Foss - Knowing you have an IDE (ATA) drive points us to this case ZIF/CE to USB 1.8"in 40Pin HDD External Hard Drive SSD Convertor Enclosure Case


@danj thanks, However in the description it says my type of drive is an encryption disk and won't work this this type of drive, I've purchased something similar in the past but the ribbon cable was ridiculously thick, not sure if this is because it's just a cheaply made item or genuinely not compatible.


The first step is getting a means to even access your drive, whats what this case will allow you.

As far as encryption, the iPod music partition is not encrypted! It just has a unique format so you do need some special software to retrieve the music files. The music files them selves you have on the iPod might have DRM which prevents sharing. Apple removed DRM on its iTunes music a few years ago, but your drive may still have the older files (is this only an issue if you are not the original owner/user of the iTunes).

If you setup a file volume these files are held in a GUID/Journaled partition. This partition might be encrypted! Did you set that up when you created it?


@danj I have purchased a couple of adapters and hoping they'll fit but not too confident, i am the original owner of the iPod and havnt done anything to encrypt it just simply used iTunes and windows file explorer to add music and files to it in the past, any idea what software may be of help should I be able to get this to plug in?


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You could send it in for data recovery but it could get expensive. The same thing happened to my wifes ipad. The hard drive stopped working so I am rebuilding it with a iflash setup with 2 128gb sd cards. But if you want to retrieve the data I would check with Louis rossmann from or jessa from ipad rehab they might be able to help you.

Update (06/16/2020)

It sounds like the hard drive failed. You can't just plug it in to something and it will give you the data. You have to take the hard drive apart and move the plate into a good hard drive. I don't know how to do this. But I do know you need to know what you are doing or you will just get a bunch of jumbled data that makes no sense.

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Thanks! Recovery seems expensive, just wondering if there's an adaptor/enclosure I could try first, as I've seen them for other drives just can't find one for this particular drive


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Adam Foss zal eeuwig dankbaar zijn.

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