What to do if iPod can’t be updated because the firmware file was corrupt or not found

Issue or symptom

iTunes may display a message that it could not update iPod because the iPod software update was corrupt or not found.

Products affected

  • iTunes 7 or later
  • Any iPod


The message does not indicate that there is an issue with the iPod but that that iTunes was unable to read the iPod software update it uses to restore or update your iPod. You can delete the folder containing the iPod software update files so iTunes can download a new copy of the iPod software update.

Here are the steps to take if you get this message:

  1. Eject iPod and quit iTunes.
  2. Use Disk Utility in Mac OS X or run chkdsk in Windows to verify there are no other issues on your hard drive.
  3. Locate the iPod Software Updates folder:
    • In Mac OS X, the folder is
      /Users/username/Library/iTunes/iPod Software Updates
    • In Windows Vista, the folder is
      C:\Users\username\AppData\Apple Computer\iTunes\iPod Software Updates
    • In Windows XP and Windows 2000, the folder is
      C:\Documents and Settings\yourusername\Application Data\Apple Computer\iTunes\iPod Software Updates

Note: If you don’t see the files in Windows, turn on the Show hidden files option.

      1. Windows Vista: Open Computer and choose Folder and Search Options from the Organize menu.
        Windows XP and 2000: Open My Computer and click Folder Options from the Tools menu.
      2. Click the View tab.
      3. In the Advanced Settings pane, select the “Show hidden files and folders” button.
      4. Click OK.
  1. Drag the iPod Software Updates folder to the Trash or Recycle Bin.
  2. Connect iPod and open iTunes. You will need to be connected to the Internet to download the files.


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