Customize Your iPod: IpodLinux or RockBox?

This past week I stumbled across two open source programs that are made to be installed on iPods and other media devices. These two programs are iPodLinux and Rockbox. They are both great programs for customization on your iPod and for doing more than the closed source programs let you. The only problem with these programs is that at the moment, not all of the devices are compatible.

iPodLinux was the first one that captured my attention and the first one to get removed from my iPod. The installer that was offered as an option did not work for me and i was forced to install it manually. The manual can be found on their website ( and it is not to hard to do. It successfully installed and I was thrilled to have Linux on my iPod. There was only one problem that I found: the ability to play music is not present in the initial installation of iPodLinux. I then proceeded to try and install the Music Player Daemon (MPD) to be able to play my music files. This was another whole problem to try and get it to work. In the end, it was too much for me and I ended restoring my iPod back to the factory settings.

After this, still wanting to use a different program on my iPod, I went and looked up Rockbox. I downloaded the RockboxUtility, the one specific for my iPod model, and I started it up on Ubuntu. It went through the installation easily and I proceeded to install the themes onto the iPod. I finished all of this and ejected my iPod. I disconnected it and the iPod rebooted. It booted up into Rockbox and it found all the music. It contained extra little programs that were nice to see and fun to have. I downloaded a theme and had the Utility install it into the iPod. It was refreshing to see a different, more colorful iPod.

For those of you that are technical enough and wish to try it out, can play around with iPodLinux. I would recommend Rockbox for those that just want something that is easy to install.


~ by masterjs on March 24, 2008.

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