Submit Hint Search The Forums LinksStatsPollsHeadlinesRSS
14,000 hints and counting!

Syncing Contacts to an older iPod nano iPod
I own a 5th Generation iPod nano (the one with the camera and the ability to play video). I have also tested this hint with a 1st Generation iPod nano. It may apply to other iPod models as well.

Up until the latest model, the iPod nano has had the ability to do a one-way sync from Address Book to its Contacts. At some point, this ability broke, either with OS X Lion, or with a specific version of iTunes. Attempting to sync Address Book to the iPod nano now produces a zero-byte file called iSync.vcf. I have reported this problem to Apple. There have been updates to both Lion and iTunes since I made that report, but syncing Contacts is still broken. Following is one possible solution that uses a four-step (or less) Automator Workflow.

Optional Step 1: Drag "Run Shell Script" into your Workflow window. In the script area, enter:
rm -f "/Volumes/<your iPod's name>/Contacts/*.vcf"
Be careful to use your iPod's EXACT name, e.g., if there is a curly apostrophe in "John Doe’s iPod".

Step 2: Drag "Find Address Book Items" into your Workflow. using the popups and text boxes change it to look something like this:
Find [people] where:
	[All] of the following are true
		[City][is not] xyzzy
		[State][is not] xyzzy
This action will find all your Contacts.

Step 3: (Your iPod must be connected to your Mac, and "Enable disk use" must be enabled in iTunes.) Drag "Export vCards" into your Workflow. Set these parameters in this action:
Export [individual vCards] to [Contacts]
If you have Optional Step 1 in your workflow, it does not matter whether you select [individual vCards] or [one vCard]. They look the same on your iPod, and each has its own advantages and disadvantages. To complete this Action, choose "Other..." from the destination popup and navigate to the Contacts folder on your iPod.

Optional Step 4: Drag Run AppleScript into your Workflow. change "(* Your script goes here *)" to:
tell application "Address Book" to quit
Click the Run button to see if your Workflow works. If it does, save it in either ~/Library/iTunes/Scripts/ or ~/Library/Scripts/Applications/iTunes/, and give it a meaningful name such as like "Export Address Book." Run this script each time you want to update the contacts on your iPod nano.

[kirkmc adds: I no longer have an older iPod nano, and have not been able to test this.]
    •    
  • Currently 3.56 / 5
  You rated: 5 / 5 (9 votes cast)
 
[5,105 views]  

Syncing Contacts to an older iPod nano | 5 comments | Create New Account
Click here to return to the 'Syncing Contacts to an older iPod nano' hint
The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
Syncing Contacts to an older iPod nano
Authored by: Jaywalk3r on Mar 27, '12 09:48:01AM

I haven't experienced any problems syncing contacts on my Nano 2G with Lion and iTunes 10.6. (I just re-tested to verify.)



[ Reply to This | # ]
Syncing Contacts to an older iPod nano
Authored by: ahamel on Apr 23, '12 12:22:17PM

Same problem: "iSync.vcf" empty file. Simpler solution: export vCards from Address Book to iPod "Contacts" folder.

Connect your iPod to your Mac.

Open Address Book (on Mac side)
Go to Edit/Select All

Then go to Edit/Export vCard…

In Save dialog box, select "Your iPod Name"/Contacts
and click "Save" to export vCards.vcf file in your iPod Contacts folder.

Click "Replace" if asked.



[ Reply to This | # ]
Syncing Contacts to an older iPod nano
Authored by: afterhours on Sep 19, '13 05:23:01AM

I tried ahamel's method with an iPod nano 4th gen (tall skinny one without camera) with the same issue (running 10.7.5, will sync iCal data shared across a server with other users, will not sync AddressBook/Contacts cards also shared, running iTunes 11.0.5). His method worked perfectly. After turning on the ipod data option, the export using his outline was flawless:

Same problem: "iSync.vcf" empty file. Simpler solution: export vCards from Address Book to iPod "Contacts" folder.

Connect your iPod to your Mac.

Open Address Book (on Mac side)
Go to Edit/Select All

Then go to Edit/Export vCard…

In Save dialog box, select "Your iPod Name"/Contacts
and click "Save" to export vCards.vcf file in your iPod Contacts folder.

Click "Replace" if asked.



[ Reply to This | # ]
Syncing Contacts to an older iPod nano
Authored by: LShark on Sep 09, '12 07:03:53PM

I don't have a nano, I have a Classic, but I tried this and it worked beautifully! Thanks so much for the instructions! Now on to a fun puzzle for me - I'm going to start with your instructions and see if I can also get my calendars to sync again...

BTW - I believe it was Lion, not iTunes that broke this. I have always had the latest version of iTunes, but the Contact issue didn't come up until I upgraded from Snow Leopard to Mountain Lion a few weeks ago.



[ Reply to This | # ]
Syncing Contacts to an older iPod nano
Authored by: LShark on Sep 09, '12 07:13:37PM

Forgot to say in my first comment: I had to change the last line to quit "Contacts" rather than "Address Book." Other than that, it worked exactly as expected.



[ Reply to This | # ]