MacMost Now 900: Manually Managing Media On Your iOS Device

Instead of using sync settings to decide what music to put on your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch, you can set iTunes to let you manually drag and drop music and video into your device. This lets you have finer control over exactly which songs are on the device. You can also get media on to your device without it needing to be in your iTunes library. Another advantage is that you can transfer media from a second Mac to your device without needing to erase the existing media.

Comments: 21 Responses to “MacMost Now 900: Manually Managing Media On Your iOS Device”

    Brad Smith
    6 years ago

    Great tip. Going to try it right now!

      Brad Smith
      6 years ago

      Perfect! Just what I needed. Thanks Gary.

    Larry
    6 years ago

    Great. Except what if PC is SLOW and almost out of puff. How can I do similar WITHOUT iTunes. Can’t even recall when last synced direct. Have been backing up to cloud. Sync is WiFi, but laptop has been off because of overheat tendency (and likely not to be able to last a full sync cycle.)

      6 years ago

      iTunes is what you use to sync between Mac/PC and iOS — that’s what the tutorial is about. No suggestions on what to do if you can’t use iTunes.

    Bob
    6 years ago

    Thanks Garry – it is great to simplify the process and have the option of more flexibility.

    Tan Fletcher
    6 years ago

    Gary, I just tried it and this is the best tip ever. It will save me so much time. The only thing missing is photos. How can we do this with photos?

      6 years ago

      You can’t do it with photos, exactly. Using iPhoto is the best way to go, because there are events and albums to deal with. But you can change the Photos syncing to sync a folder instead of iPhoto, and that may get you closer to what you want.

    John C Stires
    6 years ago

    Photos: Any way to drag n’ drop FROM iPhone TO MBP?
    (I typically don’t use iPhoto, [Adobe Lightroom, Bridge & PS6])

    MT
    6 years ago

    Does the drag and drop of music or media work when your iOS device is connected to a Windows 7 PC or just with Macs? I have both a PC & a Mac. Can you use this method to add music from both?

      6 years ago

      It shouldn’t matter if it is a Mac or a PC, you just need to be using iTunes. Try it and see.

    John M
    6 years ago

    Thank you Gary. Very useful tip for me. Thanks

    Andy
    6 years ago

    Can you do this if you are using iTunes Match? It seems to work when I manual add Movies, but Music has told me in the past that I need to do this using the cloud to automatically download since i have iTunes Match. Am I doing something wrong? Is there a way to manual load and unload music off the iPad even if you have Match?

      6 years ago

      No, this would not be useful for music if you use iTunes Match. I’d read up more on iTunes Match to understand how it handles music — it is completely different as all of your music is stored in the cloud and you don’t need to worry about managing anything.

    Emmanuel Scerri
    6 years ago

    Gary, Thanks for a great tip. Moving files around has been trying my nerves for several months month. God Bless and keep up the good work. Emmanuel in Switzerland

    Dennis B
    6 years ago

    Thank You for thegreat tutorial. I have been frustrated with iTunes saying it would erase everything on my iPad if I tried to sync from another computer. I do have one question, what is the “Finder” that you referred to a couple of times? If it is Mac software, what is the equivalent on a PC?
    DB

      6 years ago

      The Finder is the “app” that you use all the time to view and manipulate files. Look in your Dock all the way to the left — that icon there is the Finder. Then you open one or more Finder windows to view your files, etc. See http://macmost.com/tag/finder

        Dennis B
        6 years ago

        This sounds like a “Mac” answer. I use a Windows PC, and cannot find the “Dock” or Finder windows you refer to. How can you relate this video to a Windows PC user?

          6 years ago

          Right, sorry. I assumed you were asking a Mac question since this is MacMost. I interpreted your last sentence to mean that you used to use Windows and so wanted a translation of sorts. I don’t typically get Windows users asking questions, but frequently get people who have switched from Windows and want to know what things are called on the Mac side.
          The equivalent to the Finder on Windows would simply be the Windows interface — the Desktop and any Windows “windows” you would open that would show files and folders. I’ve heard it referred to as Windows Explorer — but I think that also means a stand-alone application that allows you to navigate files and folders.
          There is no “Dock” in Windows, but the Task Bar and Start menu at the bottom approximate that functionality in some ways.

    roberta
    6 years ago

    when I tried dragging, along with the file was a green circle
    with a + and a red circle with a 1: nothing transferred. I thought it indicated I was trying to move more than 1 file, somehow they’d gotten nested. But I retried with a different file, sure it was just one.Same result. What am I doing wrong?
    itunes 11
    macbook pro
    Thanks for letting me ask
    iphone 5

      6 years ago

      I’m not sure what it is you are seeing. Your description doesn’t fit anything — you have 2 circles with the icon? The + one makes sense, but one with a 1: — I don’t know that that could be.

Comments Closed.