How to reset a frozen & unresponsive ipod

Updated July 20, 2017

Like all electronic devices, iPods sometimes freeze and become unresponsive. Sometimes iPods lock up when they're dropped on the ground or come in contact with water, but less destructive accidents may also cause them to stop working. All versions of the iPod have a way to reset their hardware should they stop playing music or refuse to turn off.

Check the "Hold" switch on the top case of your iPod to be sure it isn't activated. An iPod will appear frozen and unresponsive if this feature is activated. A lock symbol will appear on your iPod's screen if it is in Hold mode.

Switch the "Hold" button on and off once. Place one finger on the "Menu" button and another on the centre button. Press both buttons at the same time and hold them for up to 8 seconds.

Release the "Menu" and centre buttons once the Apple logo appears on your iPod's screen. Try releasing the buttons and pressing and holding them a second time if the logo does not appear, as it can sometimes take several tries to reset a severely frozen iPod.

Press and hold the top button and the centre "Home" button on a frozen and unresponsive iPod touch to reset it. Hold the buttons for at least 10 seconds and wait for the Apple logo to appear on the screen, then release the buttons.

Connect your iPod to its powerblock or a computer if it is still frozen. Wait 5 minutes and then try to reset it. Sometimes an iPod can appear frozen when its battery runs out and just needs a few minutes of power to start working again.


If an iPod still does not reset, try connecting it to iTunes and clicking on the "Restore iPod" button in the syncing window. You'll lose any data that isn't backed up, but this method will unlock the most stubborn iPods. If your iPod freezes while syncing to your computer, then try and eject it from iTunes before you reset it. The iPod may unfreeze once it's unconnected from the computer.


Do not try to reset your iPod while it is syncing to a computer. Instead, eject it manually from within iTunes by clicking on the "Eject" button next to the picture of your iPod. If you can't reset your iPod, then let it sit until the battery runs out and then resync it with your computer. Never try to open your iPod's casing in an attempt to unfreeze or reset it.

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About the Author

Kevin Floyd is a freelance journalist who has written about health, environmental and financial topics since 2007. He covered the daily news of western New England as an intern with National Public Radio. Floyd has a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from the University of Massachusetts in Amherst.