How to Hard Reset a Disabled iPod Touch

Updated April 17, 2017

A hard reset restores your iPod Touch to its original factory settings. This is useful when your iPod Touch is disabled and won't turn on or off, but all your data is erased. Luckily, you can restore your data with iTunes after you've performed the reset. Once you've performed the reset, your iPod is wiped clean and iTunes prompts you to restore the settings from your last sync.

Plug the iPod into your computer and wait at least 10 minutes. This allows the battery to recharge in case it has drained. This could fix your disabled iPod, if the problem was caused by a dead battery.

Click "OK" if your computer opens a "Connect to iTunes" alert box. Depending on your version of iTunes, the message may indicate the iPod is in "recovery mode" and you need to restore the device. iTunes opens and resets your iPod for you.

Unplug the iPod from your computer if you don't see the "Connect to iTunes" alert box. Make sure the iPod is charged before you attempt the hard reset.

Press and hold both the On/Off/Wake button and the Home button on your iPod. Keep the buttons pressed.

Wait for the Apple logo to appear, it may take 10 seconds or longer. When you see it, release the On/Off/Wake button but keep the Home button pressed.

Release the Home button when you see a picture of a USB cable with an arrow pointing to the iTunes logo.

Plug your iPod back into the computer. The iTunes "recovery mode" message will appear. Click "OK" to complete the reset.

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About the Author

Aubrey Kerr is a writer and photographer. With a B.A. in media arts and public relations, she has helped small business owners design and implement online marketing campaigns since 2004. Her work appears on several websites including and the Houston Chronicle.