How to Set Up Separate iPod Accounts on the Same Computer

by Heather Marlman

Set up multiple iPod devices on a single computer using one of three different methods. If you share your computer with other iPod owners, then setting up a new computer user account may be an option to consider. If you own multiple iPod devices of your own and want to control the playlists or media libraries for each of the devices, there are methods of accomplishing that as well. Regardless of how you want to connect multiple iPods there is a method suited to your needs.

New Computer User Account

Log in to your computer using the primary administrator account.

Access the control panel or system preferences of your Windows operating system and choose "Add or remove user accounts." Follow the on screen instructions to create a new user account. Log out of the administrator account.

Log in to the computer using the new user account created in the first step. Multiple user accounts on your Windows operating system allow each person who uses the computer to have a profile customized for their computing needs.

Install iTunes under the new account profile and connect your iPod device to sync with your computer.

Create Multiple Playlists

Open iTunes and click on the "+" symbol in the lower left hand corner to create a new playlist. Name the playlist. Create unique playlists to suit any scenario. Playlists can be created for specific individuals, or to distinguish the media you want stored on specific devices. Name playlists accordingly to help keep them organized.

Drag media from the media window and drop to the newly created playlist.

With the iPod device connected to your computer, select the option to sync music. Select the radio button telling iTunes to only sync the selected playlist.

Wait until the sync is complete and disconnect your iPod from your computer.

Create Separate iTunes Libraries

Hold down the "Shift" key and double click the icon to open iTunes.

When the dialogue window appears click the option to "Create Library." Name your new iTunes library.

Once iTunes has opened, click on "Edit" and "Preferences." In the preferences dialogue, click the "Advanced" option. Deselect the option labeled "Copy files to iTunes Media folder when adding to library." Deselecting this option will prevent iTunes from duplicating the media saved in your primary library folder. Select "OK."

Add the media files to your new iTunes library by dragging files into iTunes or by selecting "File" and "Add File to Library." Once your library has been populated with the media files you want, connect your iPod device to your computer.

Sync your iPod device and disconnect when the sync is complete. Close iTunes.

Hold down the "Shift" key when restarting iTunes and select "Choose Library" to choose between the two separate media libraries saved on your computer.


  • When creating separate playlists or media libraries for your iPod devices, name them according to the owner of the iPod device or with the name of the device to make them more identifiable.
  • When using the first option of creating a new computer user account, move the iTunes media library to a shared folder on your computer so that both user accounts will have access to the same media files.

Items you will need

  • Computer
  • iPod, iPad, or iPhone
  • Connection cables for your iPod devices
  • iTunes

About the Author

Heather Marlman is a freelance writer with more than 10 years of experience. Her articles have appeared in print in the Southern Indiana newspapers "The Banner-Gazette," "The Leader," "The Giveaway" and "The Washington County Edition" as well as online at various websites.

Photo Credits

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