Is There a Way of Clearing Everything Off Your iPod Touch?

by Jason Artman

You can store a massive amount of content on an iPod Touch, including movies, music, applications and games. Your iPod Touch may also store personal information such as your browsing history, contact list and saved email. Deleting all of this content manually would be time consuming, so Apple provides a way for you to clear everything off your iPod Touch. This wipes all the files, user-installed applications and other content off the iPod Touch and returns it to its original factory condition so you can start over or give your iPod Touch to someone else without compromising your privacy.

With Computer

Update the iTunes software on your computer by launching iTunes, opening the "Help" menu and selecting "Check for Updates." Apple recommends updating iTunes before erasing the data on your iPod Touch to ensure that the latest version of the iPod Touch firmware is downloaded to the iPod Touch during the restore process.

Connect the iPod Touch to your computer while iTunes is running and wait for iTunes to synchronize any changes recently made on the iPod Touch with your computer. When the synchronization process is finished, the iPod Touch becomes available for modifications. Click its icon on the left side of the iTunes window.

Select the "Summary" tab at the top of the window and click the "Restore" button. ITunes gives you the option to back up the content stored on your iPod Touch before continuing. To do this, click the "Back Up" button. Decline this option if you do not want to create a backup file by clicking the "Don't Back Up" button.

Click the "Restore" button to confirm that you are ready to clear everything off your iPod Touch. After doing this, you will not be able to restore your content as it was unless you created a backup file. While iTunes performs the restoration, the screen on the iPod Touch goes dark; do not disconnect it from the computer during this time.

Click "OK" when iTunes displays a message confirming that a full factory restore has been performed on the iPod Touch.

Without Computer

Push the "Home" button on the front of the iPod Touch to minimize all open applications and display the Home screen.

Tap the "Settings" icon on the Home screen.

Tap the "General" heading near the top of the "Settings" menu.

Tap the "Reset" heading at the bottom of the "General" menu.

Tap "Erase All Content and Settings" near the top of the "Reset" menu.

Enter the restrictions passcode to continue if your iPod Touch prompts you to do so. If you have not set a restrictions passcode, skip this step. A warning appears at the bottom of the screen notifying you that the reset process will delete all media and data from your iPod Touch.

Tap the red "Erase iPod Touch" button. During the reset process, the iPod Touch is unavailable to use. A prompt appears on the screen when all data has been removed.

About the Author

Jason Artman has been a technical writer since entering the field in 1999 while attending Michigan State University. Artman has published numerous articles for various websites, covering a diverse array of computer-related topics including hardware, software, games and gadgets.

Photo Credits

  • Justin Sullivan/Getty Images News/Getty Images