Red circles are destroying my iPad listening pleasure
February 23, 2014 5:31 AM   Subscribe

I am unable to play over 50% of my 5000 songs on iTunes due to the red circle problem described here. Apple doesn't have a solution (called apple care several times) but perhaps the hive mind does. Please help.

For years my iTunes has worked flawlessly until I downloaded ios7 onto my iPad. Since then I am unable to play the majority of my music due to the red circle which appears when I click on a song and keeps me from playing it. I've called apple care and their default solution is back up, delete, restore, which I've done twice, and the circles eventually come back. As you can see from the last page in the link, many others have the same problem and are extremely frustrated at the lack of help from apple. Any suggestions?
posted by Xurando to Computers & Internet (10 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
My husband ran into this with his iPhone after the upgrade and we finally figured out that it was a storage issue. The newish iTunes cloud feature lists every song as available, but the storage on the device is still finite. If there were songs he wanted to listen to that were red-circled, he'd have to physically delete other content from the phone in order to free up storage. Then the red circle would change to the Download icon and he could load and play it. Hope this helps.
posted by Sweetie Darling at 7:06 AM on February 23, 2014

Response by poster: The IPad says I have 17 gigs of storage available.
posted by Xurando at 7:32 AM on February 23, 2014

I've had issues where a sync has been interrupted and the iPhone has become confused about what media is actually on the phone. When this has happened, I've also had to delete the music (i.e., tell iTunes not to sync music) and then reconfigure music syncing.

This isn't a great solution, but if your iPad is set to sync wirelessly, you might want to try either reverting to wired syncs or confirming you're not walking out of your wireless network mid-sync.
posted by subgenius at 8:37 AM on February 23, 2014

Response by poster: Not syncing wirelessly, using a USB.
posted by Xurando at 9:26 AM on February 23, 2014

Are you syncing music from your computer or using iTunes in the cloud to pull stuff down wirelessly as you need it?
posted by alms at 12:11 PM on February 23, 2014

I had some problems with a new iPhone, and they were solved by deselecting all the music in the phone, synching the phone so it deleted all the music from the phone, them re-selecting the music I wanted and synching again (all synchs to iTunes via a USB cable).
posted by slkinsey at 12:49 PM on February 23, 2014

Response by poster: Have synced from both the computer and the cloud, done deselecting and deleting, the music seems find and then the red circles come back one or two weeks down the road. I'm hoping IOS 7.1 fixes this but until then I cant use iTunes, it's driving me crazy.
posted by Xurando at 1:36 PM on February 23, 2014

A possibly related issue is that support for some codecs has been dropped in iTunes, as described here (complete with code for a brute-force fix).
posted by ivan ivanych samovar at 6:50 PM on February 23, 2014 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Ivan, This makes perfect sense to me. I'm not a coder so I can't fix it, so I'll wait for the next apple IOS 7 update and then figure out what's next.
posted by Xurando at 5:02 AM on February 24, 2014

The codec support relates to videos ("music videos"), not audio - so that should not be an issue for the OP.

I suspect that it is an interrupted sync issue, especially if there's 17GB free space left. Could you try to plug in again (since you're using USB anyway), sync, remove all the music, sync, check to make sure it's all gone, plug in again, select all the music you want on there, and sync again?

For these syncs, it is very important that the computer not go to sleep, and that you not unplug the iPad until the sync is really (really really) complete. Then hit eject, make *sure* the iPad is ejected, give it an extra minute, and then unplug. Does that work?

(I had a lot of trouble getting some apps - not music - to sync in my first few attempts after upgrading our iPad 3 to iOS 7, but eventually they all made it. Not sure if it was a hardware issue, or just iTunes being iTunes.)
posted by RedOrGreen at 11:37 AM on February 24, 2014

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