How to sync your Zune player or Windows Phone 7

Overview

The sync options in the Zune Music + Video software let you choose how to sync each type of media—music, videos, pictures, podcasts, and more. Each time you connect your Zune player or Windows Phone 7 to your computer, Zune instantly syncs your media collection to that device, according to your sync settings.

Solutions

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Selecting your sync options

The first time you connect your player or phone to your computer, you can set your sync options. If there's enough space on your device, the default setting is to sync all of your music, videos, and pictures to it. If you don't want to load all your media onto your device, simply adjust the sync settings (click More sync options to see all available options).

You can choose one of the following sync options for each type of media:

  • All: Automatically sync everything of that media type in your collection with your player or phone. When you sync, any media items you added to your collection are also added to your device, as long as there’s enough storage space available. Any items you remove from your collection are also removed from your device.
  • Items I choose: You choose which specific items or categories of items you want to be synced automatically (for example, you can choose to sync artists, genres, playlists, picture folders, and so on). Choose an item by dragging it to the Device icon. When you do that, a sync group is created that includes the item. When you sync your device with your collection, any changes you made to items in your collection that are part of a sync group will also be made on your player or phone.
  • Manual: Choose manual sync to control exactly what’s synced to your device, rather than having Zune Music + Video automatically sync the changes in your collection. When you sync, you manually add and remove items from your device.

Note When a device is connected to your computer as a guest, it is not synced automatically. For more, see Sync your device to another computer as a guest.

To demonstrate how these sync options are different, let’s say you just added two albums and deleted one song from your music collection, and you have a Windows Phone 7. When you connect your phone to your computer:

  • If your sync setting for music is All, both albums are added to your phone, and the song is removed from it.
  • If your sync setting for music is Items I choose, nothing is added or removed from your phone unless the music you added or removed is part of a sync group.

    For example, say that you have selected an artist as a sync group. The Zune software only adds the albums to your phone if they are by that artist. The software only removes the song from your phone if it is by that artist.

  • If your sync setting for music is Manual, nothing is added or removed from your phone. You can manually add the albums and delete the song from your phone if you want.

How to change your sync options

Your sync options are set the first time you connect your device to your computer, but you can change them any time. Settings are specific to each Zune player or Windows Phone 7 you have, so you'll need to adjust the sync options separately for each device.

  1. Connect your Zune player or Windows Phone 7 to your computer:
  2. In the Zune Music + Video software, click Settings at the top of your screen, click Device or Phone in the upper-left corner, and then click Sync Options in the list at the left.
  3. Under each media type, select a sync option: All, Items I choose or Manual.
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  1. Click OK to save your changes.

How to sync specific items with your device

  1. Connect your Zune player or Windows Phone 7 to your computer.
  2. In the Zune Music + Video software, select the items that you want to sync automatically:
    • To add items, find the items you want to sync from Collection and drag them to the Device or Phone icon (in the lower-left corner of the screen).
    • The Device icon shows the device that was most recently connected. If you want to sync with a different player or phone, hover over the Device icon and select that player or phone from the list.
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  • The software creates a sync group for each item or category you select and drag.
  • To prevent specific items within a sync group from being synced, right-click an item, and then click Never sync with <your device name>. Also, any items that you delete from your player or phone are automatically skipped during sync.
  • To restore an item that you previously marked to never sync, drag the item to the Device icon again.
  • Sync starts immediately.

How to review and edit your sync groups

  1. Connect your Zune player or Windows Phone 7 to your computer.
  2. In the Zune Music + Video software, click Settings, at the top of your screen.
  3. Click Device or Phone in the upper-left corner, and then click Sync groups in the list at the left.

Syncing Music Pass items

Music that you download to your computer using a Music Pass can be synced to a Zune player or to Windows Phone 7.

Music Pass items are protected with a license that contains the media usage rights defining how you can use the content. For example, if you have a one-month Music Pass subscription, the license allows you to play Music Pass music during that month. Licenses are updated periodically, so sign in to the Zune Music + Video software at least once every two weeks to keep your media usage rights current. And remember to sync your devices to update the licenses on them at the same time.

Sync your Zune player or Windows Phone 7 to another computer as a guest

When you connect your Zune player or Windows Phone 7 to a computer the first time, the device is linked to that computer as its primary computer. If you connect your device to any other computer (for example, to your computer at work), the device is connected to that computer as a guest.

This relationship determines what you can do, as follows:

  • Linked: When a device is linked to a computer, the device settings and history are remembered on that computer. You can back up and restore your Windows Phone 7. In addition, you can change the settings for sync options, the device's name, Zune tag or gamertag linking, wireless syncing, and reserved space.
  • Guest: When a device is connected as a guest, you can manually sync items between the computer and your device. That computer will not record your sync history, update your song info or album art, back up your Windows Phone 7, or provide a lot of the other perks that you get on your linked computer.

You can change the relationship between a computer and your device, though.

To see your device's relationship to the current computer
  1. Connect your Zune player or Windows Phone to your computer.
  2. In the Zune Music + Video software, click Device or Phone at the top of the screen, and then click Summary.

    The summary page shows whether the device is linked to your primary computer or is connected as a guest.

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To change your device's relationship from guest to linked
  1. Connect your Zune player or Windows Phone 7 to your computer.
  2. In the Zune Music + Video software, click Device or Phone at the top of the screen, and then click Summary.
  3. Click Change Sync Relationship and then follow the instructions on the screen.

    Note When you link your device to a different computer, any DRM-protected videos that you synced from the previous computer are removed from the device.

To change your device's relationship from linked to guest
  1. Connect your Zune player or Windows Phone 7 to the computer.
  2. In the Zune Music + Video software, click Settings, at the top of your screen.
  3. Click Device or Phone, located in the upper-left corner, and then click Sync options, in the list at the left.
  4. Click Forget This Device or Forget This Phone, and then click OK to confirm.
Some tips about connecting your device as a guest
  • When you connect your device to a new computer, all the media on your device is considered guest content by the Zune Music + Video software.
  • You can't sync DRM-protected content to a guest computer, only to a linked computer.
  • When you update your Windows Phone 7, a backup is automatically created on a linked computer, and you can restore your phone from a backup if needed. However, a backup is not created when you connect your phone as a guest.
  • If you get a new computer and sync your device to it, the items from your device are added to the Zune collection on the new computer (if you set the sync options to Sync all).
  • If you decide to link your device to a new computer and then sync the usual way—from your collection to your device—the Zune software recognizes duplicate content (items that exist on both your computer and your device) and updates your collection accordingly.
  • Items you sync to your device as a guest remain on your device unless you manually delete them.

Sync your music collection with multiple devices

You can link as many Zune players and Windows Phone 7s as you like with any computer that has the Zune Music + Video software. The software syncs content with all linked players and phones according to each device’s sync options.

However, not all songs and albums can be synced to multiple players and phones. To determine which content you can sync with more than one player or phone, you need to understand the usage rights for that content.

  • Music Pass items: Songs and albums that you download with a Music Pass can be downloaded and synced to a limited number of computers and devices. Purchased music: Songs and albums that you buy, including those purchased with song credits, can be synced to all devices.
  • Ripped music: Songs that you rip from CDs to your computer can be synced to all devices, unless prohibited by the music publisher.
  • Protected music: DRM-protected songs from download services other than Zune are not supported. These songs do not appear in your Zune music collection, and you can't sync them with Zune-enabled devices.

Sync from your device to your collection

Typically, you sync media files from your collection on your computer to your Zune player or Windows Phone 7. However, you can also sync in the other direction—from your device to your collection.

To sync items from your device to your collection
  1. Connect your Zune player or Windows Phone to your computer.
  2. In the Zune Music + Video software, click Device or Phone at the top of the screen. Or, click the Device icon.
  3. Drag whatever items you want from the collection on your device to the collection icon (the computer icon in the lower-left corner of the screen). Sync starts immediately.

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