How to delete all photos on jailbroken iPad without iTunes

The iPad is great, except for one thing: you need iTunes almost anytime you want to copy anything from and to your iPad. This includes music, movies and photos. And this is probably the main reason why many (including myself) jailbreak their device. Once you jailbreak, you can manage your files a lost more freely including installing 3rd party software to transfer files over wifi, FTP or SSH.

Ok, this article is not about Coldfusion or web development. It is about iPad. I know, that is not what this blog is meant to be about, but...let's call this an exception :-)

If you are here, you probably have the same problem as what I did. You copy some videos to your iPad. These videos belong to the same show or some kind of series but your iPad just plays them one by one. It finishes one file and returns to the video list screen instead of continuing to the next file. This is a major annoyance. (especially if you are watching movies on iPad while eating like me and got a hard time trying to find a clean finger to touch :-P)

Many people suggested creating playlist from iTunes and add your videos into it together with one song to trick the iPad into thinking that it is a song playlist. It worked for me except that when videos are played inside the iPod app (instead of the movie app), there is no video, only sound! So we need to create some kind of playlist but inside the movie app instead of the iPod app. The movie app unfortunately does not have playlist but it has one called TV Shows and it can be used as a playlist for videos.

Here is how to do it:

1. Copy movies to your iPad

The first thing we need to do, of course, is to copy movies onto your iPad. If you are managing music and videos manually like me, you can just drag the videos directly into your iPad. Once copied, they will be sitting under the Movies section.

Copy movies to your iPad

2. Change the media kind to TV Show

Next, we need to change the media kind of these movies to TV Show and aslo change a couple of other settings on the files.

  1. Highlight those movie files > Right click > Get Info
    Open Get Info dialog box
  2. Click on the Options tab and change the Media Kind to TV Show
    Change media kind to TV Show
  3. Click on the Video tab > enter a name for the show. You can enter other info on this page as well if you want. Then click OK to close the dialog box.
    Enter the show name

Once you close the box, iTunes will update your movies and move them to the TV Shows section. (If you don't see the TV Shows section on your iPad, go to your iTunes Preferences and tick on TV Shows to show it).

Movies are moved to TV Show

You might be wondering why not drag the files onto the TV Shows section right at the beginning. I tried it but my iPad keeps putting them under the Movies tab. So I have to change this setting manually after the files have been copied. You can do this on yours? Let me know how in the comments.

That is it, your videos can now be played continuously! Well, almost... There is one more thing you might want to do. By default (I think) the iPad orders them by filename. Depending on your movie filenames, this order may or may not be the order you want. To specify your movies in a particular order, you can do so by setting a track number for each of them. Here is how:

  1. Highlight your movie file (just one file this time and don't forget it is now under the TV Shows section) > Right click > Get Info
  2. On the Info tab, enter the track number of this movie into the, guess what, Track Number field.
    Enter the track number
  3. If you are going to enter the track numbers for muliple movies, you can use the Previous and Next buttons at the bottom of the dialog box to navigate instead of closing and opening the box multiple times. The order will be track 1 first, then track 2 and so on, common sense ;-)

That is it! Enjoy watching movies on your iPad :-)

Thanks for reading. Got questions? Throw them in!


  • Harsh
    26 Jul 2011, 12:48 PM

    Is there any way to delete music without connecting to itunes

  • Vinh Khoa Nguyen
    27 Jul 2011, 12:03 PM in reply to Harsh

    If you use the default music app then unfortunately no, you need iTunes to delete songs. However, if your iDevice is already jailbroken then you can use some third party app to play music. SMusic is a good alternative. It allows you to play mp3 files directly, like on desktop. The downside is its interface is not as good as the built in app. Plus, it only plays music, no video or podcast.

  • Lavar
    20 Aug 2011, 12:07 AM

    Thank God! Soomene with brains speaks!

  • Magento Agentur
    12 Oct 2011, 10:24 AM

    great information, thanks for sharing!

  • Gio
    03 Nov 2011, 4:16 PM

    Hey dude! Good Thing you know how to!
    but i used iFile for that!

  • Vinh Khoa Nguyen
    03 Nov 2011, 10:31 PM in reply to Gio

    iFile is a great app. I find its built-in video player sometimes can even work better than those specificly designed to play videos. Thanks for sharing.

  • Wan
    01 Jan 2012, 11:39 AM

    Nice.... it works for me !!! Thanx ?

  • Sylviu
    09 Jan 2012, 6:34 PM

    Superb :-) it took me several days to find your post...issue instantly solved

    Thank you :-)

  • Dan
    17 Jan 2012, 11:38 PM

    Great post! I am a newbie of a jailbroken ipod touch user, and found the application MobileSlideshow did not work well, it can not be deleted as normal application. I googled the solution for this and this post is the only working one.
    ps. on my iOS5 device, there is no /private/var/mobile/Media/PhotoData/PhotosAux.sqlite

  • George LaBarca
    17 Feb 2012, 1:24 PM

    Great information...Is the procedure for deleting photos from photo album the same for jailbroken iphone as well as ipad? I have some photos in the album I want to delete and I hate itunes...thanks.......

  • Marilyn McClure
    03 May 2012, 7:26 AM

    Thanks You dear.I don't have wide knowledge about deleting in my iPad. I enjoyed reading your article.Thanks!

  • Jusefe
    03 Jun 2012, 11:26 AM

    Hey Vinh,

    Great post! Very useful indeed!
    You mentioned that you now use 3rd party applications to manage your photos, which ones are those?


  • Vinh Khoa Nguyen
    04 Jun 2012, 9:48 PM in reply to Jusefe

    I use an app called Photo Manager Pro. You can send photos over wifi, create albums, etc. very useful.

  • Dave Hg
    17 Jun 2012, 9:31 PM

    Hasn't anyone heard of I-File and iDownloader. Solves all these problems

  • Vinh Khoa Nguyen
    18 Jun 2012, 12:30 AM in reply to Dave Hg

    I wrote this article before I knew of iFile. Yes, you can do all of these with iFile and that is a lot easier too.

  • Katsumoto Yamada
    20 Jun 2012, 1:32 PM in reply to Vinh Khoa Nguyen

    Hello friend, i did what you said and it worked, damn these Asians :D
    they know everything :P

  • Vincent
    10 Aug 2012, 12:07 PM

    I can't save photos any more after I deleted the folders you mentioned. Whenever I open my photos app it tells me I have no photos or videos, despite having saved a photo. This also happens after I take a picture. The picture doesn't appear in my camera roll or the photos app after taking it.

  • Vinh Khoa Nguyen
    10 Aug 2012, 1:03 PM in reply to Vincent

    @Vincent, I did this on my iPad 1 which has no camera but I could take a screenshot just fine. Have you tried to recreate those folders?

  • Vincent
    10 Aug 2012, 1:15 PM

    Actually I fixed the problem by deleting the PhotoData folder after backing it up. I wanted to see what would happen and after restarting my iPod touch everything started working again. I don't know what happened but everything's working now. Thanks for the guide.

  • Vinh Khoa Nguyen
    10 Aug 2012, 1:54 PM in reply to Vincent

    What we are doing here is delete certain folders & files with data in it and let the photo app recreate them again to give us a clean album. But it looks like your photo app doesn't recreate them until you deleted the whole PhotoData folder. Good to hear that it's all working for you now.

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