If your iPod decided to take the dirt nap, there may be a few tricks, short of buying a new one, that will put you back in tunes. Hackszine pal Sam writes:
I recently discovered by 1. Simply opening your ipod 2. Disconnecting your drive 3. Turning the ipod back on and letting it boot until it gives you an error 4. Turning off the ipod 5. reconnecting the drive and 6. Turning the ipod back on will fix it….
I have no idea why this works but i have had 100% success with 3 ipods; 4g; 3G; and ipod mini.
There’s also a pretty comprehensive list of things to try for whole range of common iPod problems over at CrunchGear. One that caught my attention involved sandwiching a business card between the case and the disk, thereby placing extra pressure on the drive case (which was presumably warped from heat). Oddly enough, it seems to have worked for a lot of people, and it makes me wonder if this might work as a temprorary fix for dead laptop drives as well.