With different PC hardware manufacturers out there and multiple versions of Windows in the mix, the PC side of the iTunes/iPod fence can be a little unpredictable. To help sort things out, iTunes 8 for Windows includes a feature called Diagnostics, which can help troubleshoot four categories of woes. Your choices include:
Network Connectivity. These tests check your computer's Internet connection and its ability to access the iTunes Store.
DVD/CD Drive. If you're having trouble getting music to import into iTunes from a CD—or can't burn your own discs, these tests inspect your PC's disc drive for problems and incompatibilities.
iPhone/iPod Connectivity. These diagnostics don't actually test the iPod's own hardware or software, but they do examine the way your PC connects to your iPod.
iPhone/iPod Touch Sync. These tests actually do test the iPod Touch's hardware and software to make sure it can transport the data you've chosen to sync.
To run the battery of tests, choose Help→Run Diagnostics, select a category, and then follow along onscreen. Each diagnostic program runs some tests and gives you a red, yellow, or green light. Click the Help button next to a red or yellow light to get troubleshooting help from Apple's Web site. (Green means groovy.) At the end, you can copy the results to the clipboard or save them to a text file for sharing ...