The preview apps for syncing WP8 are so useless when it comes to podcasts that people are actually suggesting using iTunes to sync podcasts! Excuse me, I think I'm getting physically ill.

But, there does appear to be an alternative--adding podcasts directly to the phone file system! However, it doesn't appear to work.

I am asking, in general, for some help in manually adding podcasts via the file system.

What I know follows. Any help filling in the details may result in a solution.

Looking at the phone file system, you can see that there are a couple podcast-related folders that are kept under Music

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Digging down into the podcasts folder, you can see subfolders that hold podcast files

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You can't copy these files to the local machine, and they appear to hold a much smaller subset of your normal metadata, most of which is invalid. You cannot copy these from the phone.

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In addition, in the PodcastSeries folder holds these odd .ser 0-length files with the same name as the podcast folder. They can't be renamed, but they can be copied to the desktop.

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So, with this information, I have tried the following:

1) Add mp3 files with their Genre set to "Podcast" (as you would have to do on WP7) as music via the desktop app. This did not work, as the files showed up as Music.

2) Added a directory to the Podcasts directory on the phone called "MyPodcasts" and filled it with .mp3 files (Genre = "Podcast"). This did not work. The podcast files did not show up under Podcasts, nor under Music.

3) Added a .ser file in PodcastSeries with the name "MyPodcasts.ser". Created a new (empty) text file (right-click, new, Text document, then renamed--yes, I made sure it was not "MyPodcasts.ser.txt"), then dropped that in PodcastSeries. This did not work. Tried the same thing by copying a .ser file to my desktop, renaming it "MyPodcasts.ser", then dropping it back into PodcastSeries. This also did not work.

I refuse to install iTunes.


There is a new app that solves the problem. You download podcasts to your computer using any software (like Zune) and use the new Windows desktop application for sending them to the phone. You can get the new application at http://www.windowsphone.com/en-us/how-to/wp8/windows-phone-app-for-desktop

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  • This isn't a new app. However, they have FINALLY fixed podcast syncing with the desktop app. I'll accept your answer in order to close this question out, as the need for a workaround is now moot. – Ripped Off May 30 '13 at 15:38
  • Huh??? The so-called "fix" for syncing from desktop appears to be well-hidden. or you are talking about on Windows 8 computers. Us still on Windows 7 are still screwed. – user2096 Oct 18 '13 at 14:08
  • 1
    You can sync on the desktop in windows 7. Get the "windows phone app for desktop". Look at this image. Click that label to set your podcast folders! – Ripped Off Oct 18 '13 at 15:27

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