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New iTunes Home Sharing


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My summary thoughts on the new Home Sharing feature of iTunes are:


"What a pain in the ass".


First off, I spent way more than an hour trying to get it to work, andin the process of research was told that it only allows moving (i.e. copying) of files that are 'protected' (i.e., purchased via iTunes).


I'm still not clear - and therefore perhaps cannot help others avoid the excessive time consumption I experienced - on what exactly I did to get it to work.


There seem to be several dimensions that need to be understood and sorted as a precondition to successful home sharing: to wit, multiple (by definition) itunes libraries, a single (?) home sharing account, multiple computer authorizations (required prior to 'home sharing') for the songs to be copied, and, possibly (at least in my case), multiple iTunes accounts.


As I said, I don't know the secret sauce for the most efficient setup.

I believe that realizing there are multiple variables here was most of the time consumption.


Note: apparently one can turn on 'home sharing' and yet not experience any benefits (prior to proper setup - proper computer authorizations and iTunes account), indeed, the 'home sharing' icon will likely not even appear (or rather disappear after an initial selection), until setup is properly completed. Don't even bother trying to drag-and-drop copying until the icon appears.


Add'l note: Home sharing is an additional level of sharing above and beyond the previous 'sharing' feature of iTunes, and therefore has a new manner to invoke it - under the Advanced menu. Presumably, the 'sharing' features must also be invoked in the iTunes Preferences 'sharing' tab.


So, here's what I did. Not sure if it's all necessary.


I logged onto all my iTunes libraries (on their host computer), sorted by 'Kind', and then played all protected / AAC songs (from itunes on another computer using the sharing feature) to insure that all the 'computer authorizations' were up to date.


note: If you've already maxed out at 5 computers (wrt itunes authorization for a particular song), you can 'deauthorize' all computers and start over with a new limit of 5, under the Advance tab. However, you won't be able to do this until you reach the limit.


I also - probably unnecessarily - logged into the same iTunes account on each computer, imagining that this was preventing me from copying the songs. Unfortunately, I had inadvertently setup two separate iTunes accounts, one for my music server, and another for iphone apps and whatnot on my work laptop, but have purchased a very limited number of songs on each. The multiple accounts caused much consternation, but hopefully unnecessarily.


I believe any potential issues evolving from multiple iTunes accounts may have been resolved by the music authorization sweep I mention above. After this, I turned Home Sharing back on, and I was finally able to copy over the iTunes downloaded music files from my Macbook Air to my music server on the Mini. I still have another iTunes library to go, plus getting the girlfriend's rather more extensive iTunes music collection copied over to my music server (which is the real goal of this entire endeavor) for her benefit.


As noted, this is likely NOT the most efficient way to setup Home Sharing, so, for those that have found the secrets, please do share for others.


I doubt I would have bothered had I known in advance what a PITA it would be. But having done so, it now appears that I can copy files other than just those that are copy-protected by iTunes, so kudos to Apple for allowing this feature for all files, and 'bad vibes' to the author of the online article that claimed it would only work for iTunes-downloaded material.



Apologetically verbose,




NOTE; this post was edited extensively after realizing that I had been misled into believing that Home Sharing only worked for iTunes material. Apologies for my misleading anyone else with this apparently incorrect info.










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