Sharing on a Home Network

In this lesson for iTunes on the Mac, we take a look at how we can share our iTunes library on our local network with Home Sharing.

What iTunes Home Sharing Is
With Home Sharing, we can share all our media, or just certain playlists, with other iTunes users who are on our same network, This is why it is called Home Sharing. You will not be able to share your library across town, only across your own network. Other people will be able to stream and download media from your library when this is turned on.

Activating Home Sharing
To turn on Home Sharing, you need to go to iTunes Preferences. You do this by going to iTunes in the Menu Bar. When to click on iTunes, you’ll see an option for Preferences. Select this, and a new window will open. Now you need to make sure you are looking at the Sharing category or tab.

The first option you’ll see is Share my Library on my local network. When you select this, your library will be shared. You do have a few options. You can now choose if you want to share your entire library or just selected playlists.

You can also set if you want to require a password. When you turn this on, anyone who connects to your shared library is going to be asked for the password you set here.

The last option is for updating play counts. iTunes keeps track of how many times something has been played. If you want iTunes to update this from shared computers, you’ll want to turn this on.

Once you have all your settings the way you want, just close the iTunes Preferences window. Any changes made are applied.

Connecting to a Shared iTunes Library
To connect to a shared iTunes library, you need to go to the drop down menu where you can select what media type you want to browse such as Music or Podcasts. You’ll see a new option at the bottom of this list when iTunes finds a shared library, the option being the computer that is hosting an iTunes library. Just select the computer you want to connect to, and then you’ll be able to see all the media on that computer, or all the media that computer is sharing. Just click on any media such as a song, to play it. If that iTunes library had a password, you would need to type it in when you connect to that computer.

To go back to your library, just click on the drop-down menu again where your music, movies, and podcasts are. Now you just select what you want to view from your library.

See this Lesson in Action
If you want to see this lesson in action, take a look at the video above.

Lesson tags: Mac Tutorials
Back to: Tutor for iTunes for the Mac > Sharing Options