View Full Version : iTunes Media Server
Aug 10, 2009, 01:57 PM
I wanted to start a thread on ideas and links on how to build your own iTunes Media server at home. Something simple enough to put into a closet and such. I need some ideas because I want to build one of my own! ;-)
Aug 10, 2009, 02:08 PM
I wouldn't advise putting hard drives or other electronics in a closet as closets don't have proper cooling and airflow to keep the drives at a reasonable temperature.
A Drobo with DroboShare is a good option combined with the free Firefly iTunes media server.
Aug 10, 2009, 02:30 PM
Does Firefly serve video or is it audio only?
Aug 10, 2009, 02:33 PM
I don't think so. I think only iTunes can serve video. Even then, iTunes library sharing is crap. It would be best to stray away from iTunes altogether and move towards something like Plex.
Aug 10, 2009, 03:05 PM
My media server is a 1.8ghz Mac mini hooked up via HDMI and optical out for sound running PLEX. Works great for Music, Video, Photo and also has built in streams for MTV, CNN etc. 1080p resolution and upconverting enabled through PLEX. 3TB in HDD hooked up via MyBooks. Controlled by Sofa Control and Logitech Harmony remote.
I just love it!
Aug 10, 2009, 03:10 PM
I also use a Mac Mini as a media center as well as file server. The best option is always to have media locally at the computer on which you play it.
Aug 10, 2009, 03:57 PM
I use a WHS running iTunes, which streams audio and video to a couple of ATVs, an Airport Express (music only), and my various macs around the house. For redundancy, the media files on the WHS are mirrored to a ReadyNAS NV+ that serves as my principal backup device (I also use it as a Time Machine target).
Aug 10, 2009, 04:11 PM
I have an old G4 400Mhz powermac hidden away in my basement with 4 external HDDs totaling 1.8 TB, streaming content to my AppleTV in the living room. I never have to go down there. I use Screen Sharing to control it if I need to restart iTunes or add media to it.
Aug 10, 2009, 09:49 PM
do you think its better to have all 6 of my external HDs hooked up to a USB hub, then to my iMac? or hook the hub up to Airport extreme basestation and share? Which is faster/better?
Aug 11, 2009, 04:32 AM
Here are the best 2 solutions I'm aware of:
1) HookUp - http://www.dottunes.net - This free app lets you connect to local or remote iTunes libraries to play tracks from within your iTunes
HookUp is actually a darn freaky app - check this out: Imagine you are on a campus and you can see 20 other iTunes shares while you are sitting in the library. Lets say you have a friend at another campus who also can see 20 iTunes shares while sitting in their library. Now you both install HookUp. Instantly you both gain access to not only each others libraries but also to the 20 other shares within each others networks!! That's right, even though HookUp is installed on only one computer within each network you both gain access to every iTunes share within each remote network. You can then load a share from the remote network, play tracks and with the Download Plugin you can also DOWNLOAD TRACKS FROM THE REMOTE SHARES AS WELL - YES FROM COMPUTERS WHICH ARE NOT EVEN RUNNING HOOKUP!!
2) DOT TUNES - http://www.dottunes.net/dt4.html - The other great free app is from the same company - it's their flagship app which has about 20 plugins to enhance the app.
This app lets you connect to your iTunes library while you are out and about, even from your iPhone where you can play and download tracks. Read on and you'll hear people talking about other apps which claim to do this as well but I assure you DOT.TUNES blows them all away!! For example, here are just a few of the things DOT.TUNES does which the others don't 1) DOT.TUNES contains some super advanced customization features including the ability to parse php pages so developers can add features and build custom interfaces using DT as the engine 2) DT provides direct streaming of files as well as radio style broadcast feeds of entire playlists 3) DT includes RSS and Podcast feeds of playlists and tracks 4) DT provides Interfaces for iPhone, Playstation, Wii, Palm and other gadgets 5) DT can poll iTunes for what's playing and display a web frontend with album art and info about current playing tracks - used by some restaurants and clubs 6) DT provides SSL certificate support for secure logins and browsing 7) DT provides a Flash player for streaming your entire iTunes library via the web 8) Facebook app support etc etc etc...there is a lot more but they are a few of the unique features.
DOT.TUNES is packed with features but seriously you've got to check out HookUp!!