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Old Jun 25, 2012, 09:03 PM   #1
Spliff
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Synology NAS Experts HELP with iTunes PLEASE??

Ok I've done a search for this here plus the Apple support forums but I can't seem to find out a solution to my problem.

My Setup:
I bought a Synology NAS DS212j with dual 2TB drives for RAID 1 configuration to go with my new rMBP. I recently solid my 24" iMac which I was using as the iTunes media hub, where I streamed my music and movies to my ATV2. I therefore backed up my data to a USB MyBook which I will soon demise once I get the NAS setup properly.

What I Want to Accomplish
I want the NAS to essentially store all my music, video and photos.
  • Pictures - View on my rMBP and stream to my ATV2.
  • Music - Listen on my ATV (as it's plugged into my 5.1" system). I understand that I need to run iTunes on my rMBP to stream the content over to the ATV2 (i.e. I can't stream the media directly from my NAS to ATV2).
  • Video - Same as above for Music.

iTunes Media Folder Relocation Attempt
First thing I've done is copied my iTunes library and iPhoto library over to the NAS. What I've tried to do is open iTunes via rMBP and relocate the iTunes Media Folder to point to the NAS. I followed the instructions here. When I change the location to the NAS where the iTunes media folder is stored, I then close iTunes and delete the rMBP iTunes library. When I relaunch iTunes, the folder is recreated on my rMBP and iTunes doesn't display any of the content from the NAS. Really frustrating.

I've done the home sharing thing by running the 'iTunes Media Server' on the NAS, but when I try to watch a video I get the stupid error "This movie requires QuickTime, which is not supported by this version of iTunes.". So I can't even play a movie that I previously used to play on my iMac.

Can anyone help me out with this? I am pretty new to the whole NAS stuff but I think I get how it should work. Can anyone give me some pointers on what I should be doing? I essentially can't get anything to work at this point, it hasn't been the greatest NAS experience so far Hope this will change soon, help is appreciated!
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Old Jun 25, 2012, 09:33 PM   #2
LaWally
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It sounds like iTunes cannot find the location of the media folder on the NAS specified in preferences -> advanced. So, when iTunes starts, since it cannot find the media folder on the NAS, it recreates the media folder on the local drive, which is standard behavior.
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Old Jun 25, 2012, 10:14 PM   #3
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Thanks for the reply. I thought maybe it was a privileges issue, but whenever I try to map the drive via iTunes it creates an "Automatically Add to iTunes" folder in the NAS iTunes folder. So obviously it's doing something but each and everytime I attempt to change the folder location to the NAS it reverts back to creating a folder on the rMBP.
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Old Jun 25, 2012, 10:20 PM   #4
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Turn off "Copy files to iTunes media folder when adding to library"

Also make sure to open any folder on the NAS before running iTunes.

The iTunes media sharing (Firefly) doesn't support cover art or much else, I don't use it.
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Old Jun 25, 2012, 10:40 PM   #5
Spliff
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Thanks for the suggestion. Just tried that and it still doesn't work. Not sure why something that seems so simple is so difficult

Anyone else have any other suggestions? For those of you with a NAS, I thought perhaps running the iTunes Media Server and/or the UPnP service might've caused conflicts so I shut them down, but still have the same problem.
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Old Jun 25, 2012, 11:26 PM   #6
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Ok, for some reason when I relaunch iTunes I see that the NAS drive location is loaded as the iTunes Media Location, but there are no Movies or Music loaded in the Library. So basically iTunes has the correct drives mapped but it's behaving like it's a brand new installation.

For those of you who have iTunes content running off the NAS, should it behave the same regardless of where the content is stored?

Edit: NVM, I rebooted my rMBP and the iTunes location defaulted back to the local drive. Someone shoot me now please!

Last edited by Spliff; Jun 25, 2012 at 11:44 PM.
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Old Jun 25, 2012, 11:27 PM   #7
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I've pretty unfamiliar with Synology NAS drives, but after reading up on them the past few days I've learned a little bit. I'm wondering what it does differently than a Time Capsule? I don't quite understand the difference.

I'd like to buy one of these or a Time Capsule to pair up with the new rMBP.

Thanks!
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Last edited by xJus10x; Jun 25, 2012 at 11:38 PM.
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Old Jun 25, 2012, 11:51 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xJus10x View Post
I've pretty unfamiliar with Synology NAS drives, but after reading up on them the past few days I've learned a little bit. I'm wondering what it does differently than a Time Capsule? I don't quite understand the difference.

I'd like to buy one of these or a Time Capsule to pair up with the new rMBP.

Thanks!
Time Capsule is used to backup Mac OSX and everything on it. My reason to get a NAS is to store all my music/video/photos on one hard drive, and allow my rMBP & MBA plus my 2 iPads and iPhone to access this content. So I basically won't be taking up hard drive space on my rMBP and MBA as both laptops will be sharing the content from the NAS. Since my NAS has dual hard drives, I have a backup in case one fails. This is extremely important (especially for my pictures) as I won't be storing these on any of my computers.

Still a good idea to do Time Machine backups as well (I do this with Time Capsule), but obviously the NAS vs. TC uses are completely different.
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Old Jun 26, 2012, 12:05 AM   #9
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UPnP won't interfere with the iTunes server. That said IMHO iTunes (daap, firefly) server is the worst bit of software on any Linux based NAS.

If you just want to store your media on the NAS (as I do) just make sure "Copy files to iTunes media folder when adding to library" is off and on an empty iTunes library drag your movies and music (from shares/folders on the NAS) to iTunes (or import them). This works great for Home Sharing, AirPlay & the Apple TV.

Sharing a library can be done this way but iTunes sort of sucks at sharing libraries among multiple iTunes machines.
http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1203?v...S&locale=en_US

On a positive note you can use Synology's iOS audio app to get to your music, but it's no match for overflow.

PS I have a DS212j and I've got one HDD for general purpose, second for TM only and an external USB drive for weekend backups.

I'm in the process of setting up a way more powerful than any home user needs DS412+
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Old Jun 26, 2012, 12:26 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blueroom View Post
UPnP won't interfere with the iTunes server. That said IMHO iTunes (daap, firefly) server is the worst bit of software on any Linux based NAS.

If you just want to store your media on the NAS (as I do) just make sure "Copy files to iTunes media folder when adding to library" is off and on an empty iTunes library drag your movies and music (from shares/folders on the NAS) to iTunes (or import them). This works great for Home Sharing, AirPlay & the Apple TV.

Sharing a library can be done this way but iTunes sort of sucks at sharing libraries among multiple iTunes machines.
http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1203?v...S&locale=en_US

On a positive note you can use Synology's iOS audio app to get to your music, but it's no match for overflow.

PS I have a DS212j and I've got one HDD for general purpose, second for TM only and an external USB drive for weekend backups.

I'm in the process of setting up a way more powerful than any home user needs DS412+
How does this work with iTunes Match? What I do now is download albums and import to iTunes, then use iTunes Match to get the music on my iPad/iPhone. With a NAS drive would I be able to download directly to the iTunes folder on the drive and use iTunes Match in the same way I currently do? If so I'm all in! Pretty excited as the 256GB HD is sure to fill up pretty quickly.
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Old Jun 26, 2012, 12:33 AM   #11
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iTunes match if it finds a match will allow you to download a 256AAC ripped by angels non protected file to replace your version. Just copy it over the original on the NAS (iTunes will download it to a nicely organized folder on your local drive)

IF you have accuripped or EAC'd your CD collection to ALAC or FLAC then 256AAC is a step down (but IMO 256AAC is excellent and beyond the quality of Apples current DACs in their iOS devices)
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Old Jun 26, 2012, 04:57 AM   #12
LaWally
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Spliff View Post
Ok, for some reason when I relaunch iTunes I see that the NAS drive location is loaded as the iTunes Media Location, but there are no Movies or Music loaded in the Library. So basically iTunes has the correct drives mapped but it's behaving like it's a brand new installation.

For those of you who have iTunes content running off the NAS, should it behave the same regardless of where the content is stored?

Edit: NVM, I rebooted my rMBP and the iTunes location defaulted back to the local drive. Someone shoot me now please!
Check to see if you have two iTunes Library files (iTunes Library.itl) in the default location: ~/User/Music/iTunes. If you do that might be confusing iTunes.

When you look at the NAS media folder location, do you see all your media files? If so, you might be able to just select them all and drag and drop them to the left-hand Library panel of iTunes to "add" them to the library, even though they are already in the media folder.

Last edited by LaWally; Jun 26, 2012 at 05:05 AM.
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Old Jun 26, 2012, 05:28 AM   #13
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I have a Synology NAS, and I use it to store all of my media. That's the easy bit.

Synology has an iTunes server built in, but the iTunes installation on the NAS seems to be sort of "crippled" because you can't do "normal" iTunes things with it - like use it as your movie server.

Eventually I gave up trying to use itunes on the NAS to serve my ATV, and bought Firecore's aTVFlash, which makes pretty well all the media on my Synology visible to my ATV2 and which allows me to play almost all media formats (but not DRM-protected itunes movies, btw.) through my ATV2.

This is maybe not the reply you want, but it is probably the easiest way to go.

----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by xJus10x View Post
I've pretty unfamiliar with Synology NAS drives, but after reading up on them the past few days I've learned a little bit. I'm wondering what it does differently than a Time Capsule? I don't quite understand the difference.

I'd like to buy one of these or a Time Capsule to pair up with the new rMBP.

Thanks!
The Synology NAS works well with Time Capsule - I seem to recall that when I set mine up my MBP immediately asked if I wanted to use it as a TC. But the good thing about the Synology is that it has other applications built-in. You can use it as a Web server, an e-mail server, a media streaming server, a download server (torrents, etc) you can use it to monitor home security (with a webcam, of course!) and so on. If you have DLNA-compliant TV, it will stream media direct to your TV and so on. It's a nice box with applications that can be used outside of the Apple universe.
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Old Jun 26, 2012, 07:08 AM   #14
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There are two parts to your iTunes Library: The iTunes Library Database (.itl and .xml files) and the Media itself. You want the library database to stay in it's default location on your local drive. It sounds like you might be removing this along with your local copy of the media. You Only want the Media folder to be on the NAS. If you delete the iTunes Library, iTunes isn't going to know what's in your library and you will have to add everything back into a new database.

NAS can work as an iTunes media location, but it is a pain. It is far simpler to use an external Direct Attached (USB or Firewire) drive. I just migrated back to a direct attached drive after using a Synology NAS for a little over a year.

The "iTunes Server" installed on the Synology and many other brands of NAS is not what you want it to be. It will show up in iTunes as a "Shared Library", but it is not the same as having a computer running iTunes with Home Sharing - meaning that you can't use it to serve your library to an AppleTV for example. You still need a computer running iTunes to do home sharing; the NAS can't take the place of that always on device.

The big nuisance of NAS + iTunes is that you absolutely have to make sure you have mounted the share before you launch iTunes. This is especially a problem when your Mac reboots - although maybe less so with a laptop as you are probably there at the time anyway. I was never able to find a really reliable way to make sure that my share was mounted before iTunes launched during start-up. There are other times that you can lose the share and need to recreate it besides a shutdown - Update applied to router - power loss to any device - update applied to NAS - PC went to sleep/suspend... All of these wil break iTunes until you mount the share and reopen iTunes.

Another nuisance is that every now and then, you will end up with multiple mounts to the same share - don't ask me why. In this case, iTunes may decide that some files are on one volume (call it 'iTunes') and some are on the other ( 'iTunes-1'). Now a few restarts later, what if you only have your normal one iTunes volume mounted? The files in your library that look like they are on 'iTunes-1' are marked as missing. ARRGH - Curse you stupid NAS!!!!!

Don't get me wrong, I like the idea of a NAS, and I think the Synology devices are great. NAS just sucks as it applies to iTunes. It can be done, but at the end of the day, it's not worth the trouble. Buy a mini, or a cheap PC, connect your USB Drive and leave it running.
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Old Jun 26, 2012, 07:28 AM   #15
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PS.

You could also look at this article here from MacWorld. Might help. http://www.macworld.com/article/1163...rom_a_nas.html
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Old Jun 26, 2012, 10:04 PM   #16
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K I got the iTunes content loaded from the NAS. I didn't realize that I had to actually open all the files again (I thought simply pointing to the iTunes directory would display the content), so everything is good there. Thanks everyone for their help and suggestions.

When I play a video to the ATV, I get the picture but no sound. Has anyone had this problem before? The video seems to be streaming okay (i.e. network seems to be keeping up with the movie itself), however just no sound.
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Old Jun 26, 2012, 10:05 PM   #17
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How did you convert your video file?
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Old Jun 26, 2012, 10:20 PM   #18
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I have been battling the iTunes server now for a while also. I have a QNAP NAS. I don't use the iTunes Server software at all. It is a horrible experience. I pretty much just have all my media on the NAS, route all my iTunes account to the folder along with my AppleTV.

It is a big pain in the butt. Also not having the ability to move items around via drag and drop is a big pain. i.e. hooking up your iPod on computer "A" and your library is on the NAS it shows up as a shared item. You can't drag anything on to your device. You have to copy it locally then drag/sync to device. What a pain. I have three computers running and now I have it setup where if anybody wants to add music I have the one computer setup with the library synced to that computer.

I hope to god Apple fixes this or someone comes out with software to remedy this.

I have not had any issues playing movies that I have ripped from my NAS box to the AppleTV or any of my computers, yet.
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Old Jun 26, 2012, 10:21 PM   #19
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These are all videos I previously played on my ATV2 via my old iMac. They are all in MP4/M4V format and I used Handbrake to convert them.

The only difference is the NAS is hosting the files instead of the local drive.
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Old Jun 26, 2012, 10:26 PM   #20
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I did the same thing, Handbrake ATV2 setting, stored on NAS. Works like a charm on iTunes, iPhone, ipad & ATV2/3

You must have an AAC track as #1 and an optional AC3 track as #2 (additional track i.e. commentary on #3)
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Old Jun 26, 2012, 10:30 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Spliff View Post
These are all videos I previously played on my ATV2 via my old iMac. They are all in MP4/M4V format and I used Handbrake to convert them.

The only difference is the NAS is hosting the files instead of the local drive.
Same here, all have worked without a hick up.
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Old Jun 26, 2012, 10:34 PM   #22
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K everything is working great! Looks like I needed to do a full system reboot. Everything is a go! Thanks guys!
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Old Sep 26, 2012, 08:28 PM   #23
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I have been battling the iTunes server now for a while also. I have a QNAP NAS. I don't use the iTunes Server software at all. It is a horrible experience. I pretty much just have all my media on the NAS, route all my iTunes account to the folder along with my AppleTV.

I have not had any issues playing movies that I have ripped from my NAS box to the AppleTV or any of my computers, yet.
Hey could you elaborate on how its dones as I just gotten myself an apple tv and a synology and having problems getting videos streamed there.

Cheers
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Old Nov 22, 2012, 01:40 PM   #24
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Last edited by normp; Nov 22, 2012 at 01:42 PM. Reason: wrong post
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Old Mar 28, 2013, 06:14 PM   #25
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Hey could you elaborate on how its dones as I just gotten myself an apple tv and a synology and having problems getting videos streamed there.

Cheers
It is posible to split the music on the laptop and the movies on the nas, having like 2 libraries?
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