Sharing iTunes on company network

Discussion in 'Mac OS X Server, Xserve, and Networking' started by paulmcmanus, May 1, 2008.

  1. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2008
    #1
    Please forgive me if this is an absurd question. We work in a large creative agency and our IT manager is able to see what we're doing on our macs. If we have music sharing on, he says we have to turn it off because it uses too much bandwidth. Is this true?
     
  2. macrumors 68000

    tersono

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2005
    Location:
    UK
    #2
    If several folks are streaming music (especially if ripped at high bitrates) across the network, then yes, it can use a LOT of bandwidth - which is often scarce on corporate networks.

    Certainly I wouldn't permit it here (I'm IT Manager for a Charity).

    (sorry to rain on your parade - I can certainly understand wanting to have access to tunes while working).
     
  3. thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Feb 14, 2008
  4. macrumors 6502a

    Sayer

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2002
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    #4
    Thats so funny. One would think the IT department would serve the needs of the users, not tell the users what their needs will or will not be. Especially in a creative environment I find it odd that the iron hammer of IT slams down so hard.

    I visited the Needham DDB/Dallas ad agency office (after hours) with a friend who was the Mac support admin and that place went out of its way to make its employees comfortable to foster creativity.

    If nothing else, turn on AirPort and make computer-computer ad hoc networks and share that way.
     
  5. macrumors 68020

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    Jan 7, 2003
    Location:
    Washington, DC
    #5
    It's the rare corporate network in which music sharing is a legitimate "need" of its users.
     
  6. macrumors 68000

    tersono

    Joined:
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    Location:
    UK
    #6
    Nope. The purpose of the IT department is to serve the needs of the business. If streaming music slows down the network to a significant degree (and I've seen it happen), then the ONLY sensible approach is to disallow it.

    I'm glad you're amused, but would suggest that a grip on reality and an understanding of the difficulties involved keeping a corporate network running smoothly might serve you better.... :rolleyes:
     
  7. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2006
    #7
    I guess our office network has plenty of capacity, because our IT Manager has no problem with streaming iTunes. There's usually 10 to 20 people sharing libraries. And our network runs great.

    But it's a big bummer that Corporate frowns on (doesn't understand value of?) Macs -- only the graphic designers get to have them.....
     
  8. macrumors 68040

    decksnap

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2003
    #8
    Tell the IT manager to fix your network. Our agency streams iTunes constantly.
     
  9. macrumors 68040

    tdhurst

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2003
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #9
    Yeah...

    I do understand the need for corporate networks to be clear of non-essential traffic for legitimate business needs, but there's no way turning on iTunes sharing is doing to bring down a proper network.

    If iTunes is the problem, the IT guys need to do some adjusting.

    Now if you're streaming from the INTERNET, I get that.

    It's a tough call either way.
     
  10. macrumors 68000

    tersono

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2005
    Location:
    UK
    #10
    Uh. WRONG. Do the math. There are are a lot of factors going on here - not least the current network usage (i.e. are there network applications being run directly from one or more servers or other serious bandwidth hogs? It's not uncommon for databases to be run that way and there's also digital telephony to think about), the speed of the network (100 base T is still commonplace - not every company can afford to upgrade their infrastructure to GigE just to accommodate stuff like streamed music), the number of users likely to connect to the stream, and the size of the files being streamed (high bitrates consume bandwidth big time).

    It always amuses me when folks who don't actually have to manage a corporate network for a living turn round and assume that just because their piddy little LAN at home can handle it, the big network at work MUST be able to handle it with ease - it's just the network admins being 'difficult' or 'incompetent' :rolleyes: . It's not until you actually try to manage a corporate domain yourself that you are forced to start looking at the numbers and work out where all the bandwidth has disappeared to. When I first took over I.T. at my current place of work, we had just such an issue - one office down at the far end of the building was having a hell of a time using our corporate database, which runs centrally from an installation on the database server. It was a bandwidth issue and the solution was very complex - it included re-wiring part of the building with fibre, upgrading a couple of network switches and reducing some of the really bandwidth-hogging traffic. I'm not exaggerating when I say that it was a two-month project which took an awful lot of planning. Even now, there are limits to the bandwidth available as the bottleneck is always going to be at the central point of the network - it wouldn't be hard to clog that up with traffic again.

    Most network admins would love to be able to say yes to these kinda requests (hell, we'd like to stream music too!), but it ain't always practical - it depends on a bunch of complex factors which are going to be different for each company. Wanting it to be otherwise don't make it so, sorry.
     
  11. macrumors 68040

    tdhurst

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2003
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #11
    Wow....

    Wow, that was pretty damn arrogant. I'm glad you speak for all IT people.

    Attitudes like yours are why people dislike most IT staff. The know it all attitude coupled with the obvious disdain for anyone not as involved as them makes working together a painful chore.

    Hope your colleagues like you, at least.

    Oh, and feel free to show me the math you speak of.
     
  12. macrumors 68040

    decksnap

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2003
    #12
    It's not that complex. AND at a creative agency, the network is costing your business money if you are still on 100.
     
  13. macrumors 603

    Cromulent

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2006
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    The Land of Hope and Glory
    #13
    Actually it was pretty factual post.

    The maths that you want to see is simple. Take the bandwidth available minus the bandwidth used and if the bandwidth used is greater or equal to the bandwidth available your in trouble. I would imagine most corporate IT managers would like to have a 10% safety net incase of increased usage although I doubt many get it.

    Now imagine you have have 5 people streaming lossless music across a network at an average bit rate of 600kbps over a 100baseT network. 600 x 5 = 3,000 kbps. 100 baseT is 100mbps so that leaves you with 97mbps. Now take into account the network overhead that is always a factor and your looking at 95 - 96mbps and you haven't actually used the network for anything useful at all. That is 5% of your network capacity gone just so 5 people can share music.
     
  14. macrumors 68040

    tdhurst

    Joined:
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    Location:
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    #14
    Nice

    Now THAT'S a good argument that everyone can understand. Thanks for the clarification.
     
  15. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2005
    #15
    Isn't there also a question of the legality of a "corporate" broadcasting music to its staff?

    The individuals may "own" the music, but as soon as it hits the corporate environment it's not individuals anymore, it becomes the business that is providing the broadcast.

    I know if you were to do something similar on your telephone system for Music On Hold you would need to pay the appropriate licensing fees.
     
  16. macrumors 603

    Cromulent

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    #16
    Yep that's also a good point. Not sure on that one.
     
  17. macrumors 68040

    decksnap

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2003
    #17
    I don't know about anyone else, but I was talking about individuals streaming to individuals, not one broadcast across the company.
     
  18. Guest

    Sky Blue

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2005
    #18
    Congrats on your promotion! You were a Systems Admin yesterday!
     
  19. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2007
    #19
    Itunes

    Hi.

    I too worked in a Creative/Branding Agency that allowed their users to share/stream itunes contect + use limewire on their workstations.

    The philosophy of the company was not to limit their employees creative outlets. Unfortunatly as much as I tried to warn the people in charge it was a violation of music laws, stability issues in a pre-production environment, they threw caution to the wind and ignored my advice, amoungst others.

    I soon left the company in disgust due to most of the "policies"
     
  20. macrumors 603

    Cromulent

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2006
    Location:
    The Land of Hope and Glory
    #20
    Not being allowed to download illegal music is a limit to your creative outlets now is it? I'd like to see stand up in court. I'm not surprised you left.
     
  21. macrumors 68040

    decksnap

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2003
    #21
    Using Limewire at work and sharing music with iTunes built-in sharing feature are completely different things.
     
  22. macrumors 68040

    tdhurst

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2003
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #22
    Huh?

    Show me where it violates music law to listen to someone else's music.

    Seriously, I'd like to know.
     
  23. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2007
    #23
    When I was able to map all of the downloads in the limewire folder to the songs that they were sharing/streaming. That violates music law.
     
  24. macrumors 68040

    tdhurst

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2003
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #24
    Riiight

    First of all, there's really no such thing as music law. It's a copyright violation.

    And streaming music is a shady area, as the songs aren't actually transferred to someone else's computer.

    But good for you, you music crusader!
     
  25. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2007
    #25
    Music Law ~ Copyright Law,
    Tomatoe ~ Tomatoe

    :p:)
     

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