Air....managing iTunes.

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by 2ndchancephones, Jul 1, 2014.

  1. 2ndchancephones macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2011
    Location:
    Denton, TX
    #1
    I am picking up my new Air on Thursday as I'm giving my son my old MBP. I have a question on how you guys manage space that iTunes takes up. I have about 15 gig of music and over 100 movies. Can you run (for a lack of a better term) from an external drive?

    I'm not that worried about space other than iTunes. I use the cloud for all my docs and pics.

    Sorry to be asking such a rookie question but I've not had to think about this before now.

    Thanks for your time!
     
  2. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Location:
    California
    #2
    Sure... you can easily run your iTunes library on an external drive. Just follow the instructions here.

    The only issue is external drives are excluded from Time Machine backups by default, so make sure you go to Time Machines options and remove the iTunes external drive from the exclusions list so it gets backed up.

    There is also iTunes Match where you can pay Apple to store your music on their servers. Limited to 25,000 songs though.
     
  3. jdechko macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2004
    #3
    I use iTunes Match for the music and a home server (running iTunes) for the movies. You say 100 movies, but do you really have to have them on the Air all of the time? Or could you copy a few over at a time to watch?
     
  4. 2ndchancephones thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2011
    Location:
    Denton, TX
    #4
    If I have Match does that allow streaming over wifi?

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    Can a Time Capsule be used as a home server?

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    Thanks for your help guys...
     
  5. jdechko, Jul 1, 2014
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2014

    jdechko macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2004
    #5
    I think match streams the song, but also downloads in the background.

    The time capsule has some file server capabilities, but isn't a full-fledged home server. The TC is basically a wireless hard drive.

    EDIT: So at least on the iPhone, streaming doesn't mean downloading. I'm away from my Mac, so I can't really tell you what happens on the mac.
     
  6. Boyd01 macrumors 68040

    Boyd01

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2012
    Location:
    New Jersey Pine Barrens
    #6
    I have used a Time Capsule to host my iTunes Library for my MacBook Air. It will work fine for this, but there are some "gotchas". Basically, anytime that iTunes is running, if it cannot connect to the Time Capsule, you will have some problems. I ended up with a corrupted iTunes Library a few times because of this.

    There are many reasons why you might not be able to connect to the server, such as moving your computer after putting it to sleep. So it does work, but you have to be careful. This got to be annoying, so I ended up getting a Mac Mini that I use as an iTunes server instead. This lets me use home sharing which is much more robust and doesn't have a problem if it can't find the server. Also much nicer for my Apple TV, since it's always available.
     
  7. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Location:
    California
    #7
    Yes exactly.

    Yes, but a not particularly full featured one.
     
  8. 2ndchancephones thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2011
    Location:
    Denton, TX
    #8
    Thanks....I sure don't want any gotchas! I'm assuming there are instructions of how to set up the mini as an iTunes server? Also, do you just run the appletv off of the mini? Sorry for the dumb question.

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    Thanks...doesn't sound like the best plan.
     
  9. jdechko macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2004
    #9
    To expand on what Boyd1 said, I don't think the strength of the TimeCapsule is in storing a live iTunes library. In fact, I'd recommend against it for the same reasons.

    However, if you want to go that route, I'd recommend using it like a wireless "filing cabinet". Store your media in folders and copy from the TC as needed. For instance, copy 2-3 movies from the TC to your Air before you go on a flight. Delete them from the Air once you are done.

    Movies can easily be managed in folders outside of an iTunes library.

    An iTunes server is just a computer that exists to run iTunes. It doesn't necessarily need to be a MacMini, but they're compact. As far as setting up, it's as straight-forward as launching iTunes, copying all media into iTunes and turning on home sharing which will allow you to connect from your Mac, iOS devices and AppleTV

    I have this setup, but with a PC. Works just fine. (Though for space reasons, I'd like to get a mini.)

    If you want to run it headless (without a monitor/keyboard), then I'd recommend installing teamviewer, which allows you to manage the computer from anywhere (set up unattended access), including iOS. It's free and super simple.
     
  10. Boyd01 macrumors 68040

    Boyd01

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2012
    Location:
    New Jersey Pine Barrens
    #10
    Yes, exactly - just leave iTunes running all the time. Many people use older Macs for this as well. I have a 2008 MBP I could have used, but I wanted a new machine with a warranty that would last for a number of years so I got a Mini.

    Here's an article with some pointers on setting up an iTunes server, although most of it is just common sense: http://www.maclife.com/article/howtos/how_set_itunes_home_server

    I just use the standard Apple File Sharing and Screen Sharing to access the Mini from my MBA. Seems to work fine and performance is pretty good over gigabit ethernet (I get ~100MB/s according the the blackmagic disk test).

    But I also connected an old 23" screen and wireless keyboard/trackpad to the Mini. This gives me another screen to watch my movies in the dining room. I have the output jack of the mini connected to my stereo system as well.

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    The Apple TV "sees" the iTunes Library on both my Mini and MBA, but I only use it with the Mini. It is accessed from the Computers icon on the home screen. And guests can use Airplay to send their media to the Apple TV as well. My granddaughter was having a lot of fun with this on her iPad over the weekend. :)

    Your guests will also be able to access your library on their computers and i-Devices using home sharing. I have been really happy with this setup. Easy to manage, easy to use.
     
  11. 2ndchancephones thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2011
    Location:
    Denton, TX
    #11
    Wow! Thanks a ton guys....I really like the mini idea and will try and find one on eBay.

    I appreciate the time.
     
  12. jdechko macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2004
    #12
    Yeah. While there are several ways to remotely connect, I quite like the fact that team viewer does all of the routing for me. Not that I couldn't do static IP routing and port forwarding, but it's nice not to have to worry about it. If I can connect to the internet, I can connect to my server. Plus, having a mobile app is great for those occasions when I need to check something.
     

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