Apple TV & External HDs

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by amnichols10, Sep 23, 2008.

  1. amnichols10 macrumors regular

    May 19, 2008
    I have an :apple:TV and am looking to get an external HD. What I plan on using it for backup of course but more so for my :apple:TV. I hacked it so that I can play stuff that I already have on my computer (avi and other media files) as making it so the :apple:TV is able to recognize and external HD through the USB slot. I also have movies and stuff that I purchased of iTunes. So here's the deal.

    Pretend like price isn't a factor

    Time Capsule (TC) set up (could it work this way?)

    -Since one of TC's biggest advantages is it's wireless capability I wanted to know if I could set it up so that the :apple:TV can recognize the TC wirelessly as an external HD and access media that I have on there (once it is moved from my computer to the TC). This is for the stuff I didn't purchase on iTunes. If this can't be done then I can connect the TC and :apple:TV using a USB cord and that would be just like having a regular external HD.

    -For stuff that I purchased I want to be able to change the store location from the HD on my computer to the TC HD and have the ability to move purchased material back and forth (TC <---> MacBook <--->:apple:TV). I know that in order to do this the iTunes on my computer has to be open during transfer.

    Another reason why I like the TC is that I'm using a MacBook and it would be easier if I could move stuff from the MacBook to the external HD wirelessly instead of hooking it up to an external HD anytime I wanted to do so.

    Can this be done using the TC? If price wasn't a factor would this be the most efficient way to do it? Any and every comment is helpful. I hope that this made sense. Thanks in advance.
  2. Rooskibar03 macrumors 65816


    Feb 5, 2007
    State of Denial
    Apple TV can only use a computer with iTunes as it's target source. It cannot connect directly to an external drive. If it could, I would be doing a happy dance right now rather then shopping for a larger drive for my iMac.
  3. tom1971 macrumors 6502a

    May 15, 2007
    Not true. If you hack your aTV, you can use e.g. ATVFiles to access files on an external hd connected to your ATV.
  4. Geohop macrumors newbie

    Oct 23, 2007
    Easier Solutions?

    This may not address the original thread in its entirety, but I think addresses a much more universally sought after answer. So here we go.

    I think taking the original posters specific setup out of the picture, there is still a more fundamental questions to ask... But before a question can be asked, I think it would be easier to state a goal.

    GOAL: To watch any video stored on a computer, External HardDrive or Time Capsule on a home television setup in a seamless user-friendly (the wife can do it without calling) way. And still if desired, also watch cable channels etc (removes the option of just putting a computer screen as your tv)

    Question: Taking specific hardware setups out of it. What would be required to accomplish this? From a viewing Medium to the place where the movie resides?

    My thoughts in a Dykstras Algorithmic sort of way:
    From a non-technical perspective, it seems that utilizing a Video Port(correct term?) in the same way you connect a VCR or DVD Player would be the easiest route as far as how to access the data physically from the television.

    Once on the correct "Video Input" Station, I guess the issue becomes having an interface generated by "..." (TimeCapsule, Airport Express, MacMini, router). It would also be handy to have the device accessible through the television remote control.

    Maybe the input screen could be configured to point at different file directories setup initially as "video files". Those file directories could be arranged in a manner allowing browsing with the tv remote easy.

    Then, you have entire file directories of videos, sorted in any manner the user feels like, as easily accessible as the local news station.

    Okay... Reality Check... How can this be done, and what is needed to do it? Seems like a pretty simple equation, but I know even the simplest things can have cumbersome solutions...

    Let's brainstorm. This is the future of Home Entertainment...



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