Apple TV Home Sharing. Mac Mini? Airport+ex HD?


macrumors newbie
Original poster
Mar 29, 2014
Hello all,

Ok I've been searching around but can't seem to find the answer... Here's what I would like to do:

I would like to be able to turn on my AppleTV, scroll over to "Computers" and access my TV shows and movies via home sharing without having to turn on or open my macbook. I torrent A LOT! Mostly tv episodes and movies which I currently convert (If not already converted) to mp4 and arrange in iTunes but the problem is the macbook has to be in the vicinity of the AppleTV in order to access the media so if it's at work or my wife wants to access the media when I'm not home it won't work. I want to always be able to access it.

Now that being said, I know there will need to be additional equipment involved in this process. I'm here looking for recommendations from the pros. Should I get a Mac Mini and import all of my files to iTunes on the Mac Mini and just leave it on all the time connected to wifi? Do I need an Airport with an external hard drive attached? Do I need to Jailbreak the AppleTV 2?

Thank you in advance for your help.


macrumors newbie
May 4, 2013
I did just that. I bought a Mac mini, which is always on with iTunes running. I fitted an extra harddrive internally so it has two, for extra storage.
I convert all my media using Subler, which is fantastic for my use.


macrumors 6502
Mar 5, 2012
Same. I have a late 2012 Mac Mini (16GB of RAM, 1TB Fusion drive, and the i7 2.6GHz quad core processor) with three ext 4 TB HDDs attached to it for redundancy. On ext HDD handles my torrents and my iTunes library, one is a Time Machine backup, and one is a manual backup. I leave the mini on all the time to handle downloads and to stream content to my three ATV3s and 3 iPads. I also use an Apple AirPort Extreme (previous model) and an Airport Express (newer model) to extend the wifi range.

Works well for my house's needs.
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macrumors member
Nov 1, 2012
Toronto, ON
Currently my setup is the following - late 2012 mac mini with 16gb ram, 120 gb ssd + 1TB 5400 HD internal. I also run os x server for all my other file sharing needs, as well a local proxy server. I have 3 ATV's, 2 iPads, a windoze laptop, 2 iMacs and 2 iPhones. The server (mac mini) has a mediasonic ProxBox ( with 3x2TB + 2TB + 1TB WD Red drives = 8TB (for all the iTunes media) left on 24/7. The mini never sleeps and the whole setup works flawlessly. I also use my mini to torrent and do HD video conversions. Because my place has many walls, I have 2 x Airport extreme's connected to each other via ethernet with the one acting as a bridge to extend the wireless network.


macrumors 65816
Oct 17, 2008
You can move all your movies to an external drive attached to your router and your wife can access them with her iPhone or iPad and airplay the movies to the Apple TV. No Mac required.

Lord Hamsa

macrumors 6502a
Jul 16, 2013
I have to echo the trend here. I have a Mac Mini running as the home media server, with the iTunes library residing on a 4x2TB NAS. Right now that's all it's doing, but I'm setting it up to be a Myth TV backend to capture TV and to eventually transcode "keeper" shows and add them to the iTunes library.