Handling iTunes on a Mini server?

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by gpspad, Feb 3, 2017.

  1. gpspad macrumors 6502

    Feb 4, 2014
    I finally downloaded OS X server and have a headless mac mini on my network. The plan is to eventually run plex on it, but I still need itunes to add music to projects in iMovies and ripping cds to my iphone.

    How do you guys handle/synch and iTunes library on a desktop you use with the remote mini running the server. Does iTunes run on the server, or would you have your iTunes run off the desktop you use the most?

    I'm a rookie at all this and could use some tips as I am in the beginning phase of setting it up. Some of it seems confusing
  2. ehrens macrumors member


    Nov 4, 2013
    I have a Mini that I use for our server, that has been used as such for about 2 years (and replaced a laptop that basically did the same thing for the previous 3) and yes, iTunes just runs constantly on it. I do keep it updated but have auto updates turned off, because I have had situations where a Mac OS update has killed iTuned to update it or has restarted entirely.

    Some things I would do that will make it much easier for you:

    1) Ensure that the account you want to use on your server has no password, and that the computer auto logs in to that account.
    2) Adjust power settings so that your Mac comes up automatically after an outage or interruption.
    3) Add iTunes to your Login Items so that it auto-launches when the Mini powers up.
    4) Enable screen sharing/remote control if you plan on running it headless and have other Macs.
    5) If your phone is synced to that iTunes account (like mine is) turn on wifi syncing so that you don't have to actually connect to sync.

    I typically add music to my iTunes library by ripping it on my laptop, then using remote screen control, grab the files from the laptop's home sharing library and add it to the server. An extra step, but it is completely wireless this way.
  3. gpspad thread starter macrumors 6502

    Feb 4, 2014
    Thanks for the tips, the only question I has was....

    I didn't think you could have a user w/o a password.

    I guess I could make a fake user, but wouldn't that be a huge security issue having an administrator user w/o a password.

    I guess I have to figure out what iCloud services get shut off on the server, it really doesn't need to be running my contacts and calendar.
  4. ehrens macrumors member


    Nov 4, 2013
    If you're running on a home network and the only outside access is via BTMM then there isn't much of a security risk. You can always create a second account with limited privileges and leave that open, and run iTunes from that.

    I do think you're maybe overthinking your setup a bit, unless this is not a home setup. My Mini is not even running Server, it's just the generic build. Rather than using NAS designated as an iTunes server, I simply have an external drive hooked to it and iTunes just runs 24/7 from that. And that has worked flawlessly for me since probably about 2011.
  5. gpspad thread starter macrumors 6502

    Feb 4, 2014
    Thanks I figured it out, in the Users settings is a item called start up. I just picked a user and it asked me for a name and password. Whenever it starts it logins in as that user and starts iTunes.
  6. gpspad, Feb 5, 2017
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2017

    gpspad thread starter macrumors 6502

    Feb 4, 2014
    One more trick I discovered the hard way was that you may not be able to launch iTunes with the ALT/OPTION key trick if your screen sharing to an OSX server.

    I could launch iTunes and change directories on all my other macs, but when I connected to my with the server app used my wireless keyboard i could not get the move library dialog to to start up. I had to connect a wired keyboard into mac running server and it suddenly worked.
  7. charlituna macrumors G3


    Jun 11, 2008
    Los Angeles, CA
    i've been using a Mac Mini for my iTunes as well as some of my ripping etc for a while. I just have it set up headless and control it via screen sharing off my main computer. I turned on home sharing to my Apple TV and my main computer as well as my iPad Pro for bed viewing. It's worked rather well. The only hiccup is that it can be really slow to copy files over if I rip them off my main computer so i do those via an external drive
  8. ehrens macrumors member


    Nov 4, 2013
    I've been doing AirDrop for data transfer and that seems to work pretty well. Not as fast as USB transfer, but faster than traditional copy/paste via Finder.

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