Mac Mini Server - Plex - Multiple Sessions

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by dhartung02, Aug 10, 2010.

  1. dhartung02 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2007
    Location:
    Little Rock, AR
    #1
    So i just got a new Mac Mini Server that i have hooked up in the living room running Plex and so far its great. This machine is also hosting my iTunes and Aperture libraries.

    My dilemma is this. I am trying to find a way that both my wife and i can log into our own specific desktop sessions (for access to Aperture, Itunes, etc) on the server all while without disturbing the Plex desktop that is being seen on the TV screen. Is there good way of accomplishing this?

    Any help is appreciated.

    Thanks.
     
  2. pj- macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2008
    #2
    Log in from where? For itunes you can just make the library shared which allows you to access it from any computer on your network. I don't know anything about aperture, but something similar may be possible there.

    What kind of things are you looking to do with your own accounts while Plex is running on the TV?
     
  3. dhartung02 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2007
    Location:
    Little Rock, AR
    #3
    I am looking to run itunes and aperture on the mac mini server under my account. Due to the size of these libraries, they dont run very well when shared across the network.

    I have a dock setup next to the mini, id like to walk by, sit my phone in it, remote into my session from my MBP (without disturbing plex which might be on the tv) and be able to sync my iphone or use aperture to grab my pictures off my phone and upload them to mobile me. Id like my wife to be able to do the same, except being logged in with her account.
     
  4. dhartung02 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2007
    Location:
    Little Rock, AR
    #4
    Am i the only one that wants to log in and actually use the mini without disrupting my plex front end that is driving my TV?
     
  5. pj- macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2008
    #5
    You're not the only one, I do this exact thing. I just wanted to be sure before I dug up an old post I wrote on how to do it..

    1. Enable fast user switching in System Preferences -> Accounts -> Login options on the mini
    2. Download vine server -> http://www.versiontracker.com/dyn/moreinfo/macosx/16699

    3. Install vine server on your account, and add it to login items so it starts automatically, then run it ( you may have to do a little tweaking of the port or display number )

    5. Download Chicken of the VNC on the computer you will be controlling from -> http://sourceforge.net/projects/cotvnc/ ( If you can get screensharing to connect to vineserver you don't need this )

    6. Run CotVNC, it should find the vine server, connect to it and you're done

    7. Repeat for your wife's account
     
  6. PurdueGuy macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2010
    #6
    Won't this interrupt Plex? Vine Server doesn't appear to allow simultaneous multiuser login, which is what the OP is asking for.
     
  7. pj- macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2008
    #7
    They need to have 3 separate accounts on the mac mini server and have fast user switching enabled.

    Account 1: Plex, no changes
    Account 2: Dude's account, run vine server, remote into vine server with chicken of the vnc
    Account 3: Dude's wife's account, run vine server (separate instance), remote into vine server with chicken of the vnc

    I know this will work with accounts 1 and 2. It should work with the third account but I've never done it myself.

    http://i40.tinypic.com/30k3fvt.png
    That is a screenshot from my macbook pro. The window titled "pjm mm" is a screen sharing session with my plex account on my mac mini while plex is running and being displayed on the tv. The window that says "(pjremote)" is chicken of the vnc connected to a second account on the mac mini.

    I'm not actually sure if he will be able to do what he wants, though. I don't know what happens when you plug in an ipod while 3 accounts are logged in.
     
  8. mangrove macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2010
    Location:
    FL, USA
    #8
    Is this relevant?

    I have read in many iTunes articles that when sharing is enabled-only one user can access iTunes at the same time.

    Does this still apply?:confused:
     
  9. mankymanning macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2008
    #9
    I tried this set up a while back but found when accessing the second account remotely Plex froze on the first account, the scrolly bar stopped scrolling or if I was watching a it video, it stopped and just froze. I never worked out what the cause was.
     
  10. dhartung02 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2007
    Location:
    Little Rock, AR
    #10
    Same thing happens to me....it just locks up until i shutdown the vine server on the second account. Still trying to figure out a good solution.

    I currently have it setup where when i start the computer, it automatically logs into the account, fires up vine server, automatically switches accounts to the plex account, fires up vine server on its login, and then is ready to be displayed on the tv.

    Wish i could everything to work though....
     
  11. hitekalex macrumors 68000

    hitekalex

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2008
    Location:
    Chicago, USA
    #11
    Spin off another instance(s) of MacOS server as a guest OS in VMWare Fusion or Parallels.. problem solved.
     
  12. dhartung02 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2007
    Location:
    Little Rock, AR
    #12
    Ouch, wouldn't that hog a ton of resources? I wouldn't think that would be as efficient as a separate user logged in with a VNC server running. With a Mini there isnt a lot of overhead to waste resources when your trying to record shows with eyetv and watch HD movies with plex.
     
  13. hitekalex macrumors 68000

    hitekalex

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2008
    Location:
    Chicago, USA
    #13
    Sure single OS instance would use less system resources.. But you and the user before you mention that concurrent account usage results in things locking up. So it appears Plex doesn't like sharing the same OS instance with multiple concurrent user sessions.

    Virtualization will give you similar level of separation as if you were running Plex on a separate computer. I run Windows 7 as a guest OS on my MacBook air with just 2GB of RAM, and it works fine.. So I would think if your Mini has 4GB of RAM - you should be good to run at least a single guest MacOS without much trouble.
     
  14. killercatfish macrumors newbie

    killercatfish

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2007
    #14
    Could this setup work with iPads as a free alternative to cloud brows for accessing flash and java? I am going to have my students using iPads and it would be great to have access in this way.
     
  15. rtrt, Dec 23, 2010
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2010

    rtrt macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2008
    #15
    missed this post first time round - not sure i've got my head around it properly yet :confused:

    it does sound like it could be very useful but maybe there are only a few niche applications?

    picking up on the post above - one of the things that could be at least a little bit of a problem here, is if the device your 'remoting in' from has a smaller screen than the server.

    for example if the server mac has as 1920 x 1200 screen and the macbook/ipad are smaller then you have the screen scaled down and blurry - not ideal.

    have i got that right?
     

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