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macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jan 12, 2004
Where are movies that I purchase from iTunes stored? I watch them on my Apple TV 4. Is it possible to put movies that I rip from DVD to that location?



macrumors G4
iTunes on a computer tends to be the home for just about all media for :apple:TV. And yes, you can store your DVD rips in iTunes and watch them on your :apple:TV.

You can also store them on a separate drive(s) and only point iTunes to the files so that your internal hard drive doesn't get filled up by big DVD files.

But all such questions are basically answered with "iTunes" to keep it simple (though there are some other options with :apple:TV4 such as Plex that open up storing media outside of iTunes).


macrumors 6502a
Jan 12, 2008
Where are movies that I purchase from iTunes stored? I watch them on my Apple TV 4. Is it possible to put movies that I rip from DVD to that location?

If purchased via iTunes then they should be stored at: Home* / Music / iTunes / iTunes Music / Movies*

This assuming using MacOS Sierra 10.12.4 and iTunes 12.6. I presume this applies as far back as Mavericks, but in Mountain Lion (10.8) and earlier access to these files was simpler and more direct.

In their wisdom Apple has made it more difficult to access the Home directory in more modern OS's. To access hold down the Option key and click on Go in the Finder (top left upper bar). Then from the list choose Home. From there you can click through the folders.

Movies and TV programs are stored in different folders within the iTunes Music folder. Listed and located alphabetically, look for either the Movies folder or the TV Shows folder. Each movie within Movies will have its own folder with its name on same, within which is the actual m4v file. Whereas in TV Shows each series will have its own folder named as same, within which is a folder for each season, and within that the actual individual m4v files.

But do not hold me to that precisely. I am more familiar with iTunes 10.7 and an older OS, both of which I've always preferred for a host of reasons. One difference being that the m4v files are stored directly in either the Movies or TV Shows folder, without interceding folders. Although, if simpler, one downloading multiple series of a TV program would then have to manually sort same into respective created folders, if wishing some semblance of order.

Note on above that iTunes will refuse to play and ask for the current location of files moved from where originally downloaded to. If simple to assign this new location.

Do note that media purchased via Apple TV will not be automatically downloaded to your computer and iTunes. It will appear in iTunes, but is not downloaded. Just being able to play it is not an indication, as then only streaming.

As for your own movies, etc. you wish to include within iTunes, first have it (already properly encoded) on the computer, as on the desktop. Then from iTunes choose File / Add to Library. A fairly simple process, with iTunes then adding the media not only to that listed as available, but also copying the file to the associated folder it likes.

But again, I am not entirely conversant with iTunes 10.12, so check as to where things end up. Another example of this is that iTunes 10.7, on importing a TV program of yours would automatically list it as a movie and place it within that list. One then had to use Command "I" to open up a summary of it and under Options select it as a TV program, at which point it would then appear in the TV section.

Frankly, the new iTunes is byzantine and in many ways wrong. One among many examples of that is simply in finding anything or knowing what one is watching. They have added the additional benefit of streaming, so in this respect iTunes acts somewhat similar to Apple TV, which by default streams all your media via remote Apple servers (save your own local content). Well, including your own local content to some extent as well.

That Apple never had their hands on is by definition and use entirely local. But anything purchased from them will stream via the new iTunes. Yet you may have the same file downloaded and wish for some reason to play that file locally, which is possible. But good luck figuring out how. Play around with the upper left corner wherein one chooses whether Music, Movies or (I'm more or less thinking) This Computer. Then within that choose TV Shows or whatever. One indication is whether you see the little clouds or not, denoting remote server streaming.

As if all this wasn't enough, if you opt to download a fair degree of media—because maybe you've purchased as much, as well like to have your hands on same, or as well do not always trust the cloud, etc.—then prepare to deal with multi-GB of data. In example, a single HD movie generally runs about 4GB, and can be higher. In short, in most cases you'll soon be exploring the best possible external hard drives to use, then backup of same.

All quite simple—and then at times complex. Good luck.
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