NAS, Apple TV, iTunes and Time Capsule

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by UncleheFTy, Aug 25, 2014.

  1. UncleheFTy macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2009
    Location:
    Cheshire
    #1
    My apologies in advance for such a jumbled title - but I have something I would like help with.

    Currently I have a MacBook Pro running iTunes and having a whole load of Movies, Home Movies et al stored on a 'G Drive) around 1,3Gb all told.
    My Wife has a MacBook Pro and a MacPro
    The newer version of Time Capsule
    Apple TV 2nd Generation

    So, what I would like to do is to hold all the movies we have on a separate drive and link that to the Apple TV via our Time Capsule (also acts as the home network). When I am not at home and my wife wants to watch movies, she cannot because the G Drive is linked to my MBP, If I;m not there she can't open it.

    I have read a book on 'Home Networking' (a dark art left to the pros) and have heard of something called NAS for Mac, can anyone please help - I'd like to get this set up so that, when I rip one of my DVDs for holding on our hard drive, it can be seen by anyone at home via Apple TV.

    Ta ever so in advance.
     
  2. stridemat Moderator

    stridemat

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2008
    Location:
    UK
    #2
    Your best bet would be to use Plex. Your don't have to rely on iTunes then.

    Either that or set the MacPro up as the mater library and both of you store your media here. Leave it on 24/7 for instant access.
     
  3. UncleheFTy thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2009
    Location:
    Cheshire
    #3
    Thanks Stridemat,

    With such a large 'pool' of video resources, neither of our MBP's is large enough to act as the 'master, and we don't like leaving devices on 24/7.

    Is there a 'hardware' alternative to the net based version of Plex?
     
  4. matrix07 macrumors 68040

    matrix07

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2010
    #4
    There's Synology, which is a NAS that claims to have iTunes server built-in. I'm not sure how well it works since I'm not using one.
    The best bet is to buy 2nd hand Mac mini and use it as home server. Connect ext. HDD to it and leave it 24/7 and you're done.
     
  5. stridemat Moderator

    stridemat

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2008
    Location:
    UK
    #5
    What about your MacPro?
     
  6. Uofmtiger macrumors 68000

    Uofmtiger

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2010
    Location:
    Memphis
    #6
    Since your AppleTV is the 2nd version, I would recommend jailbreaking it (if possible) and installing XBMC (free) and/or ATV Flash (costs money). The ATVFlash website also has instructions on how to jb, so I would go there if that is an option you want to consider. The good thing is that you don't need a NAS to use them. They will read right off of a drive attached to the Airport Extreme, so I would guess that it would work with Time Capsule.

    I have a Synology NAS with iTunes built in, but the AppleTV (non-jailbroken) can't see it without a computer running iTunes.
     
  7. rgarjr macrumors 603

    rgarjr

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2009
    Location:
    Southern Cal
    #7
    Yeah your bet is to attach that external drive to your Time Capsule, jailbreak the ATV2 and stream movies with XBMC.
     
  8. HobeSoundDarryl macrumors 603

    HobeSoundDarryl

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2004
    Location:
    Hobe Sound, FL (20 miles north of Palm Beach)
    #8
    No, the best bet is to utilize that Mac Pro owned by the wife. It's not mobile so it should always be at home. Hook up the G-drive to it, go into iTunes (running on it), "Preferences", "advanced" and turn off "copy files to iTunes Media folder when adding to library". This will basically have iTunes see the files where they are stored so OP could attach 10 more drives full of media if he wanted to do so. Then drag & drop all that media into the Mac Pro's version of iTunes and link the :apple:TV to that iTunes. This removes the laptops from the dependency situation such that the :apple:TV can now get it's media from that Mac Pro.

    :apple:TV needs a computer running iTunes to be running to work. A NAS is not a replacement without jailbreaking. So OP, you need to utilize what you have (that Mac Pro) or buy another computer that you can leave running to feed that :apple:TV when you are out of the house with your laptop. The typical recommendation is a Mac Mini but any computer- Windows too- that can run iTunes will work.

    Since you are energy minded, you can go into preferences on the Mac Pro and have it sleep when you know you and your wife will not be watching :apple:TV. For instance, you might put it to (automatically) sleep between midnight and early morning.
     
  9. Lord Hamsa macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2013
    #9
    +1 to the post immediately above, with one minor correction: technically, the ATV needs an iTunes client running somewhere to feed it. Now, the simplest way of doing that is having a computer running iTunes and having Home Sharing enabled.

    However, if you use the Synology option above (and the other manufacturers may have similar), their "Video Station" option does allow you to use start AirPlay using any iTunes client (including an iOS device), but once play is started, the NAS handles it without any further need for the client device in the middle. So, if the ATV2 supports AirPlay (I don't know if it does of the top of my head), this is a viable option, though I was particularly un-fond of the Video Station interface myself, and use the "iTunes running on a Mac Mini with Home Sharing" option instead.

    As for other posts upthread, no, the answer isn't always "jailbreak and run Plex or XMBC". If the media is ripped in Apple-specific format and is intended for Apple-only devices, there's no reason to not rely on the iTunes ecosystem that's already there, rather than having to jump through a series of hoops. Additionally, in the Apple-only environment, anything in the media library can be synced to any iOS devices used in the house without additional conversions or duplicate data storage.
     

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