Questions about iTunes and NAS Devices

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by TheJables, Sep 2, 2014.

  1. TheJables macrumors newbie

    Sep 2, 2014
    I recently purchased a Synology NAS and I'm hoping to move my music files onto the NAS and access them from there. Synology provides some nice applications, such as Audio Station, which I plan to use for accessing my music, but I'm not entirely sure how I can/should integrate iTunes into the pipeline. I generally don't use iTunes to play my music, but I do use it as my primary method of purchasing music and have built a decent library over the years. I'm also an iTunes Match Subscriber, which is a fairly nice feature but I'm not sure if I'm going to keep it.

    Previous to purchasing my Synology, I was using a Seagate BlackArmor 110 to store all of my music. I went through the process of moving my music to the BlackArmor, setting the iTunes Library Path to the BlackArmor and then adding the Music Folder from the Black Armor into iTunes (to bring in all of my music). It worked decently but the issue was that the machine I was using to access iTunes on was my laptop and I was constantly moving it off the network (taking it to work) and back on, and it would lose the mapping. This might just be an issue with my approach to networking (perhaps I shouldn't have been doing this?) but it sort of brings me to my concerns and questions regarding another NAS setup with iTunes.

    So, if I move all my music to the NAS and then set the Library Path to the NAS as well...what should be my expectations when using iTunes from that point forward? When I purchase new music will it automatically be downloaded to the iTunes library on the NAS? Should I be using a dedicated machine on my home network to run iTunes and manage my music?

    Any suggestions or tips that would help provide me with a better understanding of how I can leverage iTunes with my NAS would be greatly appreciated. I suspect that my lack of a dedicated machine is an issue with my implementation and usage of iTunes, but i'm not positive. My goal here is to make it so any music I purchase automatically shows up on the NAS so I can access it through Audio Station wherever I go (my wife too, who currently uses a Galaxy S4).
  2. superbovine, Sep 2, 2014
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2014

    superbovine macrumors 68030


    Nov 7, 2003
    First off forgive me, I have never used that product, but I have solved your issue with different hardware.

    I used a different different device, but the idea is to use the cloud sync capabilities of your NAS to your advantage. Sync all your iTunes purchased music via your own private cloud ie your NAS. That will allow you to be mobile with your laptop and it will eventually sync with the NAS device over the internet. Since, it is a private cloud and will be on the private network; you can also access your files locally as well.

    I am not familiar with your product, but it does have private cloud support, and that is probably the easy way to resolve your issue.

    For clarity sake, after I re-read it. A private cloud will allow you to access your NAS to device as long as you are connected to the internet from anyway.
  3. satcomer macrumors 603


    Feb 19, 2008
    The Finger Lakes Region
  4. TheJables thread starter macrumors newbie

    Sep 2, 2014
    Thanks so much for taking a crack at it either way, I appreciate the response! I know Synology has a Cloud solution available though I've yet to use it. If I understand what you're suggesting, I'd store my music on the NAS directly, create a cloud share of the folder that holds all my music, and then access that cloud shared folder from any Computer? This sounds like a decent way to go, though I'm a bit concerned of whether or not I'd have to download all of that data to PCs I'm wanting to access content on...or if it would allow for streaming from the Cloud itself. I suppose this would be based on the functionality provided by the Synology Cloud solution itself. I should look into this more.

    Thanks for linking to the video! I've seen this in my previous searches and it was fairly helpful, but I'm not sure if it's entirely applicable to what I'm trying to do. The person in the video is running an instance of iTunes full time on his Mac Mini, which points to data stored on his NAS. I currently don't have any dedicated PC/Laptop running 100% of the time. That's sort of the heart of my confusion/misunderstanding with iTunes. I know I can place all of the data on my NAS and access through various different Synology based applications, but I don't know if I need to be running a dedicated instance of iTunes in order to take advantage of things like iCloud syncing (if I buy music on my phone will it magically appear on my NAS without me running an instance of iTunes?) Hopefully this communicates my question a bit better? I apologize if this is cryptic and it could very well be that I'm trying to do something that's not possible. I'm just not very familiar with iTunes functionality when it comes to managing/syncing content.

    I'd like to be able to store my music on the NAS and have any new music/video content I purchase through iTunes appear there. I'd also like to be able to access that content on my different devices (both on and off the home network), hopefully without having to have cloud synced local copies (I want to stream it). Am I a crazy person asking for magic? (seriously, I don't know if I'm out of my mind here or not).
  5. superbovine macrumors 68030


    Nov 7, 2003
    You have the right idea. I don't think it would "stream" the file. It would treat it like a networked drive and transfer the changes across the wire.
  6. yetieater macrumors regular

    May 6, 2007
    Here is one possible implementation

    You may investigate dynamic DNS. With this, you can make your NAS publicly addressable. From there, you would connect to your NAS from anywhere through your laptop. You would need to take this intermediate step to propagate changes like new media purchase from the iTunes Store.

    Synology's knowledge base has a very dumb tutorial on how you can house your iTunes media library on your NAS, but you've already done this.

    Depending on which Synology device you have, you might be able to do this:

    That will allow your NAS to share its media library without needing the laptop as an intermediary, though you would need the laptop if you wanted to add new media to your iTunes library.

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