Using ATV3 to stream movies from External HD hooked up via Airport Extreme.

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by sandman512, Jan 21, 2015.

  1. sandman512 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2011
    #1
    Good morning. Current setup; ATV3, airport extreme with a 1TB external HD hooked up to it. We basically store stuff on it and every computer in the house(MBP and PC) can access it. So, my question, is there a way that I can stream movies(let's say go-pro videos) that I save on the HD to my ATV3? if not, any advice or methods I should be looking at to accomplish this? Thanks.
     
  2. Boyd01 macrumors 68040

    Boyd01

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2012
    Location:
    New Jersey Pine Barrens
    #2
    I think the answer is basically no. You need a computer running iTunes if you want to access content directly from the Apple TV. Now I think there may be some kludges where you access the movies with an app on an iDevice then use airplay to send them to the Apple TV but that seems pretty awkward.

    Also, FWIW, an external disk on an Airport Extreme is pretty slow: http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1747622
     
  3. sandman512 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2011
    #3
    So, would i be better off putting my movie on itunes and playing via itunes on my ATV? Thanks.
     
  4. Panch0 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2010
    Location:
    Virginia
    #4
    That is the easiest way to do it. Note that it is possible to leave the actual media file on the network share, but still have it appear in your iTunes Library. Just turn of the iTunes Preference to copy all files to the iTunes Library. I personally don't like using Shared drives for iTunes media, but it is possible and it does work as long as you make sure the share is mounted before you open iTunes.

    I think there are some thread here regarding getting home movies to show up properly in iTunes/ATV. You may need to add some meta-data to the video to get them sorted the way you want.
     
  5. Boyd01 macrumors 68040

    Boyd01

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2012
    Location:
    New Jersey Pine Barrens
    #5
    I tried this for awhile, and it does work, but I gave up because there are many "gotchas". First, performance is noticeably worse than a local disk - movies took longer to start playing and sometimes frames would drop.

    And having the volume mounted whenever iTunes is running isn't as simple as you might think. If you put your computer to sleep with iTunes running and wake it up somewhere out of range of the Airport, you will have a problem. Or if you lose the connection to the Airport for any reason while iTunes is running.

    As a default, the iTunes library database is stored on your Mac even if you move the media to a network drive. When the network drive is unavailable, if iTunes is running you will end up with a corrupt database. Happened to me a couple times and it was a pain to fix.

    If you want to try this anyway, be sure that you store the database on Airport disk in addition to your media. That way, if the network drive isn't available, at least you won't corrupt the database. See the section "Moving the Library Database" here: http://www.ilounge.com/index.php/articles/comments/moving-your-itunes-library-to-a-new-hard-drive/

    Another problem with using the Airport is that it's a pain to back it up. When I was doing this, I used carbon copy cloner to copy the network drive to a direct-connected external disk on my Mac. Kind of a pain with a big library - very slow because all the data has to move over the network.
     
  6. willydimes macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2014
    #6
    Hey this is how I do it, only difference is that I don't have an external HD connected, I just have them on my Time Capsule HD but should be same thing. I have the FileBrowser app and I access them form there on my iPad or iPhone and then airplay them to the ATV. Works like a charm. Only downside is the app cost a few bucks (5-10 maybe) but has been well worth it for me
     

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