HowTo: Share Your Library Over The Internet With iTunes Home Sharing

With iTunes 9, Apple introduced ( among others ) the Home Sharing feature. This features makes it real easy to share music, movies, TV shows etc, but locally. According to the Apple website, ” with Home Sharing, you can browse the iTunes libraries of up to five authorized computers in your house, import what you like, and automatically add new purchases made on any of the computers to your own library.”

So what if, you want to use Home Sharing with a friend over the internet, or with a member of your family that is studying abroad? ( see how i did it so it will not seem like a piracy method? ) . In that case you will need a VPN ( virtual private network ). For that  you can use HamachiX ( Mac ) and Hamachi ( Win ).

  1. Download HamachiX, and have your friend do the same.
  2. Run HamachiX and let it do all the fun things it needs to do. Then click the Plus button and make up a network name and password. Optionally open the Preferences and set a nickname for simplicity’s sake.
  3. Choose Create Network [and have your friend launch HamachiX and choose Join Network].
  4. Give HamachiX a minute, and hit Refresh until you see your friend is connected.
  5. Open iTunes and set up Home Sharing with the same account on both machines. If you had previously set up Home Sharing, click Advanced » Turn Off Home Sharing, then turn it back on to switch usernames.

If everything went right, you should see your friend’s iTunes library show up, and you can download to your heart’s content as though they were sitting in the same room as you.

The initial period where iTunes finds the other machine took a while. At first only one library showed up, and then eventually both did. We just kept restarting iTunes and Hamachix until things worked. We also turned on file sharing and were able to access each other’s computers, but I’m not sure if that is necessary for the iTunes Home Sharing.

[via macosxhints]