iTunes: Setting up Home Sharing on your computer

Home Sharing in iTunes lets you share and transfer content between multiple iTunes libraries on your home network and stream from those libraries to an iOS device or Apple TV (2nd or 3rd generation).

Note: This article discusses setting up and using Home Sharing on your computer. For troubleshooting assistance, follow these steps.

Home Sharing requires:

Setting up Home Sharing in iTunes

  1. Open iTunes.
  2. Select Home Sharing from where you choose between Music, Movies, and other kinds of media on the left side of iTunes.
  3. If the Home Sharing icon isn't visible, choose File > Home Sharing > Turn On Home Sharing from the menu bar. (You can disable or enable Home Sharing for your computer using the File menu.)

    Note: After you enable Home Sharing and click Done, Home Sharing is no longer visible until it detects another computer with Home Sharing enabled.

  4. When prompted, enter your Apple ID and password.

    The screen to turn on Home Sharing in iTunes 11

    Note: Be sure to use the same Apple ID when enabling Home Sharing on all computers you intend to share with.

  5. Click Turn On Home Sharing.
  6. Use the above steps to enable Home Sharing on additional computers on your home network.

Setting up Automatic Transfer

Automatic Transfer can transfer your newly-purchased apps, books, music, TV shows, and movie purchases to your other computers set up for Home Sharing.

To automatically transfer content between computers, click the Settings button in the lower-right while viewing a Home Share and select which content to transfer. Automatic transfer of iTunes Store content is off by default.
Settings button to set up Automatic Transfer

Note: The Settings and Import button aren't present if you're using Music Sharing, which is different from Home Sharing.

  • Automatic transfer applies to new purchases from the iTunes Store whenever they are made. However, updates aren't transferred (such as those from the App Store).
  • Automatic transfer only applies to iTunes Store content you purchase or download after enabling Home Sharing.
  • Previously downloaded or non-iTunes Store content can only be manually transferred. It may be necessary to authorize iTunes Store content for playback on other computers.
  • Audiobooks purchased through the iTunes Store can be automatically or manually transferred.
  • Home Sharing can't transfer or stream audiobook content purchased from Audible.com. See Audible.com for assistance in using their content on multiple computers.
  • In addition, rentals from the iTunes Store can't be streamed or transferred to another computer using Home Sharing.

Home Sharing tips

The best way to avoid duplication is to use the Show menu located in the lower-left corner. Choose "Items not in my library" before transferring any content.

Drop-down menu in the lower left of the Home Sharing window.

  • Home Sharing transfers the media file and ID3 tag information. It doesn't transfer iTunes metadata, including ratings, play history, and comments.
  • Home Sharing doesn't check for duplicates when manually transferring content between iTunes libraries.
  • If your iTunes libraries contain a large amount of identical content, you should manually select only the songs you want to transfer.
  • If you accidentally create duplicates, use the Show Duplicates feature in iTunes to locate and remove duplicate files.

Learn more

Home Sharing is designed to be an easy way to either copy items from your iTunes library between your Macs or PCs in your home, or to share items from your iTunes library with your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Apple TV (2nd and 3rd generation).

If you just bought a new computer and want to move your content, you may also use these steps:

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