How to share music and video with iTunes

iTunes lets you share your iTunes library over your home network in different ways. Read this article to find how to set up either option and to understand the differences.

Use Music Sharing

Music Sharing allows you to stream music with little to no setup. If you don't put a password on your shared iTunes library, anyone on your network can see your iTunes library, the library name, and its contents.

  1. Open iTunes.
  2. Choose iTunes > Preferences (Mac) or choose Edit > Preferences (Windows).
  3. Click the Sharing tab.
  4. Select “Share my library on my local network.”
    Sharing tab in iTunes 10
  5. If desired, select “Require password” and enter a password.
  6. Click OK.

On your Mac or PC, open iTunes. The shared iTunes library should appear under Shared with a music note or a lock icon (if you selected "Require password" and set a password). Anyone on the same home network should be able to see and access your music. If you selected "Require password" without the password, all that can be seen is your library name.

To set your library name, choose iTunes > Preferences (Mac) or choose Edit > Preferences (Windows). If you don't see shared libraries, make sure you selected Shared Libraries on the General tab.


  1. iTunes must be open on your computer in order for other people to see your shared library and playlists.
  2. Sharing is intended for personal use only and is possible only with computers in the same network subnet.

Use Home Sharing

Home Sharing allows you to transfer content to another computer or stream to other devices. It always requires your Apple ID and password to see the library and contents.

  1. Choose File > Home Sharing > Turn on Home Sharing.
  2. Enter the Apple ID and password you wish to use.
  3. Click Turn on Home Sharing.
  4. If your computer isn't authorized with your Apple ID, iTunes may ask you if you want to authorize it now.
  5. Click Done. Sharing will disappear unless it sees a shared iTunes Library on the network.

On your other Mac or PC, open iTunes. Repeat the steps above to turn on Home Sharing for up to 5 Mac or PC computers using iTunes on the home network.

Only other computers, iOS devices using iOS 4.3 or later, and Apple TV (2nd generation and 3rd generation) with Home Sharing enabled using the same Apple ID on the home network will show the shared iTunes library.

Learn more

Some content, such as apps, won't appear in Music Sharing or the main Home Sharing view.

For additional information, see:

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