I have two computers in the home each with its own mp3 music files (some unique, some overlap). I have purchased an Iomega 1TB network drive that I'd like to store all the music on and have it available to the two computers that run iTunes.

I have read questions around this (such as Share single iTunes library across multiple computers) and they suggest copying over all music to the network drive and pointing the individual iTunes installations to the ituneslibrary.xml file on the shared drive to share the music, playlists, etc.

While this is okay (I have yet to try), I don't want podcasts shared between the two computers (different taste in podcasts). However, if I share a common iTunes library, won't the podcasts be part of the share and show up on both computers just as the music will?

How do I go about sharing the music files but not the podcasts?

As a bonus, can someone tell me how purchased songs get treated? If one computer (using their own Apple ID) purchases a song, will the other computer (using a different ID or as an unlogged user) be able to listen to the purchased song and add it to a media player (iPod)?

1 Answer 1


iTunes already has you covered with it's built-in Home Sharing feature:

Home Sharing in iTunes is designed to let you easily share your iTunes media libraries between up to five computers in your household. You can also use Home Sharing to play your iTunes content on your iOS devices and Apple TV (2nd generation) if they are connected to your home Wi-Fi network.

Apple states that Home Sharing allows you to stream media between computers, so I would think that files are not copied over permanently.

  • 1
    I'm looking for a non-Home Sharing solution as it requires the computers with the respective iTunes libraries to remain switched on. If I have media saved on a network shared drive (which is the goal), Home Sharing won't really cut it. Interestingly: the Iomega does have an "iTunes media server" that appears to iTunes as a computer with a shared library but iTunes 10.5 doesn't want to detect the shared folder.
    – zee
    Jan 20, 2012 at 4:54

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