Monday, April 02, 2012 2:00 AMI have a couple of Roku devices that I wanted to point to iTunes running on a server. Also, want other laptops
and pcs to be able to point to one version of iTunes that is always up, without going thru fileshare.
I wanted to keep my iTunes library on a local pc but also copy to WHS.
Finally got it working.
The last issue was that I was copying the iTunes Media folder from a local pc to the server, and
the podcasts were not getting updated. Solved this by using a symbolic link on the WHS server box.
It appears that while you can copy the iTunes Media folder, the associated library has the absolute
path embedded inside it, so that if you copy from library from pc to pc, but each pc has a different path
the iTunes doesn't see library updates.
So in Summary ...
1. On Desktop PC, turn on Home Shareing for your itunes id.
2. On WHS 2011, turned on Audio Service
3. On WHS 2011, Install iTunes (using iTunes 10.X)
4. Copy iTunes library from client desktop to WHS Server
- Desktop PC points to something like -> C:\Users\Public\Music\iTunes
- WHS 2011 server points to something like -> F:\ServerFolders\Music\iTunes
- Copy music from Desktop PC to WHS -> Kitchen-C:\Users\Public\Music\iTunes to WHS-F:/ServerFolders/Music/iTunes
5. On WHS Server box, make symbolic link so that iTunes sees same absolute path as on Desktop
- mklink /D C:\Users\Public\Music\iTunes F:\ServerFolders\Music\iTunes
6. ON WHS Server box, start iTunes to point to C:\Users\Public\Music\iTunes
iTunes has two things:
- iTunes Library (music files)
- iTunes database (playlists, ratings, etc)
To move both of these:
- Close iTunes
- Hold down SHIFT and double click on the iTunes shortcut
- A dialog box opens up to move the iTunes database. Choose 'Choose Library' and choose where you copied the database to (for example C:\iTunes)
- Go to Preferences > Advanced and change the library location (choose something like C:\Users\Public\Music\iTunes\iTunes Media, will convert to
physical location but seems to still work)
7. On WHS Server box, restart iTunes and it will point to new library location
8. On WHS Server Box, turn on Home Sharing, use same iTunes id as on Desktop PC
9. On WHS Server Box, now that we have iTunes on WHS working, need to configure in Task
Scheduler to automatically start on Startup as Administrator
- stop iTunes
- in Task Scheduler create Task to start iTunes at startup
- run as Administrator (and note if you change password later, you have to update Task in Task Scheduler!!)
10. On WHS 2011, in Task Scheduler create task to kill iTunes at some time, Need to
stop iTunes on WHS before you can synch from Desktop PC, otherwise the some of the files,
?.itl, don't get synched.
- in Task Scheduler create Task to kill itunes at some time
- TASKKILL /F /IM "itunes.exe
- run as Administrator
11. On Desktop PC, now that we have iTunes on WHS, and starting, need to configure ability to synch from pc
to WHS server
- On Desktop PC, Installed synch toy to copy from Kitchen Public Music to WHS 2011 Music, do synch from iTunes
to iTunes, include all sub-directories and also copies the library itl etc
- on Desktop PC in Task Scheduler create task to run synctoy after iTunes has been killed on WHS
And there you have it, at least as of WHS 2011 Server, Windows 7 Desktop and iTunes 10.6 !!!
- Changed Type Ken WarrenMVP, Moderator Monday, April 02, 2012 2:08 AM Not a question...
Tuesday, April 03, 2012 1:16 PM
If you are using the Home Sharing feature of iTunes 10.5 and later, you can configure the WHS install to automatically copy all new music from any connected iTunes library to itself. Also, when iTunes creates its folders, it starts watching a folder named "Automatically Add to iTunes" under the iTunes music folder. This folder is watched for all media and will import & move them to the library when you drop files in the folder.
Finally, while it doesn't turn iTunes in to a service, I use the free WHS 2011 AddIn called "Remote Launcher" to run the iTunes GUI from my WHS box on my desktop. This combined with Wireless Sync on my iPod allows me to manage all my media on the WHS box without needing to sync files or libraries the old fashioned way.
Wednesday, July 25, 2012 7:31 PM
Thank you very much for this great tutorial. This worked like a charm for me to consolidate all instances of iTunes in my house to one central database now housed on my Windows Home Server 2011. For those that may be giving this a shot, I thought I'd add one little thing I learned to save you some time. At first, I kept the original iTunes database as installed in it's folder on the Server at C:\Users\Administrator\Music\iTunes with a symbolic link to the same at M:\ServerFolders\Music\iTunes. I then also created a symbolic link on my central PC (E:\Users\USERNAME\Music\iTunes) to the Server at \\SERVER\Music\iTunes. This caused me some difficulty as I was attempting to create a remote symbolic link to another remote symbolic link (I always refer to this post to remind myself about Symbolic Links - http://www.howtogeek.com/howto/windows-vista/using-symlinks-in-windows-vista/). Doing this provided me with this error - "The symbolic link cannot be followed because its type is disabled". I found this tutorial which will explain how to change the SymLink default to allow Remote to Remote linking - http://blogs.msdn.com/b/junfeng/archive/2012/05/07/the-symbolic-link-cannot-be-followed-because-its-type-is-disabled.aspx. This still, however, wasn't the best answer as I continued to get errors from the iTunes program on the PC.
The one thing I would add to point 5 above (and it's minor, but I find it easier):
E:\Users\USERNAME\Music. Then all you have to do is type the 'mklink' command followed by the /D modifier that acts like a shortcut to a folder. Then enter the folder name you would like created (i.e. 'iTunes'). This will create the folder inside the folder you are currently in. The easiest thing to remember is that the first command creates the folder that you want linked to somewhere else (not the other way around). I also found that I needed to put quotation marks ("") around the location of the folder I wanted to create the symbolic link to(in my case - "\\SERVER\Music\iTunes") - it did not work for me without the quotation marks. So the final command looked like this: E:\Users\USERNAME\Music>mklink /d iTunes "\\SERVER\Music\iTunes"
THE BEST ANSWER is to have the original and main iTunes folder located IN THE SERVER SHARE (\\SERVER\Music\iTunes) with the symbolic link in c: drive where iTunes is looking (C:\Users\Administrator\Music\iTunes). This way, iTunes is looking to the symbolic link that connects to the original in the server share. This server share is accesible via the client PC and a symlink on the PC now connects beautifully to the iTunes instance on the server.
I did find that, after a reboot, that iTunes locked me out as it did not see me as having permissions to access the iTunes database - "The iTune Library .itl file is locked. On a locked disc or you do not have write permission for this file". I noticed that my user name was not attributed as owner and without read/write. What I did here was change the owner of the folder from the administrator account to my user name and everything worked great. This forum post was also very helpful - http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/forum/windows_7-windows_programs/itunes-error-the-itune-library-itl-file-is-locked/20dfa800-c0d6-4852-93d5-d1fe5af2e796