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iTunes library in house with multiple users and devices

Hi All,

I am helping a family setup their new system with a large iTunes library.  Prior to this they were all (6 total, 2 parents and 4 kids) syncing their ios devices to one system under one user account.  This started to get messy with play lists and the like being changed and confusing for everyone.
What I am looking to do is find a way to share the library across the other computers, home sharing, and then enable the users to sync at their own systems.
Each user has a system and an ios device.
We want a way to not have to purchase the apps for every user (6) and be able to maximize disk space.

Parents - share the main iTunes server system, each have an iPhone to sync
Kid #1 - has a MacBook Air and iPhone wants to sync off of main library
Kid #2 - has a Windows 7 netbook and iPod and wants to sync off main library
Kid #3 and #4 - share a Windows XP PC and each have iPod's - want to sync off main library
There is also a family iPad that will need to be synced to main library

Let me know your thoughts on a proper config...
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Geneyes008
Asked:
Geneyes008
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1 Solution
 
PlantwizCommented:
I would recommend this:
http://support.apple.com/kb/ht1495

It gives you a few options and way to set it up as this is a very common issue.

Good luck
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PlantwizCommented:
As far as 'not' wanting to purchase apps for each device, well, this may be a bit of a licensing problem.  Unless the author/publisher of the app permits mulit-device use, most apps are priced to be economically affordable for each device.
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Geneyes008Author Commented:
I was looking to have the parents system as the library and the kids to be able to sync to the library from their respective systems.
Is this possible?  I do not want to introduce additional hardware into this scenario.
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nap0leonCommented:
We use "home sharing" at our house.
Once central machine with the main library on it, is always on, always has iTunes running, and has "home sharing" turned on.  Other machines access the library on this machine using "home sharing".

This works great for everyone being able to listen to the vast music library or watch downloaded videos, etc.

Mobile devices (iPad, iPhones) get their music copied to them manually via docking with the central machine.
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Jason C. LevineNo oneCommented:
Agree with Home Sharing.  Works for all purchases: apps, books, music, video.
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nap0leonCommented:
Oddly, I see (purchased) "Videos" under home sharing on my iPhone 3GS, but I do not see our music selection.  For that, i still dock and copy files (or, if they are purchases, I manually download them to the device).
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Geneyes008Author Commented:
OK, I just wanted to see if everyone could access, share and then dock and sync with their local systems.
Looks like with Apple you have to all go to the central system with the library.
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Jason C. LevineNo oneCommented:
Everybody can share with everyone else.  Home Sharing is just the way to do it with separate accounts.

The other way to do it (albeit has to be planned out in advance a bit) is to have everyone on one iTunes account and sync to one machine.  Each device gets recognized separately and can pick and choose what gets downloaded to the device.
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