Find out how you can enjoy your music library at home without having to constantly sync music or burn CDs. By reading this frequently asked questions article on Home Sharing in iTunes, you will discover what can be achieved by using your preexisting home network. You will also get to grips with what needs to be in place in order to stream music to your iOS devices and share files between computers.
What does the Home Sharing feature in iTunes enable me to do?In a nutshell, the Home Sharing feature in iTunes creates a share space (network) where you can connect computers and Apple devices together in order to share your iTunes library. This makes use of your existing home network (via a router etc.) so you can gain access to all your songs, videos, movies, and more. This then negates the need for you to use time-consuming traditional methods of sharing such as syncing via a cable, burning audio CDs, or downloading files from iCloud to each individual device.
Can I share music files between computers?Yes you can. Home Sharing in iTunes allows you to share files between the computers in your home. The iTunes software installed on each machine has to be version 9 or higher in order to use Apple's proprietary DAAP (Digital Audio Access Protocol). You also need to have an iTunes account (Apple ID) that you can log into on each PC or Mac computer. In order to transfer song files from one computer to another you have to make sure that the same Apple ID is used. There's a maximum number of computers that can use Home Sharing at any one time -- this is currently limited to 5.
If you want to keep your iTunes library in sync with all the other computers on your Home Sharing network, there's a feature you can utilize called Automatic Transfer. This is disabled by default, but can be enabled if you want all your computers to have exactly the same media files, regardless of which one you use to purchase from the iTunes Store.
Remember, you aren't restricted to just music using Home Sharing. Your other media files can also be shared as long as you use the same Apple ID on each machine.