1 2 Previous Next 24 Replies Latest reply: Apr 17, 2013 7:02 PM by kcliu02
Richmaster Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

I'm trying to find the easiest solution to our family music situation.  4 users, 4 devices (ipods, ipad, imac, pc laptops), and 4 different musical song interests.  I'm sure there are millions of households that have the same exact situation.  I want to be able to pull up only my musical library, not my kid's music, and then easily synch it to my ipod.  Everyone in the family wants to do this same thing.  I have spent alot of time trying to search the forums/internet and there does not seem to be one "most popular" solution.  I did setup iCloud for each family member using a different Apple ID than my main Apple ID, and I'm happy that ALL the music shows up on my ipad.  But between iCloud, MobileMe, Home Sharing it all gets very confusing.  Some say to setup multiple computer login accounts, and others say to setup 1 playlist for each family member and synch from that playlist.

 

I would think 1 itunes account allows you to easily share a purchased song with 4 users, instead of buying songs twice.

 

So here are a few of my questions-

1-Is it best to have only 1 itunes account and then synch all devices off of 1 main computer? 

 

2-Or since we each have iCloud accounts, will they be able to synch their ipods from their own pc laptop?

 

3-And when they synch, what is the easiest way to exclude other users music in itunes? (other than unchecking hundreds of artists)

 

4-Or setup 4 separate computer login accounts on the imac and then keep 1 itunes account?  If so, how does this work when they open itunes?

 

 

Again, I'm hoping for a straightforward simple solution.  I don't want to move & create libraries, download 3rd party software, etc. etc.  Please reply if you found something that works for your family.  Thanks in advance.


Imac, Mac OS X (10.5.1)
  • 1. Re: How do you setup multiple users with multiple devices on itunes?
    mr.lars Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I'd really like to know the answer myself.  I would think that there are many out there with the same question.

  • 2. Re: How do you setup multiple users with multiple devices on itunes?
    sleepyarmistice Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I'm not 100% sure that I understand your question, but I'll share how our house's media situation works. My girlfriend and I share an iMac on which we each have our own user accounts. In those accounts, we have separate iTunes libraries. Using my Apple ID, I have signed into Home Sharing in both of our libraries. That way, when using fast user switching, the other person's library is visible under the home sharing section of iTunes and we can grab a song from the other library when we want. Syncing devices is no problem because there are two seperate libraries. It sounds like this situation is more complicated than you are looking for, but I think that it is the ideal situation. As far as I can tell, iTunes isn't really meant to support multiple users, which is kind of ridiculous.

  • 3. Re: How do you setup multiple users with multiple devices on itunes?
    Sanjay65 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I don't know sleepyarmistice if you have answered the question to our full satisfaction. What you are saying is that we use apple's home sharing and use separate user logins on our MAC to synch our devices. Will this allow the same apple id to be used acorss several devices? Why I am paranoid in using separate apple ids in separate devices is because am told we need to purchase the same app twice. How do we get across sharing one purchased app?

     

    Mr. Richmaster - I am also fed up of this problem and want to sort it out once and for all. Have come to the forum earlier and could not understand clearly most of the posts. Once we implement it successfully this time I want is to certify it works and publish for other (perhaps thousands) users with clear guidelines.

  • 4. Re: How do you setup multiple users with multiple devices on itunes?
    Richmaster Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    Thanks for your reply sleepyarmistice, but I don't know if multiple apple IDs is the way to go for my household.  That would be 4 different apple IDs and I'm sensing their would be alot of confusion with purchased songs/apps.  And what about if someone has itunes on a pc laptop, then they don't have a apple ID, right?  They would just have a separate itunes account, right?  Maybe I'm wrong on that point........If someone could tell me that would be great.  But I can see your point about the "Home Sharing" feature and maybe that is what makes your idea work.  Because then you could only buy a song once and that song could be "Home Shared" to your girlfriend's library if she wants it also.  (I understand you can get a purchased song on up to 5 household computers).  But I'm still amazed that there is not a common everyday user-friendly itunes solution for a household of 4.  If there is.... then it is not published very well.  Even with my original post from a week ago, there is really no reply from anyone with a "great" solution.  That alone tells me that there is not a magic bullet to resolve this.

     

    Sanjay65- I'm with you. 

     

    If my multiple questions were confusing, I will try to sum it up ..........I want everyone in the family to be able to take a device (ipad/ipod) and go to THEIR OWN itunes music library and synch it.  Is it possible to synch it from their PC laptop, MAC, and ipad?  In other words, no matter what computer they are working from in the house, can they access THEIR OWN itunes music library.  Will all THEIR songs be on each computer, or should we just get in the habit of synching from 1 main computer?  All I want is to be able to synch 4 devices (ipad/ipod) to 4 different itunes music libraries.  I think most of you know what I'm trying to do.  I'm sure millions of you are thinking along the same lines here.

  • 5. Re: How do you setup multiple users with multiple devices on itunes?
    turingtest2 Level 8 Level 8 (46,525 points)

    Here are my usual thoughts on the topic...

    The Apple support document How to use multiple iPods with one computer suggests a number of ways for managing the media content. I use method two (Sync with selected playlists) with a slight twist. Rather than regular playlists I set the grouping field to indicate which users should receive which tracks and create smart playlists based on the content of this field.

     

    e.g.

    "Alice's Tracks" is "Grouping contains Alice" + "Kind contains audio"

    "Bob's Videos" is "Grouping contains Bob" + "Kind does not contain audio"

    Tracks that both Alice & Bob want on their iPods have the grouping set to "Alice/Bob"

    etc.

     

    I currently manage our family's five iDevices using this system, each getting a different selection to suit their tastes and the capacity of their device. An advantage of using the grouping field is that it is stored in file tags (for non-wav audio files anyway) so that it is relatively easy to recreate the playlists should the iTunes library get trashed and need rebuilding. Also useful if you move files about manually as playlist membership is preserved when you delete & re-import the tracks.

    It works for me, but it may not for you. Purchasing everything through the one account means I only have one to manage, at least until the kids properly fly the nest. Eldest child has gone off to university with a clone of the library from which I excised all the content she doesn't want. My son has a similarly cut down library on his machine, but connected to the shared media folder which has all our files. He can, in princple, sync his iPod from his own machine or get me to do it. No surprises which happens most often.

     

    tt2

  • 6. Re: How do you setup multiple users with multiple devices on itunes?
    Richmaster Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    turingtest, I do have a couple questions. 

    Number one, does everyone in your family only sych their ipods from only 1 computer?  If everyone only uses itunes from 1 computer I can see how that will work.  But what if kids want to use itunes for windows?  Will "Home Sharing" allow all their music purchased on the MAC, to be also displayed on their itunes for windows laptop?  I noticed you have PCs and also an ipad.  How do you manage your family's music on these devices?

     

    Also, how did you first get everyone's music library into their own library?  Drag & drop?  Is the "grouping field" you mentioned under "view", then "view options"?  What does this do? 

     

    Thanks.

  • 7. Re: How do you setup multiple users with multiple devices on itunes?
    Takoda Level 1 Level 1 (75 points)

    Hello Richmaster,

     

    My name is Takoda and I am glad to assist you today.

     

    My understanding of your question is that you want to have the music from everyone's account on your computer, but not on all of your devices, excluding your iPad.

     

    The easiest soulution would be for everyone to have separate Apple ids, and to have Home Sharing enabled on the devices you want everyone's music on. That way, your music is all that appears in your iTunes library but you still have access to everyone else's music. The same applies with everyone else's computer.

     

    Apple Support's Understanding Home Sharing should help you set up Home Sharing on all of the devices you need.

     

    Sincerely,

     

    Takoda

  • 8. Re: How do you setup multiple users with multiple devices on itunes?
    turingtest2 Level 8 Level 8 (46,525 points)

    Richmaster wrote:

     

    turingtest, I do have a couple questions. 

    Number one, does everyone in your family only sych their ipods from only 1 computer?  If everyone only uses itunes from 1 computer I can see how that will work.  But what if kids want to use itunes for windows?  Will "Home Sharing" allow all their music purchased on the MAC, to be also displayed on their itunes for windows laptop?  I noticed you have PCs and also an ipad.  How do you manage your family's music on these devices?

     

    Also, how did you first get everyone's music library into their own library?  Drag & drop?  Is the "grouping field" you mentioned under "view", then "view options"?  What does this do? 

     

    Thanks.

     

    Sorry I missed your post earlier. Normally I follow up on any replies. This one must have fallen off the page on a busy day.

     

    As my kids have left home I have created for them a complete clone of the familiy library, then deleted the tracks from it they don't want. Over time their libraries will divirge, but if needs be they can still update their devices using the library at home. Handy when eldest's kit was stolen.

     

    Grouping is just another property, useful because it isn't generally overwritten by other software but is stored in the tags, so preserved when you copy files from one place to another. You can make the column visible and edit for multiple tracks in Get Info. Some software calls the same field "mood" or "sub-genre". iTunes has a specialist purpose for it generally used with classical music, but it doesn't seem to work very well for that and I don't use it that way.

     

    tt2

  • 9. Re: How do you setup multiple users with multiple devices on itunes?
    Chris CA Level 9 Level 9 (74,870 points)

    Just gonna throw this in there.

    Personally, I think each person should have their own computer login and their own AppleID.

    With their own computer login, they get all their own data (calendars, contacts, documents, etc.) and no need to worry about someone messing with someone elses stuff.

     

    With their own AppleID, they get their their own purchases (which can still be shared amongst the family) but when they leave, no need to worry about authorizing that computer with Dad's AppleID.

    All/most content will have been purchased under their own AppleID.

  • 10. Re: How do you setup multiple users with multiple devices on itunes?
    turingtest2 Level 8 Level 8 (46,525 points)

    You may well be right, assuming budgets run to such.

     

    My strategy was also put in place back when music came with DRM and my kids weren't ready to take ownership of the problem of sorting out their stuff. Of course they still don't want to.

     

    tt2

  • 11. Re: How do you setup multiple users with multiple devices on itunes?
    Davej56 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    One stumbling point here is that my daughter is 7 years old. I can't setup a separate APple ID for her, she needs to use mine. I think the easiest way around this is to just change the default location of the library to sync to when you open iTunes.

     

    My daughter has her own Windows account and iTtunes library as do I. Therefore we can sync our own libraries to the same device using playlists or to our iPod or iPad.

    Cheers
    Dave

  • 12. Re: How do you setup multiple users with multiple devices on itunes?
    Ozpolonski Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I'm also looking for a way to do this...

    I have one computer with only one login account. It is a Windows PC. ie: it goes straight to the desktop without prompting for a user - and this is how I am going to keep it.

    Therefore we have one copy of iTunes installed on said computer.

     

    Myself and my wife each have a seperate iTunes account.

    We each purchase our own apps/music with our own iTunes account.

    We each have linked our own (and seperate) contacts using our different iTunes accounts.

     

    HOWEVER,

    When we log in to either account, iTunes shows all apps, music etc and confuses the contacts.

    When we sync our devices we get a random cross bleed of apps and contacts on the different devices.

     

    Is iTunes able to properly filter the music/apps/contacts from different users to stop this cross syncing? Is there something more that I should be doing or is this an iTunes limitation/screw up...

     

    This is what I want:

    Windows PC---iTunes--+--My Account--My Music/Apps/Contacts

                                      |--My Wifes Account--Her Music/Apps/Contacts

     

    Not sure how to spell this out any clearer. Thanks in advance!

  • 13. Re: How do you setup multiple users with multiple devices on itunes?
    Chris CA Level 9 Level 9 (74,870 points)

     

    This is what I want:

    Windows PC---iTunes--+--My Account--My Music/Apps/Contacts

                                      |--My Wifes Account--Her Music/Apps/Contacts

    Not gonna happen with one computer login.

     

    You are saying you want separate info in one computer login.

    You can have different iTunes libraries and sync different iTunes content but contacts and calendars (and all other content on the comnputer) are not going to be separate

  • 14. Re: How do you setup multiple users with multiple devices on itunes?
    Ozpolonski Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Yes everything on the computer is shared. Only iTunes related stuff needs to be seperated.

     

    The contacts and calendars are synced from 2 different gmail accounts so that shouldn't be an issue.

    The apps have only been purchased on their respective devices so shouldn't be available on a device on a different account. However whenever we plug my wife's phone in it insists on placing some of my apps onto her device :/

     

    All I want is if my wife's phone is plugged in, only her apps, contacts etc are available, and if my device is plugged in then I only see my contacts. The music and video doesn't matter so much. If itunes can't do this without the computer itself having seperate logins then there is a serious deficiency in the software! :)

     

    Can it be done?

1 2 Previous Next