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Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Sharing Content on Your Wireless Media Center

With a wireless media center, you can use one computer to store and organize all of your music and video, and then stream that media wirelessly to any location in your home. Before you can access the shared media from either Windows or Mac OS X, you need to configure your setup.
Sharing media with the network from Windows
To share media with the network from Windows, follow these steps:
1. In My Computer or Windows Explorer, right-click the root-level folder in which you store all of your media, and choose Sharing and Security.
If you use a separate hard drive exclusively for storing media, right-click the drive letter in My Computer or Windows Explorer. Do not share an entire hard drive if it contains program files or documents that you don't want to share.
2. Under Network Sharing and Security, select the Share This Folder on the Network check box.
3. Give the folder a share name. Other network computers see this name when they access the shared disk or folder.
Do not select the Allow Network Users to Change My Files option. This prevents others from accidentally deleting your songs and other media.
4. Click OK to apply your changes and close the Properties dialog box.
5. In My Computer or Windows Explorer, make sure that the shared folder or disk has a hand on its icon. The hand indicates that the folder is shared.
Sharing media with the network from Mac OS X
Follow these steps to share media with the network from Mac OS X:
1. Choose Apple --> System Preferences and then open the Sharing icon.
2. Select Personal File Sharing to allow file sharing with other computers.
If you plan to share media with Windows PCs, select Windows Sharing. Then, click the Enable Accounts button and then select the user account or accounts that you want to use when accessing your Mac from a Windows PC.
3. Close System Preferences.
4. Open the Finder, and then browse to the folder containing the media you want to share.
5. Select the folder you want to share and press CMD+I.
6. In the Info dialog box that appears for the folder, click the arrow next to Ownership and Permissions, and then click the arrow next to Details Under Ownership and Permissions.
7. Choose Everyone in the Group menu and then choose Read Only in the Access menu.
8. Click Apply to enclosed items and then close the Info dialog box.
Accessing shared media
Use these steps to access shared media;
1. In Windows, choose Start --> My Network Places.
2. Double-click the network place that contains your media files.
If you don't see the network folder containing your media, click View Workgroup Computers on the left side of the My Network Places window, and then open the icon for the workgroup computer which contains the media. Remember, the media server computer must be on and connected to the network.
3. Open the folder and subfolder containing the media you want to play.
4. To play a song or movie, double-click it.
5. To play multiple files or folder, hold down the Ctrl key and click once on each file or folder that you want to play, and then click Play All or Play Selection under Video Tasks or Audio Tasks on the left side of the window.
When you play music on a Macintosh from a network location, iTunes first copies the song to the local computer before playing it. To change this behavior, open iTunes and choose iTunes --> Preferences. Click Advanced at the top of the Preferences window, and then deselect the Copy files to iTunes Music folder when adding to library option.
Disable power-saving settings on the media server. If the server shuts down its hard drives or goes to sleep after a period of inactivity, other network computers won't be able to access media files stored on the server.

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