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Questions about Using iTunes on More than One Computer
Ed Kohler
A reader wrote in with a few interesting iTunes questions I thought I'd throw out to the group. I'll take a shot at the questions, but would appreciate some additional takes.

1. There are at least three computers that I use on a regular basis, our family computer, my work computer and my laptop, when I travel.  I have tried to figure out how to have my subscriptions be the same on each computer.  By this I mean that I thought Itunes would be a web based program that when I signed in to my account my menu of my podcasts and subscriptions would be the same no matter what computer I was using.  This is not the case.  Each Itunes library is linked to each computer not to my account at Itunes.  Have I missed something? Is there a place I can see where all my subscriptions are?

Your iTunes subscriptions are tracked within a file called "iTunes Music Library.xml" which resides on your computer. This file tracks both your music files and your podcast subscriptions. It's not web-based, so you are correct when you state that, "each iTunes library is linked to each computer."

2. I don't even bring my connector cord to work anymore, even to re-charge the battery, because it starts up Itunes and if I have forgotten to turn off the auto upload, I have replaced what was already on there.  Is there anyway to keep a list of the podcasts I have downloaded, or have subscribed to other than in the notes section on my blackberry?

Your iPod is basically a satellite of one computer. Just like satellites only orbit around one planet, iPods only orbit around one computer. Syncing the same iPod with more than one computer is going to create a mess since the library files are not synced.

If there are podcasts you plan to listen to from your computer rather than on the road (at work or home), you could subscribe to them with something other than iTunes, such as Google Reader. They won't auto-download, but that's not really critical with podcasts since they'll start to play immediately when clicked on unless you're on dial-up. Using a web based RSS reader like this would allow you to keep your podcast listening in sync at all computers since it's, well, web based. Here's a link to Technology Evangelist's podcast feed for insertion into Google Reader you can use to test this out. You can play the files immediately online, or download them to your computer if you want to play them when you're offline or to sync into iTunes.

3. "Where would I find information on how to download podcasts to my ipod from sites other than itunes?"

By this, I assume you mean subscribing to podcasts in iTunes that you didn't find through the iTunes Music Store. One way to do this is by clicking on the RSS icon for a podcast. If you happen to use FireFox, this will take you to a subscription page that lets you choose which RSS reader you'd like to use to subscribe to the show. If it's a podcast, iTunes would be a good choice. To give this a try, click here for Technology Evangelist's podcast feed.

4. Is there a way on Itunes, or any other podcast sites, to search for videocasts?"

Click iTunes Story > Podcasts > Then scroll down to "Featured Video Podcasts" to find many popular options. iTunes could certainly do a better job differentiating which podcasts are video vs. audio than to they do today. Other options including video blog directory sites. Here are five to try.

To me, it sounds like your best bet is to pick one of your computers to use as your podcasting base station. Sync with that when you get a chance. If that computer isn't your work computer, use your iPod during the day or listen to podcasts through non-iTunes RSS readers like Google Reader.



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Comments

1. Posted by: Jim on March 16, 2007 11:47 AM:

Is it possible to create a folder under a playlist in iTunes library? For example I have a playlist called Eighties and would like to create individual folders (playlists) under the Eighties playlist. Thanks for any help. Jim




2. Posted by: Jake on July 1, 2007 7:51 PM:

My mom and I both have an Ipod. Hers is a video and mine is a nano. We don't want to share each others library, but we can't figure out how to install to seperate iTunes. I already have my own iTunes account, but we still share the same library. Is there a way to have two iTunes on one computer?




3. Posted by: Madelyn Foxworthy on July 17, 2007 6:33 AM:

Is it possible for my daughter and I to save each others libraries on our IPODs. I want her music and she wants mine. Is it possible?




4. Posted by: robert on August 15, 2007 6:44 PM:

How do I load itunes on my laptop if I already have an account on my pc.




5. Posted by: emily on March 30, 2008 9:44 PM:

my sister and i are sharing itunes.. but she went to england for 1 year and has like so many songs and movies and we were wondering if there was a way you could put her music back into the librairy on our itunes., so we could share again.




6. Posted by: Soctt on April 16, 2008 6:49 PM:

Similar to Jakes post (Number 2) is there a way to have 2 Itunes on the one computer ?
Any help or advice would be greatly appreciated.




7. Posted by: Tiffany on August 28, 2008 7:29 AM:

I have I believe a 1st gen Ipod Nano and have Itunes on my laptop. My husband just bought a 3rd gen Ipod Nano and when I went to connect it to my itunes it said that it wouldnt work and I needed to download the newer version. How do I do that and does it keep the same itunes or does it make a complete new itunes. Thanks




8. Posted by: Angela on October 29, 2008 11:50 AM:

I logged into itunes from my new work computer and cannot see my credits to purchase music. Where do I locate my credits in order to make new purchases without using my credit card? I have like $30 on my old computer.




9. Posted by: Chris on October 31, 2008 3:58 PM:

I am taking a language class and the teacher posts audio lessons as MP3 files. I can download the files to my Itunes library and put them in a play list, but some of them will not download from the Itunes library or play list onto my Ipod. Is there a way to convert these files for use on my Ipod?Here is an example of the file that works on the computer but didn't download onto the Ipod.

http://fms.clear.msu.edu/viewpoint/_downloadable/_2851_1223480476.mp3




10. Posted by: Glenn on November 10, 2008 2:51 AM:

similar question to: My mom and I both have an Ipod. Hers is a video and mine is a nano. We don't want to share each others library, but we can't figure out how to install to seperate iTunes. I already have my own iTunes account, but we still share the same library. Is there a way to have two iTunes on one computer?

My son has a (square nano) and is already in I-tunes on our computer. My daughter has the (newest nano. How can she get on the I-tunes site and download her own music to hers without losing my son's music.




11. Posted by: Aylin on January 3, 2009 3:37 PM:

I have a nano that I started to download onto from my sisters laptop. I recently moved and now want to download from my own computer. Is it possible to continue downloading from another computer?




12. Posted by: alexis on March 18, 2009 12:51 PM:

when i plug in my itouch to my computer and then it shows up in itunes ,, it doesnt let me click on anything under my itouch . like when i try to add or delete songs its like all gray and i cant click on it. what do i do?




13. Posted by: Isabel on March 20, 2009 8:28 AM:

I had to send my hp laptop (which had itunes with all my music) back to hp to be "enhanced". I saved my music on a portable external drive. My hp laptop is back and i downloaded itunes again. Will it be easy to put my purchased music back onto it by importing or something like that? I just want to make sure I don't do something wrong. Thank you all for any suggestions or tips.




14. Posted by: mark on April 26, 2009 7:12 AM:

iTunes is a rip off. I back up my hard drve monthly, but it crashed in between back ups, and Apple wont let me download my purchases a second time - even though i bought them. Over $100 of music gone - in the last month alone. I HATE APPLE!!!




15. Posted by: James Davis on May 21, 2009 1:50 PM:

My son gave me his old 60gig Ipod because he bought a new one but I also have an Ipod(4gig) but how do I transfere my itunes to this new Ipod




16. Posted by: James Davis on May 21, 2009 1:50 PM:

My son gave me his old 60gig Ipod because he bought a new one but I also have an Ipod(4gig) but how do I transfere my itunes to this new Ipod




17. Posted by: tianna on August 2, 2009 5:35 PM:

stupid retarded itunes!!!!!! ive tried FOREVER to create an account but it wont work ive tried everything...help!




18. Posted by: tianna on August 2, 2009 5:35 PM:

stupid retarded itunes!!!!!! ive tried FOREVER to create an account but it wont work ive tried everything...help!




19. Posted by: zstyle on September 7, 2009 10:15 PM:

I am a Disc Jockey/Entertainer, I have a laptop and a desktop.
Both computers are set to automatically store all music files on my external hard drive. I use a software hardware package to mix music. I do not like to download music on my laptop only on my desktop. So my question is if I create smart play lists on both computers and only upload music onto my external form the desktop will all of my music be available to me in the same smart play-lists?




20. Posted by: Cookie Stephan on October 17, 2009 4:35 PM:

I got a new computer and tried to transfer my music from my ipod nano. I found that 51 songs I have purchased wouldn't transfer. I got the message "not authorized for this computer." Why not? I paid for them. Thanks, Cookie




21. Posted by: javier on October 31, 2009 8:59 AM:

i have three computers, the traveling the office and the one i use at home,,i was wondering if i could backup all of my itunes in the three computers, but the problem is that,if i backup my itunes into one computer can i backup in the other 2 or it only allows one backup




22. Posted by: chad on April 6, 2010 1:07 PM:

Somebody stole my laptop with my itunes on it and so i bought a new laptop and installed itunes now i see im gong to lose all my music once i sync it . WOW can somebody help me all i want to do is put my songs from my iphone to my new laptop? HELP .....




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