[How To] Use your QNAP to enable iTunes Home SharingNote: This is for x86 only! Sorry, no ARM solution for now!
Like many folks, I have been trying to find the right/affordable solution to enable Apple iTunes Home Sharing feature on QNAP, so that my Apple TV 2, iPad, and iPhone can stream the music & photos & videos. It’s especially cool that you can use your phone or iPad as a remote control (downloaded the ‘Remote’ App from AppStore) to stream whatever the content to anywhere using Home Sharing and AirPlay features.
Unfortunately, there is no easy way to do it, and you will probably never see QNAP to implement this Home Sharing feature. Part of the reason is that Apple and Movie/Music studios control how you distribute music to your remote/mobile devices. As of today, you must use your PC or Mac to have iTunes running at all time and turn on Home Sharing feature. I think most of the folks think like me that this is not the ideal situation because it’s really a waste to just use a dedicated PC/Mac to be a iTunes Home Sharing server device.
To do that, Philippe made this possible, kudos to Philippe. He has done a lot of great work packaging VirtualBox 4.0.8 that allows you to run Windows XP virtual machine inside of your QNAP. Note: this is still in beta. But, so far, I haven't found any issues.1st
, this is for x86
only because VirtualBox does not support ARM.2nd
, it’s strongly recommended that you have Dual Core
Atom and upgrade QNAP's RAM to 2GB3rd
, go to this thread for instruction on how to install VirtualBox QPKG. viewtopic.php?f=255&t=459824th
, after VirtualBox is successfully installed, now you can add a Virtual Machine by installing WindowsXP using ISO image.5th
, you must use Bridged mode to enjoy all the layer 2 LAN Home Sharing features. Please go to this thread on how to do this. viewtopic.php?f=255&t=466826th
, Optimize your Windows XP to very minimum, so that it can keep both Windows VM CPU and QNAP CPU utilization to relatively low. Google search on how to optimize Windows XP. Since this is my dedicated iTunes Home Sharing server, I turned off firewall, I don’t intend to use this VM to download anything or browse internet or open any email or documents.7th
, install VNC (optional). I find VNC server response faster and smoother than RDP, especially for the mouse. It’s your choice.8th
, install iTunes on your Windows VM. Make sure you have already mapped your Windows VM to QNAP share/Multimedia or your Music folder (Preferably, the mapped Drive letter would match that on your real PC's mapping). Open iTunes, go in to Advance tab under Preference, and tell iTunes's Media Library is not in VM's C drive, but point it to your new mapped QNAP's share/Multimedia folder. Then, close iTunes.9th
, if you have a PC, and if you have been pointing your Media Library to QNAP server, then copy (overwrite) everything (ex: iTunes Music Library.xml, iTunes Library.itl, Album Artwork, etc..) except your music, MP3, Movies, and Podcast (these should be stored in QNAP anyway) into your Windows VM’s My Music/iTunes folder.10th
, now open iTunes in your Windows VM, your iTunes should now see exactly what you saw in your real Windows PC.11th
, turn off
Home Sharing in your real Windows PC, and then turn on
Home Sharing in your Windows VM.12th
, it will take 1 -3 mins for Apple TV/iPhone to discover there’s a new Home Sharing Library from Windows VM. Now, you can stream music and videos from Windows VM using Home Sharing to your iPhone/iPad/Apple TV 2, and use your iPhone/iPad as the remote control to your Apple TV as to what album streamed to Apple TV with Photo Sharing from iTunes as well for Screen Saver!!!13th