Having multiple iTunes libraries on multiple computers can get
pretty confusing. Not only have you purchased tracks on one PC or
another, but often you’ve purchased them on a mobile device and
synced or backed up that device to a single PC. Wouldn’t it be nice
to have the same iTunes
library, with the same tracks, on all your PCs? MediaRover is a
completely free solution and it works well.
Before you can get going with MediaRover, though, you need to
set up file sharing. Start it on, say, your Public folder or a
network drive, in Control Panel -> Network and Internet ->
Network and Sharing Center. Password protect it if you feel that’s
necessary. Then, after you run the MediaRover wizard (and register
for a free account; you’ll want to do this as it’s what allows you
to share files between computers), it’ll ask you for your Storage
Server info. If you’ve set up a shared folder somewhere, click
Locate Servers and it’ll find the address of your network
automatically. Then click Locate Shares, and it’ll find all the
folders you’ve set up sharing on for you to choose from. Put in the
same password you just set up, then it’s as simple as starting a
Initially, this sync copies all of your music files to the
storage server. You have the option of also copying specific
playlists, or all of them. (MediaRover sees only static playlists,
not Smart or Genius playlists.) Then, these files on the storage
server can be synced to any other PC.
Next, install MediaRover on every other PC that needs to be
synced, and put in the Access Code that MediaRover gave you when
you registered, and the settings will carry over. There’s no need
to find the storage server a second time. Then, you’ll be able to
sync files on the other PCs, both from the PC to the server and
from the server to the new PCs. Soon, all of your computers will
have the same library.
There is one caveat: MediaRover doesn’t handle every duplicate
exactly as it should. It does skip duplicate files when syncing
from one place that has a specific file to another place that has
the same specific file. But if a single location has two or more
copies of the same track with different filenames, it won’t skip
them: it’ll go ahead and sync both of them. It’d be nice if
MediaRover could recognize identical tracks by something other than
names only, and bypass those dupes as well.
Bottom line is, MediaRover helps make your iTunes libraries make
sense. Syncing files between all your media devices is important,
because there’s nothing worse than hunting for a specific track you
know you purchased, or attempting to use iTunes’ esoteric syncing
rules to copy files between systems. Save yourself a headache and
use MediaRover instead.
Note: Registering for a free account on the
MediaRover site unlocks its most important feature, the ability to
share between PCs.