Home Sharing differences iTunes versus Apple Music

I have been using Home Sharing for years on a Mac mini running Mojave. This computer shares my music and video library to my local network. This is accomplished by turning on Home Sharing in iTunes on the server computer. Every computer running Mojave or older and iOS devices up to 15.2 can see the shared library from Mac mini. None of those devices have Home Sharing turned on, so there is only one shared library on the network.

But my new M1 Mac on macOS12.1 can not see the shared library in either the Music or TV app. Computer is of course on same network, properly logged in, authorized and does not exceed the 5 computer association limit.

By chance I figured out a workaround. Turn on Media Sharing and Home Sharing on the M1 Mac. Now I can see the Mac mini shared library although I really prefer to not clutter up things by sharing a useless M1 Mac library on my network.

Anybody else experience this? Is this a bug in Monterey or a feature? Do other macOS from Catalina on behave the same?


I have an Intel Mac on 12.1, but I don’t have that issue. I have home sharing turned off on this machine but can still access my Mac mini home sharing library.

However, I will admit that it took me a while (and eventually some Googling) to figure out that I had to click the down arrow next to library in the sidebar to access the Mac mini library.

Thanks for the tip.
Why should Apple make it easy to share media that does not require a paid subscription?! :face_with_raised_eyebrow:

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Does your Mac mini media server from which you are Home Sharing run iTunes (Mojave) or Apple Music (Catalina or higher)?

The mini is running iTunes on Mojave.

Why should Apple make it easy to play any music you aren’t streaming from their servers?

Because they don’t want to go on a full-blown attack against their own customers. It would cause large numbers of users to switch platforms (for everything including computers, phones and accessories), and it wouldn’t even increase music subscriptions, because people would very quickly switch to alternative music player software.

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This is interesting. So you have the exact same setup, except using an Intel Mac on macOS 12.1 versus my M1 Mac. I kind of don’t believe the processor makes a difference but who knows. I talked to Apple and even the second level tech support had no clue and thinks sharing always needed to be turned on on both computers for Home Sharing to work.

I confirmed your observation on a MBP M1 Pro macOS 12.1. If Home Sharing is not on, there is no disclosure marker next to “Library” on the Music sidebar (therefore a shared library cannot be selected). If I turn HS on, the disclosure marker immediately appears, and another Mac’s music library can be selected.

I have an Intel iMac and a M1 MBP, both running 12.1. They behave the same way: if Home Sharing isn’t turned on, a library shared by the other system isn’t available in the Music app.

I think I figured it out. On the server, like Mac mini running Mojave, Home Sharing under the File pulldown menu needs to be turned on in iTunes and under iTunes Preferences > Sharing > Share my library on my local network selected.

On other computers on my network running e.g. Monterey, Media Sharing in System Preferences needs to be turned on, but Home Sharing needs to be deselected if one only wants to connect to the shared Mac mini library and not share any other libraries. There will be a warning message but you can ignore it. You may have to select and deselect things a few time before they stick properly. After that there should a small down triangle next to Library in the sidebar of Music or Apple TV app.