Apple home server

Tom Rowley says the same thing I said some months ago: We need an Xserve home edition (only that he says it about a zillion times better):

Automatic syncing of household digital content. Any device on the network that buys a song, TV show, or movie from the iTS will inform the server of its purchase; a specialized iTunes iServ app will make a copy of all content purchased on authorized household systems. This copy will serve as both an archive, as well as a source for streaming or copying the file to other authorized devices.

Exactly. I said:

It is used as a central for all media of the different Macs in the house. It stores backups of all pics in iPhoto, all music in iTunes and everybodys documents in general. When someone enters new music on their Mac, it’s sent to the family Xserve so others can use it, both in iTunes and on their iPods.

Just this evening I have been IMing Eirik for a long time about solutions for sharing thousands of pictures between several computers. This is a quite common scenario in modern families. You have parents and kids who all have photos that belong to several groups:

  • The ones all in the family would like to have on their Macs all the time, both on portable and not portable machines.
  • The ones that you just want to keep for yourself.
  • The ones that you want to share with just one other.

And so on.

As far as I know, there are no solutions that does this. Add backup that works flawlessly and syncing between machines, and you have a huge project that I really hope half of Cupertino is working on (the other half, please keep working on FCP 6 please). Add music, video and recorded tv, and you need a very clever system to keep this clean and simple.

What features would you like to see in the Xserve Home? Or iServ?

  • Nate

    I think for pictures Flickr does a pretty amazing job for keeping things in Sync. Granted it isn’t on your local network but my Mom subscribes to the private photocast of my daughter and anything I tag with her name gets put up on Flickr and then my mom gets it automatically in iPhoto.

    The only problem with this is you need flickr users for each family member and as we have a big family (mom, dad, and 8 kids, plus in-laws) that is quite the chunk of change each year for flickr accounts.

  • Nate

    I think for pictures Flickr does a pretty amazing job for keeping things in Sync. Granted it isn’t on your local network but my Mom subscribes to the private photocast of my daughter and anything I tag with her name gets put up on Flickr and then my mom gets it automatically in iPhoto.

    The only problem with this is you need flickr users for each family member and as we have a big family (mom, dad, and 8 kids, plus in-laws) that is quite the chunk of change each year for flickr accounts.

  • http://www.inuron.com/ Jorre

    Oyvind,

    at iNuron we created an application, the Mc Nucle that may answer most of your needs, the DRM discussion and availability aside for the moment.

    The basic idea is that your Mac becomes your central ‘all’ data server in the house, but which is also available remotely (in a secure and controlled fashion).
    Since we gather a lot of data these days, we added a metadata management browser to it to ease your data management.

    There’s more fun stuff to it such as the iTunes bridge allowing remote usage of iTunes on your data (on the Mac at home), or a UPnP integration to use the remote control to navigate your movies… and so on and so on πŸ˜‰

    Nate, our solution allows to share with family and friends remotely, but I love the creativity you put in working around through Flickr. :)

    Anyway, have a look at inuron.com for the details and let me know your thoughts…

    Cheers, Jorre.

  • http://www.inuron.com/ Jorre

    Oyvind,

    at iNuron we created an application, the Mc Nucle that may answer most of your needs, the DRM discussion and availability aside for the moment.

    The basic idea is that your Mac becomes your central ‘all’ data server in the house, but which is also available remotely (in a secure and controlled fashion).
    Since we gather a lot of data these days, we added a metadata management browser to it to ease your data management.

    There’s more fun stuff to it such as the iTunes bridge allowing remote usage of iTunes on your data (on the Mac at home), or a UPnP integration to use the remote control to navigate your movies… and so on and so on πŸ˜‰

    Nate, our solution allows to share with family and friends remotely, but I love the creativity you put in working around through Flickr. :)

    Anyway, have a look at inuron.com for the details and let me know your thoughts…

    Cheers, Jorre.

  • http://eirikso.com eirikso

    I’m on my way to MacOS land. But I’ll keep my 2 TB media center server and a GB LAN. So, what I need is a nice way to share thousands of songs and thousands of pictures to two macs on the same network. And, if I tag an image with a new tag or make a new collection in the image database it should show up like that on the other mac as well.

  • http://eirikso.com eirikso

    I’m on my way to MacOS land. But I’ll keep my 2 TB media center server and a GB LAN. So, what I need is a nice way to share thousands of songs and thousands of pictures to two macs on the same network. And, if I tag an image with a new tag or make a new collection in the image database it should show up like that on the other mac as well.