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Enable iTunes and iPhoto sharing on newer Linksys routers Network
Background: A while back, I had to replace my old Linksys router with a newer one -- the old one maxed out well below my FIOS connections 15Mbps limit (Verizon supplied an ActionTEC router, which worked quite well, but whose admin interface I hated). After the switch, iPhoto and iTunes sharing no longer worked between my Macs, or to my AppleTV after it arrived. This bothered me enough to ask about it, but I sort of gave up when I didn't get any good responses. Our recent move to a new home gave me the chance to set the network up from scratch again, but sharing still didn't work. So I set out to do some more Googling for a solution.

The answer: To enable sharing with a newer Linksys Cable/DSL Router (I have a BEFSR41 v4.1), you need to modify your router's setup. Go to the Security page (i.e. http://192.168.1.1/Filter.htm), and down near the bottom, you'll see a setting for Filter Multicast. By default, it will be disabled -- which logically strikes me as the proper setting. However, if left disabled, sharing won't work -- change it to Enabled, save the settings, and you'll be good to go! Hooray!

The solution was originally posted by NCarter in this thread on Apple's Discussions site, so all credit to NCarter!
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Enable iTunes and iPhoto sharing on newer Linksys routers | 8 comments | Create New Account
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Enable iTunes and iPhoto sharing on newer Linksys routers
Authored by: jweber on Apr 30, '07 10:17:27AM

Thanks! This was driving me nuts.



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Enable iTunes and iPhoto sharing on newer Linksys routers
Authored by: cagg on Apr 30, '07 05:52:18PM

Wow. This was something I spent HOURS trying to get working. I left messages on both LinkSys's message boards and Apple's Discussion message boards, to no avail. Eventually I gave up and went to a different router. Would never have dawned on me to un-block multicast, which I think is blocked by default. I may test this out if I ever get the urge to reconnect it and try :-)



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Enable iTunes and iPhoto sharing on newer Linksys routers
Authored by: casperghst42 on May 01, '07 08:25:59AM

No disabling multicast is not a good thing, all broadcast protocols will be blocked (daap, smb, afp, etc). They probably do this from factory due to this being a home router, but it will cause problems for more or less everyone.



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Enable iTunes and iPhoto sharing on newer Linksys routers
Authored by: jaaronp on May 01, '07 10:26:36AM

Just for the sake of technical accuracy: it's not the sharing that's being prevented; it's the service discovery.

These really are two distinct protocols: bonjour (formerly rendezvous) uses multicast DNS queries to discover services available on the network. This is what's being blocked by the router.

Essentially, when a service provider comes online it sends out a "hello computer X is offering serivce Y on port Z" message to everyone on your subnet (which is cached by possible consumers), and when consumers come online they (a) check their cache, and (b) send out a message like "Is anyone else offering service Y" (again to all machines on the subnet). Once the consumer has discovered the provider, it makes a direct connection to that machine. (*Note this is a very rough sketch, rendezvous does some clever caching and so forth to minimize chattiness).

The actual sharing (transfer of library data, and streaming of songs) takes place over a standard point to point TCP connection. It uses HTTP on a funny port (3689 for iTunes) as a session-layer transport, and DAAP (The Digital Audio Access Protocol), DPAP (The Digital Picture Access Protocol) to transport the library data. The songs/pictures are transmitted as raw mp3s/aacs/jpegs/whatever over the HTTP connection.

This distinction is significant because it means that if the Finder's Network Browsing isn't functional (because the switch is blocking the rendezvous mDNS traffic), you can still enter the IP address of the server in the "Connect to Server" dialog and reasonably expect to be able to establish a connection (unless the switch is also blocking the Apple Filesharing Protocol (AFP), port 548).



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Enable iTunes and iPhoto sharing on newer Linksys routers
Authored by: tom larkin on May 01, '07 08:19:08PM

if you are using DD-WRT third party firmware by default multicast filtering is enabled. You can check it by going to Security tab.



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Enable iTunes and iPhoto sharing on newer Linksys routers
Authored by: jweber on May 02, '07 12:33:22PM

I turned on multicast filtering, and it fixes the sharing bug in iTunes. But then once in a while, I'll lose the share, and I can't get it back. Does anyone else have this problem? I have to restart the server to fix things.



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Enable iTunes and iPhoto sharing on newer Linksys routers
Authored by: corienti on May 06, '07 09:42:30AM
With Billion modems...
This hint gave me the clue I needed to get the iTunes remote speaker thing working with my Billion ADSL modem/router. It's never worked from the Billion's wireless network and I never got around to trying to fix it, simply using the wireless network of my Airport Express instead.

Turns out what you need to do to get it working with a Billion modem is:
1) upgrade to the latest firmware, 5.52e, which was only released in March
2) enable "IGMP snooping", in Configuration -> Advanced -> IGMP.

I'm not sure how widely Billion modems are used - googling this problem and Billion has showed me that noone else has ever posted about having the same problem. They seem to be relatively popular here in Australia though; they're a more of a "has every feature under the Sun" product than your Netcomm/Netgear/DLink etc.

To get the latest firmware, go to www.billion.com, or www.billion.com.au for Australia.
IGMP snooping is NOT on by default, and, according to the latest firmware release notes, it didn't forward the IGMP packets on to the wireless LAN from the wired LAN anyway, even if you did turn it on. That's been fixed in 5.52e.
IGMP snooping must be on otherwise the modem doesn't even attempt to forward IGMP from wired to wireless.
"IGMP forwarding" IS on by default; but I guess it only forwards wired-to-wired or wireless-to-wireless. The snooping one is what's required.


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Enable iTunes and iPhoto sharing on newer Linksys routers
Authored by: tomdavies@exemai on May 10, '07 03:31:32PM

Thanks! I have a Billion too (7401VGP-M), and was having the same problem.

I didn't need to upgrade to 5.52f -- I'm on 5.08a.ds4 and your instructions worked fine.

Thanks,
Tom



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