Enable iTunes Home Sharing on Macs and iOS devices

These days there are plenty of households with more than one Mac, plus any number of iOS devices. But maybe you’d like to have access to all the media you store on your Mac on your iOS device or on one of the other Macs in your home. You could sign up for iTunes Match, but if you don't want to pay the $25-per-year fee and you’re only interested in streaming over your local network, maybe iTunes Home Sharing is all you need. Here’s how to set it up.

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Video: Join audiobook tracks for iTunes

My wife listens to a lot of audiobooks on CD—or more precisely, audiobooks originating CD that she converts for her iPhone. I listen to a few too—as well as full-cast audioplays. The problem is, iTunes is designed to import music CDs. So it defaults to bringing in every single CD track as its own file. A single book can end up being comprised of 200 individual tracks!

The good news is, there are a few different approaches to simplify your iTunes library. There’s a little-known iTunes command that will save you a long time if you haven’t begun the CD ripping process. The free utility Join Together will join iTunes files together after the fact. And users of Roxio’s Toast may be unaware that it includes a nifty audiobook-ripping tool of its own.

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Configuring Mail's rules

Many of us live and die by email, and because we do it makes sense to organize that email so that you can quickly find the messages you need. One way to organize email is to create filters or rules to automatically file it as it’s received. In this week’s Macworld Video I show you how to do just that.

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Share files with Dropbox

Email’s nice for sharing the occasional holiday photo or short story, but what to do when you need to share something more substantial? In this Macworld Video tip, we explain how to set up a Dropbox account so that you can exchange files of all sizes with your friends and family.

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Create custom iPhone alert sounds with GarageBand

Apple’s iOS devices come preloaded with a handful of alert sounds that you can use for ringtones and, as of iOS 5, for text messages, voicemails, reminders, and more. But maybe you want something more distinctive: a snippet of your favorite song, a clip from a classic movie, the whoosh of a materializing TARDIS?

No problem. Using GarageBand ( ) on your Mac, you can quickly turn any sound file into an alert sound for your iOS device; then you won’t have to check your phone every time you hear one of those default iPhone ringtones in a crowded café. Follow along with this week’s Macworld video tip to see how.

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