Catalina: Can’t get music Home Sharing to work

Long story short:

On my iMac (where my music library is kept, running Catalina), I am unable to get Home Sharing for my music to work.

My MacBook on the same network (also on Catalina, signed into same iCloud account) won’t show the iMac’s music library (or the required little downward arrow next to “Library” in Music).

A bit longer:

I have tried signing out of and into my iCloud account (my registered iTunes account), I have tried de- and re-authorizing my Macs, I have re-started my Macs several times - no luck there.

The weird thing is that the “Media Sharing” checkbox in System Preferencens -> Sharing -> Media Sharing stays greyed out (whatever I do).

I have tried simply selecting the “Home sharing” checkbox in the same preference panel - then the “Media Sharing” box also gets checked and my iMac displays the message along the lines of “Home sharing is now turned on” … but it simply isn’t. The library doesn’t show up on my other Mac on the same network. (Only when I select the “Share media with guests” box, the library suddenly appears on my other Mac - but that’s supposed to happen with only “Home sharing” selected …)

I have no idea what else to try - any advice would be highly appreciated.

Kind regards,


I think you might be logged in under a different AppleID? Or not logged in on the macbook at all?

That might be the reason why the guest option does work.

I’ve seen this happen on the same account but logged in under the ID on one machine and the email address on another. So I would suggest you check the icloud settings in iTunes

Hey there,
Thanks for your ideas. Highly appreciated.

It actually turns out that
a) I did manage to turn on music Home Sharing after all but
b) it only shows up on the Apple TV, my iPhone and iPad.

The MacBook’s install of music (Catalina) simply refuses to show the shared music library.
I checked and double-checked that both Music and the MacBook are checked into the correct Apple ID / account.

Any more ideas?

Maybe the steps on this page will work?

that article contains some good pointers.
The Discovery app (Hello, Trekkers!) actually lists “home sharing” by my iMac as available (or “visible”) on my MacBook, so it is a mystery why the Music app appears so oblivious to it.