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How does Sonos access the library on my PC? No share is created on my PC?

  • 12 October 2018
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I have a standard Sonos system with several Play 3 speakers. My iTunes library is on my PC. It works fine until I reboot my PC. After the reboot, (my IP stays the same) the Sonos speakers can't play my music, and they report that the library at \\M1\iTunes can not be located (or similar). My PC is on, connected to network and working fine. If I go to my computer and start the Sonos Controller For PC, then my speakers will play my library fine. If I close the Sonos Controller app on my PC, the speakers will continue to play fine. For days, until I reboot my PC again. The thing is, that I don't see a share on my PC named iTunes. Even when it is working, if I use Net Share to list out the shares on my PC, it doesn't exist. So I'm wondering, how DO the speakers see the music on my PC anyway? Is there a service on my PC and a special server for this, or something else? I thought it was standard windows file share since a lot of people are using a NAS, but again, I don't see the share on my PC. Why does it work after I start and close the controller on my PC? It's gotta be something simple I'm missing here. I searched the forums and I see some questions that are close to this but I couldn't find an answer. Thanks for any assistance.
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Best answer by MikeV 12 October 2018, 20:19

Sonos recently switched from using SMB, which uses the operating system's "File Sharing" functionality, to having their own music library service that runs in the background on your computer. Their music library service uses HTTP to "stream" music from your computer to your Sonos speaker(s) that are playing from your music library. Folders on your computer that you share to Sonos won't show up in the shared folders listing for Windows, since they aren't using Windows' file sharing services.
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I have a standard Sonos system with several Play 3 speakers. My iTunes library is on my PC. It works fine until I reboot my PC. After the reboot, (my IP stays the same) the Sonos speakers can't play my music, and they report that the library at \\M1\iTunes can not be located (or similar). My PC is on, connected to network and working fine. If I go to my computer and start the Sonos Controller For PC, then my speakers will play my library fine. If I close the Sonos Controller app on my PC, the speakers will continue to play fine. For days, until I reboot my PC again. The thing is, that I don't see a share on my PC named iTunes. Even when it is working, if I use Net Share to list out the shares on my PC, it doesn't exist. So I'm wondering, how DO the speakers see the music on my PC anyway? Is there a service on my PC and a special server for this, or something else? I thought it was standard windows file share since a lot of people are using a NAS, but again, I don't see the share on my PC. Why does it work after I start and close the controller on my PC? It's gotta be something simple I'm missing here. I searched the forums and I see some questions that are close to this but I couldn't find an answer. Thanks for any assistance.

Hi samsks,

Welcome to the community. Normally, when you set up a music share for Sonos from your computer, the Sonos app creates a shared folder on your computer. This folder should show up in the list of shared resources on your computer when you run Net Share, though it could be named a few different things, usually it's called "Music." Once set up, the shared folder usually doesn't change unless acted upon by something else, such as an antivirus program. Rebooting your computer shouldn't normally change the shared folder.

To understand what's happening, I'd like to see a report from your system. Please reproduce the issue, then submit a diagnostic report and reply here with the confirmation number.
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Sonos recently switched from using SMB, which uses the operating system's "File Sharing" functionality, to having their own music library service that runs in the background on your computer. Their music library service uses HTTP to "stream" music from your computer to your Sonos speaker(s) that are playing from your music library. Folders on your computer that you share to Sonos won't show up in the shared folders listing for Windows, since they aren't using Windows' file sharing services.
Thank you. I found the service "SonosLibraryService" and even though it is set to Automatic, it isn't starting automatically. No errors in event log. I manually started the service, and viola, everything works properly. I then stopped the service, and I opened the Sonos Controller app on my PC. The service started automatically and remains running after I close the app. So this explains my issue and why nothing works after I reboot my PC. Now my new question is, any tips on how I can figure out why the service won't start automatically? It isn't a delay issue, my PC can be on for hours and the service won't start. But if I start it manually, or if Sonos Controller app starts it, then everything runs fine.

Thanks again. --sam
P.S. I did run the diagnostics report, but note that since I have to start the controller app to run the diagnostics, the service would have been running by the time the diagnostic runs. If that matters.....
Your confirmation number is: 1174556076.
I never was able to get the SonosLibraryService service to start automatically, even though it is configured to do so. It starts and stops manually just fine. I tried setting it to delay start and it did not help. In case anyone else stumbles across this post with the same problem, what I did was create a scheduled task to run at logon with the action of "Start a program"
Net Start "sonoslibraryservice"
This workaround solved my problem.
Thanks Mike V for the info on how it works behind the scenes, and explaining why I don't have a file share on my PC.