Apple iTunes Authorization and Deauthorization Demystified

Introduction

Authorization helps protect the copyrights on the content you buy. You can use your digital rights management (DRM)-protected music purchases from the iTunes Store on up to five different computers (these can be any mix of Macintosh or Windows-compatible computers). When you play an item you’ve purchased, your computer is “authorized” to play content purchased using your Apple Account.

Deauthorizing a computer allows you to manage which computers can play music, videos, audiobooks, or other content purchased from the iTunes Store.

Tips: Songs you encode in AAC format from a source other than the iTunes Store, such as your own audio CDs, and songs from iTunes Plus downloads do not need to be authorized.  “Winning!”

How to Authorize a Computer to play purchases using your Apple Account

  1. Select a song, video, or audiobook you’ve purchased (in your library or the Purchased playlist).
  2. Click the Play button.

If the computer is already authorized, the item plays. If the computer has not yet been authorized, iTunes asks you to enter the Apple ID and password you used to purchase the song.

Note: Remember to deauthorize your computer before you sell it, give it away, or get your computer serviced.

How to Deauthorize a Computer

  1. Open iTunes.
  2. Choose Store > Deauthorize Computer (In earlier versions of iTunes, access this option from the Advanced menu).
  3. Select Deauthorize Computer for Apple Account and enter your Apple ID and password.

Note: Make sure you deauthorize your computer before you upgrade your RAM, hard disk or other system components, or reinstall Windows. If you do not deauthorize your computer before you upgrade these components, one computer may use multiple authorizations.

How to Deauthorize All Computers associated with your account

If you find you have reached 5 authorizations, you can reset your authorization count by clicking Deauthorize All in the Account Information screen.

  1. Click iTunes Store in the menu on the left side of iTunes.
  2. If you’re not signed in to the store, click the Account button, then enter your account name and password.
  3. Click the Account button again (your ID appears on the button), enter your password, and then click View Account.
  4. In the Account Information window, click Deauthorize All.

Note: You may only use this feature once per year. The Deauthorize All button will not appear if you have fewer than 5 authorized computers, or if you have used this option within the last 12 months. If you need assistance on using this feature, please contact the iTunes Store support via email (http://www.apple.com/support/itunes/ww/).

Additional Information

  • iTunes DRM-protected music includes audio with a bit rate of 128 kbps and allows users to transfer songs and videos to up to five computers, burn seven copies of the same playlist to CD, and sync to an unlimited number of iPods.
  • iTunes Plus music refers to songs and music videos available in our highest-quality 256 kbps AAC encoding (twice the current bit rate of 128 kbps), and without digital rights management (DRM). There are no burn limits and iTunes Plus music will play on all iPods, Mac or Windows computers, Apple TVs, and many other digital music players.
  • While you may need to enter your account information again after initializing or formatting your hard disk, initializing or formatting the hard disk itself does not remove the computer from the list of authorized computers. If you plan to initialize or format your hard disk prior to selling or donating your computer, deauthorize the computer first, then initialize or format the hard disk.
  • Under some circumstances you may be required to enter your registration information again, but this should not use up multiple authorizations. If you think that you may have used up multiple authorizations on just one computer, see One computer using multiple iTunes Store authorizations.
  • The iTunes Store is governed by its Terms of Service, which permits Apple to change the authorization policy.
  • You can authorize computers not located in the United States so you can play previously purchased music.
  • An Apple ID based on an expired .Mac (pronounced “dot Mac”) or Mobile Me account name and password can still be used to purchase items and to authorize or deauthorize computers to play purchased music.
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Published in: on March 4, 2011 at 9:46 pm  Comments (1)  

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