Here’s a good tip for iTunes users who want to share their downloads with more than five computers. There’s no doubt that the Apple service is probably the best around, but limiting your MP3s for authorized use on just five machines can be somewhat annoying.
Thankfully, the guys and gals at Firblitz have engineered a way of getting around this problem, so you can listen to tracks downloaded through iTunes on any computer. iTunes stores its authorization data in a hidden folder (/Users/Shared/SC on Macs, C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\Apple Computer\iTunes\SC Info on Windows). In order to authorize the file for all machines simply back up the SC Info folder on an authorized machine, de-authorize the computer, then restore the original SC Info folder. Your computer should work as if it’s authorized, but will no longer take up an authorization slot in iTunes.
This workaround isn’t completely foolproof and any music you purchase after the sneaky trick will not play, as a result of iTunes changing the key each time you purchase a new song. However, it does work with old purchases and if you’re in the spirit of giving this Christmas then you’ll be able to share your old downloads with whoever you like. Just be warned, Santa does not work for Apple and therefore the company won’t take kindly to you handing your downloads over to one and all.