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Google Music UK & World Install Guide - free cloud music streaming

enigma

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Over in America, Google Music isn't just the Android app that plays your music. It's a whole music streaming system, which lets you upload your music to Google's servers then access it via the web or the Music app. It's brilliant, because unlike most streaming services it's completely free, it has no ads and it has all of your music - up to 20,000 tracks or about 80 GB.

 

Fortunately, there's a way to bypass Google's restrictions and access the same service anywhere in the world. It only takes a few minutes to set up, and then you'll be free to stream and upload for ever more.

 

In this article, I'll show you how. It's a pretty easy process - you just need a PC with your music on it and a connection to the Internet. You don't even need an Android phone - you can still access the Google Music web app from any PC or smartphone.

 

Let's get started.

 

1. Download and run Tor

 

Tor is a useful anonymity project that includes a customised version of Firefox. That's perfect for our purposes, as it'll allow us to make it appear to Google that we're coming from an address inside the United States. Otherwise, we'd just be refused entry.

 

You can download the Tor program for Windows, Mac and Linux right here. Launch the program once downloaded - it should pop up with a window that states 'Connected to the Tor network!' once it's ready.

 

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Now we've got to find out which IP address we've been randomly assigned. You're most likely to get an American IP, but you might turn up anywhere in the world! To check, visit duckduckgo.com in the Tor version of Firefox that launches and search for "IP." This'll tell you your IP address, as well as what country it corresponds to.

 

If you weren't assigned an American IP address, just go to the Vidalia Control Panel (that first window) and press "Stop Tor", then click "Start Tor" again. Refresh the Duck Duck Go page and check your IP. Repeat this process until you've got an American IP address.

 

 

2. Sign up for Google Music

 

That was the hard part. Now, just go to http://music.google.com in the Tor Firefox window. Sign into the same Google account that you use on your Android phone (if you've got one). You'll be asked to agree to some terms of service.

 

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Once you've agreed to the terms of service, you should see the Google Play website. You can (and should) disconnect from Tor at this point, as now you should be able to access Google Music from any address in the world as long as you're signed into your Google account.

 

3. Upload Music

 

You'll want to now click on 'Upload Music' in order to begin uploading the music on your computer to Google's servers. This will download the Google Music Manager, a small helper application that will upload your music.

 

Continue through the installation process as normal, remembering to sign in with the same account that you used to sign into Google Music initially.

 

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Once the installation is complete, you'll be asked to select the location of your music. Upload as much or as little as you like, but it makes sense to do it all if you've got the time and the bandwidth. It took me about 30 hours to upload my music collection, but this'll vary considerably depending on your internet connection speed and the amount of music you're uploading.

 

Thankfully, Music Manager will start up with your computer and continue to upload until it's finished, as well as uploading new tracks as they're added to your computer's music folder.

 

Once you've got a few songs uploaded, you can use the Google Music app (on Android 4.0) or the Google Music website to stream your music. On the Android app, you're also able to choose music to download to your phone for playing offline, although on most data connections you'll be able to stream without issue.

 

If you have an older version of Android, like Gingerbread (2.2) or Honeycomb (3.0), then try this bonus step below to install the latest version of the Music app, which supports streaming from Google Music. If you're running Android 4.0 or you don't want to use the Android client, you're done!

 

Bonus: Install Google Music APK on older Android devices

 

First, you'll need to search for "Google Music 4.0.9 APK" on Google in order to find the .APK file (I can't link to it here, sorry.) Next, connect your phone to your computer via USB and copy the .APK file to your phone - anywhere will do, but be sure to note down which folder you stick it in so you can find it later. Disconnect your phone from the PC.

 

Now, we need to make sure that you can install the app from the .APK file. You'll need to ensure that 'allow installation of non-Market apps' or apps from 'unknown sources' is enabled, which is typically in Settings under the Applications or Security sub-menus.

 

Finally, launch a file browser app (Astro File Manager is a good one) and navigate to the folder you copied the .APK file to. Open the .APK file you just transferred, and it should be installed as an app on your device.

 

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Now you'll be able to stream your Google Music - awesome!

 

Signing off

 

So with that, you should be completely set up to use Google Music. Let me know if you have any issues, and I'll certainly try to help out where I can. Thanks for reading, and if you found this helpful then please Kudos this post Smiley Happy

 

This article was written by William Judd, a freelance tech journalist and copywriter.

Follow me on Twitter, @wsjudd, email me at wsjudd (at) gmail (dot) com or check my site at williamjudd.com

29 Comments
trainee

And for those moaning about the legal implications etc then think about it - Google know where we live. They could easily block us if they wanted to. The 'US-only' is, as far as I can tell, solely to keep numbers of users lower while it's still in beta. I don't see the record companies having to be involved.

 

The record companies would need to be involved with regards to the *sale* of music in the play store but google music itself (as opposed to the store) is private online storage. It is no different to uploading a song to your private webspace so you can listen to it at work. No different again to putting all your music onto an iPod to have with you wherever you go. It is the same process - you are transferring music files to a different hasrd drive / storage device for playing elsewhere.

 

If we're working to the letter of the law then you shouldn't even be ripping music from a CD as that is, in the UK, illegal.

 

MaFt

I did this myself a month out two ago. Instead of using tor though, I used tunnelbear on my PC to get my US IP address. It's been invaluable this week, as I unexpectedly ended up in hospital and automatically had all my music with me. Google music & Giffgaff unlimited data, what a great combination!
phenomenon
I'd imagine it being quite data heavy. I wouldn't want to risk having my data blocked (see numerous threads).
marvel

wsjudd wrote:

 

This is just a waste of bandwidth for files that you can copy directly to your phone.

I'd say that keeping 40 GB of music on your phone is a waste of internal storage - something that's extremely limited, where on giffgaff data is free and unlimited. 



Perhaps you'd better discuss this comment with giffgaff before making it, as they seem to be wanting to discourage indiscriminate high data use that could instead be done by downloading to the phone via a home network.

 

And your theories about cloud storage of all this stuff you want to use a lot will completely fall down when you are roaming. Surely having that much memory on the phone is useful for exactly that sort of reason,  that you won't need to keep streaming down the same things over and over again?

newcomer

jaygb1982,

Giffgaff is run by the people, if you don't like this then join another network.

The information is already out there on how to do this, don't shoot the messenger.

 

Thanks for the post Giffgaff, major respect to you. 

governor

jaygb1982,

Giffgaff is run by the people, if you don't like this then join another network.

The information is already out there on how to do this, don't shoot the messenger.

 

Thanks for the post Giffgaff, major respect to you. 

 

I do believe that by allowing authors to publish an editorial like this does harm giffgaff's image. By having this information published they are endorsing breaking a EULA which is something any company should not be seen to approve.

 

giffgaff is the mobile network run by you, However I feel all editorials on this blog should be thoroughly checked.

 

Like others have since suggested. As the doors have been blown wide open by this, Can we have a Blog post showing people how to Download HD movies as well Smiley Wink

 

The precedent this has set means that our mobile network has a disregard for TOS / EULA's, So what's different about copyright law Smiley Wink

 

A point to note in relation to this service, Is that when Apple did a similar thing with iCloud everyone had to re-upload the data when they flicked the switch and allowed iCloud for all users, Google could do the same and delete all your music Smiley Happy

beginner

I have a feeling this is going to lead to a lot of people getting data barred

newcomer

Same as Ninja_Penguin.....Tor just wouldn't work for me, instead I also used TunnelBear free and this worked ok. Get Google Music 4.0.9 APK on your phone and away you go.

Corporate legal issues aside this is a great service which should be a global product - google know full well by restricting a product on launch work arounds such as this are bound to appear.

newcomer

Haha.  Everyone getting on their high horses about this.  If Google wanted to, it could easily block this and quite ironically, how to do this is easily found using Google.  It wouldn't work for me either when I used tor but I didn't have any problems with Hotspot Shield.    Also, likening this copying of your own files to play on another device to downloading HD films is ridiculous.

 

Peace Cat Happy