Setting up a virtual MIDI network
- Live Versions: All
- Operating System: All
You can set up a virtual MIDI network to stream MIDI data such as MIDI Note, MIDI Control Change, and MIDI Clock messages from one computer to another computer or device.
Note: If you're syncing Live (or Link-enabled apps) across multiple computers, we recommend using Link instead.
Mac computers have a built-in virtual MIDI network.
1. To enable it, open Audio/MIDI Setup from Utilities and select Show MIDI Window from the Window menu.
2. Now click twice on Network to open the MIDI Network panel.
3. You can create a Session which will be seen by all machines/devices connected to the same network. To do this, click on the + sign in the My Sessions part of the window and edit its "Local name" and its Bonjour name. Note that the Bonjour name will be the name that is visible to other computers.
4. Then check Enabled to enable the virtual MIDI Network.
5. By enabling the Session, the Network MIDI port will appear under the MIDI Ports in Live's Link/MIDI Preferences. This will let you send and receive MIDI Note, MIDI Control Change, and MIDI Sync messages through the network. Refer to our guide on how to configure the MIDI ports in Live to understand how to use the MIDI Ports settings.
6. Next, repeat this procedure on a second Mac computer. Once you have created a Session using the above procedure on the additional computer, select Anyone in the drop-down menu Who may connect to me:
7. Now select the destination Session in Directory in the MIDI Network Setup of one of the two machines and click Connect:
8. At this point, MIDI data can be transmitted between the two computers.
Windows computers don't provide an in-built solution, but there is a great freeware utility courtesy of Tobias Erichsen which allows the use of MIDI via network.
It's also Bonjour compatible, which lets you connect Macs and PCs on the same network.
Using virtual MIDI buses in Live
If you want to stream MIDI data between different applications on the same computer, you can use a virtual MIDI bus instead. See our dedicated article: Using virtual MIDI buses in Live.