Being one of most famous media server, Plex brings your media on a single app available for any device and from everywhere. Raspberry PI computer boards fits perfectly plex server needs and are a good option to run your server from your home
In this tutorial, I’m going to show you how to install Plex server in your Raspberry PI.
What Is Plex
Plex has a huge number of followers. It is really flexible and makes your media together, accessible in a simple way from any device. Moreover, it allows you to reach a number of new services, so discovering web TVs, Shows, channels, podcasts and so on.
It also runs from NAS, but Raspberry PI boards can give great results as they have better performances of NAS from the same price range.
Plex can run quite on every recent computer. Besides Raspberry PI, it is compatible with Windows, OS X / macOS, Linux, NVIDIA SHIELD, Netgear Nighthawk X10 router and many popular NAS devices such as Drobo, Netgear, Synology, and more. The minimum recommended CPU is Intel Core i3 (or equivalent) or faster, but the Cortex ARM CPU of Raspberry PI models do a great job. The typical RAM suggested by Plex is 2GB. Again, Raspberry PI 3 Model B/B+ do a great job with Plex, even if Raspberry PI 4 Model B perform better. So, Plex can run on the latest Raspberry PI computer boards, which are a great option for home Plex installations.
In this tutorial, I’m going to use a Raspberry PI 3 Model B+, but the same procedure should work on other Raspberry PI computer boards.
What We Need
As usual, I suggest adding from now to your favourite e-commerce shopping cart all needed hardware, so that at the end you will be able to evaluate overall costs and decide if continue with the project or remove them from the shopping cart. So, hardware will be only:
- Raspberry PI (including proper power supply or using a smartphone micro usb charger with at least 3A)
- high speed micro SD card (at least 16 GB, at least class 10)
Check hardware prices with following links:
Install Operating System
If not already done, make sure your OS is up to date. From the terminal, use the following command:
sudo apt update -y && sudo apt upgrade -y
Get Plex Server Installer
In this tutorial, I’m going to use the official Plex installation procedure. I will copy the latest installer link from browser and use this link with “wget” command directly from Raspberry PI. Of course, you can alternatively download the same installer in your local PC and transfer it to Raspberry PI with an sftp program (like Filezilla).
With your favourite browser, go to Plex Download page and make sure that the Plex Media Server button is selected:
Open drill down menu under “Windows” to select “Linux” as your distribution:
Scroll down and click “Choose Distribution” button. It will open a new drill-down menù. From here, identify Debian “ARMv7” distribution and right-click from your mouse. From here, select “Copy Link Location”:
This will save the installer link in your local clipboard. Back to Raspberry PI terminal, write “wget” and paste the copied link. You will have something like the following:
If this doesn’t work, you can also use my wget terminal command to get the Plex Server v.1.22 installer.
Install Plex Server
As said, the previous command will download the official Plex Installer, a “.deb” file in your current folder. Use dpkg with “-i” option (from sudo) to start the installation (please replace “.deb” filename with the one you downloaded):
sudo dpkg -i plexmediaserver_188.8.131.5263-d8c4875dd_armhf.deb
Use your Raspberry PI’s IP address (followed by “:32400/web”) in your browser to start the setup process (in the following screens I’ll use “192.168.1.238” as this is my RPI address, so mu URL will be “http://192.168.1.238:32400/web”).
The first screen warns that you are running Plex Server on a localhost (not on Plex farm):
Use your Plex account or login with available services. A confirmation email could be sent to you from Plex.
The next screen starts showing briefly how Plex works. When ready, click “GOT IT!” button at bottom part of this page:
The next screen proposes Plex offers for paid accounts. You can both evaluate enhanced account or close with “X” button on the top-right part of internal popup:
The next screen allows you to configure your server name and set if you want to allow remote access from the outside home network. When finished, click “next”:
The following screen allows you to add your libraries. You can also add them later. When ready, click “Next”:
Following setup, the screen notifies you that you can enrich your plex experience with plex app universe (available from button). You can click Next:
The final screen allows you to select your media menù to show on the sidebar (even if you will however able to reach all media). After choosing, scroll down and click “Finish Setup”:
You will be finally redirected to Plex Server home page:
More info on how to configure and use Plex Server can be found on official Plex Docs pages.
Interested in how you can do with your Raspberry PI? Take a look at peppe8o Raspberry PI tutorials!
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