Plex Media Server
Join up with Plex. I enrolled for $75 because I wanted in—grandfathering my paid membership (PlexPass) for less and for the later benefits that would establish. However, you can install and use the Plex server software free as well as view the content of friends' servers for free.
For me, Plex is two things: MyPlex, how I see Plex servers, and my own Plex server itself. I use the former to view the content on the latter. My PlexPass gets me both. I also use MyPlex to see content on a nephew's and a son's server.
After paying, here's what I did to get Plex running on my Ubuntu Linux webserver:
[email protected]:~# dpkg --install plexmediaserver_0.9.8.6.175-88ffbb2_amd64.deb
To see my Plex server via browser after it's installed and running, I go to http://tol-eressea.site:32400/web/.
Trouble or the unexpected? See my last experience here.
There are a number of commands you might use to determine if Plex is installed and/or actually running. Try these:
[email protected]:~# dpkg --list | grep [p]lexmediaserver [email protected]:~# ps -ef | grep [p]lex [email protected]:~# service plexmediaserver status
You don't have to tell it! It's sort of magic. Even when your ISP changes your IP address because it imposes DHCP on your (i.e.: you have no static IP address), your server quickly recovers its ability to serve up media content. This is because your Plex server broadcasts its IP to your plex.tv account.
Go to your Plex Media server management page, click on Settings and then on Show Advanced under the Server section, it shows the global IP port that it uses. This setting is what tells Plex which address and port to use.
Again, there's no apt-get-like involvement. Instead, repeat the installation instructions to get a Debian package. Use that with dpkg which will replace whatever is there as long as what you're offering is later. If your browser was up looking at your Plex content, you'll see it go out to lunch for a while.
Warning: I never had any trouble with new packages produced by Plex until years after just installing new ones when they came out. One day, the new package did not work, so I had to back up to the previous version. I'll discuss this later here below.
Here's what new installation looked like for me one fo the times I did it:
[email protected]:~/Downloads# dpkg --install plexmediaserver_0.9.11.5.774-760cb52_amd64.deb (Reading database ... 309102 files and directories currently installed.) Preparing to unpack plexmediaserver_0.9.11.5.774-760cb52_amd64.deb ... plexmediaserver stop/waiting Unpacking plexmediaserver (0.9.11.5.774-760cb52) over (0.9.9.13.525-197d5ed) ... Setting up plexmediaserver (0.9.11.5.774-760cb52) ... plexmediaserver start/running, process 32405 Processing triggers for ureadahead (0.100.0-16) ... ureadahead will be reprofiled on next reboot Processing triggers for desktop-file-utils (0.22-1ubuntu1) ... Processing triggers for mime-support (3.54ubuntu1) ...
To benefit from advances or new features, you'll now need to Update Library of each group of content. Examine this illustration: see Update Library in the upper-right of the page. There is an illustration of this below at Updating Plex' record of your content. However, I long ago abandoned seeing a need to do this.
Restoring a previous working version...
To install a (the) previous package, simply run dpkg just as above and the package manager will remove the one that's there and (re)install the older one. At least with a Debian package, the only way to do this is if you have the earlier, working version. So, always keep a working package in reserve in case the new one you install does not work.
First, note that the "digital copy" some disk sets comes with isn't worth the bother or the plastic the disk is made from. Ignore it, rip the content yourself and put it up on Plex. Here's how.
For episode names, season and episode numbers, I used these links:
Here's what the content looks like copied to my Plex server:
[email protected]:/plex-server$ ll total 40 drwxr-xr-x 7 russ russ 4096 Sep 15 18:31 ./ drwxr-xr-x 24 root root 4096 Nov 8 06:46 ../ drwx------ 2 russ russ 16384 Aug 3 18:17 lost+found/ drwxrwxr-x 17 russ russ 4096 Nov 25 07:44 Movies/ drwxrwxr-x 97 russ russ 4096 Sep 25 04:47 Music/ drwxrwxr-x 6 russ russ 4096 Nov 29 15:37 TV/ drwxrwxr-x 2 russ russ 4096 Sep 15 18:24 Videos/ [email protected]:/plex-server$ cd TV [email protected]:/plex-server/TV$ ll total 24 drwxrwxr-x 6 russ russ 4096 Nov 29 15:37 ./ drwxr-xr-x 7 russ russ 4096 Sep 15 18:31 ../ drwxrwxr-x 3 russ russ 4096 Nov 29 15:39 Endeavour/ drwxrwxr-x 8 russ russ 4096 Nov 29 16:36 Inspector Lewis/ drwxrwxr-x 15 russ russ 4096 Nov 27 22:39 Inspector Morse/ drwxrwxr-x 3 russ russ 4096 Nov 28 18:58 Messiah/ [email protected]:/plex-server/TV$ tree Inspector\ Lewis/ Inspector Lewis/ +-- Season 1 | +-- Inspector Lewis - s01e01 - Whom the Gods Would Destroy.m4v | +-- Inspector Lewis - s01e02 - Old School Ties.m4v | `-- Inspector Lewis - s01e03 - Expiation.m4v +-- Season 2 | +-- Inspector Lewis - s02e01 - And the Moonbeams Kiss the Sea.m4v | +-- Inspector Lewis - s02e02 - Music to Die For.m4v | +-- Inspector Lewis - s02e03 - Life Born of Fire.m4v | `-- Inspector Lewis - s02e04 - The Great and the Good.m4v +-- Season 3 | +-- Inspector Lewis - s03e01 - Allegory of Love.m4v | +-- Inspector Lewis - s03e02 - The Quality of Mercy.m4v | +-- Inspector Lewis - s03e03 - The Point of Vanishing.m4v | `-- Inspector Lewis - s03e04 - Counter Culture Blues.m4v +-- Season 4 | +-- Inspector Lewis - s04e01 - The Dead of Winter.m4v | +-- Inspector Lewis - s04e02 - Dark Matter.m4v | +-- Inspector Lewis - s04e03 - Your Sudden Death Question.m4v | `-- Inspector Lewis - s04e04 - Falling Darkness.m4v +-- Season 5 `-- Specials `-- Inspector Lewis - s00e01 - Reputation.m4v 6 directories, 16 files
For this television series of three episodes and bonus short features, I went to Fires of Faith. This didn't avail much more than the DVD had to offer. Using Plex' Naming TV Show 'Specials' page example for Heroes, I decided on the following arrangement which imitates Heroes and its special for the peculiar numbering while using information on names for bonus material from the DVD cover and the names of the episodes.
[email protected]:/plex-server/TV$ tree Fires\ of\ Faith/ Fires of Faith/ +-- Season 1 | +-- Fires of Faith - s01e01 - Yearning for the Word.mkv | +-- Fires of Faith - s01e02 - Martyrs for a Book.mkv | `-- Fires of Faith - s01e03 - The King James Bible.mkv `-- Specials +-- Fires of Faith - s00e01 - The Bible and America.mkv +-- Fires of Faith - s00e02 - Other Translations.mkv +-- Fires of Faith - s00e03 - The Bible Today.mkv +-- Fires of Faith - s00e04 - The Translators.mkv +-- Fires of Faith - s00e05 - Martin Luther.mkv +-- Fires of Faith - s00e06 - King Henry.mkv +-- Fires of Faith - s00e07 - King James.mkv +-- Fires of Faith - s00e08 - Religion Today.mkv +-- Fires of Faith - s00e09 - Tyndale's Legacy.mkv +-- Fires of Faith - s00e10 - Favorite Passage.mkv +-- Fires of Faith - s00e11 - Bible Literacy Today.mkv `-- Fires of Faith - s00e12 - The Making of Fires of Faith.mkv
To see what I did after this, please see Appendix: Ingesting ripped content.
Movies are pretty much a no-brainer.
[email protected]:/plex-server/Movies$ tree Errand\ of\ Angels/ Errand of Angels `-- Errand of Angels.mkv
...except that if you want to rip and includes lots of extras from your disk, you'll want to examine the section entitled, Organized in Subdirectories, at the bottom of this page:
Some movies have multiple parts, especially older disks for longer movies like Robin Hood, My Fair Lady and Fiddler on the Roof. These have to be dropped into the same subdirectory and given names according to a specific scheme using - pt1, - pt2, etc.:
[email protected]:/plex-movies/Musical Performances/Fleetwood Mac--The Dance$ ll total 1956890 drwxrwxr-x 2 russ russ 4 May 9 08:04 ./ drwxrwxr-x 23 russ russ 23 May 7 23:00 ../ -rw-r--r-- 1 russ russ 1114410072 May 9 08:04 Fleetwood Mac--The Dance - prt1.mkv -rw-r--r-- 1 russ russ 887265763 May 9 08:04 Fleetwood Mac--The Dance - prt2.mkv
For movies, I do nothing special except to ensure I've got a home in the server's files sytem, by the same name as the movie, ready to receive it when I will copy it there.
There is one thing you could do if you wish to include bonus material from your movie. If you want to do that, and it's on the same disk, note that Handbrake has the ability to enqueue ripping commands such that you can set up what will be ripped and how it will be ripped ahead of time, creating a queue, then launching it. That way, you don't have to sit there waiting for one thing to finish before setting up ripping for the next thing. It saves on babysitting the rip.
Here's where preparation will save on a) monotony and b) mistakes.
First, create a list in a text file of all the episodes. You can get the particulars from IMDB or Wikipedia, but craft all the names carefully so you don't have to agonize over your solution as you go.
For example, I created the following after doing research (during which I discovered that the sale of this series in the US had different and wrong seasonal divisions than those Plex would find when it went to get the metadata for it):
Season 1 Foyle's War - s01e01 - The German Woman.mkv Foyle's War - s01e02 - The White Feather.mkv Foyle's War - s01e03 - A Lesson in Murder.mkv Foyle's War - s01e04 - Eagle Day.mkv Season 2 Foyle's War - s02e01 - Fifty Ships.mkv Foyle's War - s02e02 - Among the Few.mkv Foyle's War - s02e03 - War Games.mkv Foyle's War - s02e04 - The Funk Hole.mkv Season 3 Foyle's War - s03e01 - The French Drop.mkv Foyle's War - s03e02 - Enemy Fire.mkv Foyle's War - s03e03 - They Fought in the Fields.mkv Foyle's War - s03e04 - A War of Nerves.mkv Season 4 Foyle's War - s04e01 - Invasion.mkv Foyle's War - s04e02 - Bad Blood.mkv Season 5 Foyle's War - s05e01 - Bleak Midwinter.mkv Foyle's War - s05e02 - Casualties of War.mkv Season 6 Foyle's War - s06e01 - Plan of Attack.mkv Foyle's War - s06e02 - Broken Souls.mkv Foyle's War - s06e03 - All Clear.mkv Season 7 Foyle's War - s07e01 - The Russian House.mkv Foyle's War - s07e02 - Killing Time.mkv Foyle's War - s07e03 - The Hide.mkv Season 8 Foyle's War - s08e01 - The Eternity Ring.mkv Foyle's War - s08e02 - The Cage.mkv Foyle's War - s08e03 - Sunflower.mkv Season 0 Foyle's War - s00e01 - Writer, Anthony Horowitz.mkv Foyle's War - s00e02 - Writer, Anthony Horowitz.mkv Foyle's War - s00e03 - Recap of Seasons 1.-6.mkv
Using this text file, I can:
Last, and this was not the case for the example series here, but as the (nominally two-hour) episodes were one per disk, I could not enqueue the rip in Handbrake, but for usual, American half-hour series, this is often a benefit.
Typically, material that does not fall solidly in the category of an episode is placed under Season 0 and given a title similar to how episodes are named. And it doesn't matter in what season's disk you get this material. An example of this is the season 0 list for Foyle's War in the example above where the was an interview with the series script writer, Anthony Horowitz, at the outset of season 1 and again several seasons later—hence "episodes" 1 and 2 with the same title in this example.
Typically, you cannot have an episode numbered as 0, but it might work. Realize that if you're counting on Plex finding such a thing in a media content database, it likely will not. If you're hand-tweaking the content and use this naming scheme, you might get away with it even when choosing to view all episodes.
Canonically, though, the system in use for bonus material is done as just explained. You might get particular guidance on a television series by looking at details by browsing to the database likely to cough up the information Plex uses.
It's possible to acquire subtitles as separate files, for example, a rip of The Lord of the Rings might only subtitle Elf and Orc speech or The Wolverine Japanese bits and Thor: The Dark World the dialog between dark elves, etc. Though you turn on subtitles in this case, you won't see any until you reach those parts of the movie that are subtitled.
In other words, the movie you're copying and watching might not have, say, English subtitles while it does have separate subtitles in a separate file to handle the bits you'd otherwise not get subtitles for. Thus your movie isn't subtitled per se, but it handles the bits that are incomprehensible to (English) speakers while the rest of the movie is just in their tongue.
For ripping full subtitles, please see here.
One place to get subtitles separate from the media file is YIFY Subtitles. You drop the downloadable .srt file into the subdirectory with the movie you've already downloaded, ripped, etc.
~/Videos/plex $ ll the-* -rw-r--r-- 1 russ russ 43407 Jul 29 17:27 the-lord-of-the-rings-the-fellowship-of-the-ring-english-yify-1538.zip -rw-r--r-- 1 russ russ 125233 Dec 2 2013 the-lord-of-the-rings-the-fellowship-of-the-ring-yify-english.srt ~/Videos/plex $ scp the-lord-of-the-rings-the-fellowship-of-the-ring-yify-english.srt \ taliesin.site:/plex-server/Movies/The\\\ Lord\\\ of\\\ the\\\ Rings--The\\\ Fellowship\\\ of\\\ the\\\ Ring/ the-lord-of-the-rings-the-fellowship-of-the-ring-yify-english.srt 100% 122KB 122.3KB/s 00:00
Maybe you'll need to refresh your movies before this will work. From your browser, you'll see...
...that Plex offers you an "unknown" subtitle file. Unless you have many, this is what you want. Or Plex may tell you the language. It's supposed to.
By and large, I find subtitle work to be richly unrewarding.
You can create as many "libraries" on your Plex Media server as you like, Videos, TV shows, Movies, Music, etc. But let's say you found some content and you can't decide whether it's a televsion show or a movie. How to decide?
I wanted to separate out my episodes of Alton Brown Good Eats because my copies were "loose," taped off-air years ago, and I didn't want to research the whole season and episode thing.
Once you've ripped new content and uploaded it to the library of choice on your server (i.e.: television, movies, videos, specially named libraries, etc.), you just need to pop your Plex Media content up in a browser and click Update Library:
At this point, Plex will use a list of popular databases for retrieving metadata like disk-cover thumbnails, titles, dates, etc. If you're unhappy with the choices, there is a way you can order its search of these databases and even add or eliminate the list.
Here's a partial list of databases I'll add to as time goes on and I end up caring about and using them directly. Often, especially when trying to put together season and episode lists for television shows, it's useful to go to a database and see what it's got. If you go to a database using your browser, there's a search engine you can use.
With obscure movies, movies that are particularly public and movies sharing identical names with other, especially popular movies, it's frequently possible for Plex to corral the metadata during the Update Library step of the wrong movie and assign it to the one you just ripped.
For example, let's pretend that Plex mistook (as incredibly as that seems) a movie I just uploaded to my movies section at taliesin.site:/plex-server/Movies/Ronin for the more recent offering, 47 Ronin. I go to the new movie, click the three-dots icon at the bottom of the pile of controls down the extreme left-hand side and choose Fix Incorrect Match. This will negate the metadata including poster photo already assigned and I'm free to figure out what to correct it.
Solutions include typing in my own metadata or changing the database used.
Another situation is where no database has the correct metadata you want for your movie because it's obscure, not a commercial movie, etc. What you want to do is enter the metadata by hand and thereafter you don't want Plex rethinking it. You need to lock that data.
To do this, choose Unmatch from the pile of controls shown here.
Having done this, you can click on Edit (the pencil icon for the title), then fill out
These should be given the name -trailer just before the file extension. Put them in the movie subdirectory under a deeper subdirectory named, Trailers. Do this preferably before choosing to Scan Library Files when ingesting a new movie.
Once you've labored over metadata in Plex by hand, that data isn't immune to Plex mucking it up all over again. Once solution is to go back in after you've finished making your changes (and before updating any Plex Library) and clicking on the orange padlock icon to the left of each field. During update library, Plex may still say it's looking at the media associated with what you've locked it out of, but it won't actually change it.
Television shows don't benefit from the same interface as movies and there's no easy way to prevent Plex from cocking it all up. For example, no amount of correcting (via the pencil icon) Inspector Lewis Season 8 shows would do the trick: during Library Update engaged for other, newly added television shows, Plex consistently returned these episodes to it mostly inexplicably wrong titles and metadata.
What appears to work is to tell Plex to leave everything alone and let you do the naming, metadata, etc. The way to achive this appears to be to thwart its plug-in database bundle for television. What I did was go to /var/lib/plexmediaserver/Library/Application Support/Plex Media Server/Plug-ins and rename TheTVDB.bundle to not-TheTVDB.bundle-not hoping Plex would not find it or refuse to recognize it. It appeared to work: the next time I ran the Library Update (clicked on the circular arrows) for television shows, checking Inspector Lewis Season 8 shows proved they had not changed.
Important: this must be done and done again, probably after Plex updates. I've put a request into the forums for assistance on this.
See and experiment with instructions from:
Another option, if you've got lots of commercial television series that are more than certainly in the television database, is to create a separate television library to put your less well known or personal stuff into and turn off Plex' helpful attempts to ingest.
The idea I've followed is that I know better than Plex and I don't want it mucking about with my lesser known television series.
Sometimes you get two movies by the same title—or near enough that Plex will just toss them into the same bucket. For example, I have Pride and Prejudice, Pride and Prejudice and Pride & Prejudice. To fix this (put them into their own buckets alone), once you see a sigle above with 2, 3, etc. (just as the one that says how many episodes are in a television series, see illustration below), click on the movie to get to its page, then click the three-dots icon down the left column and choose Split Apart. You'll be asked to confirm after which Plex will split them, but you'll see the same metadata for both as if duplicates except that the lengths will be different.
You'll have to fix up the one that's wrong by choosing Fix Incorrect Match, Unmatch etc., as covered elsewhere on this page.
Extra features obtained when ripping a disc can be placed under the title's subdirectory thus (before ingestion):
[email protected]:/plex-movies/Movies$ tree "Roots and Wings"/ Roots and Wings/ +-- Behind the Scenes | `-- Behind the Scenes.mkv `-- Roots and Wings.mkv
The list of recognized subdirectories was available here at one time, and consisted of:
The name of the media file does not appear to make any difference to Plex.
You've loaded in and done an Update Library to get Plex to ingest your new uploads including lots of extra materials. However, none or only some of the extra material is shown. Click the ... icon and choose Analyze.
Once set up, you can share your videos with family and friends.
After ripping, carefully naming and locating the content files (.mkv) for my television series on my Plex server, I went to my browser to go to the TV content and clicked Update Library:
After that operation finished, I went down into the new Fires of Faith content and clicked Refresh, which produces nothing because this DVD is of rather narrow interest and Plex cannot locate content, images, information, etc. to support it:
So, I'll have to populate the metadata for this series myself. I click Edit:
...and fill in the detail taking care to a) click outside the field I've added, then b) click the padlock in the orange background to the left of the field in order to make the lock go away. After I've finished, I click Save Changes:
If I get the message "Your changes could not be saved," it's likely that I didn't clear the lock for a field and that edit may not have taken. (This would be the case for the Rating field above if left in that state.)
How this works changes a little over time.
You can also just drag the image file.
Please note that the displayable image is crucially predicated on aspect. Plex will not modify it to fit, but it will clip to the center of the image (and you'll lose plenty of it at least horizontally).
Note also that some of this may have you working blind because of apparent bugs in the Plex web application. You might drag the image over and drop it only to fail to see it there (another already there is still the only one visible). usually, when you dismiss the dialog, the one you just dropped is the one you'll see.
Please see notes about this topic here.
Just links for now until I've done it. These notes are only for Linux. I would never use Windows for anything except running TurboTax (period) and I would never waste a Macintosh in a server role when it's really a glorious GUI (even if I don't choose it myself). Linux is free, Linux server is lightweight yet performant, Linux is ubiquitous (just Google for anything), Linux simply rules for running this sort of thing.
I'm following Move an Install to Another System.
from "Moving an Install[ation] to Another System"
—easier if migrating between the same OS platform.
Then uncheck the emptying of trash setting and save changes.
[email protected]:~$ sudo bash [email protected]:# ps -ef | grep [p]lex plex 1239 1230 0 09:31 ? 00:00:00 /bin/sh /usr/sbin/start_pms plex 1243 1239 0 09:31 ? 00:00:01 ./Plex Media Server plex 1582 1243 0 09:31 ? 00:00:08 Plex Plug-in [com.plexapp.system] /var/lib/plexmediaser... plex 1678 1243 0 09:31 ? 00:00:02 /usr/lib/plexmediaserver/Plex DLNA Server plex 1775 1243 0 09:31 ? 00:00:02 Plex Plug-in [com.plexapp.agents.localmedia] /var/lib/... plex 1777 1243 0 09:31 ? 00:00:01 Plex Plug-in [com.plexapp.agents.imdb] /var/lib/plexme... [email protected]:# service plexmediaserver stop plexmediaserver stop/waiting [email protected]:# ps -ef | grep [p]lex
[email protected]:/plex-server# locate DLNA /usr/lib/plexmediaserver/Plex DLNA Server . . . /var/lib/plexmediaserver/Library/Application Support/Plex Media Server/Logs/Plex DLNA Server Neptune.log . . .Here, I had lots of paths located, but I happen to know that /usr/lib isn't a metadata path since it's where the software binaries and other, permanent data are kept. That's not the stuff I'll need to copy since the installation on the new server will put it all there. Instead, I know that /var/lib/plexmediaserver is the path I want because it's where Plex has kept all my variable data (hence /var) and that's what I want to preserve from my source host to the new destination. So, what did I do here exactly? I went to the path /usr/lib/plexmediaserver/Library/Application Support and began copying the subdirectories from this location to tol-eressea. I could not copy them directly; instead, I have to copy them to my user's home directory first:
# scp -rp Cache [email protected]:/home/russ/plexmediaserver # scp -rp "Crash Reports" [email protected]:/home/russ/plexmediaserver # scp -rp Logs [email protected]:/home/russ/plexmediaserver # scp -rp Media [email protected]:/home/russ/plexmediaserver # scp -rp Metadata [email protected]:/home/russ/plexmediaserver # scp -rp Scanners [email protected]:/home/russ/plexmediaserver # scp -rp Preferences.xml [email protected]:/home/russ/plexmediaserverNote: The Media appear to be images, thumbnails, subtitles, etc. e.g.: art1.jpg, art2.jpg, art3.jpg, Subtitles.xml, index-sd.bif, thumb3.jpg, thumb2.jpg, thumb1.jpg. This subdirectory takes forever to copy. The Metadata appear to lots of Info.xml and some other files like c5cc8a84436166c653adaa8b1eecdcd10940eeaa and com.plexapp.agents.themoviedb_a76702420550cb61dd9f69e34e83ebcc6f3ac038. This subdirectory takes forever to copy, but nothing like how long it takes to copy Media. The Cache appear to be stuff like
Cache/PhotoTranscoder/ff +-- ff1db11c17ff63cf743b7876b6bc6b2c60a9ec4b.jpg +-- ff4e12b8622acdc0195ee9160fe614ef87c3fe38.jpeg +-- ff60d01cc068c945e4e2d14773ccad5eebcc6cee.jpeg +-- ff615d2afcf7661d9391d7a16c14cfb8575c740e.jpg +-- ff6fc9b4337208d42596f9ecf670c80c6cc4ab2b.jpg +-- ff8d4e62186876cb168fc24cb590ef533b000c35.jpg +-- ff8e92c3221ee2f2bc89f17eee3f9f13ba39c2ce.jpg +-- ffb45a6f8c9e03ce661722213b8a136b89c7b4e8.jpg +-- ffc42370cf0e7785b675544a58674a8020a313d0.jpg +-- ffc44063006098a0902341e99c1ec593eacffd93.jpg +-- ffc61697306659e2f194756239fe991eb4b11e60.jpg +-- ffc73c86143753586ae3554382af2855137267a5.jpg `-- ffdda6a70526faba48aedf51fdb3499b08b87955.jpg
[email protected]:/var/lib/plexmediaserver/Library/Application Support/Plex Media Server# rm -rf \ Cache/ Logs/ Preferences.xml "Plug-in Support"/ "Crash Reports" [email protected]:~/plexmediaserver# mv * \ /var/lib/plexmediaserver/Library/Application\ Support/Plex\ Media\ Server
This is going to be successful, so...
[email protected]:/# service plexmediaserver start plexmediaserver start/running, process 6070
This isn't as straightforward as you'd like unless you're a software developer in which case it actually works just the way you'd best like in the sense that you get it as comma-separated values in a .csv file ready for importing into a database, spreadsheet, etc. This work is free from a very nice Dane.
This utility runs as a "Plex Channel plug-in" which means you must install it in Plex and run it from a browser. I'll explain this in a moment.
To get this, go to ukdtom/plex2csv.bundle. You can follow the doc there through or you can just follow my instructions here. Note that this plug-in is updated from time to time.
Please note that, despite what you may have read elsewhere on this page, the real PLEX_HOME is /var/lib/plexmediaserver. This path is used in the instructions for this bundle.
# mv plex2csv.bundle-master/ plex2csv.bundle
# service plexmediaserver restart plexmediaserver stop/waiting plexmediaserver start/running, process 16228
# cd /tmp # mkdir PlexExports # chmod a+rwx PlexExportsPlease note that if you screw this up, you'll never see any indication that this plug-in is working, neither files on this path nor lists of libraries in your browser. And it won't give you an error. Simply put, you must get this instruction 100% and you must note this path exactly in all its spelling in the step below where you tell the plug-in where the files are to be put or you'll wonder why you wasted your time.
[email protected]:/tmp/PlexExport/Plex2csv# ll total 120 drwxr-xr-x 2 plex plex 4096 Jan 10 10:15 ./ drwxrwxrwx 3 root root 4096 Jan 10 09:30 ../ -rw-r--r-- 1 plex plex 7668 Jan 10 09:41 Foreign-Simple-20150110-094106.csv -rw-r--r-- 1 plex plex 103778 Jan 10 10:15 Movies-Simple-20150110-101507.csv
"Media ID","Title","Sort title","Studio","Content Rating","Summary","Rating","Year","Genres" "5079","2010","","Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer","PG","A joint American-Soviet space expedit...","6.3","1984","Drama - Adventure Film" "3786","47 Ronin","","Universal Pictures","","Based on the original 1941 movie fro...","6.4","2013","Action - Adventure" . . .
[email protected]:/tmp/PlexExport/Plex2csv# head Movies-Simple-20150110-101507.csv \ | python -c 'import csv,sys;[sys.stdout.write(line+"\n") for line in csv.reader(sys.stdin)]' Title 2010 47 Ronin American Gunmaker the John M Browning Story Amistad Anxiously Engaged Astérix et Obélix--Mission Cléopâtre Avalon Avatar Baptists at Our BarbecueOr that and pipe it to wc to count the movies:
[email protected]:/tmp/PlexExport/Plex2csv# head Movies-Simple-201... | wc 257 893 5261
Just in case you're disgusted by the single-line Python utterance, here it is in good Python (the reason it's 1 instead of 2 is because a Python list is 0-based), but you'll have to put it into a file:
import csv,sys for line in csv.reader( sys.stdin ): print line[ 1 ]
Execute it thus:
[email protected]:/tmp/PlexExport/Plex2csv# head Movies-Simple-20150110-101507.csv | python parse-title.py
There are television shows that appear on-disk in a different order than the original broadcast or that of the databases Plex consults when it ingests the media for these shows. Someone has created a special agent to fix that, i.e.: put them into the intended order (in the case where it's different). The prime example is Firefly. See here.
I believe that the DVD/Blu-ray order of the Firefly episodes is the correct one. The plug-in discussed here does more shows than Firefly including 24 and still others, but I only have Firefly.
On first inspection, even if you find a download link, there are no instructions. You have to squint through a couple of forum posts to get this. I'll put it all right here.
~/Downloads/plex $ tree . `-- DVD Order Agent.bundle `-- Contents +-- Code | +-- dvdorder.py | `-- __init__.py +-- Info.plist `-- Resources `-- icon-default.png 4 directories, 4 filesThe answer is found by looking at the contents of Plex' Plug-ins subdirectory: it's all similar stuff with a .bundle suffix. So, the answer is to copy the top-level directory, DVD Order Agent.bundle (with everything under it, but leaving it all just as it is).
[email protected]:~# chown -R plex:plex "DVD Order Agent.bundle"/
Many of the titles on my Plex Media server are nothing that exists in film or episode databases so I find myself obliged to ferret out images, synopses, etc.
As near as I've been able to figure, Plex offers support for music, but this support does not work.
When I first set up my Plex Media server, I simply moved all my MP3s in the subdirectory structure I've been consuming on Windows (Winamp) and Linux (Audacious) over to my Plex Media server and caused them to be ingested. The result was a big mess, most of my music wasn't available, much of it inaccurately named if named at all.
Thinking that this was going to be a lot of work, I set it aside for a couple of years before hitting it again. In February, 2016, I tried again by removing the library, creating a new one using an empty subdirectory (folder) and carefully adding one artist with one album:
Music/Natalie Cole/Natalie Cole - Unforgettable with Love with the following contents:
-rw-r--r-- 1 russ russ 4169474 Jan 11 2007 01 - The Very Thought of You.mp3 -rw-r--r-- 1 russ russ 3356948 Jan 11 2007 02 - Paper Moon.mp3 -rw-r--r-- 1 russ russ 2964900 Jan 11 2007 03 - Route 66.mp3 -rw-r--r-- 1 russ russ 3684627 Jan 11 2007 04 - Mona Lisa.mp3 -rw-r--r-- 1 russ russ 2496785 Jan 11 2007 05 - L-o-v-E.mp3 -rw-r--r-- 1 russ russ 2211330 Jan 11 2007 06 - This Can't be Love.mp3 -rw-r--r-- 1 russ russ 3560907 Jan 11 2007 07 - Smile.mp3 . . .
On that day, I followed these links:
Music/Artist Name/Artist-Album Name/Track# - Track Title.mp3
However, clicking the Update Library control when looking at an empty library yields "The library has no content yet. Click here to add content to the library."
I played around with this several times also trying the documented filesystem format all to no avail. As I don't care at all for Plex' Premium music features, I tried the basic music library option too.
Mid-November 2015 update.
Plex has released a major update to the Plex Media Server, version 0.9.14.1. This release features
The transcoder is used when you watch the server on any device other than a computer. The new upgraded transcoder should be able to handle more file types as well as offer better subtitle support (such as the Elvish in LoTR that never seems to show up on half the devices).
The Roku is the most popular device among Plex viewers around me. While this device is fantastic, using it to stream 1080p video encounters far more buffering unless it's on the local network with the server (the case basically at my house since that's where the server is). This update may fix some of those issues.
Chapter thumbnails are a very desirable feature of DVDs and Blu-rays that most have been living without when watching Plex (but also Netflix and Amazon). Chapters are useful for skipping past introduction sequences for television shows, skipping over scenes, etc.
It's unclear whether and how well these will work and on what devices (like the Roku), but one can hope. It's unclear, for instance, whether all or which media on the server will have them. It may depend on how it was ripped and what format it's been ripped to. It's expected that Matroska, the most common format on my server (especially because of how well it does subtitles and especially because it keeps subtitle content inside the same file as the movie so it's not lost when copied), may be the most likely to benefit from chapter titles.
These are on the path /var/lib/plexmediaserver/Library/Application Support/Plex Media Server/Logs. The basic (current—immediate) logfile is named Plex Media Server.log. Older logfiles (on a rolling appender basis) are named Plex Media Server.N.log, where N is an integer. This subdirectory is complicated: there are various logfiles in use for other aspects of Plex, all generally (rolling) revisioned as already noted: