Plex - MacBook Air - external hard drive

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by rick_w, Apr 10, 2014.

  1. rick_w macrumors newbie

    Nov 5, 2010
    Hi All,

    Wondering if somewhere there can help me

    Have an external hard drive with 1.4tb of mixed movies and tv shows correctly (I assume) titled for plex to work and in seperate folders for movies and tv at a top level

    Hard drive is formatted in exFAT so I can use on PC and Mac and the Samsung smart tvs I use can access files directly (albeit with a raw folder only UI)

    Have downloaded plex server client on mac which appears to be a web UI and I cannot get the Mac to recognise or 'see' either the hard drive or the media on it?

    Can anyone point me to a very simple 'how to' to get this to work or say what within PLEX I should be doing

    Thanks in advance!

    ps If I can get it to work would this theoretically after paying for plex pass and plex client for ipad allow local off-internet storage and playing of synced files on the ipad?
  2. T'hain Esh Kelch macrumors 601

    T'hain Esh Kelch

    Aug 5, 2001
    Plex has problems with ExFAT, so it is not recommended to be used with it.

    1. That would work even without paying for Plex Pass.
    2. Yes.
  3. Latt macrumors member

    Feb 13, 2013
  4. rick_w thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 5, 2010
    heard about the issues with exFAT but apparently a deep scan removes that trouble I am having is Plex WebUI under MAC is not even seeing the external hard drive

    Are all file types supported under the Plex client for iOS or just the native apple ones?
  5. T'hain Esh Kelch macrumors 601

    T'hain Esh Kelch

    Aug 5, 2001
    You are not the only one I've read about that had that exact problem, using ExFAT.

    The Plex server transcodes all media before sync, to make sure it is supported by your platform of choice.
  6. rick_w thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 5, 2010
    thanks - trouble is not the updates to the library I cant even get Plex to construct the initial library!

    As for the transcoding - great; that should mean all syncd local stored ipad media from plex would be playable on the ipad (for biz trips/holidays etc)

    any hints on getting the exFAT drive recognised - is there some key strokes I am supposed to do for deep scan? Icon to click whatever?
  7. Gav2k macrumors G3


    Jul 24, 2009
    If the drive is mounted and on your desk top then plex is the issue. A quick test with two USB sticks and I can tell you ntfs works fine. Ex fat remains invisible to plex
  8. rick_w thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 5, 2010
    is exFAT invisable to plex always under mac?

    I understood but could not get definative answer anywhere that exFAT was readable to creats a library (although I havnt been able to acheive) but that after that you needed to manual deep scan to see the files
  9. rick_w thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 5, 2010
    that last link just links to plex forums - i cant see a specific thread which explains it to a numpty like me how to 'see' exFAT drives apart from repeatedly being told to do a deep scan which I dont know how to do or what to 'press'
  10. matrix07 macrumors 601


    Jun 24, 2010
    A deep scan is on the Media Server. When you open your server on browser you will see a Scan button (the one that looks like a Refresh button in Safari). Beside it is an arrow down. Click this and you'll get a Deep Scan option.
  11. rick_w thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 5, 2010
    thanks for that will try it after the weekend
  12. jmerrilljr macrumors newbie

    Nov 25, 2012
    My bad. Thate was the search page which had all the posts related to exFat. You could try a search. BTW, some folks claim even a turbo scan won't work.
  13. Crazy Badger macrumors 65816

    Crazy Badger

    Apr 1, 2008
    From what you've described, I'm not sure the problem is just a drive format one. The plex client needs a plex server to talk too, not just a storage device full of media! The client and server can talk running on the same machine, although there are probably much easier ways of watching the media if that's all your trying to do.
  14. kage207 macrumors 6502a

    Jul 23, 2008
    exFAT does not work with Plex. I have had an external drive connected to my library before when I first started playing with Plex.

    Honestly, if you have an old PC laying around, I'd use that as your server instead of using your MBA to be your server. That's why I built one. My problem with iTunes was that I had to have a Mac always on with iTunes running if I wanted that to work on my ATV a few years ago before they had iCloud.

    So I built a computer and installed Ubuntu and now it is my server for Plex. It's low power and doesn't use much energy as I got an i3 (35w). Though an old CPU would be fine as long as it meets the specs Plex recommends. With an easy upgrade in memory to 4-8GB would then set you up nicely.

    Plex Sync, while it is very nice. I do have issues with it. It has sometimes not sync'ed the full content. Though I haven't updated the server software in awhile in fear of breaking streaming.

Share This Page