Plex Releases Client for Non-Jailbroken Apple TVs

Discussion in 'iOS Blog Discussion' started by MacRumors, Jun 5, 2013.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    Plex, the advanced server-client media player, has released a new client for the Apple TV -- however, unlike the existing ATV client, this one does not require the device to be jailbroken.

    Plex allows users to store movie and TV show files on a server and then view those files on a wide variety of client devices including Macs, PCs, a number of smart televisions, the Roku box and the Apple TV. The server also connects to Internet databases to pull IMDB-type metadata on media.

    The client, called PlexConnect, uses a hack to get video from the Plex Media Server onto the Apple TV. A small Python program on the Mac intercepts DNS requests from the Movie Trailers app on the Apple TV and instead returns a custom XML feed that delivers a list of media and movie streams to the device.

    From the Plex blog post announcing the program:
    Currently, PlexConnect runs within a terminal window on the Mac, making it tricky for novice users to set up. The team is working on making it easier to install for future releases.

    There is a PlexConnect wiki with installation guides and more information, and the Plex website has more information about the program as a whole.

    Article Link: Plex Releases Client for Non-Jailbroken Apple TVs
  2. gotluck macrumors 603


    Dec 8, 2011
    East Central Florida
    The ATV3 just got a whole lot better. Wonder if this will drop ATV2 prices..
  3. CrystalPepsi, Jun 5, 2013
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2013

    CrystalPepsi macrumors regular


    Feb 3, 2011
    Unfortunately, this pseudo-exploit will be patched in 3..2...1... Apple get their act together with whipping up some Apis for this thing.
  4. karan1686 macrumors newbie

    Jul 28, 2008
    Works as advertised. Some things missing, but overall really good.
  5. vmachiel macrumors 68000

    Feb 15, 2011
    Pretty nifty:) I hope Apple finally allows for Apps on Apple tv next week though
  6. New Account macrumors newbie

    Sep 14, 2010
    I am a bit confused here - how is this different than applications such as Beamer, AirParrot etc.?

    Thanks :)
  7. Wildog27 macrumors member

    Jun 10, 2008
    One of my biggest wishes for WWDC is for iTunes/AppleTV to be able to play MKVs. I doubt that will happen, but I'll probably give this a try.
  8. portishead macrumors 65816

    Apr 4, 2007
    los angeles
    That's cool, but I don't want to transcode. I do love Plex though, they really should make their own hardware. I'd buy one in a second.
  9. jclardy macrumors 68040


    Oct 6, 2008
    I don't think they will - setting DNS server is kind of an important feature for many people. And the "exploit" is just rerouting all traffic through your mac which then either gives you the local content or something from the internet.
  10. GenesisST, Jun 5, 2013
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2013

    GenesisST macrumors 68000


    Jan 23, 2006
    Where I live
    You can easily whip up an MP4 from a MKV using the Subler app. No reencoding necessary when the MKV is H.264 (not sure if MKV supports other codecs). It is a matter of about a few minutes for an hour long TV show on my 3-year old MBP.

    Still... annoying to have to do this...
  11. mic j macrumors 68030

    Mar 15, 2012
    Huh? Are you saying Subler can convert an MKV that does not use the h.264 codec to an mp4?
  12. itcomesinwaves macrumors member

    Jul 2, 2003
    Applications like Beamer require you to browse the files while sitting at your computer. This Plex app runs on the computer but lets you navigate your files using the AppleTV interface (ie the remote). It's a lot like going to the green 'Computers' icon on the AppleTV (which lets you browse a computer's iTunes library), but it works with many more file types.
  13. GenesisST macrumors 68000


    Jan 23, 2006
    Where I live
    nope... I've rephrased... I was saying that when the video is H.264 in the MKV there is no reencoding necessary, just repackage the file as a .mp4. I wanted to say that I'm not certain if MKV supports other encoding at all.

    Sorry, for the mess...
  14. Wombert macrumors regular

    Oct 31, 2005
    Munich, Germany
    They could switch to using HTTPS for downloading the feed, that would be enough to kill the "exploit".

    I hope they don't, though :)
  15. Narial Taster, Jun 5, 2013
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2013

    Narial Taster macrumors member

    May 17, 2011
    Much, MUCH easier to use Beamer. They have a free trial that you can check out.
  16. mic j macrumors 68030

    Mar 15, 2012
    You are forgiven. Go say 3 hail Mary's and 3 Our Fathers, my son. :)

    Just wanting to make sure there was not some new development I was unaware of.
  17. mic j macrumors 68030

    Mar 15, 2012
    I would say it's much easier not to have a computer sitting on your lap and using the Finder to find the movie you want to watch. IMHO
  18. sfrancis928 macrumors member

    May 31, 2012
    I have never gotten Subler to work correctly. The audio and video always get out of sync. And it doesn't work in Mountain Lion at all anyway.
  19. yegon macrumors 68020

    Oct 20, 2007
    Eh? I've been using Subler in ML for aaaaaages, works perfectly.
  20. GenesisST macrumors 68000


    Jan 23, 2006
    Where I live
    Weird... works for me... But good to learn of a new option: Beamer.
  21. cclloyd macrumors 68000


    Oct 26, 2011
    Alpha Centauri A
    Couldn't get it to work, even after disabling websites and dns in OS X Server. Oh well. I hope they release an API for an app store for ATV soon. It's not like the ATV is a big hacking target (other than jailbreakers)
  22. Tilpots macrumors 601


    Apr 19, 2006
    Carolina Beach, NC
    Sounds cool. Don't have an ATV but glad people are tryin to make it more useful.
  23. yegon macrumors 68020

    Oct 20, 2007
    It definitely works under ML, although it just occurred to me that you have do the following to fix it. It's that long ago I did this, and I've used it so much, I'd completely forgot it didn't work initially;
  24. wiz329 macrumors 6502a

    Apr 19, 2010
    I highly doubt that will happen. 99% of .mkvs are pirated in my experience. If you're ripping your own movies, why wouldn't you just encode them using .mp4? As far as I know, there is no advantage to using .mkv over .mp4, especially since handbrake added DTS passthru support for .mp4 last year.


    I've never used Subler, but MP4 tools and MKV tools work great for me.
  25. KhrisGarcia macrumors member

    Jul 21, 2011
    I've been running this for a week now and it's awesome. The simplicity of having everything right on the Apple TV is great. I also prefer the ATV remote over my clumsy Logitech K400 keyboard.

    Previously I was using Airplay from the Plex client on iPad. This eats up wifi bandwidth and we have multiple clients in the house. Plus it was clumsy like the k400 keyboard. Too big. Everything should be on the main screen with a simple remote. Meaning no Beamer.

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