How To Create Your Own Media Server At Home

Don’t have a smart TV, perhaps your USB port on your TV doesn’t read your external hard-drive, tired of connecting your PC to your TV to play your hit Itunes or view your pictures and other video content you may have saved on your computer. Or you have everything and just want to step into the world of wireless and ease of connection? Well, you are in luck, this post will show you how to create your very own network server absolutely free and in just a matter of a few clicks.

This post will be covering DLNA – Digital Living Network Alliance and how you can use a software called Universal Media Server to help create your new media server for free and with ease.

1. Getting Started

To create your own media server, you will need:

  • A TV (If you own a smart TV you won’t need a console).
  • Any one of the following consoles: A PS3, An Xbox 360, An Xbox 0ne or a PS4. (or a DLNA device)
  • A PC or Laptop (Will act as the server)
  • A wireless or wired connection (Usually with the use of a router)
  • And finally the software Universal Media Server (Makes it possible to do everything).

2. Installing the Software

To start the installation process, you will need:

  • Click on the operating system you have to download the software.

  • Once the download is complete, follow the built-in installation wizard to install the software.

2.1.  Answers to the Wizards Questions


Would you like to run the UMS configuration wizard?


Should UMS Start Minimized?


Which of the following best describes your network?

Select what you currently have

Should UMS hide its advanced options?


3. Universal Media Server Interface

  • After following the installation wizard, UMS will open up to the status tab.
  • The status tab will show you the detected media renders that are available on your network.
  • Detected media renders are devices that will allow you to connect to your PC.
  • As seen in the image below, A Ps3 is visible.

4. Setting up Universal Media Server

         4.1 Under the “General Settings” Tab
  • Assign a new server name
  • Untick “start automatically with windows” (unless you want to)
  • Optional: Tick “Check automatically for updates” (It is entirely up to you)

        4.2 Under the “Navigation/Share Settings” Tab
  • Under the “Virtual folders/files” subheading, make sure that:
  • Tick “Show iTunes Library”
  • Tick “Hide empty folders”
  • Tip: Make sure everything matches the image below.

  • Note: Whenever you change the options you have to restart the server (Top center button).
  • Under the “Shared Folders” subheading:
    • Click the File Icon.Select the folders or files you are going to share.
    • Click the File Icon.
    • Select the folders or files you are going to share.
  • This allows you to specifically specify which folders or files you allow to share from your computer.

  • That is all you need to do. You are done.
  • Yes, there are tons of other options and capabilities of the software, but for the purpose of setting up a media server fast and easy, that is all you have to do.

5. Using a renderer

  • Depending on your connection speeds, you may or may not need to allow for the software to load (make the connection between the two systems, i.e the renderer & the software).
  • Once UMS is loaded, you are pretty much done.

  • For the case of the PS3 – To access pictures, go to the pictures section, then select the icon with your server name to bring up the shared folders and select the pictures you want to view.
  • The pictures you will be viewing will be straight from your computer.

  • That is it, the process is the same for all the other options, slight variations may exist but the process will be the same.

6. About the Software

  • Universal Media Server is a DLNA-compliant UPnP Media Server
DLNA Digital Living Network Alliance
UPnP Universal Plug & Play
  • Is based on the older PlayStation Media Server (PMS).
  • Created by SubJunk, an official developer of PMS.

7. Tips for the software

  • Make sure you have the latest Java installed (UMS usually installs it for you if you don’t)
    • If UMS does not open, you will have to reinstall Java.
  • For video stuttering:
    • Issue: Wireless connection
    • Solution: Under “Transcoding settings” Tab:
      Select a new value in the “video quality settings” option
    • Issue: Subtitles not showing
    • Solution: Under “Transcoding settings” Tab:
      Select “subtitles settings” and add your language to the “Subtitle language priority” input box
  • Comparisons between other media server software can be seen here.

8. Support

  • If you have any issues with the software or wish to find out more about it, a dedicated forum exists. You can access it here.

9. Plugins

  • Universal Media Server also has a number of useful plugins that you can choose from. You can check the available plugins here.
  • Or access the available plugins from the “plugin Management”



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