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How to: plex media server on Ubuntu 12 Desktop Edition and Ubuntu Server

how to: install, configure and update plex media server on ubuntu 12.04

i thought i could write a quick how to for installing pms (plex media server) on ubuntu, because many other linux guides on the internet helped me very much previously. 

i used ubuntu server 12 lts, but it should work on older ubuntu versions, too.

first, you have to open a terminal window or ssh into your computer. 

How to: plex media server - how to install avahi

it is enough to copy and paste this line to install avahi:

sudo apt-get install avahi-daemon

however you can do much more with avahi. for example advertising afp-shares. this guide covers it. 

How to: plex media server - how to install plex media server

sudo nano /etc/apt/sources.list

then add "deb http://www.plexapp.com/repo lucid main" to the file.
or add "deb http://www.plexapp.com/repo beta main" for the beta versions.
you can put it wherever you like. 
use something like ctrl+x (mac-keyboard) or strg+x (windows-keyboard) to close and safe the file.

update apt-get:
sudo apt-get update

sudo apt-get install plexmediaserver

how to: plex media server - access plex through a browser on the computer running plex media server
or any other computer (connected via lan)

to initially add media to your library, you can click on one of those icons on your pms website. for example movies:

then you can choose a name and directory:

the scanning will take a while, depending on how many movies or tv-shows you have. 
you should see the progress on the web client   

How to: plex media server - read this if plex does not play any files:

if plex does not play any files, make sure your permissions are right. because plex is a new user it may not have the permissions to play your media. 
you can try it the easy way: add the plex-user to your group: 
gpasswd -a plex myuser 

or if you want to change the permissions properly (more work): 

cd into your media directory, for example: 
cd /home/user/media

then look up the permissions with

ls -l

here you can see if your directory has read/write/execute for every user. its like this: (no colours in real life)

drwxrwxr-x 365 user group ---somemorestuff-- foldername

rwx indicates read/write/execute for the user. 
rwx indicates read/write/execute for the group 
r-x indicates that every other user has read/-/execute access.

i would assume the user plex only has as much access as the last three letters/hyphens (every other user).
it works for me like this so the blue bit should look different in your setup. 
the easyiest thing you can do here is put the plex user in the group: 

sudo chown youruser:plex -r /home/user/mediadirectory

this way plex will be the group and have the groups permissions (green rwx). but if there is no rwx, you will have to give it read/write/execute permissions: 

sudo chmod 770 -r /home/user/mediadirectory

the first 7 gives the user read/write/execute permissions. the second 7 is for the group. the 0 in this case gives every other user no permissions at all. 
the -r will change the permissions of all files in the folder. 

now it should look like this: (check with ls -l again!)

rwxrwx--- 365 user plex ---somemorestuff-- foldername

please note: this is just an option! 
a complete linux permissions guide would be too long for this how to. but you can find plenty good youtube videos on this topic  
this might also be helpful: https://help.ubuntu....filepermissions

How to: plex media server - how to update plex:

plex updates just like most of the other linux programs. with aptitude: 
(every other programm will update too)

sudo aptitude update && sudo aptitude safe-upgrade

all programs mentioned here will be updated. 
then you have to type in y to continue. 
that is it.

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