Even in the age of Netflix, Amazon, Disney and the like, many people still have their Blu-rays or DVDs in the cupboard. Digitized and stored on a hard drive or NAS, accessing them is still a bit cumbersome. At the latest when the TV at home and mobile devices or other family members come into play, it gets fiddly.
One solution to this is Plex. Plex is a commercial successor to XBMC. Wikipedia writes: "The server desktop application organizes video, audio, and photos from a user's collections and online services so that players can access and stream the content. There are official clients for mobile devices, smart TVs and streaming boxes."
But the very best thing is that it can be operated free of charge on your own server at home, making access to your own media as easy as with commercial streaming providers. Only certain (convenience) functions require a paid Plexplass.
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The aim of these instructions is to operate a Plex Media Server based on TrueNAS/FreeBSD. In order to be able to use Plex publicly, further measures are required, which will be dealt with separately from Part 2 onwards. An already installed TrueNAS or FreeBSD and for part 2 an OPNsense firewall is required.
TrueNAS also known as FreeNAS, is a free operating system for Network Attached Storage (NAS). A NAS is an easy-to-manage file server that you can install on your own hardware, unlike Synology or QNAP. TrueNAS can not only serve files: Since it is based on FreeBSD, other services can be operated very easily, leanly and securely with so-called JAILS. FreeBSD does not care if one or 100 jails are running at the same time; only the services running in them are relevant.