State of the release - Plex Blog

State of the release

, | 31 Oct 2011 | by 62 Comments

It’s been about 24 hours since the release, although it seems longer than that because we haven’t gotten much sleep with all the excitement. First and foremost, a massive THANK YOU to everyone for your overwhelmingly positive response to this new release. It’s been an amazing experience for us to finally see this release take wings after being in development for so long. You’ve already queued thousands of items in your myPlex Queues, and one of you even wrote a Safari extension already (thanks, Alex!). Of all the feedback that poured in, this had to be one of my favorite comments:

Twitter

I just wanted to quickly cover a few of the known issues, and some frequently asked questions, in hopes of helping you with the new release.

myPlex

  • Why don’t I have any thumbnails? Some of you are noticing that your server’s sections don’t look as pretty as mine do. Speaking frankly, my sections bring all the girls to the yard. The reason for this is simply that with the many thousands of people who connected their servers to myPlex for the first time today, the thumbnailing jobs are a bit backed up. We’ll be bringing more hardware online shortly to help.

My Plex  The Office 1

 

  • Why don’t I see/can’t I play my media on myPlex? myPlex is a cloud-based hub for your media, which helps connect Plex clients to Plex Media Servers, but it does not store your libraries (media or metadata).
  • I am having issues logging into myPlex/the forums. In order to support single sign-on and scale, we are migrating over accounts from the forums to myPlex. This migration should be transparent and automatic, and it has been for thousands of people. However, a handful of you have had trouble, the primary situation being if forgot your forum password. If you need help, please stop by the Plex Chat and one of our friendly engineers will lend a hand!
  • myPlex makes it too easy for me to watch my media, no matter where I am! Sorry, we’ll get right on that.

Known issues

  • There appears to be a problem with iOS 4.x, where users are seeing a crash on start with Plex for iOS 2.0. We’re scurrying around to find a device with that version (we’ve all updated to iOS5), so if you’re having problems, the quick fix would be to upgrade, if you’re willing to do so.
  • A minority of users are reporting stutter with nearly all video, which we’re puzzled by. We’re in the process of isolating the cause, and you can help by stopping by Plex Chat and sharing details of your setup, or adding to a forum thread.
  • Transcoding qualities from the Plex Laika client were wrong (too low), and additionally, transcoding from a server which was not on port 32400 (an automatically mapped one rarely is) would fail. A fix for this one is available as 0.9.5.1; the updated clients are available for download now (no autoupdate for now, sorry!).

Security/privacy

IANAL but these are my common sense notes:

  • All communication between clients and myPlex is fully SSL encrypted.
  • myPlex doesn’t store any information about your media (files, hashes, etc.)
  • myPlex stores five thumbnails from each section (when it gets around to it) but no metadata about items in your library (beyond what you see).
  • myPlex acts as a hub, connecting Plex clients and Plex servers, but it is not involved in any communication between client and server (beyond facilitating it).
  • myPlex stores URLs and metadata for queued items (obviously), and your progress viewing the items.
  • When clients sign into myPlex, they send OS type and version, client type and version, and a unique identifier (random UUID on most platforms).
  • myPlex loves you and respects you. myPlex doesn’t wait to call you. myPlex never forgets your birthday.

General tips

  • Plex/Nine used to contain client and server together in a single package. For a variety of reasons, the new release has separated out the client (Plex Media Center) and the server (Plex Media Server). This allows you to quickly install just the client on a machine, for example. The new server can simply be dragged to Applications like the client.
  • The old and new clients don’t interfere with each other and can both be used on the same machine.
  • You can move between old and new server (and back again) without any trouble.
  • One thing to note is if you had the old server starting automatically, you may want to disable this in Plex/Nine via Preferences > System > Plex Media Server if you’re going to run the new server.
  • There is no need to re-scan, recreate your library, or anything of that nature when moving between server versions. Try the new one out! Make your dog use the old one!
  • The new client will work with the old server, mostly, but you’ll be missing features (e.g. TV posters in On Deck/Recently Added). If the server is much older, the new client may not see its sections at all.
  • The old client will work with the new server perfectly, but it might be a bit jealous.
  • The new client is labeled BETA. It’s very new. Most things should work much better. Some things are still missing, incomplete, or broken.
  • There is no auto-update for the new client or server yet, but it will be added soon.

And for Phill, who correctly pointed out in the comments that such a major release warrants an additional photo of Barkley: you, sir, are correct, and we’ve taken steps to remedy this most serious breach of protocol.

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62 Comments so far

  1. JungleMan October 31st, 2011 2:42 am

    Great Job on the new version. LOVIN IT!
    It seems i can’t set my aperture library as screensaver anymore… Any tips?

  2. Kevin Rose October 31st, 2011 2:45 am

    Just wanted to say I love the new software, and have it one five different clients around the house – all working great!

    Thanks and well done!

  3. jon October 31st, 2011 2:55 am

    never been first before.

  4. Ollivier October 31st, 2011 3:19 am

    Hi,

    How about security ? Cannot set a password in plex server any longer, this means anyone can potentialy connect to my PMS over the air …

    This is not so cool …

  5. Sjostrand October 31st, 2011 3:21 am

    Note: http://www.myplex.com is NOT the same thing as my.plexapp.com. And your plex account does not work there…

    #LFMF ;)

  6. wmbell October 31st, 2011 4:14 am

    “myPlex” == GREAT Idea! I love the idea of queuing-up items! Being able to share my Home Movies and Pictures of my daughters will be a great treasure to friends and family!

    “Shelf/On-Deck” == Too Cluttered! We need the option of turning it Off/On! My suggestion is to have a “slide-out Shelf/On-Deck”. Basically, the MediaStream skin would be the standard “clean” skin with appropriate backgrounds, but pressing Right on your controller would trigger a “slide-out” menu to the new “Shelf/On-Deck” feature. Clicking back to the Left would then hide the feature again. This would produce a clean, more private interface, for the 10-foot (Living Room) experience, while still achieving quick-access to your recently viewed material.

    “Weather” == Where did it go? The Weather menu and its “widget” were subtle and silent in Plex, yet were VERY useful! I sure hope they arrive on the non-BETA release.

    “Favorites” == Where did they go? This is another highly-used feature. Why was it removed? Sure hope it comes back too!

    “Barkley” == What? How could you so easily forget this Plex Family Member?!? Shame on you! =)

  7. Alex October 31st, 2011 4:15 am

    some bugs in it (who cares cause its beta) but i have to say it has awsome features in it!
    Loving it, loving plex!!

  8. Dan Hausman October 31st, 2011 4:31 am

    Thank you for all you do! This is a great app, I use it to run all of my media.

  9. marklight October 31st, 2011 5:08 am

    You guys did a bang up job! Honestly the ease by which you allow us to access our media is awesome.

    Hopefully the forums get a bit more useable. It’s probably a compliment that so many ppl are bogging them down haha.

  10. mausdesign October 31st, 2011 5:10 am

    Security Settings seem to not be supported in the new iOS client. I cannot connect to my existing server now. How do you access the security settings area to enter the login information???

    Also cannot access forums now. I get a SQL error – Otherwise I would post there.

    Please help!

  11. plakna October 31st, 2011 5:24 am

    STEILO! :)

  12. Luke October 31st, 2011 5:37 am

    Great job on the new version. Nice to see you are working on a few small issues.

  13. james October 31st, 2011 5:38 am

    @Ollivier: This is so not true ;-) The new media server doesn’t allow unauthorised connections, at all. All connections from external IPs must now provide a valid access token from myPlex.

  14. JPer October 31st, 2011 6:51 am

    This is incredible guys! I am loving the new updates. Been putting everything through it’s paces since Sunday and Plex hasn’t missed a beat! I love it! Thanks so much!

    Quick question: The wifi in my house is spotty and I have a Mac Mini in the living room with the new Laika client installed. Is there a way to force PMS to transcode media when streaming to the Mini? It tries to Direct Play everything and my spotty wifi doesn’t allow that when it tries to play my Blu-Ray rips. It’s only a 720p TV, so full 1080p goodness isn’t needed anyway!

    Thanks so much again guys!

  15. Bryan October 31st, 2011 6:58 am

    Does MyPlex on the server side act as a DNS/IP auto-updater? I have a dynamic IP address and have been using DynDNS’s auto-updater and my own host name to access my content. With the addition of MyPlex it looks like it manually enters in my IP address – but does it update when the server’s IP address changes? How often does it check for updates?

    Also, do Plex servers work in series with my server and clients? ie: When Plex servers go down, do I lose the ability to connect to my server remotely?

  16. wally007 October 31st, 2011 7:29 am

    @Elan and dev team,
    “Why don’t I see/can’t I play my media on myPlex? myPlex is a cloud-based hub for your media, which helps connect Plex clients to Plex Media Servers, but it does not store your libraries (media or metadata).”

    I love Plex and all its quirks but I can not understand this one. I do not want myPLex to store video. I want it to LINK ALL my content into one queue to rule them all. So Provide me with links to ALL videos, not just queued up short clips. If it see sections and its content on myPLex website I want to play it. Otherwise I do not see a point for myPlex website. Couldnt SAME be incorporated into existing server/webserver ? Please consider LINKING my served content and allow me to use it :-)

  17. perssonster October 31st, 2011 9:55 am

    Just wanted to stop by and show my love for the new release! Its mindblowing! The minute you guys support freenas im buying some new hardware and stream everything everywhere!

  18. Daniel October 31st, 2011 10:15 am

    I reported something via Twitter (and got a response) so I’m a bit surprised to not see my issue under “Known Issues”: When I’m connected to my VPN (using Viscosity) and start the PMS, it seems to bind to my local VPN address and not my “real” local address, which – of course – results in Laika not seeing my PMS (even if it’s on the same machine).
    So right now I have to make sure to start PMS before connecting to my VPN, which is a bit annoying since I have them both setup to start at login.

  19. mapdek October 31st, 2011 10:57 am

    Great job, guys!
    Any ideas on how to change the language in Plex?

  20. Mike October 31st, 2011 10:59 am

    Great update to an already outstanding piece of software!

    My only complaint is that if I have friends or family over and we are browsing (for example) from TV SHOWS to MOVIES to MUSIC VIDEOS…when I get to the MOVIES section it randomly throws up an image from one of the thousands of movies I have…and sometimes those images can be offensive (to some folks anyway)…for example, I have: “Fast Times at Ridgemont High” and a huge image of Phoebe Cates in all her GLORY shows up on the screen….unfortunately, that isn’t something that everyone wants to see…there has got to be a way we can turn off the random thumbnail and or background images – isn’t there? I looked and tried a couple different things…but nothing I tried did the trick. Any help here?

    The other thing I would have liked to see in this release is password or PIN protected sections…I know this is holding quite a few of my friends back from using Plex. They don’t want their children to have full access…was really hoping this would have been added on this release.

    THANKS

  21. elan October 31st, 2011 11:00 am

    @Daniel: that too is a known issue, I didn’t post it because I believe a minority of people run VPNs, and the post was long enough as it was :) It’s on the list and we’ll fix it.

  22. golo October 31st, 2011 12:28 pm

    I love plex, but none of these changes address the issues I have had with it. #1 on that list is that manual port forwarding is not an option for me, and I wish this app could achieve these great things without it.

  23. jesse October 31st, 2011 12:30 pm

    You guys deserve huge congratulations for this huge release. The “My Plex” system and library sharing is what I’ve been hoping for and then some. A round of drinks on me.

  24. nookhorton October 31st, 2011 3:49 pm

    Amazing update! I second the request for password protected sections. Thanks!

  25. fanclerks October 31st, 2011 4:32 pm

    @golo

    I’m not entirely sure what you expect Plex to magically do to your router to have it setup port forwarding for you. Unless your router is UPnP, it ain’t gonna do that magically. Spend the 20 minutes it takes to figure out how to do it and do it yourself.

  26. Aaron Bockelie October 31st, 2011 9:49 pm

    I was just digging into all the bugs of 0.9.3, wishing a new version was out when BAM the download page is updated. How lucky am I?

    Thanks

    Aaron

  27. grgz October 31st, 2011 9:55 pm

    Thanks for the privacy info. Thats the sort of stuff I want to know about any “cloud” services I use. Awesome work guys!

  28. pninjs November 1st, 2011 1:01 am

    Excellent update just one problem on my iOS devices { iPad,iPhone 4s } won’t play apps like abc, revision 3 etc. but they work on my mac mini and mac book pro

  29. Juan November 1st, 2011 5:33 am

    Again, please give us high res audio (DTS-MA and Dolby True HD). Been asking for this a year ago and totally ignored by you folks. 95% of BDs are not able to play in Plex. It crashes when trying to play the HD audio.

    Thank you for your hard work with all the new releases and great features. None of these are useful to me at this moment.

    My 2011 Mac Mini, HD audio capable and Receiver cannot wait for your generosity.

  30. Vextrer November 1st, 2011 5:58 am

    I have been asking for DTS-MA Dolby true HD support for years too and never got any replies from them either. I am beginning to think their developers are simply junior programmers. With new releases, people just throw up their hands and vow Plex is the best in all these comments but in reality, Plex is NOT.

    I went back to MediaBrowser and never looked back.

  31. Mark Seaton November 1st, 2011 8:44 am

    Love the new update, I have noticed you added support for DVD which is fantastic! maybe in future releases you could add Blu-Ray Playing on Mac? and also EyeTV TV tuner? I would really like to add this to my media center so i can Tune/Record in HD on my Mac. Keep up the Good work and give your dog a bone for me :)

  32. eithe November 1st, 2011 8:56 am

    Thanks! Would love to see Favorites back, though ….

  33. eturk November 1st, 2011 10:48 am

    finally media center Plex for windows.
    BUT, this release shows no media menu options. music/video/pics missing from menu.
    do we need to install the server for windows also (though it is suggest that it is stand alone)?

  34. squirrellydw November 1st, 2011 11:16 am

    Just donated some beer money from my other email account. thanks and keep up the great work. email started with bongo if you need that info for any reason.

  35. boots2x November 1st, 2011 5:03 pm

    @Vextrer – how is your Mac connected to the AV Amp? Interested…

  36. singleuseonly November 1st, 2011 5:03 pm

    My fingers and toes are crossed that the ‘Applications’ menu returns in the next release……but I LOVE your work. Period. My MCE buddies are left sooooooooo jealous….!

  37. lasko November 1st, 2011 5:08 pm

    Do you plan on making this available for Leopard as well or will Snow Leopard always be the minimum requirement? I’d really hate to not be able to run this new release.

  38. ... November 1st, 2011 5:08 pm

    Thank you.

    You even fix the big sub-title bug, really appreciate.

  39. kevvo November 1st, 2011 5:10 pm

    One issue I’ve encountered is that there no longer seems to be the option to link Plex’s volume to the system’s. That was a really handy feature, and I hope it’s going to be brought back.

  40. Steven W November 1st, 2011 6:52 pm

    An issue I have with the new iphone app. The app does not mimic the rotation behavior of safari on iOS5, so you can not “lock” the app in horizontal by rotating to it’s side then upside down. This makes it near impossible to use in a bed or other comfortable position. Please fix this, I love this app but this feature has been missing since the second major update to the iOS app and desperately needs to come back soon.

  41. shaggydaddy November 1st, 2011 8:49 pm

    PLease please someone tell me why my friends and family who are suing iOS5 iPad 2 cant see my share stuff even if they have signed up for my plex

  42. elan November 2nd, 2011 1:12 am

    @shaggydaddy: It may be that this release of iOS doesn’t support “serverless” operation, so if you’ve shared with your friends, and they don’t have a Plex Media Server, the sharing feature doesn’t work. It’s a shortcoming, we suck, and we’ll address it.

  43. Ollivier November 2nd, 2011 1:16 am

    @James

    Well, on the subject of security, I’am afraid you’re only partially right.

    Since last version of iOS app and PMS, if I add a new server in the iOS app using my IP address (actually I use dyndns.org) the iOS app can connect to my PMS with no security applied, this means anyone knowing my dyndns.org domain name (and some do since this is used to make some of muy resources available) can connect to my PMS when they want even if I don’t want them to …

    To be precise : Connecting to my PMS not using MyPlex.

    I would like user/password settings to be restored…

    Thanks,

  44. jms_uk November 2nd, 2011 1:17 am

    I don’t know if its been mentioned. But does the PC Client support DXVA Hardware accelerated video decoding?(e.g. Like Media Player Classic Home Cinema)

    Just wondering as there are quite a few nice cheap Windows NetTops that have the nVidia ION2 chipset and can handle 1080p HD with ease (despite only having a dual core atom cpu)

  45. elan November 2nd, 2011 1:20 am

    @jms_uk: DXVA2 is supported.

  46. elan November 2nd, 2011 1:25 am

    @Ollivier: That is incorrect, but I’m happy to talk more and see if we can figure out what’s going on. Here’s me from a remote computer, talking to my home PMS:


    $ curl http://xxxxxxxx:32400
    401 Unauthorized
    $ curl http://xxxxxxxx:32400/library/sections
    401 Unauthorized

    Without a myPlex provided token (which you may have cached on your device), the connection will be refused.

  47. Aqntbghd November 2nd, 2011 3:19 am

    @elan> however you’re transmitting this token in cleartext over HTTP, so this token can be considered as public, and provides no security. :) I suspect few security problems in Plex sharing, however if you want to talk privately about it i’m glad to.

  48. Man November 3rd, 2011 6:43 am

    Just wanted to chime in and say the Laika has for me worked more or less 100% in both my OSX and Windows environments. it is quite strange that people have a lot of troubles. Not counting the obvious bugs like the screensaver not working as.
    Its cool that you (plex ) eventually reforked XBMC. That was a f…. nice touch! The picture/sound sync is much much improved, new ffmpeg handles 24bit with no problems, etc etc. Of course the guys over at XBMC hates you even more now :D

  49. Bill Grant November 3rd, 2011 7:14 am

    It sounds like I am in the minority but as a long time user I’m a bit disappointed that there is no way to use the new client without MyPlex. I like to have my video system stay inside the network (other than to collect video metadata) and this no longer allows me to do that. As long as 0.9.3.4 continues to work scraping metadata I will continue to use it. Once it breaks I suppose I will need to go back to XBMC.

  50. elan November 3rd, 2011 11:05 am

    @Bill: I’m not sure what you mean, you can use the new client without myPlex at all. We invented myPlex to make things easier for you, not to force you to use it. If you’re operating on your local network (you say “inside the network”) then simply don’t sign in.

  51. Bill Grant November 3rd, 2011 11:15 am

    Thanks @elan for the response… I loaded up the client and everything loaded magically. It’s the craziest thing, I had loaded the client twice before and just assumed I was going to have to use myPlex for something that was simple before.

    I take it all back… Awesome job.

  52. Michael Nord November 9th, 2011 2:34 am

    Plex still has issues with .dvdmedia files unfortunately. It starts playing them but suddenly the sound disappears. You restart Plex and it works again for a while. Occasionally the remote stops working when you ‘re playing .dvdmedia files.

  53. Jason November 12th, 2011 1:23 pm

    Great release!
    Am I the only one still having missing thumbnails for TV episodes?

  54. MildlyConcerned November 12th, 2011 5:09 pm

    I uninstalled immediately.

    Anyone else here concerned about giving Plex access to their collections? Why does Plex now need to maintain my login and with that access to my computer? What if Plex has coded full access to our entire computers in their closed source server software?

  55. elan November 12th, 2011 11:29 pm

    @MildlyConcerned: thankfully most people realize that use of myPlex is completely optional, and those who wish to continue using the media center/server as a local network only sort of a thing can keep doing so freely.

  56. Darkanima November 14th, 2011 6:46 am

    Hey elan, is there anyway to have the sound output level from the Plex client in sync with my mac sound level? In 9.3.5 there was an option in preferences->system->audio to make this happen.

  57. KS November 15th, 2011 5:20 am

    I love the windows client (Laika). I am able to access it on my computer from Windows Media Center as a plug-in. However, I am not able to access it from my XBOX 360 extender. It does not even appear as an “extra app/plugin” when accessed from my XBOX. Other plugins such as Mediabrowser do work. Any suggestions? Thanks

  58. krcnyc November 16th, 2011 5:06 pm

    like a few others, I have stuttering probs with the old mac mini so I’m back on the older release for now. Psyched about the new Barkley photo though :-)

  59. mischkaffee November 21st, 2011 4:03 pm

    the new release is working great on my one mac but…..I’m having trouble getting another to see the server through internet connection sharing…so i’ll stick with 094 on the affected machine.

  60. dm November 22nd, 2011 11:15 am

    I know I’m not the only one and I think a formal complaint has been submitted but I seem to have issues with audio when plugged in via optical on my macbook pro. I can watch a movie no problem when I first start up plex, but when I go to watch another movie or tv show, the audio fails and wont work until I shutdown the app and then restart plex.

    I do love the new features and I am sure this is just a minor bug!

  61. ArcSissy November 29th, 2011 5:23 am

    Please reinstate a login/pass model (token-free) version of Plex server en -App.
    I am using VPN to enter my personal Plex server over a additional subnet (VPN only) and therefore Plex Server is not available anymore.
    The older version rocked … but I’m on the break of departing with Plex due to the new traffic warden situation.

    Please revert!
    ArcSissy

  62. Paul Cheshire January 21st, 2012 10:00 am

    Hi, I am a complete novice. I have downloaded Plex for my IPad 2 but a;ll i get is a blank screen. Please help.

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