How to Install Plex on the Apple TV For Free

By , Feb 6, 2012

Plex is a simple way to access both local media stored on your PC or networked drives, along with online media on a variety of devices.

There are Plex apps for the Mac, PC, iOS, and even Android devices. Being the ubiquitous app that it is, it’s not surprising that it runs on a jailbroken Apple TV.

Inside we’ll show you how to install Plex on your jailbroken Apple TV for free…

Important: You will need a jailbroken Apple TV 2. If you have yet to jailbreak your Apple TV, see our Apple TV jailbreak guide. You will also need Plex Media Server installed an configured on your local computer. I go into that a bit in the video, but you will need to configure that on your own. You can download Plex Media Server for Mac or Windows.

Above all, watch the video, as it will make the following instruction make a lot more sense.

Step 1: Verify the IP address of your Apple TV. It must be on the same network as your computer.

Step 2: SSH into your Apple TV 2, by opening a terminal and typing SSH root@xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx where x = your Apple TV’s IP address. Your password is alpine, unless you have changed it.

Step 3: At the terminal execute the following commands one by one:

  • echo “deb http://www.ambertation.de ./downloads/PLEX/” > /etc/apt/sources.list.d/plex.list
  • apt-get update
  • apt-get install com.plex.client-plugin
  • dpkg -l
  • killall AppleTV

The dpkg -l command is there for you to verify that the necessary packages have been installed. Look for packages mobilesubstrate, org.tomcool.smframework, com.plex.client-plugin and beigelist. For more help with these commands, visit Plex’s help page for the Apple TV.

Step 4: Your Apple TV should reboot, and you should now have the Plex menu item. Under Plex go to Settings > Manage Server List > and you should see the name of the Plex Media Server running on the same local network as your Apple TV. Add that server.

Step 5: Explore! Go to Movies, and find all of the movies that you configured using the Plex Media Manager running on your local computer. You can also add various channels to access online content similar to XBMC’s plugins.

Plex is an extremely easy to install and easy to use app for the Apple TV. The only thing you have to keep in mind is that you must have the Plex Media Server running on a local machine as the same network in order to find your content. Be sure to watch the video for more details.

Another thing to keep in mind is that you can also install Plex without using command line commands by using aTV Flash (black). Plex is one of the pre-configured packages that comes with FireCore’s jailbreak tool.

Have you ever used Plex? How does it rate in your book?

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  • http://twitter.com/oneBurge Burge

    Jeff your a god ..you have saved me the time in to looking in to this ..I thank you..

  • Anonymous

    With the firecore software, I believe there’s an option to install it, just like installing XBMC….

    • http://www.youtube.com/myjailbreakmovies/ Jeff Benjamin

      There is, I mentioned that above. This is for people who want it free though.

      • Juan Vargas

        Hey Jeff, I got an issue after installing Plex; my apple tv doesn’t restart and the screen stays black occasionally showing and apple logo and going right back to the black screen. Would you know a workaround for this?

      • Arne Lamet

        I have the exact same problem!

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Steve-Slade/100003059414956 Steve Slade

        Me too… just wish I knew what i/we did wrong.. Jeff, if you’re out there.. please Help!!

      • http://twitter.com/Arturikbk Art

        you can use IFUNBOX if you on PC like me and you dont know anything about ssh.
        Download IFUNBOX and connect Apple tv 2 to your PC, you will need mini usb cable that connects to the back of apple tv.
        and from Ifunbox you can see ssh thing. open it and inter :
        apt-get remove com.plex.client-plugin

      • http://twitter.com/Arturikbk Art

        and you Steve just saved my day and probably a lot of headache !!!
        thanks brother very much.

      • Anonymous

        Jeff I know this is an old post, but I followed your instructions, and everything went as planed. But after my atv rebooted it did not show plex. Do you have an idea what went wrong?

  • Anonymous

    Sorry about that, Jeff

  • http://www.way2hype.com 1976Hoosiers

    This is awesome, but plex hasn’t been released with the latest firecore. I had to install a beta. Is there an official release for this with 4.4.4?

  • Anonymous

    we have a router where we just plug in the external HD.

  • http://twitter.com/KorensLi Ortal d

    Jeff hi
    where is the list with pkg we need to check
    I’m Probably missing something because I get a black screen (safe mode)

  • Alexei ALX

    Hi Jeff !!! Nice blog!!! One question…..plex work only with a computer? Not work with a NAS ? XMBC work Well with my NAS

  • Anonymous

    Jeff great article…
    Currently I waste a lot of time converting my videos to iTunes format.. So with this I could just play any file format I guess..

    Thnaks!!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/zoopmitty Zoop Mitty

    i just RE-installed plex on my apple tv using the steps above but i can’t find the “Plex Online” feature where i install new add-ons. before on my old version i would go to
    plex->server list->my iMac->plex online (which was near at the bottom)to install new add-ons but now i don’t’ have that option. all i have movie, movies, music, tv, tv shows, and channels. did it move??? anybody have this problem??? am i missing something???

  • http://www.facebook.com/zoopmitty Zoop Mitty

    i just RE-installed plex on my apple tv using the steps above but i can’t find the “Plex Online” feature where i install new add-ons. before on my old version i would go to
    plex->server list->my iMac->plex online (which was near at the bottom)to install new add-ons but now i don’t’ have that option. all i have movie, movies, music, tv, tv shows, and channels. did it move??? anybody have this problem??? am i missing something???

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Cameron-Farzaneh/100000931068104 Cameron Farzaneh

    is this illegal?

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Sherif-Saleh/501165316 Sherif Saleh

    For some reason it doesn’t work.
    I followed your instructions very well, the appleTV reboots after the installation of the plug-ins before I type the killall. When I type killall appletv, it says host not found.

    Apple-TV:~ root# killall AppleTV
    No matching processes were found
    Apple-TV:~ root# killall AppleTV
    Apple-TV:~ root# Write failed: Broken pipe
    Sherifs-MacBook-Pro:~ sheefo2k$

    Now It will not reboot and I have to start from scratch. I have to install the stock firmware, then jailbreak and attempt this plea installation for the 4th time. what am i doing wrong?

    • http://twitter.com/mvgiacomelllo Maurício Giacomello

      Same error here. Anyone knows how workaround this issue?

      I do: apt-get install stuff
      after that when i type: killall AppleTV, it give me this message: No matching processes were found, and I have to restore the factory firmware and then jailbreak it again.

      Rly appreciate any comment.

      Tks.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/PTZLME4N2XPQ2PUDMZ77S66TE4 DOVERS

    do not work with 4.4.4

    • http://twitter.com/mvgiacomelllo Maurício Giacomello

      Read my reply over yours. You can use the actual beta version that works with 4.4.4. Cheers. I’m running plex over my 4.4.4 aTV for 2 weeks and no big issues til now. Cheers.

  • joe

    still work on 5.2

  • mdxsport acura

    won’t work tv 3

  • mdxsport acura

    terminal then ssh root@ plus ip
    refuse