How to Easily Create Home Media Server with Ubuntu 20.04

gnome shell

Now it’s easily to create a home media sever in Ubuntu with the default Gnome desktop since a new sharing option added in Settings utility.

Rygel is a home media solution (UPnP AV Media Server) allows you to easily share audio, video, and pictures to smart TV, game consoles, or other devices over a home network.

Since Ubuntu 19.10, Rygel is installed out-of-the-box, and Settings utility offers an option to easily toggle the service.

1.) Open Settings and navigate to Sharing in the left pane. Then turn on the top-right corner toggle, and finally click on “Media Sharing”

2.) In the next popup dialog, do:

  • Turn on the top-left toggle to enable media sharing.
  • Add (scroll down, click ‘+’ button) or remove folders you want to share.
  • Choose Wifi or Wired network if both connected.

Finally, enjoy streaming media in your TV, mobile phone, or any other devices with DLNA/UPnP support.

By Ji m

I'm a freelance blogger who started using Ubuntu in 2007 and wishes to share my experiences and some useful tips with Ubuntu beginners and lovers. Please comment to remind me outdated tutorial! And, notify me if you find any typo/grammar/language mistakes. English is not my native language. Contact me via Buy me a coffee:


  1. If using Ubuntu Server 20.04 and wanting to not install a GUI is this the best option?

  2. Does this Media Sharing work when no users are logged in or is that required?

    Some answers for the other questions:
    [quote] If using Ubuntu Server 20.04 and wanting to not install a GUI is this the best option?[/quote]
    MiniDLNA and Plex Media Servers don’t need a GUI to setup. MiniDLNA is 100% text config file controlled. PMS has a web-GUI on port 32400 to configure everything. No plex account or paid plex anything needed. Any DLNA client on the same subnet can access the Plex media.

    [quote] Does it work for sub folders in Videos as well?[/quote]
    Yes, if the file permissions allow the userid running the rygen process to have access to those files and directories. Unix file and directory permissions matter, always.

    [quote]possible switch on dlna on 20.04 from ssh? [/quote]
    Appears that rygel can be configured to run using a different userid than the logged in userid. If a start/stop/status job is created using init.d/ or upstart or systemd Unit files, then a different userid can be used. The media files need to have normal Unix permissions to the other account can access them. Then just use the sudo systemctl start rygel and sudo systemctl stop rygel.

    1. My media share folders are also samba shares with user nobody nogroup. Does this stop the rygel tracker plugin from scanning at boot? The tracker is not finding mpeg files and I am looking for the reason.

  3. Hi, thanks for your sharing. Issue when trying to install gupnp app-repo on Ubuntu Fossa .
    Unable to see chromecast or smart tv in vlc.
    No renderer shown
    Any idea

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