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  • PlexConnect Brings Plex to 3rd-Gen Apple TV without a Jailbreak


    The Apple TV might be easy to use and affordable but it doesnít do much if you want to run third-party services until now. Systems like Plex have required an older jailbroken box if you want to run them in the past but this is all about to change with PlexConnect, a new homegrown hack by the company which puts Plex in Full HD on 2nd- and 3rd-generation Apple TV boxes, with only a single modification on the Apple box itself.

    Although thereís been a Plex client for the Apple TV for some time, it hasnít been the most streamlined of systems. The biggest issue for mass market acceptance in the past was that it required the Apple TV to have gone through the jailbreak process, which can be tricky for beginners and since thereís currently no jailbreak for the third-gen Apple TV, it means hunting down on one of the increasingly exclusive second-gen versions. Listings of new second-gen models on Amazon are hovering around roughly $400 as opposed to $96 for the current model.

    PlexConnect works differently though. Instead of requiring installation on the Apple TV itself, it runs on the media server computer of your Plex system. JavaScript and XML is then used to deliver content to the Apple TV, which sees PlexConnect as the official Trailer app.

    Since itís an official release from the Plex team, users already get the companyís latest transcoder, subtitle support, and at least AC3 5.1 audio. As of right now, the software is in its earliest stages and still demands a little familiarity with Terminal in order to get it up and running, though itís likely an update will make it more user friendly in the near future. Despite all this, one Plex team member reported having everything all up and working in under two minutes.

    Apple could easily turn around and block the loophole that the Plex team seems to have taken advantage of with the particular hack as the Cupertino California company has in the past. There have been plenty of rumors that Apple is planning its own entertainment system, one that is more robust with the likes of Siri and a high-definition television set but no news has been released as of yet. So far, the Apple TV has been treated as more of a hobby but with the release of PlexConnect, more users may want to consider picking it up.

    Source: Plexapp (Thanks to MMi user Rick Fayad for sending this in)
    This article was originally published in forum thread: PlexConnect Brings Plex to 3rd-Gen Apple TV without a Jailbreak started by Akshay Masand View original post
    Comments 14 Comments
    1. jtanner's Avatar
      jtanner -
      I have a 2nd Gen Apple TV collecting dust I'd happily sell for $400 day-yam!!

      Good work to plex though nice to see their progress
    1. fanboyfanboy's Avatar
      fanboyfanboy -
      Quote Originally Posted by jtanner View Post
      I have a 2nd Gen Apple TV collecting dust I'd happily sell for $400 day-yam!!

      Good work to plex though nice to see their progress
      I want to but an ATV but I still haven't realized why you need to jail break it, which is my only deciding factor whether to spend alot on 2nd gen or little on 3rd gen
    1. rickuk's Avatar
      rickuk -
      Quote Originally Posted by fanboyfanboy View Post
      I want to but an ATV but I still haven't realized why you need to jail break it, which is my only deciding factor whether to spend alot on 2nd gen or little on 3rd gen
      XBMC and PLEX are the only two reasons I have a AppleTV at all, and then only a jailbroken one,
    1. fleurya's Avatar
      fleurya -
      Nice!! I don't see why other hacks couldn't follow suit too!

      I sold my ATV2 8 months ago for a low $150 because I didn't use the JB features very much. I figured the 3rd gen could be busted open at any moment. Wish I knew then it would take this long and I'd made more money!
    1. JedixJarf's Avatar
      JedixJarf -
      Meh, I sold my ATV-2 for $250 on fleabay and switched over to the Roku for PLEX. Haven't looked back since.
    1. fanboyfanboy's Avatar
      fanboyfanboy -
      Quote Originally Posted by rickuk View Post
      XBMC and PLEX are the only two reasons I have a AppleTV at all, and then only a jailbroken one,
      I've searched what's the main use of both and just really don't understand why they're that important, guess its a need it as you use it type thing
    1. ice913's Avatar
      ice913 -
      Why do you need apple tv when you can get the mac mini. Plus Hulu and other sites are not blocked.
    1. vinaygoel2000's Avatar
      vinaygoel2000 -
      Quote Originally Posted by ice913 View Post
      Why do you need apple tv when you can get the mac mini. Plus Hulu and other sites are not blocked.
      I didn't know Mac Mini was $89. Going to the store now.
    1. tankz504's Avatar
      tankz504 -
      MovieBox and an Apple TV 3. That's the combo!
    1. b1997469's Avatar
      b1997469 -
      Nice, finally the ATV v3 can do something other than collect dust.
      Now HOW do I install this? Anyone got a better tutorial than "use terminal" as thats all I found so far...
    1. fungusfeet's Avatar
      fungusfeet -
      Quote Originally Posted by b1997469 View Post
      Nice, finally the ATV v3 can do something other than collect dust.
      Now HOW do I install this? Anyone got a better tutorial than "use terminal" as thats all I found so far...
      https://github.com/iBaa/PlexConnect/wiki/Install-guides

      It's very easy, have it running on my hp microserver, Apple TV now works like it should have originally.
    1. b1997469's Avatar
      b1997469 -
      Quote Originally Posted by fungusfeet View Post
      https://github.com/iBaa/PlexConnect/wiki/Install-guides

      It's very easy, have it running on my hp microserver, Apple TV now works like it should have originally.
      Thanks. I got it installed and the ATV3 can see but it wont play anything.

      Wondering if I can set up a NAS as the plex server instead of the PC? Thats where everything is so it streams from the NAS to the PC to the ATV3, I just want to remove the middle part.
    1. fungusfeet's Avatar
      fungusfeet -
      Quote Originally Posted by b1997469 View Post
      Thanks. I got it installed and the ATV3 can see but it wont play anything.

      Wondering if I can set up a NAS as the plex server instead of the PC? Thats where everything is so it streams from the NAS to the PC to the ATV3, I just want to remove the middle part.
      That's the setup I have, I have ubuntu server installed, guess it depends on what NAS you have and what operating system it runs.

      I did have the same issue as you where it wouldn't play anything but that was only the first few times and I think it was just while it was downloading the metadata for the shows.
    1. b1997469's Avatar
      b1997469 -
      I've been searching and it looks like both my NAS systems cant run PLEX.
      Pity as thats where all my movies and TV shows are. The PC isn't always on so cant use the ATV3 all the time.
      Still waiting for the jailbreak for ATV3 so I can finally access the NAS's directly.

      It's taking ages for PLEX to set up all the files but it looks like its working for some files and not others.
      I've tried 2 AVIs and 1 works and the other doesn't. I'm guessing after everything is cataloged then it'll work.