View Full Version : Best operating system for a media server

10-07-2012, 07:43 PM
I'm thinking of turning my old PC box into a media server so I can free up some room on my current PC.

It will just have movie and music files on it, and ideally i'd like to be able to view all these on my pc/blu ray player and ps3.

Is there a 'best' operation system that I should use?

10-11-2012, 05:31 AM
Depends on your system.

If your machine is quite a bit older it may be difficult to run it as a media server.

A good OS for older hardware is Puppy Linux.

A media server in your home isn't going to be more than a file share for you alone so I wouldn't assume a lot of security is necessary.

You could really use a wide variety of Linux distros. All you need is to share files from computer to server and vice versa.

I like Debian personally.

ClearOS is good.

A lot of people like Ubuntu. (it was based on Debian)

There is CentOS also. Cent OS is basically RedHat without having to pay for support. After RedHat releases their code changes the CentOS team apply it to their OS, and keep building off of it.

If your desktop is Windows based you can always use Samba and Putty to help run a Linux server with it.

10-14-2012, 01:30 PM
for low power systems i would go with debin i guess.
i had it running smoothly on embedded systems with 1ghz ARM cpu and 512 megs of ram (less power than decent smartphone).
even with that configuration you can run minidlna server, trnsmission, ftp, samba and a web server at the same time ;)

to view stuff on your dlna-capable tv:

10-14-2012, 02:52 PM
FreeNAS would make an excellent media server. I'd love to try it out, but I don't have the cash to invest in things i would need for the system right now.

It is really cool how it works. You have a box without a hard drive. Then you use a USB to boot the OS, and a hard drive enclosure with however many hard drives. Then FreeNAS becomes a share point for all clients on your network.If you got an enclosure with 3 or 4 hard drive slots that was RAID compatible you'd be able to have an amazing media server.

I am just learning about how it works so I can't go int oa lot of detail. Check out the FreeNAS build video series these guys made. Very good information.


And check out the FreeNAS website.