This article is a bit out of the scope of what ComicUI normally covers, but last night I found myself frustrated due to the lack of ability to watch some of my locally kept Marvel TV shows.
I’m an avid user of AppleTV and PlexConnect on it. Requires no jailbreaking on AppleTV 3’s and Plex Media Server is quickly becoming a better alternative than XBMC for home networking. The AppleTV update yesterday that added Disney, Weather, and other channels, essentially broke the methods that PlexConnect used to communicate with the AppleTV.
Within the 24 hours of the problem, PlexConnect developer, Paul Kehrer, has posted a fix which he hopes is temporary. It involves an AppleTV, copy of Apple Configurator on Mac and a MicroUSB cable to connect to the AppleTV. It may sound a bit technical, but his posted instructions are easy to follow and give back the sweet PlexConnect functionality we love.
In my living room sits the ultimate amalgamation of home media devices: X-box 360, Blu-ray player, and an AppleTV. None of them work in tandem with one another and each has a designated purpose. Now many people don’t have AppleTV’s, for which I’m writing this article, but since purchasing one, I’ve loved it. Advantages include AirPlay for the iPhones and iPads that reside in the apartment, along with being able to use my Macbook on the TV is a huge bonus when working on video (OS X Mavericks allows an AppleTV to become a second monitor, so that really has my attention), and access to my iTunes purchases for watch on the TV is enough to justify the purchase alone.
However, the AppleTV lacks one feature that I rely on for my media consumption: home network playback (and does not support apps that could make this a reality). An example of this includes some DVD copies I may have put on a local desktop server that I want to access on my iPad or whatever I have in my hands at the time. In comes PlexConnect. This program is not an app, but rather a Python scrip that runs in tandem with Plex Media Server (PMS for short, yes, get your giggles out now). PMS is a program that runs on your computer and shares your audio-visual media across the network. It has apps for every mobile device, and is accessible via browser as well. The best part is that it automagically scrapes the internet for movie/episode information, downloads it, and has that available for everything you watch. So you can get a quick synopsis at a glance, plus see where it belongs in the viewing order of things. Something a media junkie like me appreciates.
PlexConnect uses a Python script to trick the AppleTV into having the pre-installed Trailers app access the Plex Media Server. This is a case of DNS spoofing and requires no jailbreak or hard-coded changes to your AppleTV. Its quick, its clean, and it makes the world go round. However, with the latest AppleTV update, this method was broken (probably intentionally).
Thankfully, the developer of PlexConnect is super awesome and had a fix for it in less than 24 hours. If you’re looking to start your PlexConnect journey, please follow the tutorials here. Read on it BEFORE beginning and make sure you have PMS installed on your local machine.