Mobile devices have completely changed the way how we access our media and files. Also by mobile devices i don’t mean tableta and mobile. I am also considering TV, gaming consoles like PS3. We often want them to be connected and play all sorts of filea without the fuss of copying files from one device to another. If you have any spare PC lying around in some corner you can very easily convert that machine into a file & media server.
Look into your junkyard and assemble a old lying computer. I would suggest you to use the old computer but new harddisk. This harddisk is basically suppose to hold all your files and therefore to have hassle free accesss you should use new harddisk.
Also I would recommend using a new Gigabit LAN card and Switch if possible that would enhance your network speed and stop delays while streaming high bandwidth videos like Bluray Media
Download latest Ubuntu distribution and install it over the PC. You can find lots of install documentation on the net.
Assign static IP to this machine. I have another post which describes static IP assignment.
Install Samba server.
apt-get install samba
And use official Ubuntu page for samba to configure it. You can also make use of the webmin tool to configure your server which makes configuration quiet a fun to do.
Install rygel to serve your media files on the network. Their are lots of media servers available for Ubuntu both free and paid but I like rygel the most as it’s minimum configuration and robust performance is good in the long run because what matters the most is that you have trouble free media serving. It basically works as DLNA server which is mostly compatible with wide range of devices.
apt-get install rygel rygel-preferences
Now simply open GUI utility rygel preferences and setup your media path.
You are done 🙂
Enjoy your own mini file and media server.