Raspberry Pi DLNA Server/renderer

Introduction: Raspberry Pi DLNA Server/renderer

On this instructable, I'm going to show how to configure a Raspi to run a UPNP/DLNA server and renderer.

My main goal is to use it on my car as a media server.

As I still haven't got a wifi usb drive, I'll be setting this 'able as a home server/renderer, using MediaHouse on my Android phone for streaming.

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Step 1: MiniDLNA

  • First, we need to get our system updated and install MiniDLNA. I usually enter sudo su, so I don't have to enter sudo before each command.

Via terminal, type:

# sudo su
# apt-get update
# apt-get upgrade 
# apt-get install minidlna

After installation, we are going to configure minidlna:

# nano /etc/minidlna.conf
  • Remove the comment (#) from these lines and add next to # media_dir to mount 3 USB drives:



# media_dir=A,/mnt/ext/Music 

# media_dir=P,/mnt/ext/Pictures 

# media_dir=V,/mnt/ext/Videos 

friendly_name=MyPi (change per your liking) 


exit and save (Ctl+x, Y, Enter)

  • I want my database to be rebuilt at each boot as it doesn't take too long, and keeps all files fresh and updated. The best way I found was to run a script at boot to launch MiniDLNA and have it rebuild the database.
# nano /etc/init.d/dlnascan

Paste the following:



# Provides:          dlnascan

# Required-Start:    $local_fs $network

# Required-Stop:     $local_fs

# Default-Start:     2 3 4 5

# Default-Stop:      0 1 6

# Short-Description: dlnascan

# Description:      Rebuilds MiniDLNA database on boot 


service minidlna force-reload

Save the script and make it executable:

# chmod 755 /etc/init.d/dlnascan

Then, load it for startup:

# update-rc.d dlnascan defaults

Step 2: Renderer

Follow this excelent guide to install gstreamer (move down to the gstreamer section):


Step 3: Testing, 1, 2, 3...

Reboot the Pi with no media attached and load House Media or your preferred DLNA/UPNP app.
Scan the Pi's DLNA for files; there shouldn't be any. Attach a drive and reboot.

Wait for the database to build up (use a pen drive with a couple of files for testing) and restart your DLAN app. You should now see the new files.

Give yourself a tap on the back and start streaming!

Step 4: Update 1

  • Looking back to step 1, and as we are controlling the Raspi through a smartphone app, I found the neat "Raspi SSH" app.
  • This app lets us have preset SSH commands with a simple icon button press.
  • Download the app and add 3 SSH commands - at least these are the ones I find most usefull:
  • Button 1:
Name: Reboot

Command: sudo reboot
  • Button 2:
Name: Shutdown

Command: sudo shutdown -h now
  • Button 3:
Name: DLNAdbUpdate

Command: sudo service minidlna force-reload
  • Now, going back to step 1, the is no need for the boot script. Instead, we'll simply execute this command on terminal instead.
  • Removing the script (if you had already configured the Raspi that way):
# sudo update-rc.d dlnascan remove
  • Then:
# sudo update-rc.d minidlna defaults

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    4 years ago

    merci vos tuto superbe