Richard is trying to use PLEX and he can't understand how to make it work. Leo says he can watch his own movies using a PLEX Server. That will serve up any media he has on the network.
Ben has a Fire TV and wants to know if he can watch videos from his computer. Rich says that he can grab an external hard drive, then add it to Fire TV on the network and use VLC Media Client play the movies from that. Otherwise, he'll have to consider a network attached storage and a media client.
Walt has a few hundred CDs and he'd like to rip them, put them on a music server, and then donate them. Leo recommends ripping in a lossless version called FLAC. FLAC is a great because if one needs to re-burn to a CD, they can. If using iTunes, he should use Apple's own lossless codec. Using a Mac that stays on all the time would work, but Leo recommends using a Network Attached Storage device and have that run as the music server. It can also do double duty backing up the network. Leo recommends the Synology brand.
Matt has backed up all his family home movie DVDs on his network, but they're not playable because they were backed up as disc images or VOB files. What can he do? Leo says what Matt needs to do is create an ISO for them. There's software that does it. Leo recommends getting media server software like KODI. Then he can use the AppleTV that can see it and play it.
Seth wants to set up a home media server for a friend. He has an array of hard drives that connect via Thunderbolt and wants to share those with everyone else in the house. Can he do that or does he have to migrate to a separate NAS? Leo says that a Home Media Server is a kind of NAS that can be an older computer or even a hard drive that runs Apple Media Player or even Windows Media Player. In fact, many routers can do this as well. Apple's Airport can do this. But the best idea is just to get a Network Attached Storage and run the home media server software that comes with it.
Mark wants to create a media server in his home that he can stream throughout the house. Is there a server that works across multiple platforms that will allow him to go from room to room and remember where he was? Leo recommends Plex. It's based on the XBox Media Center and they've gone well beyond that. And XBMC will remember where he is.
Earl bought an HP Windows Home Server and now that it's not supported by Microsoft anymore, he wants to know if he can convert it to a media server. Leo says sure! Just because Microsoft doesn't support Windows Home server doesn't mean it won't work anymore. It's fairly straight forward to set up. The real challenge will be digitizing everything. Once it's all digitized, it can be stored and made available by all computers on Earl's network. Paul Thurrott of winsupersite.com was a huge fan of Windows Home Server.
Justin bought a Roku Box and has a bunch of movies and TV shows he bought on iTunes and wanted to stream them via Plex. Leo says that copy protection won't allow that, though. Justin says that's why he's buying discs again. He's wondering if he can rip them and stream them online? Leo says that once they're ripped, he could, but he'd have to have a media server and then log into it remotely. It's doable, as long as it's just for private use.