Stream video content from XBMC on Ubuntu Linux to an Xbox 360

I’ve recently started to play around with XBMC, a fantastic open-source media server that supports UPnP.

Main XBMC interface.

Following is a quick procedure to stream video content from a machine running XBMC to an Xbox 360 Arcade.

In this example, my XBMC server is an Intel Q8200 machine running Ubuntu 12.04, with XBMC version 11.0 installed. I’ve assumed that the server and Xbox are already connected to a home LAN. XBMC is running the detault Confluence skin.

 

First, let’s enable basic sharing. Launch XBMC, and in the application, goto “System -> Network”. Enable “Share video and music libraries through UPnP”:

XBMC - enable PnP

Now, let’s locate the media server from the Xbox. On the Xbox, go to the Xbox Home screen, then “settings -> System -> Network Settings -> Wired Network -> Test PC Connection”. If successful, you should see your XBMC server listed:

Xbox wired network settings test.

Now let’s add a video to test streaming with. In XBMC, goto “Videos -> Files -> Add Videos…”, and locate a folder containing a compatible video file (see here for compatibility details). If the video is not automatically detected by XBMC’s media scrapers, then you can manually add a video using this guide. Either way, the video file must be in the XBMC library for it to be detected by the Xbox:

Video added to the XBMC library.

Finally, on the XBox, go to the Xbox Home screen, then “movies -> My Video Apps -> System Video Player -> XBMC (Your XBMC Media Server) -> Recently added movies”. You should see the file shared from XBMC listed – select it and play:

Location the Xbox video player app.

Launching the Xbox system video player app.

XBMC server detected on the Xbox.

Recently added movies in XBMC on the Xbox.

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20 thoughts on “Stream video content from XBMC on Ubuntu Linux to an Xbox 360

  1. Pingback: Rip a DVD for streaming to an XBox 360 from XBMC « Dave Koelmeyer

  2. Pingback: Stream video content from XBMC to an Android tablet | Dave Koelmeyer

  3. justmeyogs

    Hi There,

    I have been trying to get my XBMC Media Server to stream to my xbox, I am able to see the media server from the xbox however when I attempt to connect, it coming back with an error that there might be a firewall blocking connection.

    XBMC is installed on Ubuntu 12.04
    trying to stream to Xbox 360

    Any help would be awesome.

    Thanks

    Y

    Reply
      1. justmeyogs

        Hi,

        Thanks for replying so soon. Here is the error verbatim.

        “Can’t connect to the PC. A firewall may be firewall may be blocking the connection.”

        Thanks

        Yogesh

    1. justmeyogs

      Hi Dave,

      I apologise for the tardy reply, I am in Canada and I needed to get some sleep. I have reboot ubuntu a couple of times. I have a feeling that it might be a port within iptables but I am not that well versed in editing that part, I dont want to screw anything up

      Yogesh

      Reply
    2. justmeyogs

      Hi Dave,

      Just wanted to give you an update here, I am now able to connect tot he XBMX mailserver from my xbox however there are no files to display. Is there something that I am missing in order for the files to show up? I just rebooted the server now again, lets hope I can connect fine.

      Thanks,

      Yogesh

      Reply
      1. justmeyogs

        Just an addendum, rebooted server, restarted xbox, xbox still seeing media server however firewall error again.

      2. davekoelmeyer Post author

        In XBMC, can you make sure you have the “Share video and music libraries through UPnP” setting enabled (see https://davekoelmeyer.files.wordpress.com/2011/01/xbmcenablepnp.png). This is one way in which I am able to recreate your error message.

        If you do have it enabled and still get the firewall error, then it’s possible that the UPnP service is not running on Ubuntu, or another application is hogging the service ports required. Do you have any other media streaming applications running on the Ubuntu machine? If so, try disabling them, then launch XBMC and try again.

        Unless you have performed some fairly detailed modifications to the default Ubuntu installation including firewall settings, I shouldn’t think iptables would affect this at all. The reference to the firewall settings in the Xbox error message are most likely boilerplate for any general connectivity issue. On an out-of-the-box installation of Ubuntu, this configuration should “just work”. I am assuming as well that both your Xbox and the Ubuntu machine are on the same local network. If you have any other computers on the local network also sharing media, then I would suggest powering them off while troubleshooting this.

        Let me know how it goes 🙂

      3. Aaron Planell

        Hey justmeyogs,

        For discover if the problem is the firewall try to disable it with the command:
        sudo ufw disable

        And test it again. It works for me. I will try soon not disable the firewall instead of open the ports with the command: sudo ufw allow xxxx. The problem is that I don’t know which ports must be open, jejeje.

        Good Luck!

        Best regards,
        Aaron Planell

      4. Aaron Planell

        Ei Justmeyogs,

        Try with:
        sudo ufw allow 14765
        sudo ufw allow 57960
        sudo ufw allow 57263
        sudo ufw allow 46743
        sudo ufw enable

        With this commands you only open the ports that you need.
        It works for me.

        PD: Thanks Davekoelmeyer for your blog!

        Good Luck!

        Aaron Planell

  4. Xdcfan

    hi there guys, thx this post now i can see my XBMC laptop server on my xbox 360, but like Justmeyogs there are no files listed to display, i don’t have firewalls errors but i deactivated anyway to be sure, with no luck.

    plus, i’ve installed xbmc remote on my android phone and i can manage my pc without trouble, so don’t know what heppend.

    running under
    Linux Mint Maya 32bits
    wireless connect.

    any help would be preciated.
    thx in advance

    sorry about my english, i’m chilean and i do my best :p
    Xdc

    Reply
    1. davekoelmeyer Post author

      Thanks for commenting 🙂 Can you please check the following and let me know?

      In XBMC, can you make sure you have the “Share video and music libraries through UPnP” setting enabled (see https://davekoelmeyer.files.wordpress.com/2011/01/xbmcenablepnp.png).

      Do you have any other media streaming applications running on your server? If so, try disabling them, then launch XBMC and try again.

      And can you play the media you wish to stream in XBMC itself? That is, can you play it in XBMC without streaming to your Xbox?

      Reply
      1. Xdcfan

        thx for reply so soon davekoelmeyer.

        just back to say i recently saw a movie trough xbmc server and my xbox360.
        xbmc settings wasn’t the problem, just when i back to scan computers serving on my 360 i saw the message about NAT config, i’ve check my zte zxv10 w300 router config and UPnP was deactivated

        i just activated both, save config and i could play my files.
        maybe thats happend to Justmeyogs.

        Happy about it.

        just some Questions
        Q. how can i order files by folders cuz the 360 show the files by genre and others
        Q. any way to run the server minimized? to work while kids watch movies. :p

        thx.
        Xdc

  5. davekoelmeyer Post author

    Great – thanks for the update and information 🙂 Those are two very good questions – happy to cover those in a blog post in the very near future, so stay tuned!

    Reply
  6. Dave

    Can you please update the guide? Since Xbox 360 got its latest software update, the settings have changed and more importantly, so has the screen for video playback. I really can’t find where to look to look for my XBMC.

    Reply

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