Ubuntu 10.04 Media/Video Streaming server LAN

Hello, this is kind of a shot in the dark.

I'm semi new to linux, I know the ins and outs and how to get around using commands, etc. But I'm not an expert so I don't even know if something like this would even be possible.

What I want to do is, have a server ( already got it set up and running ) that streams or provides media for my upstairs Windows 7 Home Theater PC. I know the conflict between Windows and Linux is going to make this a bit of a task, but I have a semi decent idea.

What if I just set up a simple web page over LAN using apache ( So ) that had some sort of flash player embedded so that my family can just pick a movie I put on there and watch it. Seems pretty simple to me, and it eliminates the cross platform issues. But I'm not sure If I can set up a player that will play my HD video's in good quality.

My other idea is just somehow stream these videos, using something like samba. I would need to see a directory of some sort, to locate these video's and be able to just play them over the network. I'm not even sure if this is possible.

I'm also open to any ideas, or solutions.

Keep in mind, I'm dead set on using linux for my server, and windows for my HTPC, I have my reasons.
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  1. Best answer
    Probably the simplest solution would be to set up a Samba share on your Ubuntu box, and share the directory of your media. You can then mount this share on your Windows box, and be able to navigate a directory full of said files.

    If you're able to capture streams on your HTPC, you could also set up a streaming service such as Media Tomb and stream/transcode media directly from your Ubuntu box. I'm not sure if your HTPC would support this or not however.
  2. Awesome, thanks for the input.

    What would my HTPC require to do this?

    AMD Athlon X2 @ 3.2GHz
    4GB of DDR2 1066
    Happauge Dual Band Media Card

    I'm assuming its hardware specific? Not sure exactly what you mean by support.

    Thanks again.

    Also, just for the fun experience, and "cool" factor, would the website with the video player be a "bad" idea, quality wise?
  3. You've got a plenty capable rig. It'd more be software that I was talking about. What are you running to play movies on your HTPC? Do you just use your TV as a monitor and play in WMP, or what?

    You would be able to embed a web player no problem. I know that some media streaming software supports this (Twonky comes to mind). It plays at full resolution when you go full-screen generally.
  4. Okay, cool.

    I'm using Windows Media Player on a 42" Sony LCD TV @ 1920x1080.

    So twonky will integrate with simple HTML?
  5. If you install Twonky Server on your Ubuntu box, there is a web-management interface you can access from other computer on the LAN. From here you can browse videos, and watch them in your browser.

    It's worth noting that Twonky does have a one-time fee (I think it's $20, don't recall). I'm sure there's free streaming packages out there with web interfaces as well, I'm just not familiar with them. I'm sure Google would turn up a few results.
  6. Awesome, I really appreciate it.

    I'm assuming I can just drop movie files into this samba directory from my personal windows box. So I think I'm set.

    Thanks a lot man.
  7. Best answer selected by tillman32.
  8. Tillman32 said:
    Awesome, I really appreciate it.

    I'm assuming I can just drop movie files into this samba directory from my personal windows box. So I think I'm set.

    Thanks a lot man.

    No worries :)

    That should be helpful getting Samba set up. There's tons of info available online.
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