PS3 Media Server Headless on Ubuntu 10.04 Server

I decided to get the PS3 Media Server running on my Ubuntu 10.04 server and found the documentation available online to be fragmented and contradictory in some cases, so once I got my system up and running, I figured I would document what I did for others. All of the extra repositories that I added support most if not all modern versions of Ubuntu so I am pretty sure that this process will work for anything up to 11.11.

For this setup, I wanted to use repositories as much as possible rather than compiling so that everything can stay up to date easily. That said, I didn’t want to use the Passaid repository for PS3MS because I have seen it go down frequently and it offers up an outdated version.

PS3MS on Linux uses native versions of mplayer, mencoder, ffmpeg and mediainfo along with requiring Java jre rather than packaging them with the installer. We need to install these dependencies ahead of time using the newest possible versions.


sudo add-apt-repository ppa:shiki/mediainfo


sudo add-apt-repository ppa:jon-severinsson/ffmpeg

Medibuntu for a newer version of mplayer and mencoder

sudo wget --output-document=/etc/apt/sources.list.d/medibuntu.list$(lsb_release -cs).list && sudo apt-get --quiet update && sudo apt-get --yes --quiet --allow-unauthenticated install medibuntu-keyring && sudo apt-get --quiet update

Install the dependancies

sudo apt-get install mplayer mencoder mediainfo ffmpeg openjdk-6-jre-headless

Download the Linux version of PS3MS from using wget or downloading to your desktop and running it over to the server using scp.  Once you have PS3MS, extract it to /opt and rename it:

sudo tar zxvf pms-generic-linux-unix-1.50.0.tgz -C /opt/

sudo mv /opt/pms-linux-1.50.0/ /opt/pms

Finally, get the init script from here: Unzip it and scp it over to /etc/init.d on your server. Then

sudo nano /etc/init.d/PS3MediaServer

and put your unprivileged user and group for PMS_USER and PMS_GROUP. Then make it executable with

sudo chmod +x /etc/init.d/PS3MediaServer

Finally, install the service so that it starts and stops with the server

sudo update-rc.d PS3MediaServer defaults 90

Now the somewhat tricky part: getting the configuration file set up. The conf file specified in the init script is /opt/pms/PMS.conf but it does not exist by default and needs to be automatically created by PS3MS because the first line is a UUID. First try simply running PS3MS from the command line:


and then stopping the process with CTRL+C. If that did not create a PMS.conf file, try

/etc/init.d/PS3MediaServer start

/etc/init.d/PS3MediaServer stop

The file should now contain a single line with a UUID; add the following lines to get everything working:

thumbnails = true
thumbnail_seek_pos = 300
mencoder_ass = true
folders = /mnt/BigDiskWithMusic,/mnt/BigDiskWithVideos
hide_videosettings = true
hide_enginenames = true
audiochannels = 2

Obviously you want to change the folders line to reflect the actual location of your media. Do NOT leave a space between folders, PS3MS will not like it and generate an error.

If you are feeling adventurous, edit /opt/pms/WEB.conf and set it up with your favorite podcasts, RSS feeds, radio and video streams.