Jellyfin Synology NAS Setup Instructions! Great Plex Alternative!

In this tutorial, we are going to look at how to setup Jellyfin on a Synology NAS.

Jellyfin is an open-source alternative to Plex that’s installed on Docker. The biggest benefit that Jellyfin offers is the ability to stream your data remotely for free. Plex allows this, but the Plex pass or an app purchase is required depending on what exactly you’re trying to do and from what device, which makes Jellyfin superior. Overall, it’s tough to crown a specific winner as everyone will have different needs, but it’s a great platform to check out.

Installing Jellyfin on a Synology NAS is incredibly easy, but the setup process is what makes it somewhat confusing. Since it’s open-source, documentation exists, but it’s not easy to find everything that you’re looking to do. For this reason, I tried to write this tutorial in a way where everyone can follow it, but also appeal to the masses. It’s not an in-depth Jellyfin tutorial, but it provides the detail needed to install and setup Jellyfin on a Synology NAS to the point of streaming media to your devices.

Before starting, you need to ensure that you have your media (Movies, TV Shows, Music, etc.) on your NAS in a Shared Folder. The folder structure isn’t important, but the files must live on your NAS.

Setup Instructions - Jellyfin Synology NAS

1. Install Docker from Synology’s Package Center.

2. Open Docker and download jellyfin/jellyfin from the registry and download the latest image.

Jellyfin Synology NAS

3. When the download is complete, double-click the image to launch the installer.

4. Give the container a name and select Advanced Settings.

5. Check off Enable auto-restart and then select Volume.

6. This is the trickiest part of the entire setup process because it will be different for everyone. The folders that you map here will be based on the media structure that you have setup.

Examples:

If you have one Media folder created, with sub-folders for TV Shows and Movies, you only need to mount the top-level folder (Media). Your folder structure and Docker Volume section would look like this:

If you have separate media folders created (one for TV Shows, one for Movies, etc.), you have to create different mount paths for each. Your folder structure and Docker Volume section would look like this:

It’s important to set everything up this way because when you are in Jellyfin later and adding your media folders, you need to be able to access them from Jellyfin. If you don’t map the folders, you won’t be able to access your media folders. Unlike most of the other Docker tutorials I’ve done, Jellyfin just kind of works and you’re only responsible for mapping the folders where your media exists.

7. Select Network and check off Use the same network as Docker Host.

8. You can now select Apply and the container will start. If you are using Synology’s Firewall, go to the Security section, edit your Firewall rules, and create an Allow rule for port 8096.

9. Open a web browser and navigate to the IP address below.

http://[NAS_IP]:8096

10. You will be brought to the default Jellyfin page. Pick your language and select Next.

Jellyfin Synology NAS

11. Enter a username and password and select Next.

Jellyfin Synology NAS

12. You will now need to enter your media libraries. Select Add Media Library, enter the content type and then add a new folder.

Jellyfin Synology NAS

13. In this section, you will need to select the folder that you added earlier. This will be completely user-specific, but you need to map the content type to the top-level folder. Meaning that the Movies content type should be mapped to the Movies folder that you mapped. Edit any additional settings that you’d like and select Ok.

Jellyfin Synology NAS

14. Do steps 13 and 14 for all media types that you have and then select Next.

15. Select your preferred metadata settings and select Next.

16. Configure your remote access settings. I highly suggest that you keep the second UPnP option deselected, as UPnP is an overall security risk. If you’d like to access your data remotely, I suggest that you open the port directly on your router (using a reverse proxy manager like nginx proxy manager would be even better – tutorial coming soon) as opposed to using UPnP.

17. Select Finish. The setup process is now complete!

The media that you have will now sync. This process took a long time for me. The best thing you can do is leave it overnight and check back in the morning, especially if you have a lot of data.

If you’d like to modify some of the admin settings, select Settings and then Dashboard under the admin section. There are a bunch of settings that can be changed here.

Conclusion

Jellyfin is awesome! As an avid Plex user for many years, I wasn’t sure how I’d feel about it, but it’s practically the same thing. It also has the benefit of being open-source and has a lot of the “premium” features that Plex charges for, for free. That’s not to say it’s an overall better platform or that you should switch, but it’s a great alternative. Hopefully, Jellyfin will be in Synology’s package center one day!

Thanks for reading the tutorial. If you have any questions, please leave them in the comments!

This Post Has One Comment

  1. Great Tutorial! Thank you!

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