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02 November 2011, 16:16

Plex media centre update adds Windows support

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Plex logo The Plex development team has released version 0.9.5 of its open source media centre application, code-named "Laika". According to the developers, the new release of the skinable fork of the XBMC Media Center, which is based on the latest stable version, "has been largely rewritten". However, they note that "there are a lot of new moving parts, so we're sure there may be a few rough edges."

Previously only available for Mac OS X, Plex v0.9.5 is the first release to officially add support for Windows XP SP3 or later, and is said to "run smoother, and consume less CPU and memory" than previous builds. It adds support for browsing movies by country and allows users to browse music selections by collection.

Zoom The Plex desktop client is now availble for Windows
Audio playback works better over slow connections and the transcoder has been "greatly improved". Other changes include performance improvements for recently added media queries, fixes for crashing bugs and Direct Streaming support for AAC files up to 160 kbps, as well as reduced memory usage when reading iTunes XML files and fixes for iTunes playlists.

The updated desktop client includes support for the new myPlex cloud services. With myPlex, users remotely access their media from an iOS or Android device, view and manage their media queue, and share files with friends and family via the myPlex web site. Further details about myPlex can be found on the Plex Blog.

The Plex app for iOS devices ($4.99/£2.99), which acts as a remote control for the Media Center application, has also been updated. Version 2.0 features a new home screen, adds support for myPlex and a number of other improvements. Support for the recently announced Google TV update is being added in the form of a new app that can access media over a network connection, and includes support for myPlex and Plex channels.

More information about the new version can be found in a post on the Plex Blog; at the time of writing, the 0.9.5 documentation still refers to the Preview Release and the Plex wiki has yet to be updated. Plex v0.9.5 is available to download for Mac OS X 10.6 or later, and Windows 7, Vista or XP SP3. Hosted on GitHub, Plex source code is licensed under the GPLv2, apart from the Plex Media Server which is currently closed source and connects to the GPL-licensed client over the network.

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