Accessing an Xperia media server using eezUPnP, Totem and Rhythmbox Part 1

All Sony Xperia smartphones, including older models, support DLNA media streaming. Thankfully, the feature has remained available and stable even after Xperia devices were upgraded to Android 5.1.x. Moreover, iOS, Android and Windows Phone and Windows apps are capable of accessing an Xperia media server with minimum fuss.

UPnP/DLNA access on Linux can be occasionally sketchy when it involves proprietary hardware and software although media streaming is almost seamless between Linux media servers especially if you're using implementations such as Kodi and Rygel. This article provides an overview of setting up an Xperia media server on an Xperia Z1 with Android 5.1.x and using Totem/GNOME Videos movie player, Rhythmbox and eezUPnP from a Debian 8 Jessie system running on Xfce.

Note: As always, Linux user experience may vary between machines and your set up.

To set up an Xperia media server and allow access to your Debian machine:

1. Connect the Xperia device and Linux machine to the same Wi-Fi network.

2. In the Xperia device, tap Settings > Xperia Connectivity > Media server settings > Share media. If needed, enable Upload to Xperia as well.

3. Launch the application you want to use to access the Xperia media server.

4. On the Xperia device, tap the notification to allow the Linux machine to access the Xperia media server. Change the access level to Always allow if needed.




EezUPnP on Debian 8 Jessie

EezUPnP for Linux has been around for awhile now but if you're only interested in accessing music files on the Xperia Media server, it's a fairly simple option to use on a Linux box. If you're planning to access shared video and images, however, you'll have to use a different desktop application or method.

To set up eezUPnP to access the Xperia Media server:

1. Download and extract eezUPnP to a folder.

2. Run the executable file from the terminal or right-click the CP file in the eezUPnP folder and click Execute.

3. On the Xperia device, tap the notification to allow Debian and eezUPnP access to the Xperia media server. Change the access level to Always allow if needed.

4. Click the Xperia media server on the list of media servers detected by eezUPnP Control Point.


EezUPnP Control Point lists the PlayMemories Home server, a miniDLNA Debian server, a Rygel DLNA server and the Xperia media server from the Z1.

Note: In my tests, eezUPnP was able to detect the Xperia media server immediately. The length of time before eezUPnP detects the Xperia media server may vary depending on your network setup.

5. Navigate to the Music folder of the Xperia media server, select files and click Add to playlist.

EezUPnP is fine for playing music though it's extremely limited in functionality. There are, of course, other UPnP/DLNA clients for Linux that can accommodate images and videos from a UPnP server.


Continued in Accessing an Xperia media server using eezUPnP, Totem and Rhythmbox Part 2

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