Linux Distros for Plex Media

10 Best Linux Distros for Plex Media Servers [2023 Edition]

You're undoubtedly sick of navigating back and forth between media pages. Why miss any of your favourite media stuff when a Linux Distro can combine it with Plex Media Server? Come in now to discover the best Linux distros for Plex Media now.

  • CentOSOverall Best Linux Distros for Plex Media Server
  • UbuntuMost Popular Working Distro for Plex Media
  • DebianStable Linux Distros for Plex Media Server
  • RecalBoxHigh Graphics Distro for Plex Media
  • OSMCBest Beginner-Friendly Linux Distros for Plex Media

Best Linux OS for Running Plex Media

Do you enjoy media and don't want to miss any of your favourite shows or movies? The best course of action you can imagine could have been to leap from one platform to another. The good news is that this issue is resolved, especially on a Linux distribution, by a media server called Plex.

Because of its adaptability, Linux has proven to be a great platform for a variety of applications. One such program is the well-known media server Plex, which enables users to stream their media files to a variety of devices. Plex is the ideal answer for all your media streaming demands, whether you're a movie or music fan. However, picking the best Linux distribution for your Plex server can be difficult given the wide variety of Linux distributions available.

We'll examine the top Linux distributions for Plex media servers in this article. We'll examine the essential qualities, such as prerequisites, performance, usability, and stability, that make a Linux distribution appropriate for Plex. This article will assist you in selecting the optimal Linux distribution for your Plex media server, regardless of your level of Linux experience. So let's get going!

What Makes Linux Distributions Good for Plex Media Servers?

The capacity of an OS to run various software programs efficiently is dependent on a few key qualities. Linux distributions meet every requirement. They are the finest OS for running media servers like Plex as a result. But why is that so? Linux distributions are dependable and stable over the long run. Rarely do they crash or require a reset. This makes them a great option for managing a media server that must be available at all times. Also, because Linux distros are so flexible, you can tailor them to your unique requirements. You can uninstall unused programs and services to free up system resources and boost performance.

They have fewer flaws and are more resistant to malware and viruses than other operating systems, Linux is thought to be more secure than those platforms. Lastly, Linux is an open-source operating system, meaning using and downloading it is free. Because of this, it is a desirable choice for individuals who want to operate a video server on a tight budget.

Best Linux Distros for Plex Media

Now that you know what makes a Linux distribution good for Ple Media servers, let's take a look at some of the best in the market right now.

CentOS — Overall Best Linux Distros for Plex Media Server

  • Min. Processor: 2GHz
  • Min. RAM: 2GB system memory
  • Min. Storage: 20GB ​​of free hard drive space

If you're looking for the best distribution to run your Plex media server, CentOS is at the top of the list. One feature in particular checks all the boxes. As a result, it is a Linux distribution that is dependable, secure, and suitable for running a Plex Media Server. CentOS is renowned for its durability, dependability, and stability. With a media server, this is crucial since you don't want to run the risk of losing your media files as a result of system breakdowns or instability.

With frequent updates and patches to fix vulnerabilities, CentOS has a strong security focus. Additionally, installation and updates are simple because Plex Media Server is offered as a package in the CentOS repository. CentOS is additionally performance-optimized and built for server use. As a result, it can handle large traffic and workloads. Again, CentOS offers a sizable user and developer community that may provide support and assistance when required.

Pros & Cons of CentOS Linux


  • CentOS is highly stable and hardly crash
  • CentOs has a friendly user interface
  • Updates of features and versions are readily available


  • The speed and booting rate require more development
  • Not completely fit for large-scale users or enterprises
  • CenOS is not completely lightweight

Ubuntu — Most Popular Working Distro for Plex Media

  • Min. Processor: 2 GHz
  • Min. RAM: 4 GB system memory
  • Min. Storage: 25GB of free hard drive space

Ubuntu is a great choice for Plex Media Server because of its popularity and outstanding features. It is unquestionably the most popular Linux distribution for a variety of uses, including media servers. When you consider the superb media features, this accomplishment is deserved. The reliability of Ubuntu is well-known, and stability is crucial for a video server that must be accessible always. Ubuntu is a free-to-use, customizing, and organised operating system that is open-source software. For customers who wish to set up a media server without having to pay license fees, this makes it the perfect option. Ubuntu also has a sizable and vibrant developer and user community.

Moreover, Ubuntu features a user-friendly interface that makes installing and using Plex Media Server simple. In addition to everything else, it provides a sizable repository of software packages that are readily installed with a single command.

Pros & Cons of Ubuntu Linux


  • Ubuntu is undoubtedly the most popular working Linux Distro
  • Ubuntu is not only stable but also compatible with most devices
  • Usable by a single operator and enterprises
  • High level of customization and personalization


  • Ubuntu is popular but not a lightweight Distro
  • Limited functionality due to limited applications
  • Sometimes Ubuntu has difficulty in software and hardware difficulty

Debian — Stable Linux Distros for Plex Media Server

  • Min. Processor: 1GHz
  • Min. RAM: 512 MB system memory
  • Min. Storage: 10GB ​​of free hard drive space

The use of the Debian Linux distribution for the Plex Media server is recommended for several reasons. Yet, one characteristic you shouldn't overlook is its excellent steadiness. Possibly the most dependable and stable Distro is Debian. This makes it a viable option for operating a media server that must be online constantly, like Plex. Furthermore, it places a high priority on security and releases frequent security updates.

Debian also offers a sizable software repository with a broad selection of packages. Debian nonetheless has a user-friendly design and is simple to use. It is therefore simpler for users to install, operate, and utilize a Plex Media server who are not familiar with Linux. The considerable flexibility of Debian is another quality worth mentioning. This gives you the option to customize the Plex media material to your liking.

Pros & Cons of Debian Linux


  • Debian is one of the most stable Linux distros for Plex
  • Debian is a free open source
  • A real lightweight distro
  • There is support for every system architecture
  • It has a specific server and use case


  • Debian is a highly conservative distro
  • Some hardware configurations are quite difficult and stressful
  • Debian Linux has pretty issues with GNU protocols
  • Presence of Bug tracker software

Linux Mint — Best Distro for Switcher from Windows Device

  • Min. Processor: 64 Bits CPU
  • Min. RAM: 1 GB system memory
  • Min. Storage: 15GB ​​of free hard drive space

Are you new to Linux but a seasoned Windows user? This is a distribution that is fairly close to what your OS should be. This will make handling and organising your Media stuff on Plex less odd. Linux Mint features a user-friendly interface, just like your Windows machine. Also, this distro has a history of consistency. This is unquestionably essential when running a media server like Plex. It makes sure that your media files are constantly available and prepared for uninterrupted streaming.

Interestingly, it has modest system requirements. As a result, Linux Mint can operate flawlessly on outdated hardware or in a virtual machine. This makes putting up a Plex Media server an accessible and economical alternative. The most recent Plex version is one of the many software packages that Linux Mint may get. This simplifies installing and maintaining Plex and other essential software for your media server.

Pros & Cons of Linux Mint


  • Easy to operate even for a window switcher
  • Installation of Linux Mint is seamless
  • Linux Mint require minimal resources and it is a lightweight distro
  • Extensive documentation just like many other distros


  • There is a poor device manager on the distro
  • Linux Mint also has a conservative approach to updates
  • Too simple for complicated media files

OpenSUSE — All-Rounder Linux Distro

  • Min. Processor: 1.6 GHz
  • Min. RAM: 2GB system memory
  • Min. Storage: 3GB ​​of free hard drive space

Plex and many other media servers may be set up using OpenSUSE Linux. This credibility is due to its characteristic that is compatible with many software and device operating systems. Moreover, OpenSUSE is a reliable system that offers a great environment to host Plex media without concern for crashing. Furthermore, it frequently releases security upgrades and has a proven track record of security. You will concur that a media server needs to consider this. purely because you wouldn't want your system to be compromised or for illegal access to your media.

Moreover, OpenSUSE features a strong package management system that makes program installation and upkeep simple. This indicates that installing and maintaining Plex Media Server and its dependents is simple. Fortunately, OpenSUSE has a sizable and vibrant user and development community that offers top-notch assistance and resources. When troubleshooting media server issues or looking for setup optimization tips, this can be extremely useful.

Pros & Cons of OpenSUSE


  • OpenSUSE has a rich repository with a vast range of packages
  • Suitability for most use cases
  • A well-managed software packages
  • Stability and easy navigation


  • OpenSUSE is a medium-weight distro
  • Quite high resource requirements
  • Lack of frequent updates

RecalBox — High Graphics Distro for Plex Media

  • Min. Processor: 64 Bits CPU
  • Min. RAM: 8GB system memory
  • Min. Storage: 16GB ​​of free hard drive space

Open-source Linux distribution RecalBox was created with gaming in mind. This explains why it has powerful graphics. It can also be utilized to host media servers like Plex. Even though it might not be the most popular option for a Plex media server, its outstanding graphic characteristics offer it a vibrant appearance. One of RecalBox's qualities that should be taken into consideration is its simple installation process. Also, this distribution is simple to use and navigate.

RecalBox has a lot of multimedia functions in addition to being intended for gaming. They include a built-in media player with support for both audio and video playback. Because it can manage media files with ease, it makes a fantastic choice for a Plex media server. Also, RecalBox is an actively developed distribution, so it gets frequent updates and bug fixes. Lastly, RecalBox works with a variety of devices, including Raspberry Pi, ODROID, and even x86 PCs. As a result, you can use it on a wide range of devices.

Pros & Cons of RecalBox


  • RecalBox has high graphics
  • Active developer community
  • Presence of highly compatible software with all media formats
  • Simple installation with easy navigation


  • High memory requirement
  • Mostly popular among gamers

OpenELEC — Specialized Distro for Media

  • Min. Processor: 56 – 64 Bit CPU
  • Min. RAM: 2GB system memory
  • Min. Storage: 170GB ​​of free hard drive space

Is the objective of your distribution to support media servers? This is a solid plug. The Linux distribution known as OpenELEC (Open Embedded Linux Entertainment Center) was created especially for media centres and home theatre PCs. due to the gadgets' low resource consumption. OpenELEC is a slim distribution that is made to function on low-power devices like the Raspberry Pi. Operating Plex Media Server on compact, low-power devices, makes it a good option.

Several multimedia codecs and libraries are pre-configured in OpenELEC for convenience. As a result, playing or streaming a variety of audio and video file formats is simple without the need to install any additional software. OpenELEC requires little upkeep and updating due to its lightweight design. This makes it an excellent option for running Plex Media Server on devices even when they are not online. This distribution's stability and dependability rule out the possibility of a server crash.

Pros & Cons of OpenELEC Linux


  • Specialization in media uses
  • Aesthetically appealing desktop environment
  • Free and open source
  • Advanced media features are available for customization


  • Not a lightweight distro in a real sense
  • Medium stability
  • Incompatible with files which are not media
  • Too primitive for intensive software

Fedora  — Best Linux Distro with Easy Usability

  • Min. Processor: 2 GHz
  • Min. RAM: 2 GB system memory
  • Min. Storage: 15GB ​​of free hard drive space

Popular Linux distribution Fedora has many features that make it an excellent option for running a Plex Media Server. Fedora's ease of use in comparison to its well-known competitors is beloved by customers. Although it might not have as good graphics as Recal Distro, it offers a pleasant desktop setting.

Thankfully, Fedora offers up-to-date software and is stable. An additional feature you shouldn't take lightly is the package manager. DNF, Fedora's package manager, is user-friendly and makes installing and managing packages a breeze. This might be quite beneficial if you are new to Linux.

Security-Enhanced Linux, or SELinux, is a component of Fedora and offers extra security capabilities to help safeguard your system and data. When managing a media server that could be accessed via the internet, this can be crucial.

Finally, Fedora is renowned for its minimal installation, which only includes the software required for the system to run.

Pros & Cons of Fedora


  • Fedora is arguably easy to use
  • The performance rate of this distro is high
  • Fedora is highly secure and customizable


  • Installation is complicated unlike its user experience
  • New features are consistently added. Hence, it is unstable
  • Although lightweight, Fedora works awfully with older devices

OSMC — Best Beginner-Friendly Linux Distros for Plex Media

  • Min. Processor: 64 Bits CPU
  • Min. RAM: 1 GB system memory
  • Min. Storage: 8GB ​​of free hard drive space

The Linux distribution OSMC (Open-Source Media Center) is made primarily for running media centres. For some reason, it is a good option for running Plex Media Server.

Even beginners may easily utilize OSMC thanks to its straightforward UI. As a result, even if this is your first time using Linux or Plex Media Server, you will find it simple to use. It is a lightweight distribution that is designed to run on devices with limited power. As a result, it makes for a cost-effective option for hosting your Plex Media Server. It is constantly built upon the reputable and stable Debian operating system. As a result, you don't have to be concerned about your material getting damaged or experiencing downtime.

Moreover, this distribution includes an easy-to-use installer that makes it simple to install and configure Plex Media Server. In this case, OSMC comes with a large selection of pre-installed plugins and add-ons that make it simple to increase the functionality of your media centre.

Pros & Cons of OSMC Linux


  • Ease navigates makes it a choice for beginner
  • Installation is simple
  • Lightweight distro for many use cases


  • Difficulties in handling advanced software
  • Incompatibility with some hardware

Arch Linux / Manjaro — Linux Distros for Pro Users

  • Min. Processor: 64-Bit CPU
  • Min. RAM: 512 MB system memory
  • Min. Storage: 2GB ​​of free hard drive space

A distribution with advanced functionality for experienced users is listed last on this list. There can be no reasonable question as to why this is. It has a continuous release cycle because Arch Linux is a rolling release distribution. Thus, a quick change in appearance and characteristics is possible. Plex Media Server and all other programs are always up to date thanks to this. A newbie might become perplexed by this, but you would have access to the most recent features and problem fixes.

Manjaro's extensive customization options let you modify the software to meet your unique requirements. Installing certain packages and services, as well as configuring them to your tastes, are also options. Last but not least, Arch Linux offers a sizable and vibrant user and developer community that may provide support and assistance as needed. This is especially helpful if you run into problems installing or operating Plex Media Server on Arch Linux.

Pros & Cons of Arch Linux


  • One of the best lightweight distros
  • Compatible with most software and devices
  • Fit for intense system operation
  • Customization features are great


  • Can only be best used by Linux pros
  • Changes appearances too swiftly
  • There is a high tendency to crash


Q. What is Plex Media Server and What Does it Do?

With the use of the software program Plex Media Server, users can organize and distribute their media files, including movies, TV shows, music, and images, across a variety of devices from a single location. Computers, mobile phones, tablets, and network-attached storage (NAS) devices are just a few of the various gadgets on which the program can be installed. The server will automatically organize the content once the media has been added. Additionally, it downloads the metadata and makes the media streamable to compatible devices locally on the network or remotely via the internet. Also, they support parental control and remote access among others.

Q. Is Plex Media Server a Free Service

Plex Media Server is a cost-free service, so yes. The server software is free to download and set up on your computer or other compatible devices. Yet some of Plex's premium features and services, like the ability to browse your video library remotely from locations other than your home network and extras like facial recognition and automatic photo tagging, demand a subscription. It is necessary to purchase a Plex Pass subscription to use these premium features.Plex Media Server is as such not a paid service for basic users. You only have to budget for the service for premium service.

Q. Is Plex Media Server Usable on all Linux Distros?

Whilst Plex Media Server is intended to work with a variety of Linux distributions, not all of them are supported by Plex. Together with other operating systems, Plex offers official support for Ubuntu, Fedora, and CentOS. In addition, there are packages for other distributions like OpenSUSE and Arch Linux that are supported by the community. You could still be able to install and use Plex if you use a Linux distribution that isn't supported by Plex. However, you might have to manually install it or use a package maintained by the community. It is advised that you look up any known issues or restrictions in the Plex forums or support materials for your particular distribution.


It should go without saying that picking the finest Linux distribution for your Plex Media Server can have a big impact on how well your streaming works. It is obvious that each distribution has strengths and limitations after going over some of the greatest Linux distributions available.

Most of them undoubtedly have dependability and user-friendly characteristics in common. The ideal distribution for your Plex Media Server will ultimately depend on your requirements and tastes. Considerations like usability, stability, security, and compatibility with your gear and software are crucial.

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  1. Ubuntu is the worst for Plex media player because it will lock all your drives to root and you will not be able to save anything on them.

    1. yes, CentOS, particularly CentOS 8, reached its End-of-Life (EOL) status at the end of 2021. This means it no longer receives updates, including security patches, from its maintainers. Using an EOL operating system can pose security risks, as any new vulnerabilities discovered after the EOL date will not be addressed.

      However, CentOS has been a popular choice for servers due to its stability and robustness, being a downstream rebuild of the commercial Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL). This made it a preferred option for environments like Plex Media Servers, which require a stable and reliable operating system.

      In summary, while CentOS was a strong candidate for Plex Media Servers, its EOL status makes it less advisable now. It’s better to opt for actively maintained distributions that provide regular updates and security patches.

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