Plex Blog

The Book of Plex, Volume III: Plex Cloud

September 26, 2016 694 Comments

Revised: December 15, 2016

A few weeks ago we shared with you that we’ve had technical challenges integrating Amazon Drive with Plex Cloud. The team has worked to address these issues and to expand storage options by introducing support for Google Drive, Dropbox, and Microsoft OneDrive, all of which are working great. Unfortunately, the challenges with Amazon Drive have proven insurmountable at this time, so we have decided to remove Amazon Drive for the foreseeable future. Current beta users with a linked Amazon Drive account will no longer be able to use Amazon with Plex Cloud after December 31st 2016.

We look forward to coming out of the beta with multiple popular storage options that provide a simple, seamless, and beautiful experience. Thanks again for your interest in Plex Cloud!

In the beginning, there was the TV and the Xbox. Media was formless and void, and darkness was over the surface of the TV. The landscape was dotted with Macs in search of purpose. Then Plex said “let there be Plex”; and there was a media center. It was the finest media center available on OS X, and the Macs rejoiced. Plex saw that it was good and checked it into Git. This was the first day.

Plex said, “Let there be a powerful tool to organize thy media and stream it to any device, let it run anywhere, and let it ‘Just Work’”; and there was Plex Media Server. Computers all across the land were pressed into service, streaming all kinds of media from every corner of the earth, and it was good. This was the nine-hundred and sixty-second day. (Hey, this stuff takes time!)

By the three-thousand one-hundred and seventy-eighth day, Steve and Sergey and Bill had appeared on top of their respective mountains and handed down hundreds of millions of tablets, each more powerful than the last; the perfect devices for enjoying media. Computers no longer filled every home, Al Gore admonished those who kept them powered on at all times, and a shadow began to fall across the earth.

So, Plex said, “Let there be Plex Cloud!” And just like that, the nomads, the tech newbies, the eco-conscious, and the hipsters alike saw the light.

Run Plex Media Server on Amazon Drive

So what is Plex Cloud? For the first time, you get a full-featured1 Plex Media Server in the… er… cloud. But the important thing is that you no longer need to worry about it! Plex Cloud is always on and accessible. We take care of all the annoying stuff like software updates and power bills. Our Cloud Elves (that’s totally a thing) have even worked a little bit of magic to bring you all the sweet, sweet transcoding capability usually reserved for more powerful home servers (or as the Cloud Elves call them: “closet warmers”).

That covers the server, but what about storage? It’s easy, you simply connect your own Amazon Drive account to store your media.

Starting today, Plex Cloud, our new, premium offering, will be available to a limited number of interested Plex Pass users who want to participate in the invite-only beta program. If this sounds good, head over and sign up here. We’ll be expanding the program over the coming weeks, so if you don’t hear back right away, sit tight!

Here’s Plex Cloud in a nutshell:

  • Plex in 60 Seconds: Plex Cloud eliminates the need to run your own local Plex Media Server and manage an always-on computer or NAS. With the simplified setup and no hardware or network challenges, you’ll be streaming quicker than ever!
  • Storage with Peace of Mind: Let Amazon worry about nasty stuff like power failure, corruption, and data loss. It turns out they’re pretty good at that stuff!
  • Unlimited Storage, Radical Performance: Add as many files as you like to your unlimited Amazon Drive2 and stream anywhere! Forget about your glacial home upload bandwidth and give your data cap some room to breathe. Plex Apps let you quickly view, organize, and share things when you need to, no matter where you are.
  • Hang on to your $$$’s: No more costly hardware to buy and maintain! You can store and play as much as you want for just a few bucks a month!3

Answers to (any second now!) Frequently Asked Questions:

How do I get in the Beta?
Sign up for access to the Plex Cloud Beta. Please sign up as soon as possible to ensure your spot.

Can I use with my existing Amazon Drive account?

Are all Plex Media Server features available on Plex Cloud?
Most of the core features are available at launch and we’ll be working to add some of the currently-unavailable features over time. Camera Upload, Mobile Sync, Cloud Sync, Media Optimizer, DLNA, and DVR are not available at this time.

Do you work with any other cloud providers?
Currently, Plex works with Amazon Drive. We’ll continue to evaluate adding support for other cloud storage providers over time.

Is this a copy of my local Plex Media Server?
Nope. This is a completely separate, independent “Plex Media Server” and not a copy of the one you run locally.

How do I upload my files?
Currently, Amazon provides several tools for PC and mobile as well as a web interface for uploading content securely. Plex then accesses that content through secure connections. Plex does not do any file level encryption or modify your files on Amazon Drive in any way.

1. Some features like Camera Upload and Offline Sync aren’t available at launch, but we’re working hard to bring those to Plex Cloud. 2. Unlimited Amazon Drive is not available in all locations. Check with Amazon for terms and conditions, but we’ll work with your Amazon Drive account even if it’s not unlimited. 3. A Plex Pass and an Amazon Drive are required to use Plex Cloud. Check with Amazon for Amazon Drive pricing in your area.

A Happy Barkley!