How to Set Up a Media Server With Windows 7

By Techwalla Contributor

If you have Windows 7 and a PS3 or other system that can benefit from a Media Server, and you are tired of burning all your .AVI, .MPEG, etc., movies to DVD and wish you could stream them instead, you can easily set up Windows Media player 12 to share and stream any video, music or other media.

Step 1

Set up your media library. Open Windows Media Player 12 and add the various media you want to share. You have to build your media library before you can set up media sharing. You can select media from various locations locally or from external sources.Example: To add video for streaming right-click on "Library" from the left pane, click "Videos" and select "Manage Videos Library." A new window will open up. Click "Add" to select folders where you have videos you would like to share. After selecting the folder in the organize view, click on the button "Include Folder" to add this folder to your Media Player Videos Library. It will then close and go back to the "Videos Library Locations" window where you'll need to click on the "OK" button to finalize your folder additions. You'll then get a pop up that asks, "Do you want to share this folder?" Select "Yes, share this folder." You will then see your new videos from that folder listed in your Videos Library listing.

Step 2

Set up the media server sharing "Stream" options. Select the "Videos" Library listing. Sort your videos in the desired order, i.e., by any of the header titles such as Title, Length, Size, etc. Notice the "Stream" Menu item along the top. Click on the "Stream" menu item and select "Automatically allows devices to play my media." This is the setting that will work with a PS3, for example, on your network. However, you can stream to the Internet and allow remote control of your player as well.You will then get a pop up window asking, "Do you want to automatically allow devices to play your media?" Select the "Automatically allow all computers and media devices" option. Once you do that, it will close that window and take you back to the main Media Player Library listing.

Step 3

Disable your firewall if you have one. You need to either add an allowance for the Streaming Media Player or simply disable your firewall while streaming. If you're streaming within your household network, disabling your firewall should be fine. If you're streaming your content over the Internet or allowing other people to control your player, configure your firewall to allow that traffic. This can help prevent unwanted attacks on your PC. For example, with Norton you can right-click on the Norton Antivirus icon in your system tray and select "Disable Firewall." Depending on your version, the text may be different but the idea is the same.

Step 4

Set up the media server on your PS3 or other stream device. Go to the main menu system for the PS3 and go to the Videos section. Do a "scan/find media servers"; this may take a few minutes while it searches your network. If it finds your media server it will notify you that it found "1" media server. Click the "O" to go back. PS3 automatically adds the media server to the Videos section menu listing. Use the down arrow on the controller until you see your computer name that has the Windows Media Player 12 streaming setup. Select your Media computer and navigate through the shared media and play your content.