How to Stream on a VLC

By Tavis J. Hampton

VLC media player is a cross-platform free and open source application that is both a video player and video streamer. It is part of a larger project called VideoLAN; the software is available for a free download for free. It has also been packaged for numerous operating systems. VLC users may stream live audio and video over local networks and the Internet. VLC works with nearly all major video and audio codecs and formats.

Things You'll Need

  • VLCNetwork or Internet connection2 computers

VLC Installation

Step 1

Download VLC from the VideoLAN website (see link in References).

Step 2

Open the downloaded file and install it according to your operating system's standard procedure.

Step 3

Repeat the same installation on the other computers.

Set Up the Host Computer

Step 1

Start VLC (see link in References). Click File > Media > Streaming.

Step 2

Select the video or audio files you wish to stream. Select more than one by holding the "Ctrl" key and clicking the files.

Step 3

Check "Play Locally" so that you can see and hear the output. Check "RTP" to play over a LAN.

Step 4

Enter the destination IP address. You may leave the port setting at "1234."

Step 5

Click "Stream" at the bottom. Click Tools > Add Interface > Web Interface. This will allow you to connect to the host computer remotely and control VLC.

Set Up the Client Computer

Step 1

Start VLC. Click Media > Open Network.

Step 2

Select "RTP" from the Protocol column. You can leave the address section blank.

Step 3

Click "Play."

Use the Web Interface

Step 1

Open a web browser on a computer within the same network as the host.

Step 2

Enter the host IP address with the port number "8080." For example: "http://192.168.1.17:8080."

Step 3

Control VLC remotely.

Tips & Warnings

  • You can stream using this method over the Internet relying on the HTTP protocol instead of RTP. Make sure both the client and host have the appropriate ports open on their firewalls.To stream effectively, the client must have all the audio and video codecs present on the host. If they do not, VLC can use transcode to convert the file into something the client can play.You should be able to play the streaming video from other client software, including mobile devices.
  • Be mindful of the ports you open for streaming so as not to compromise the security of your network.