5+ best DLNA server software to stream HQ media content

Madalina Dinita
by Madalina Dinita
Madalina has been a Windows fan ever since she got her hands on her first Windows XP computer. She is interested in all things technology, especially emerging technologies -- AI and DNA computing in... Read more
Affiliate Disclosure
  • With countless media options at the tip of your fingers, it's safe to say there is no shortage of entertainment.
  • DLNA server software can help you store and access all your entertainment content in one place.
  • Check the list below for the best DLNA server software out there that help you manage TV shows, music, video games, and more.
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Life today is media-centric and there’s never a dull moment. At least not with the DLNA standard allowing you to stream unlimited video, music, audios, and photos to your entertainment devices.

You will, however, need the best DLNA server for Windows 10 to convert your computer to a robust media server.

Of course, you can also enable the Windows 10 native DLNA server. However, most users find using third-party software more straightforward.

What is a DLNA server?

A DLNA server stores media content and avails it across a network wirelessly. In general, the server is a DLNA-enabled PC or a NAS (network-attached storage).

Once active, the server enables you to conveniently browse the entire media collection from multiple devices.

What is a DLNA server software?

A DLNA server software is an application that allows you to share the burgeoning library of movies, audios, and pictures in your computer to your other DLNA compatible devices.

These include your Android phone, TV, game consoles, media players, iPhone, and more while the inter-device connectivity is established through the handy DLNA protocol.

Why you need the best DLNA server software?

Once installed, the DLNA server application instantly sets up your PC as a media streaming center opening up a sea of thrilling and personalized entertainment choices. It’s the software makes the whole process super simple and direct.

What is the best DLNA server software for Windows 10 PCs?

Playon

Playon is a full-feature media portal that integrates all your media streaming services into one media library. 

The platform is easy to use. You can either download it on your computer or directly to a media streaming device such as Roku.

The software is easy to navigate. You get a grid view of all your streaming platforms in the home menu, along with recommended content based on your history.

One major plus of using Playon is the recording feature. You can capture all types of media for offline enjoyment. 

Other key features of Playon include:

  • Full HD 1080 recordings
  • Instant ad skip
  • Cast videos to TV
  • Auto records new episodes
  • Downloaded content has no expiration

Playon is a subscription-based service with monthly charges. You can try it for free for 7 days and get to download 7 media recordings.

Playon

Playon

Access all your favorite media platforms and channels from one library, record content for offline entertainment, and more.

Free trialVisit website

Ampache

Ampache is an open-source web-based streaming app and file manager that works with pretty much any internet-enabled device so capturing and casting shows from the desktop, tablet or phone is a breeze.

If you want a highly reliable, and secure DLNA server software, Ampache has very few equals.

Ensuring a fantastic user experience, this tool lets you stream movies, music, and shows from Hulu, Netflix, HBO, Amazon, and countless other streaming sites and channels with no hidden catch.

There is no DLNA/UPnP with a premium subscription, as Ampache already has all of those features by default, for free.

Let’s quickly look at its key features:

  • Free and open-source software
  • Powerful API and streaming to any client (VLC, WinAMP, Foobar2000, Windows Media Player, Subsonic API, UPnP/DLNA, and DAAP with iTunes)
  • Flexible catalogs (scan music straight from your local filesystem or use other sources to add to its database)
  • Countless customization options (authorization methods, list metadata sources by preference, enable importing custom metadata, order album art sources by preference and many more)
  • Support for multiple users, and user registration
  • Music streaming (stream your music to your preferred player, or listen on the web page with an HTML5 player)

Get Ampache

Plex

Plex is a multimedia management software that not only allows you to access and stream TV channels and streaming platforms’ content but also lets you organize all your personal media files into one library.

This platform works worldwide, allowing you to stream content from all major on-demand media services.

Plex is compatible with multiple media hardware such as Amazon Fire TV, Android TV, Roku. It can also run on Android and iOS mobile devices and Windows or macOS computers.

Plex allows you to download content so that you can access it without an Internet connection. You can sync downloaded media to all your devies so you can enjoy it wherever you are.

Other key features of Plex include:

  • Automatic LyricFind lyrics for music content
  • Custom sharing restrictions
  • TV-show intro skip

Plex has both free and premium versions. The free version allows you to stream and store all your media content, connect to your media platform accounts and access them all from the UI. The premium versions come with added benefits, and you can try them for free for 30 days.

Get Plex

Kodi

Kodi is another popular option for users that want to connect and access all their media content from one place. It provides completely free media library management features that integrate your TV channels, on-demand platforms, audio files, pictures, and more. 

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Besides passive media content, Kodi allows you to connect your games within the app. You can add stand-alone games, or connect emulators. It also offers support for game controllers, so you can set it up as a one-stop entertainment center.

You can use this software to record live-TV video content. Just press the record button while streaming and you’ll be able to reaccess it whenever you want.

Key features of Kodi include:

  • Live TV playback
  • Customizable UI
  • Metadata-based library organization
  • Digital pictures/image display
  • Supports most media file formats

Kodi can be used on Windows, macOS, Linux computers. It also comes in the form of a mobile app for Android and iOS.

Get Kodi

Jellyfin

The media server software has also been hailed for its sleek performance. And would you believe you can get all this bliss without paying a dime!

Even without digging too deep into its technicalities, this is one of the best choices for anyone searching for a smashing performance from a free DLNA server for Windows 10.

Unsurprisingly, its advanced design enables the server to produce one of the sweetest streaming experiences amongst the top contenders.

Let’s quickly look at its key features:

  • Collect, manage, and stream your media to any device from your own server
  • Store your entire media collection and organize it neatly
  • Make playlists
  • Watch Live TV and set automatic recordings to expand your library
  • Apps on your Android, iOS (including AirPlay), Android TV, or Fire TV device, or via Chromecast or Kodi
  • No centralized tracking of your data
  • Completely free to download

Get Jellyfin

MediaPortal

Powerful but very easy to use, MediaPortal puts up a strong show when pitted against the rest of the DLNA servers for Windows 10.

It streams a large variety of media files with surprising precision and at impressive speeds.

MediaPortal handles just about every device and is a powerful entrant to our unique selection of DLNA media server tools that gives a reliable, simple, and seamless streaming experience.

Let’s quickly look at its key features:

  • Watch, schedule and record live TV
  • Play videos, movies, DVDs and Blu-ray discs
  • Stream media, radio, and TV to any HTPC / PC connected to your network
  • Use a remote to control your HTPC
  • Check the weather, news, and more
  • Access from the web or mobile devices
  • Hundreds of plugins and skins available (to stream or download web TV, Apple Trailers,
  • YouTube videos, or internet radio)
  • Complete media solution for free

Get Media Portal

Subsonic

Subsonic is another popular UPnP media streaming service whose main claim to fame is its unique ability to transcode a huge variety of media formats. Whatever you want to share, the tool is always up to the task.

Your Xbox, smartphone and practically every other device work excellently as soon as you hook them up with this DLNA server software that also boasts apps for Android, iPhone, Windows Phone, Chrome, and many more.

Let’s quickly look at its key features:

  • Clean web interface optimized for constrained bandwidth environments
  • Displays cover art, assign ratings and comments to albums and tracks
  • Create your own playlist and manage the play queue
  • Supports all media formats (MP3, OGG, AAC, and any other audio or video format that streams over HTTP)
  • Compatible with any network-enabled media player (Winamp, iTunes, XMMS, VLC, MusicMatch and Windows Media Player plus it has an embedded Flash player)
  • Customizable user experience (28 languages, 30 different themes, personal avatar, etc.)
    Works with any number of users
  • Integrates with the best web services through an open API

Get Subsonic

Emby

Emby is one of the most feature-rich media servers that works like a charm across a plethora of rendering devices and is a joy to stream with.

Whether it’s stand-up comedy, soaps, Formula 1, or blockbuster movies, this has gotten rave reviews for its polished performance.

The innovative idea of a pleasant user interface and media auto-detecting technology is especially attractive to users seeking painless streaming.

Let’s quickly look at its key features:

  • Automatically converts and streams your personal on any device (store your content in multiple resolutions to enable direct streaming from any device)
  • Sync your personal media to smartphones and tablets for easy offline access (Emby apps are available for Android, iPhone, iPad, Windows Phone, and tablets)
  • Parental Controls (monitor and remote control sessions as you need to)
  • Send videos, music, photos, and Live TV to Chromecast with ease
  • Sync your personal media to the cloud for easy backup, archiving, and converting
  • Edit metadata and images, search for subtitles, and more.
  • Automatically detects DLNA devices on your network
  • Powerful web-based management tools (to manage your content, users, sharing, security, and more)

Get Emby

To enjoy your rich media library across multiple devices, you have to convert your PC into a media server and the best way to do this is by using a DLNA server software for Windows 10.

The thing with these thoughtful tools is that they’re not equal meaning you need to take your sweet time evaluating your options.

If you have any suggestions or questions, feel free to leave them in the comments section below.

If you are interested in learning more about streaming software, check out our Streaming Hub.

We provide more recommendations and troubleshoot support for streaming platforms within our Streaming Service Guides section.

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Frequently Asked Questions

  • Protocols are standardized rules that allow electronic devices to communicate with each other. A DLNA protocol does just that, but for multimedia devices only. DLNA-compliant devices can stream content over a local network.

  • Open the Control Panel -> Network and Internet ->Network and Sharing Center ->Media Streaming Options and press on Turn on media streaming. Check out this complete guide on how to use DLNA on Windows 10.

  • There are quite a few strong contenders, that also come in free of charge such as Ampache. Check out this complete list of best DLNA server software for more options.

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