5 best DLNA server software to stream HQ media content

Madalina Dinita
by Madalina Dinita
Managing Editor
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  • With countless media options at the tip of your fingers, it's safe to say there is no shortage of entertainment.
  • Why not make the most of it using a DLNA compatible device? Stream your own media on your own server with the very best DLNA server software out there.
  • Take your experience up a notch with our Streaming Software and Solutions.
  • Visit the Streaming Hub as well to get the latest news and updates from this industry.
DLNA

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.

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Best DLNA server software for Windows 10 PCs

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)

If you want to enjoy crystal clear videos, check out these best media software for PC.


Ampache

Ampache

Get the best DLNA/UPnP features with no hidden subscription string attached.

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

Looking for the best streaming software for Windows 10? Check out our top picks.


Subsonic

Subsonic

UPnP media streaming made easy - share whatever, whenever.

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
MediaPortal

MediaPortal

Enjoy a reliable, simple, and seamless streaming experience!

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

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.

FAQ: Learn more about UPnP /DLNA media servers

  • What is DLNA protocol?

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.

  • How do I make my PC a DLNA server?

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.

  • What is the best media server software?

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.

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in September 2019 and has been since revamped and updated in May 2020 for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.