Plex Server Hardware Requirements

Building & Configuring the Ultimate Plex Media Server | Building a

Whether you want to run your Plex Media Server on your every-day computer, you're looking to use a dedicated computer, or you want to run it on a NAS device, you'll need to make sure that the computer/NAS is compatible and that it will support what you want to do.

If you're in doubt about anything before you go to get a system for running Plex Media Server, our forums are a great resource for discussions and advice.

Related Page: Plex Forums

Plex Media Server is compatible with:

  • Windows
  • OS X / macOS
  • Linux
  • Many popular NAS devices such as Drobo, Netgear, Synology, and more

Desktop Computer

Running Plex Media Server on a desktop computer is a very popular option. This allows you to choose your operating system and you have flexibility in your computer components.

Operating System

You can run Plex Media Server on a desktop computer running a number of operating systems.

Tip!: You'll generally want to ensure that you've installed all "critical" type updates or service packs for your current operating system.


When running on Windows, the following operating system versions are supported:

  • Windows 7 SP1 / Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1
  • Windows 8 / Windows Server 2012
  • Windows 8.1 (with Update) / Windows Server 2012 R2 (with Update)
  • Windows 10


OS X / macOS 10.9 Mavericks or newer (including Mavericks, Yosemite, El Capitan, and Sierra)


We have official Plex Media Server releases available for the following Linux Distributions:

  • Ubuntu 10.04 or newer
  • Fedora 14 or newer
  • CentOS 6 or newer


Plex Media Server releases are available for FreeBSD 9.1 or newer.


CPU requirements can vary dramatically, depending on how exactly you want to use Plex, which particular Plex apps you'll be using, properties of your media, how many people will be using Plex at the same time, and more.

As a minimum, we recommend:

  • Intel Core i3 (or equivalent) or faster

Note: While Plex Media Server can install and run on a computer with a slower processor, you might not have a very good experience, depending on your usage.

Generally, any modern computer should meet that minimum. However, if you will have multiple people accessing content simultaneously and you'll sometimes require transcoding of content during playback, then you may well need something faster than the minimum.

If your computer's CPU is not powerful enough to keep up with transcoding your media, you will notice pausing or buffering as the app waits for the server to catch up. We have additional information to help you figure out what kind of processor you might need for your own particular usage.

Related Page: What kind of CPU do I need for my Server?
Related Page: Why is my video stream buffering?
Related Page: Direct Play, Direct Stream, Transcoding


In general, Plex Media Server doesn't require large amounts of RAM. 2GB of RAM is typically more than sufficient and some installs (particularly Linux-based installs) can often happily run with even less. Of course, more RAM won't hurt you and will certainly be helpful if you're also doing other things on the computer.

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