Looking for a smart, easy-to-use Raspberry Pi media server solution with a good selection of client applications? You may have looked at Plex or Kodi but found that they don’t feel right. If so, then you should try Emba.

Easy to install and set up, Emby is an alternative to an intelligent media server. Here is how to install Emby Server and Emby Theater on Raspberry Pi.

What is Embi?

Emby is a media server. While not as well-known as other solutions (like Plex or Kodi), Emby is open source and has client and server software. This means that you can install the server module on a computer with your media data and then share it with client applications.

Various plugins can extend the capabilities of Emby. For example, you will find IPTV plugins for Internet TV. Emby also offers built-in parental controls to help protect your family from sensitive content. While Emby is less well-known than its competitors, its user base is growing.

For More Information, Here’s Why You Should Forget Plex and Kodi and Try Emby instead of this.

What you need for a Raspberry Pi Emby media center

To create an Emby media server, you will need:

  • Raspberry Pi 2 or later (we used Raspberry Pi 4: )
  • microSD card (16 GB or more for best results)
  • PC with card reader
  • Keyboard and mouse
  • HDMI cable and suitable display

Make sure you have the correct power connector for your Raspberry Pi.

The process is simple: install Emby, connect it to the network, and then use it as a media server. Media stored on a USB hard drive can be added to Emby and then sent to devices on your network.

For example, the Raspberry Pi Emby box can serve your favorite home movies and photos to your TV or mobile phone.

Install Emby Media Server on Raspberry Pi

Installing the Emby server on the default Raspbian Buster Raspberry Pi is easy. Open a terminal and update and refresh to get started:

sudo rpi-update sudo apt dist-upgrade 

Then use wget to download the ARMHF version from the Linux downloads page; this version is compatible with Raspberry Pi.

 wget https://github.com/MediaBrowser/Emby.Releases/releases/download/ 

Install it with

 dpkg -i emby-server-deb_4.2.1.0_armhf.deb 

Wait until this completes. Your Raspberry Pi Emby server is installed. All you have to do now is set it up.

Set up your Emby Media Server

Access the Emby server through your browser. The easiest way to use the Raspberry Pi itself is to use the address http://localhost:8096 .

This will take you to the server setup. You will need to set your preferred language, username, password, and other options. The installer also gives you the option to link your Emby Connect account. This is a great way to connect to your server from any Emby account, without the need for an IP address. However, this is not required.

After that, you will see the «Setting up your libraries» screen. Click here Add Library .

Add media to Emby

Just find the location, then set the meta information according to the menu.

Paste library meta settings

It’s mostly language based and shouldn’t take long.

Customizing meta settings on Emby

When you’re done adding media locations, click Save . It’s time to start watching content on the Emby media server!

Connect any device to your Emby server

An impressive collection of apps is available for Emby. Want to watch on smart TV? You can! You’ll also find apps for Android TV and Amazon Fire TV, as well as Xbox One and PS4. Using Kodi? Add-on available for Emby.

In addition, Emby releases mobile applications for Android and iOS mobile devices. There is even a version for Windows 10 and Windows 10 Mobile, as well as an HTML5 web client.

In short, all devices are covered.

To enjoy the content on your Emby server, just install the app and complete the setup. You will be prompted for the name of the server or device and, if you set it up, the Emby account credentials.

Once this is all set up, you’ll be ready to stream media from your Raspberry Pi Emby server.

Set up your Raspberry Pi as an Emby client

Thanks to the Emby Theater tool for Linux, you can view media files on your Raspberry Pi Emby server on another Pi.

Install Embi Theater on Raspberry Pi

You have two options for installing the Emby Theater client application on your Raspberry Pi.

  1. Download the DEB file on Raspberry Pi and install it on Raspbian Buster (or any Debian based operating system).
  2. Or download the full disk image, burn it to a spare SD card, and boot it up.

Use the appropriate download link depending on how you plan to install Emby on your Pi.

Download : Emby Theater DEB File for Raspbian Buster

Download : Emby Theater Disk Image

With the download of your choice completed, it’s time to install Emby.

How to Install Emby Theater on Raspbian Buster

Get started with Emby Theater by downloading the DEB file from GitHub. It must be downloaded directly to your Raspberry Pi, or the location from it can be copied to the Pi.

Next, open a terminal and update and update:

 sudo rpi-update sudo apt dist-upgrade 

Next, run the install command:

 sudo apt install -f ./emby-theater_3.0.9_armhf.deb 

Then restart your computer:


Finally, run Emby with


Want Emby Theater to auto-launch when your Pi boots? It’s not a problem. In the terminal, edit the autorun file:

 sudo nano ~/.config/lxsession/LXDE-pi/autostart 

Scroll to the bottom and add:


Save and Exit ( Ctrl + X then Y ) and restart your Raspberry Pi. Emby should automatically launch. Of course, if you want this feature, it’s smarter to just install a disk image.

Install Emby Theater from a disk image

To turn your Raspberry Pi into a dedicated Emby client, download the compressed disk image to your main PC.

Next, unzip the file. You must now insert your Raspberry Pi’s SD card into your PC’s card reader.

Launch Etcher, then click » Select Image», to find the IMG file. Make sure the correct drive is selected (Etcher is good at auto-detecting flash, but check independently) and then Flash . Etcher will format the media and burn the Emby disk image.

Install Emby Theater on Raspberry Pi with Etcher

A notification will appear when you’re done. Close the software, safely remove the SD card and install it in your Raspberry Pi. The computer should boot directly into the Emby Theater.

Stream content to Raspberry Pi with Emby

Emby brings a whole new dimension to media serving on the Raspberry Pi. For starters, it’s compatible with the Raspberry Pi 4, and the hardware amplification provides it over its predecessors.

View files on your Raspberry Pi Emby server

But that’s not all Don’t want the bells and whistles of a Raspberry Pi Plex server? Finding streaming content on Kodi isn’t as smooth as you’d like? Don’t worry Emby has a clearer focus on media sharing across your network. Of course, you can upgrade to Emby’s subscription program for more features, but you probably won’t need them.

With apps for just about any device, you’ll find Emby is perfect for your Raspberry Pi and your media.

Considering alternatives? Here are some more ways to set up your Raspberry Pi as a media server

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