Streaming media to the Playstation 3

This post is more-or-less what my last post started out as… before I got side-tracked explaining why I have a PS3 in the first place.

Shortly after getting the PS3 I started looking for a way to stream videos to it. I learnt that the PS3 requires a UPnP compatible media server and found this helpful blog post explaining how to setup MediaTomb.


The MediaTomb download page has packages for various flavours of Linux, but none specifically for Ubuntu Gutsy Gibbon (which I run at home). Fortunely the Ubuntu Feisty Fawn package works fine.

After installing that package and following the instructions linked above I still had to make a few changes to the MediaTomb config file:


to ensure that the PS3 could see my computer and play DivX files (a new feature of the recent PS3 v2.10 firmware update).

In the server section I had to add a few things including an explicit IP address (which will be different depending on your machine configuration):

<protocolInfo extend=”yes”/>

And a new mapping to the mappings section:

<map from=”avi” to=”video/x-divx”/>

I’m not sure why it needs an explicit mapping from file extension to MIME type; it seems like assuming that all AVI files contain DivX movies is a bad idea because it’s not always true. However, streaming wasn’t working otherwise. I didn’t look into it too deeply.

Playstation 3

A couple of months ago, I bought a Playstation 3. I was a little surprised actually. My general rule of thumb for buying a console is that it has to be less than $400 and there must be more than $400 worth of games (released or upcoming) that I want to get for it… otherwise I’d be in the apparantly ridiculous situation of spending more on the console than on games for the console. Usually this means that I won’t buy consoles until a couple of years after they are released. (The Gamecube and Wii are notable exceptions since they launched at less than $400.)

Anyhow, throwing my rule of thumb aside, I bought a Playstation 3 for $699 with a game (Heavenly Sword) included in that price (yay GameTraders!). I think that clincher for getting the Playstation 3 was seeing it running at Phil’s place. He had all these demos downloaded and seemed to spend a fair amount of time just playing them. I thought that was great because, being a jaded gamer, I tend to get bored with games after a few hours (if that) and I could just get the demos instead of shelling out for the full game. Also, HD output looked fantastic.

Thus far I’ve downloaded a dozen or so demos and I figure that has saved me a fair amount of money; most of the games aren’t worth shelling out money for IMHO. The exceptions possibly being skate. (which has an awesome control scheme) and Heavenly Sword (which I already have). I bought Flow (which was worth it) and LocoRoco Cocoreccho (which wasn’t). I enjoyed the Sega Rally, Stuntman, and GT4 HD demos, but I don’t enjoy driving games enough to buy them.