FreeNAS Tutorial for Windows Users – Part Five – XBOX 360

Update: Please read all the comments before sending me a question! You can find my FreeNAS posts/Tutorials here:

Very quick one here – but since I get a lot of hits looking or this information, I thought I would post it. Enabling the XBOX 360 to see the FreeNAS server is very simple.

  • On your FreeNAS admin page, select UPnP under Services.
  • Click Enable on the UPnP page.
  • Give it a name that you will recognize when browsing via the XBOX.
  • Set the network interface (should be set if you only have one network card.
  • Select the FreeNAS share you want the XOX 360 to use – in this case I am sharing my Movies folder with my XBOX – I could also add music, pictures, etc.
  • I left the port blank to use the defaults.
  • Under Profile just select XBOX 360.
  • You can enable the Control web page or not.
  • Click Save and Restart.

FN_XBOX That’s it – on your XBOX 360 you should be able to go to the media blade, select Video, then browse for computers and see the FreeNAS server (you may have to press the blue “X” button on the XBOX remote to change the source of the movies, music, whatever. Below is the UPnP screen shot from my FreeNAS server.


  1. I’ve tried many configurations of FREENAS with many media servers around the house. These are the conclusions I’ve come to as for working reliably and consistanty with a family of 8 people with the level of tech ability ranging from EXPERT to “where’s the power switch?”

    First, I’ve found it best to let FreeNAS be a NAS..and nothing else. don’t enable bittorrent, or any of the fluff. SAMBA for AD integration is preferred when tying to a windows domain for security issues. With dual nics bonded, this allows for best performance.

    Now, as for the XBOX solution, we have settled on 2. Since the Xbox is “retarded” at decoding most encoded files found on the net or encoded at home with modern encoders, it prefers the limited WMV format as this is MSFT’s answer to the media studios to make them happy and believe their content is safe. DRM blows for this reason alone.

    Solution 1) XBMC. Since we have pcs next to our tvs as well as xboxes, we run xbmc which does well at serving up media files for xbox as well.

    Solution 2 “preferred”) Tversity /free or pro you decide. This is the all in wonder way to serve media files to the xbox. Install it on a medium to decently performing pc with windows 7 and the MP4 codec package of your choice (it will prompt you to download one and install if not detected) and turn on “on the fly encoding ALL the time”. This will produce a stream that xbox enjoys which means you get beautiful picture no matter what the source material is. MKV, MP4, AVI, MOV or other divx, h.264 derivitive. It also produces a stream your network can handle even if the file is 8 gigs which means your xbox wont stutter when viewing the file.

    XBMC and Tversity are both free. don’t take my blind word for it. do some research and gain some knowlege. We’ve dropped expanded cable and gone to in house on demand system. With the xbox able to read the movies now, even our 8 year olds are able to pull up their favorite episodes of icarly, etc, on demand!

  2. Hi,
    Thanks for the article. I am having a problem with my setup. Not all of the files are showing up. When I do an “update database” it says “updating database.” but nothing seems to happen. I lose access to the FUPPES URL. I’ll let it sit for as long as a couple of hours (thinking maybe it just takes a long time) and then I notice the Hard drives have gone to stand by from inactivity.

    Then I disable and then enable the service. If I “update the virtual container” and then hit status after waiting a while, only a fraction of the files seem to populate the database. I’ve checked supported file formats. It’s a different number of files each time I do this. They play just fine, but I want them all to show up, not just some of them.

    Has anyone had this issue?

    • Me too! Xbox 360 sees the server but there are no video files shown. It’s empty. Fuppies url says videos are present.

  3. Hey, good article. I have a visual demonstration if you want to leave the link here.

    My video is a little different, in that I have BOTH PS3 and XBox, and the settings for XBox work for both.

    Hope this helps folks:


  4. How can it be made a secure user for accessing the FreeNAS UPNP web page, please?! Awaiting, please for your answer.

  5. Hi, very new to freenas, running version: 0.7 Khasadar (revision 4919)
    I tried to follow the instructions above to enable streaming to xbox 360, but when I tried to click on ‘save and restart’, I got an error:

    The following input errors were detected:
    * The attribute ‘Content’ is required.
    * The attribute ‘Database directory’ is required.
    I don’t know what to do with either of these. Should I just make a new directory for the database to be stored in? And I couldn’t type anything in the ‘Content’ field, and there was nothing to select. Thanks for any help! Cheers, Joe.

  6. I’m having trouble with this…

    uPNP on FreeNAS was working fine with PS3, now my housemate has moved out and taken the PS3.

    We have been trying to get it to work on XBOX360… no luck, we can only see one movie… and NO music whatsoever… I changed the profile to DLNA and I can now see all my folders, the files had Xs next to them and would not play.

    I tried “rebuild virtual container” and such, but nothing seams to work.

    can anyone help?


  7. Hi,

    I am planing to install a freeNAS on an old PC after finishing some upgrades. I hope you can help me in that. Please, send me you email add through which i can contact you, obviously I am unable to find it here.

  8. I had a few problems with sharing, but rebuilding everything from the config page and adding the XBOX’s IP worked like a charm. My only problem now is that for some reason whenever I add an album it lists the album twice on my xbox.

    Any ideas?

    I would also like to thank Rob for the excellent guides.

  9. I have everything working – FreeNAS, CIFS/SMB sharing, UPnP sharing, and my Xbox 360 sees the files. The problem is whenever I add new music,images,or videos to my FreeNAS the Xbox 360 doesnt see them. I manually update database and it still doesnt see them. I have to manually rebuild the virtual container in order for the Xbox 360 to see my new files.

    Why does this not happen automatically? Before setting up FreeNAS, I was using Windows Media Player 11 on my WinXP machine to stream media to my Xbox 360. Whenever I added new media it showed up automatically on my Xbox 360. Is there a setting that preventing my FreeNAS from doing this automatically? I hate to go back to WMP11 on my WinXP machine because I wanted FreeNAS to free up resources on that machine.

  10. I’m running the latest build: 0.69.
    Basically, this is what I did to get it to work.
    1) Rename my UPnP to “freenas:xbox” (like previous posters have said, the colon is important)
    2) Enable web user interface
    3) Go to http://your_nas_ip:49152 –> options –> rebuild virtual container

    I have CIFS/SMB enabled (does not affect UPnP).

    Thanks for all the help.

    • Ben, thanks for the info that helped me get my movie folders to show up on xbox360.
      My question now is everytime i placed a new movie in my folders i will need to rebuild de virtual container?

  11. Hi,

    It’s good for me Peter with that name “freenas: seee” or another name complex.
    To see my shared files I had to disable the CIFS / SMB service and my files are now visible.
    For my part, I activated the AFP service because I use OSX and the UPnP service.

  12. Hi Guy’s..OK having walked around a bit and calmed down..I joined the forums and well here is a simple answer…If you name the server in the UPnP like this freenas: seee the colon makes a big difference it works, I rebuilt the database and container as well but now the the XBOX can see the share, but not the files or folder structure but I’m convinced that is more a permissions issue. Later Peter

  13. Hi Dan, Been trying all day to get this working. Got the latest FreeNas build as of this week and can’t get the XBOX360 to even believe there is another box on the network to get files from. Tried your file edit and only got an error code 1 when trying to restart the UPnP service. I’ve given up. Its real poor to have the service and a drop down for the XBOX if it doesn’t work. ๐Ÿ™

  14. Excellent notes on the cron stuff! Added to update in the mornings, thanks for the info.

  15. I tried to post the bit about the name but it didnt display correctly (a bit like my IP description), then I ran out of time – hence the blank post. Your link shows what I was trying to say nicely.

    My post above on the IPs misses out the tags as they are not displayed when I submit the post but basically inside the allowed_ips section you have to add an ip tag (surrounded with greater than and less than bracket), your xbox ip address then a closing ip tag (less than, forward slash, greater than).

    For me to get it working properly I needed both of the above amendments to the file. The only problem is when you add the IP address you can no longer use the fuppes web user interface from the freeNAS UPnP page so you cannot rebuild your containers or DB when you add new files. The way I have got round this is to create two files in the /etc/rc.d folder, one with the ip in and one without. I just switch them from the command line then restart the service from the freeNAS interface when I need to access the fuppes web interface to rebuild the DB. Once done I switch them back and restart again.

    Interestingly enough, now I have removed the IP tag and left the friendly name bit in there and it all seems to be working i.e. I can see it from the 360 and edit it through the web interface :0)

    By the way, while I am at it the only automated solution I can find to get fuppes to see new files that I put on the shares it to schedule nightly rebuilds of the database and container files. I have added the following to the cron (system|advanced|cron):

    /etc/rc.d/fuppes rebuilddb
    /etc/rc.d/fuppes rebuildvcont

    I have experimented and it looks like you have to do both in order for the xbox to see the updates. I have spaced them out to run @ 3am and 5am so the first one has time to complete (each takes about 40 mins with my data).


    here is the code dan was speaking about in his last post.

    this code goes in the xbox 360 description section.

    I added allowed ips too, but if you don’t all ips are allowed.

  17. Fantastic news that you got it up and running, and what timing – as I just updated and am having issues again – so I will look into your recommendations Dan… don’t worry about my name, no-one else does ๐Ÿ˜‰


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