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How to stream local video to your Chromecast (using Plex)

This guide will help you use your Chromecast to stream personal video files straight to your TV

These days, transforming your television into a smart TV is as simple as plugging in a Chromecast. Serving as a digital media player in the form of a small dongle, a Chromecast can turn any compatible TV into an entertainment hub.

While a Chromecast comes equipped with apps for Netflix, YouTube, BBC iPlayer and more, it can also be used to stream local videos from your phone, tablet or PC and display them on the TV it’s connected to.

Streaming local video, however, is a bit more complicated than streaming video through a third-party app. In short, the method you use to stream your video files will depend on the device you aim to stream from.

This guide will explain how to stream local video to your Chromecast using a laptop or PC. We’ll go over some of the prerequisites and then take you step-by-step through the process of getting your video content onto the big screen.

READ NEXT: How to watch videos on any device using Plex

Things to know before getting started

To stream local video to your Chromecast, there are a few things you need to check before you begin. Firstly, you will have to sign up to a service called Plex, which is an online media player that allows you to stream local videos to other devices. You can do so by following this link. It’s free, so you don’t have to worry about any future payments, and it’s what you will use to stream video to your Chromecast.

To use Plex, you’re going to need a desktop or laptop, and you will have to use a Chrome browser. It’s not possible to use Plex to stream content to another screen using a mobile device or any browser other than Chrome.

After you’ve created a Plex account, you need to download the Plex Media Server on the computer or laptop where you keep the videos you want to stream. You can do this by clicking the Launch button in the top-right corner of the screen on Plex’s homepage, which you’ll see after creating your Plex account. The Media Server also comes bundled with the Plex Web App, which you will need to access next.

Once you’ve accessed the app, you need to make sure that the Plex Media Server allows for secure connections, otherwise you can’t stream to your Chromecast. To make sure it does, open the app, select Settings, click on Server and then choose Network. From here, make sure the Secure Connections option is set to Preferred.

Finally, you need to add the videos on your connected device to your Plex library, which comes packaged with the download of the Plex Media Server. This will allow you to store and access videos on Plex so you can stream them to your Chromecast.

Now, you should be ready to stream local video to your Chromecast. Just follow our step-by-step guide to complete the process.

Accessing Chromecast through Plex

Step 1. Using a Chrome browser, access the Plex Web App and click the Plex Players icon in the top-right corner of the screen. It looks like a rectangle with a Wi-Fi connection symbol in the bottom left.

Step 2. After clicking the icon, select Cast, which will reveal a dropdown menu, showing a list of devices that have Chromecasts attached to them that the Plex Media Server has detected.

Step 3. Select the compatible Chromecast device you want to stream your local videos to. This will set it as the device that you want videos played on when using Plex.

Playing videos

Step 1. Using the Plex Web App, play the video you want to watch. Once you do, the video will appear on the TV the Chromecast is attached to.

Step 2. The browser you’re using to stream the video to your TV can now be used to control the playback of the video.

Step 3. To stop streaming to your Chromecast, select the Google Cast extension in the Chrome browser playing the video and click Stop. The video will no longer appear on the Chromecast but will continue to play on the Plex Web App in your browser.

And there you have it – you can now stream local videos to your TV. If you want to use Plex for other devices such as iOS, Android or Apple TV, all you have to do is follow the link and we’ll show you how to get set up. If you only plan on using Plex and Chromecast to stream to your TV, though, then you should be ready to go.

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