What is MyFlix?

Simply put, it's a Netflix-like website for your local media. I haven't used a DVD in a long time and decided to digitize my collection. But I needed a way to watch them on my smart tv without having to connect a PC via HDMI or Apple TV to my TV. And I wanted a simple way to navigate from the TV, preferably with something a bit more visual-friendly than a simple directory listing of files. I know, I'll make my own Netflix, how hard could it be?

My target platform was smart TVs, since they all have (as far as I'm aware) a web browser. My particular Samsung TV has a controller that works much like a wii-remote, just point it at the screen and move the cursor around. Because of this, I implemented finger-like scroll support on the video browser page. Just grab the page by clicking down and pulling the page, as you would use your finger to flick a page up and down on your smartphone.

The project is still in very early development, but is functional to a point. Video links are hardcoded at the moment, but I have worked on a way to scan a directory for movies and retrieve relevant information from the web based on the the file name. So yes, there is as preferred structure for filenames but it is a little flexible. Ideally, your movie files would look like: Title [year].mpg.

TV shows would be grouped by the name of their directories. For instance, "Star Trek" would be the name of the root directory and include subdirectories called "Season 1", "Season 2", and so on. When setting up MyFlix the first time, you will choose which two local directories will contain movies and tv shows separately. The system will then scan them and build a database.

I currently host all my media on a Qnap NAS device. The local web server does not have to be on the same computer as your media. When you set up the media folders they will be seen by the website like they were local directories, meaning you can administrate the site from anywhere on the network.


There are some drawbacks to this system. Because it is completely web-based and has no additional software to install, there is no transcoding. You're not pulling video across the internet, only locally, so bandwidth isn't an issue. But without the transcoding you are limited to the video formats supported by the web.

Another limitation is the TV itself. Web browsers on televisions are not the best, nor is their processing power for the web. While it is getting better, the older smart TVs might have trouble running the site and there's no easy way for me to test it with all of them.

You can check out an early demo here: MyFlix