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Turn-key solution to Plex-Debrid streaming

Today we welcome plex-debrid, another piece of the puzzle for simple Plex debrid-based streaming. Plex-debrid lets you use your Plex watchlist as a "watchlist" (haha), scraping public trackers for the debrid-cached releases, and adding them to your Real-Debrid. It then triggers a rescan of the Plex library, so that in theory, the media is available to stream within 10-20s!

Plex-Debrid "Infinite" streaming

This is a beginner-friendly solution which avoids dealing with torrents, trackers, ratios, VPNs, and storage limits. The trade-off, of course, is that you don't own the media - it's streamed to you from your debrid service, for as long as you have a valid subscription.

Here's a little diagram showing how simple it can be:

flowchart TD
    K[Plex] --> |Stream|Z[User]
    Z[User] --> |Add to watchlist|K[Plex]
    K[Plex] --> |Watchlist|G[plex_debrid]
    G[plex_debrid] --> |Scan on download|K[Plex]
    G[plex_debrid] <--> |Find and add torrent|H[real-debrid]
    H --> I[Zurg]
    I --> |/storage/real-debrid/...|J[rclone mount]
    K[Plex] <--> |Library|J

And here's a demo from the plex_debrid repo..

Your ElfHosted streamer now includes autoscan!

Our users may have large media libraries stored either on ElfStorage, or some other, BYO storage, which may be subject to API ratelimits, increased latency, etc. As such, the default behavior of rescanning the entire media library at a set interval is both resource-intensive and time-consuming.

Thanks to user suggestions, we've now bundled Autoscan with our streamers (Plex / Jellyfin / Emby).

By simply adding a webhook connection on the Arrs (Radarr, Sonarr, Lidarr, Readarr), you can configure the Arr to fire a webhook at Autoscan when new media is downloaded.

Autoscan will then use an API token to instruct Plex / Jellyfin / Emby to rescan just the parent folder that the media appeared in, so that your library is instantly updated, rather than relying on regular filesystem scans.

See the Autoscan page for instructions on how to set it up!

G'day, Wallabag! 🦘

Today's new app is an old open-source classic (which is still receiving regular maintenance, updates, and new features), Wallabag, an excellent, feature-full read-it-later app:

Screenshot of Wallabag

From the official site:

wallabag extracts the article's content (and only its content!) and displays it in a comfortable view. Moreover, wallabag is responsive: you can read your articles on your smartphone or your tablet.

If you already have data on Pocket©, Readability©, Instapaper©, Pinboard©, Firefox or Chrome, you can import your data into wallabag: add easily thousands of articles in your account.

Introducing Homepage

Hello, Homepage 🎨

Today's new app is an alternative dashboard, Homepage...

Screenshot of Joplin

Why do you need another dashboard, what's wrong with your default ElfHosted dashboard?

Probably nothing, but it's soooo pretty! Also, some of the app integrations are pretty sick! Unlike Homer, which hits the various APIs using your browser, Homepage runs a backend proxy, so it's much easier to configure it to talk to your other ElfHosted services, and much richer data can be retrieved.

For example, the Jellyfin integration will show you exactly what media is currently streaming, along with the expected summary of your library stats.

You can customize homepage by adding your own services (like the weather in your location, or the price of your favorite crypto), your own custom background, etc, and changes are effected instantly.

If there's popular demand, I'll add an option for Homepage to replace your default dashboard 👍

Tada, it's Tdarr! 🎉

I was trying to catch up on my 1080P movie backlog on my laptop recently, only to discover that Jellyfin would transcode the movie since the 5.1 audio track apparently won't work on modern Firefox on my modern Macbook (grr, why? 🤦‍♂️)

Rather than just watching on my nVidia Shield (which plays everything I throw at it), I instead spent about 6 hours (I never even got to watch the movie!) adding Tdarr to our platform, with a mind to having a 2-channel audio track added to my existing media.

So, we now have Tdarr available! 🥳 It works as advertised, although it turns out to be quite tricky to configure, and even trickier to make work with the Quick Sync Video hardware transcoding support in our 9th-gen Intel nodes.

Screenshot of Tdarr

A few peculiarities to our implementation:

  1. While Tdarr can support multiple, distributed worker nodes, we just use one worker node, paired with the Tdarr server, for easy resource isolation, and because our transcoding "scratch" volume is actually a 200Gb ephemeral NVMe-backed disk, which only exists for as long as the pod does.
  2. We don't actually want to significantly increase our CPU usage across the platform - rather, we want to leverage Tdarr for spare capacity on hardware-based transcoding. Each Tdarr pod has minimal CPU, and enough RAM to run the server, plus one hardware transcode, but will crash and restart if trying to do more than one transcode in parallel (because mooar transcodes requires mooar RAM)

I've pre-configured a working Tdarr setup, so you won't be starting from scratch when configuring it, and I've added more specifics to the app page.

Get your 24h trial / subscription at the store!

Introducing Joplin Server

Today's new app is a fresh request from one of our fellow elfies.. Joplin is a 100% open-source , markdown-driven note-taking app, similar to Obsidian or Logseq. There are apps for Mac, Windows, and Linux, even a terminal app!

Joplin Server is the open-source version of the sync engine behind, which takes you beyond simple apps, by enabling cross-device sync, sharing, publishing, etc.

Screenshot of Joplin

Adding Joplin Server to your "Elf Stack" will let you utilize your ElfStorage (pass go, collect 100GB) for storing notes, attachments, etc.

The "publish note" feature is pretty - here's an example of what a published note looks like - it's published by joplin-server (so you can edit it with any client on any device), and it's auto-updated whenever the note is updated.

If you don't trust a seedy seedbox host with your super secret notes (and why should you?), you can enable E2E encryption in the client apps, which (like Seafile) means that all that's stored in ElfStorage is the encrypted blobs, and some metadata in the postgresql database.

Introducing Miniflux

I've been a fan of Miniflux since I publicaly ditched TinyTinyRSS for it, 6 years ago. (read all about it!)

Screenshot of Miniflux

Miniflux is part of a class of apps I'm hoping to add more of - standalone apps which leverage an external database backend (like MySQL or postgreSQL). In this class we already have Seafile and Mattermost, and I hope to add NextCloud in the near future. (and hopefully eventually Radarr and Sonarr!)

Using a "real" database (as opposed to sqlite) makes backup / migration a little tricker, but I've implemented automatic daily backups for the database component (they'll go to /storage/elfstorage/backups/<app>/), alongside whatever backup / export option the app natively provides.

See more on the app page, or perform a 24h trial / subscription at the store!

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Introducing Openbooks

Today we added Openbooks, a tool which allows you to download ebooks from quickly and easily.

Screenshot of Openbooks

Currently, Openbooks is hard-coded to save downloaded content to /storage/elfstorage/downloads/completed/books, and changing this is non-trivial, since it's a commandline argument fed to the application binary, rather than a user-configurable UI setting. If changing the download location is important to you, we may be able to effect this in future using ElfBot.

While Readarr -> Openbooks -> Calibre -> Calibre-Web would be the "holy grail", it doesn't look like we'll see Readarr integration. However, I have noticed some issues on the Openbooks GitHub repo which explain how to setup a Calibre "auto-add" directory, which would create the "slightly-less-holy grail" of Openbooks -> Calibre -> Calibre-Web. For this to work, we need to switch to the VNC-in-browser version of Calibre, which I'll try to do over the next few days.

See more on the app page, or perform a 24h trial / subscription at the store!

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