Since ISPs are rolling out DS-Lite connections to customers the need for IPv6 support in Plex is rising. I recently got such a internet connection myself and I need to work around this issue using external services.
The Plex infrastructure is currently only IPv4 leaving everyone with a IPv6 connection unable to access their PMS through PlexWeb. Thanks to Plex Media Server Update 0.9.12.5 the situation has improved, but is not perfect.
So what is DS-Lite and IPv6?
The internet today relies on the “Internet Protocol” in Version 4, which assigns a IP-Address to each computer/router that is connected to the internet so they can communicate with each other. The problem is that IPv4 has a limited address space and in our world of smartphones, tablets, wearables and internet of things more and more devices want to get access. As a result the pool of available addresses is draining fast.
Therefore the new Internet Protocol Version 6 (IPv6) was developed. It has been around for quite some time, but till a few years ago there was no need to do the switch. Recently the last block of IPv4 addresses was assigned to a regional administrative entity and as a result ISPs started to provide consumers with internet connections over IPv6 so they can save their existing pool of IPv4 addresses for business customers.
In order for those consumer internet connections to access the “current” IPv4 internet they use a IPv6 to IPv4 gateway which uses one IPv4 address for multiple customers. This approach is called DS-Lite, where DS stands for “Dual Stack”. Dual Stack means that the connection is IPv4 and IPv6, the lite version, as explained above, has a native IPv6 address and a shared IPv4 address, the regular Dual Stack has both native IPv4 and IPv6 addresses.
What are the implications for a Plex user?
In order to reach your PMS from the internet you need to forward a port like 32400 to your PMS. Using the IP-Address assigned by your ISP and the specified port you can reach your PMS from the Internet. As explained above normally this IP-Adress assigned by your ISP is a IPv4-Address, which works just fine.
In the case of DS-Lite you are going online with a IPv4-Address, but the port forwarding is not working since the IPv4-Address is not unique to you, you share it with perhaps hundreds of other people. The only way to get to your PMS is using IPv6 since your device has its own globally unique IPv6 address.
What does Plex need to do?
Plex online services needs to support and handle IPv4 and IPv6 requests. The same applies to the PMS side. So if your port 32400 is open on the IPv6 interface it can get recognized by the PlexWeb online service allowing remote access to your PMS.
Workaround starting with PMS 0.9.12.5:
Here is a small step by step guide on how to get your PMS and PlexWeb working with remote access again:
- You need to sign up for a IPv6 to IPv4 port mapper service which maps a IPv4 Address with a port to your IPv6 Address with Port 32400. There are plenty of services out there two examples are myonlineportal.net (free) and feste-ip.net (paid). I personally use feste-ip.net.
- In case you router requires IPv6 Port-Forwarding, forward Port 32400 to your System running Plex Media Server. It might be that you need to configure your server so that it is accessible through IPv6 also in your local network. In this case you need to enable IPv6 support in your PMS at Settings > Server > Networking > Advanced Networking > Enable Server Support for IPv6.
- Now your Port 32400 should be open to the Internet using IPv6 and if you pointed the port mapping service to the correct IPv6 address you should be able to reach your Plex using the port mapping service url. For Feste-IP.net the Urls look something like this: username.feste-ip.net:28437
- Take the port mapper URL and go to Settings > Server > Networking > Advanced Networking > Custom server access URLs and paste the Url in the format http://domain.name:Port/web
- Save the configuration and wait a few minutes, then go to the Settings > Server > General page and associate the server with your Plex account. Afterwards it should be available through https://plex.tv/ – Note: Settings > Server > Remote access will still complain as being not able to reach the server, but it works! 😉
As soon as I have more time available I’ll do a complete guide with screenshots.
The original post can be found here.