[UPDATED] Full guide on making a Plex server with automated torrent downloads using Docker
6 min read
This week I had a bit of free time so I decided to make a Plex server with automated downloads.
Edit: Since I wrote this article, I have been able to get it more stable and simple. So, I thought I should update my article.
Do not use this for anything illegal. This is for educational purpose only.
I am using Ubuntu LTS for this tutorial but due to Docker being the main component, it makes it easy to replicate on other systems. I am also using a singular 1tb hard drive for this tutorial.
- Docker is a software that produces OS-level virtualization containers allowing for easy software deployment and compatibility for many OS's.
- Portainer is essentially just a fancy web management GUI for docker that allows easier debugging and deployment
- Plex is a global media server with supports a lot of devices and browsers.
- Jackett allows you to add indexers to find torrents.
- Ombi allows people to request content.
- Radarr is the software that connects Ombi, Plex and Jackett together to find and download movies.
- Sonarr, like Radarr, connects Ombi, Plex and Jackett together to find and download TV Shows and Anime.
- Transmission is a lightweight torrent client.
- Gluetun is a lightweight VPN container that has all network traffic routed threw it.
You can find the installation guide here. If you want to make sure to get the latest updates for make sure to install all the prerequisites:
sudo apt-get update sudo apt-get install \ ca-certificates \ curl \ gnupg \ lsb-release
Next, add Docker's offical GPG key:
curl -fsSL https://download.docker.com/linux/ubuntu/gpg | sudo gpg --dearmor -o /usr/share/keyrings/docker-archive-keyring.gpg
Add Docker's official stable repository:
echo \ "deb [arch=$(dpkg --print-architecture) signed-by=/usr/share/keyrings/docker-archive-keyring.gpg] https://download.docker.com/linux/ubuntu \ $(lsb_release -cs) stable" | sudo tee /etc/apt/sources.list.d/docker.list > /dev/null
Update the apt package index and Install Docker:
sudo apt-get update sudo apt-get install docker-ce docker-ce-cli containerd.io
You can find the installation guide here. Create a volume for Portainer data to be stored in:
sudo docker volume create portainer_data
sudo docker run -d -p 9000:9000 -p 8000:8000 -p 9443:9443 --name portainer \ --restart=always \ -v /var/run/docker.sock:/var/run/docker.sock \ -v portainer_data:/data \ portainer/portainer-ce:latest
You can see if it is working by running
root@server:~# sudo docker ps CONTAINER ID IMAGE COMMAND CREATED STATUS PORTS NAMES de5b28eb2fa9 portainer/portainer-ce:2.9.3 "/portainer" 2 weeks ago Up 9 days 0.0.0.0:8000->8000/tcp, :::8000->8000/tcp, 0.0.0.0:9443->9443/tcp, :::9443->9443/tcp portainer
You can set up the filesystem how you want but what I have done is put all the content into
/media. This is a simple secure filesystem. To make files use
Sonarr, Radarr, Transmission, and Sonarr will all need a common directory to be passed threw. In this case, they recommend /data.
Example of media configuration:
├── config │ ├── jackett │ ├── ombi │ ├── plex │ ├── radarr │ ├── sonarr │ └── transmission └── data ├── media │ ├── Anime │ ├── Movies │ └── TV Shows └── torrent └── downloads ├── complete └── incomplete
I am also running this all under one user called media-server. If you want to create this user run this.
sudo useradd -r -m -d /opt/media-server -s /usr/sbin/nologin -g docker media-server
I also changed the owner of the directory to media-server
sudo chown -R media-sever:docker /media
If you are running multiple hard drives for your media server you can use something called Mhddfs. I have not used it but you can find more info here.
Setting up the stack in Portainer
- Go onto localhost:9443
- Make up the login credentials and log in.
- Click on Local then Stack.
- Click add stack
- Paste this docker-compose.yml
Tip: Portainer has a useful way to get access to logs and consoles. Click on the container and then click on the option you want.
Below I am explaining how these images work and what to configure.
My full script is on GitHub here.
--- version: "3.8" services:
At the top is just basic info.
gluetun: image: qmcgaw/gluetun:latest cap_add: - NET_ADMIN environment: - VPN_SERVICE_PROVIDER=nord - OPENVPN_USER= - OPENVPN_PASSWORD= - SERVER_COUNTRIES=India ports: - 9117:9117 - 8989:8989 - 7878:7878 - 3579:3579 - 9091:9091 - 51413:51413 - 51413:51413/udp restart: unless-stopped
Gluetun opens up all required ports for all the other containers. Gluetun supports all the popular VPN providers and even has the option to specify an OpenVPN file. To check the list of providers they support, check on the wiki. Even if you don't want a VPN, I recommend at least using a proxy. You can find all the info you need here. In the configurations on the other boxes when specifying IPs, use localhost.
plex: image: lscr.io/linuxserver/plex:latest container_name: plex network_mode: host environment: - PUID=1000 - PGID=1000 - VERSION=docker volumes: - /media/config/plex:/config - /media/data/media/TV Shows:/tv - /media/data/media/Movies:/movies restart: unless-stopped
It is not always ideal to run these containers as root with access to the full system. You can change who runs the container with PUID AND GUID. You can find the id of the user by
Plex will be started on port 32400 and will not be run threw the VPN.
image: linuxserver/jackett:latest container_name: jackett environment: - PUID=1000 - PGID=1000 - TZ=Africa/Abidjan volumes: - /media/config/jackett:/config - /media/data:/data network_mode: "service:gluetun" restart: unless-stopped
To access Jackett, use port 9117.
Sonarr and Radarr
sonarr: image: linuxserver/sonarr:latest container_name: sonarr environment: - PUID=1000 - PGID=1000 - TZ=Africa/Abidjan - UMASK_SET=022 #optional volumes: - /media/config/sonarr:/config - /media/data:/data network_mode: "service:gluetun" restart: unless-stopped radarr: image: linuxserver/radarr:latest container_name: radarr environment: - PUID=1000 - PGID=1000 - TZ=Africa/Abidjan - UMASK_SET=022 #optional volumes: - /media/config/radarr:/config - /media/data:/data network_mode: "service:gluetun" restart: unless-stopped
Make sure your user is the owner of all the folders. When you have trouble, logs are your best friend.
Sonarr is port 8989 and Radarr is port 7878.
ombi: image: linuxserver/ombi:latest container_name: ombi environment: - PUID=1000 - PGID=1000 - TZ=Africa/Abidjan - BASE_URL=/ombi #optional volumes: - /media/config/ombi:/config - /media/data:/media network_mode: "service:gluetun" restart: unless-stopped
Pretty basic. This is the container that handles all the requests for media.
You can access this container by port 3579
transmission: image: lscr.io/linuxserver/transmission:latest container_name: transmission environment: - PUID=1000 - PGID=1000 - TZ=Africa/Abidjan - TRANSMISSION_WEB_HOME=/combustion-release/ #optional # - USER=username #optional YOU SHOULD ADD A USERNAME AND PASSWORD # - PASS=password #optional # - WHITELIST=iplist #optional # - HOST_WHITELIST=dnsname list #optional volumes: - /media/config/transmission:/config - /media/data:/data # - /media/torrent/watch:/watch # any torrent file you put into /watch will be auto-downloaded network_mode: "service:gluetun" restart: unless-stopped
Transmission is a very simple lightweight torrent downloading client. I highly recommend it. I do highly recommend adding a username and password.
You can access this container by port 9091.
Starting it up
All you have to do is click 'Update the stack' and you are done setting up the server. You now have to setup up:
- Add indexers to Jackett.
- Adding download locations, indexers and Transmission to Sonarr and Radarr.
- Setting up the symbolic links for Sonarr and Radarr.
- Configure Ombi for requests for Sonarr and Radarr.
I heavily used Zac Holland's tutorial to help me set up this server. Go see his blog, he has a lot of exciting projects.
I hope you enjoyed this tutorial. If you have any questions you can always leave a comment below or feel free to reach out to me on Twitter at @dingo418.