Plex for Windows - Overview

Navigating the App

Home Screen

The home screen is designed to help you quickly find interesting content or access your libraries. This is achieved through unique Discover views.

Continue Watching

If you recently left off in the middle of a movie or TV episode, you can quickly get right back into it from Continue Watching.

On Deck

On Deck shows you television content that you're watching. If you have a whole season of content and finish episode 3, On Deck will then have episode 4 waiting for you to quickly start. In cases when you stop watching in the middle of an episode, it will be available for you to pick up right where you left off.

Related Page: FAQ > What are "On Deck" and "Continue Watching" for?

Recent Playlists

Just as regular library content is presented as a"hub" on the home screen, your recently accessed playlists are now quickly accessible from the home screen. This is great for getting back to your "Marvel Movies" playlist or for that "On the move" music playlist that has just the right music to motivate your run.

Tip!: Only playlists that have been accessed within the last week will appear here. If you have a playlist you haven't recently accessed, you can always find it under Playlists in the navigation menu.

Recently Added

The Recently Added areas let you see what content you've added of different types and provides quick access to that content. You can see recent additions for movies, music, photos, home videos, or television. For television content, it will even be intelligently stacked for you so that if you add an entire season of content, you'll just get a single "season" entry displayed rather than a dozen individual episode entries, for instance.

Navigation Menu

The Navigation Menu is your centralized method to access most areas of the app. You can quickly jump to a particular Plex library, manage your sync items or app settings, switch users, and change locations.

Viewing Libraries

When viewing your libraries you can quickly find interesting content. This is achieved through unique Discover and Browse views.

Tip!: You can easily switch between the views using the Discover and Browse buttons at the top of the screen.

Discover

The Discover view is designed to help you quickly access content in which you may be interested. This is achieved by displaying several "hubs" of content.

Each Discover screen is specially crafted to the type of content you are viewing. Be it movies by a particular director, most played music in the month of June, TV Shows from a genre, or photos taken this year, these dynamic displays help you find interesting content.

The following are some examples of the kinds of "hubs" that you might find on the Discover screens. This is not an exhaustive list, and is meant to give you an idea about the variety of ways you might explore your content.

  • Movies
    • Recently Released Movies
    • Top Movies by Ridley Scott
    • Top Movies in Action
  • Television
    • Recently Aired TV
    • Start Watching (Shows that you haven't begun watching yet)
    • Rediscover (Shows that you started, but haven't recently watched)
  • Music
    • Most played in May
    • More by Arcade Fire
    • Top Albums from 1995
    • Artists on Tour
  • Photos
    • Photos from 2005
    • Photos From the 2010s
    • This Month in 2009
  • Home Videos
    • Videos from 2013
    • Continue Watching
    • Unwatched Videos

Browse

The Browse view provides simple, yet fast access to libraries, playlists, and channels.

Type / Filter / Sort

You can browse your libraries by type (such as Artists, Albums, or Tracks), filter them to find specific content, and sort them as desired.

Tip!: By using the Create Smart Playlist button within the  drop-down filter list, you can save your current filter and sort criteria as a smart playlist.

View

The  button allows you to quickly change to your preferred view for a library. You view all items, several discovery hubs, or view the library by folder.

Item Preplay Screen

The preplay screen offers a rich, content-filled overview for your media. You can access related movies based on similar characteristics, view extras, Sync the item, remotely start playing it to another Plex app or device, and even watch the trailer.

For TV Shows, you can also quickly jump to a season or queue up the show for a viewing marathon.

When playing music, you can read artist bios, view tour dates, find similar artists, browse their albums, and even watch their music videos!

Media Playback

The Plex for Windows app offers a number of ways to enjoy playback of your media. Obviously, you can play videos, music, and photos in the app as you'd expect. You can also control other Plex apps using our Plex Companion feature or cast to a Chromecast device. 

Related Page: Plex Apps > Plex Companion

The Local Device

The "Local" device entry in the Location Menu is home to your all your synced content, camera roll, and local videos on your device.

  • Synced Content: If you've synced content to your device using our Mobile Sync feature, you can access those libraries here. You'll have the same browsing, searching, and filtering experience you've come to enjoy when streaming from your Plex Media Server.
  • Camera Roll: Quickly access the photos and videos from your phone's camera roll right from within the Plex app. No reason to switch to an entirely different app!

Premium Mobile Features

Mobile Sync

Mobile Sync provides an easy way for you take your content with you and enjoy it offline. You can sync a range of content from your library such as movies, music, photos, and even playlists. Your viewing progress will be remembered while viewing content offline and will later be synced back to the media server next time you are online.

Related Page: Getting Started > Guides > Quick Guide to Mobile Sync

Related Page: Plex Pass > Mobile Sync & Cloud Sync

Camera Upload

Our premium Camera Upload feature lets you easily have photos and videos you take on your mobile device automatically synced to your Plex Media Server. Now, not only will they be backed up on your server, but you can easily share them with friends and family like other Plex content.

Unlocking or Activating

The Plex for Windows app can be downloaded free in the Windows app store. While many features of the app are available to use for free and users can test out all of the features, the app must be unlocked in order to access full functionality.

Related Page: What are the features and limitations without unlocking the app?

There are many ways to unlock full functionality for the app. Users with an active Plex Pass subscription have free access to the Plex for Windows app when using their Plex account. Free access to many Plex apps is one of the premium benefits of a subscription.

Users who don't have a Plex Pass subscription—and aren't interested in the features and benefits of a subscription—can unlock Plex for Windows through a simple one-time purchase.

Related Page: Unlocking or Activating Plex for Windows

For users interested in subscribing to a Plex Pass subscription, please do so directly from our website.

Related Page: Plex Pass Subscription Management