How to Stream Video From VLC

Most Linux users are at least familiar with VLC, and a good portion of them have it installed. What many don’t know is that VLC can handle much more than just playing your videos. In addition to its many other options, VLC can easily stream a video over your network.

In this tutorial you will learn:

  • How to Set Up a VLC Stream
  • How to Connect to a VLC Stream

Stream from VLC

Stream from VLC.

Software Requirements and Conventions Used

Software Requirements and Linux Command Line Conventions
Category Requirements, Conventions or Software Version Used
System This will work on any distro with VLC.
Software VLC
Other Privileged access to your Linux system as root or via the sudo command.
Conventions # – requires given linux commands to be executed with root privileges either directly as a root user or by use of sudo command
$ – requires given linux commands to be executed as a regular non-privileged user

Set Up a VLC Stream

Once you have installed VLC on your system, streaming isn’t something particularly difficult on VLC. It’s actually a normal way the program can handle a file. There’s no special configuration needed. So, open up VLC on your Linux PC.

Choose Stream from VLC Menu

Choose Stream from VLC Menu.

With VLC open, select Media from the top menu. VLC will open up a new list of options, pick Strong from that list.

Choose Video on VLC

Choose Video on VLC.

VLC will open a new window for you to configure your stream. The first thing you’ll need is a video stream. Press Add to the right side of the top section. Browse to the video that you want to stream. Once you have it, press Stream at the bottom of the window.

The next screen is just going to give a brief explanation of what you’re streaming and list your file. Press Next.

Choose Stream Destination on VLC

Choose Stream Destination on VLC.

Then, you’ll be able to choose your stream output. Use the drop down menu to choose the output stream type. HTTP is probably the easiest to work with. Press Add.

Stream Settings on VLC

Stream Settings on VLC.

Under your new HTTP tab, choose the port you want to stream on and if you want a specific address for your stream. You can safely leave the defaults in most situations.

Stream Transcode on VLC

Stream Transcode on VLC.

Next, choose the transcode for your stream. It’s probably best to transcode and pick a format that’s web friendly. You can pick up the stream both on the web and VLC or another player that supports HTTP.

You’ll get one last screen where you can review the command line arguments used to construct your stream. You won’t need to do anything here. Just press Stream.

Connect to a VLC Stream

There isn’t one right way to connect to your stream. As it is, it’s available on your network on your computer’s IP on the opened port you’ve specified. It should look something like this:

. In case your are using firewall such as the firewalld make sure that the port is opened to receive an incoming traffic.

Open up VLC, say on your Android device, and open the menu, and choose Stream. On desktops, it’s Media and Open Network Stream….

Then, just enter the address of your stream. You’ll need to include http at the beginning, so it’ll need to look like:

VLC will load up your stream and start playing.


That’s all there is to it. You an stop your stream at any time on the computer streaming it by pressing the stop button.

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