Right now I'm dual-booting Ubuntu and OS X. The only thing I use OS X for is watching the DRM-ed Netflix stream. I've looked into ways of watching Netflix on Ubuntu, but it seems the DRM basically makes that impossible (Moonlight project says unless Netflix drops the DRM their Silverlight replacement will not allow watching of Netflix).

But then I realized, hey what if I stream Netflix to another computer running say, OS X, then somehow redirect it (using Unix magic) to my Ubuntu machine? Is this possible?


2 Answers 2


While not exactly using the MAC - I have had success using PlayON media streamer, which will pull the netflix stream, decode it, and then through UPNP magic give you a streamable connection which you can open in VLC to watch the transcoded stream.


Its not free, its not open source, and if you have less than 1 GB of ram expect your transcoding sessions to fail constantly.

again, please note, that playon has a licensing fee, or basically a yearly subscription cost. Runs natively on windows (parallels may come in handy here. I can attest I've had quite a bit of joy using it in a virtual machine just for grins. BARE MINIMUM of 1GB of ram)

also, did I mention you'll need some beefy video ram or system ram to handle the transcoding process?


Regardless of the hardware you use, there is pretty much no way to play NetFlix "in" Ubuntu. The best-working solution seems to be running a windows virtual machine and using Netflix in the virtual machine. Even if you do a remote desktop, the NetFlix client wouldn't be running "in" Ubuntu.

  • As my question states, I realized it's impossible to play Netflix "in" Ubuntu. Do you have any ideas along the lines of what I proposed? Apr 3, 2012 at 7:58
  • Desktop sharing? That comes closest to what you proposed AFAIK. Unless you're able to re-broadcast the video and load it up via VLC. You'd have to open the port on your modem or router and it may use up your bandwidth very quickly... Apr 4, 2012 at 5:55

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