Alexa and remote access

alexa
voice-control

#1

Why would Plex need to have remote access enabled if I am using Alexa on my local network?

Do I have something misconfigured?


#2

Nope. You are configured correctly. The developer decided or was forced to access Plex from Alexia in such a way that requires remote access.

Judging by the fact that no other app requires that kind of special access I believe that it is simple laziness or ineptitude on the part of the developer. Of course that gets reinforced by extremely poor performance of the app in recognition and response. Every other Plex remote control works on my local network WITHOUT remote access enabled so it surely is possible.

Due to this and other major problems I quit using the Plex app on my Echo. It is just too unreliable and too badly implemented.

My Harmony Hub is perfectly controlled by my echo and it recognizes every command it is supposed to while a simple phrase like "Alexa, tell Plex pause" often results in my Plex system starting some random video or audio file starting to play when all that was wanted was to pause the playing video. BTW: "Alexa, Tell Harmony pause" works perfectly.

The app is poorly written and poorly implemented and poorly conceived and requiring "Remote access" to work is just stupid. I recommend that it not be used until it is fixed in such a way as to be operational and user friendly and NOT require remote access.


#3

the “skill” lives at Amazon which translates what you say into values, which relays values through a our servers to be converted to a command that is then communicated to your PMS.

basically it goes User’s Voice > Amazon > our Server > User’s PMS

Elijah we know things are not perfect and we are working on it.


#4

Thanks Guys, I am a little disappointed, as I was excited to try this and I never wanted to open my plex server to the outside for security reasons.I live where my bandwidth is extremely limited, and an ISP that will not just shut me off if I go over.


#5

that is weird as I have two plex servers, one is behind a double-nat and an ipv6 internet provider (no direct access from outside - red status under Settings/server/remote access) and the 2nd is in a datacenter with enabled remote access (Green status under Settings/server/remote access). I'm using both local as well, as the 2nd server is "bigger".

Until Yesterday evening the 2nd server was working with Alexa's Plex skill, but from today it can "only" see the other one... And lists also error in the Amazon Alexa app... "Connecting to Plex Media Server // If the plex skill is not finding or connecting to your plex media server, please first ensure that:"
Now I can only "control" the server which is only available in the local network (same network, where alexa is installed on, but not accessible over the interNET)...
And the server reachable on the internet NOT... :-(
Plex skill lists only one server, and set it automatically as default...

he? how is this then possible?


#6

at the time of setup Plex in Amazon Plex skill… for 2-3 days ago

today morning as the “connection” was broken…

“palinka” is normally not reachable from outside

humm, if I’m enabling it, it says its “fully accessible outside your network”
and on my mobile connected via LTE/mobile internet it says
INDIRECT
learn more at https://plex.tv/relay

this is new for me…


#7

@BigWheel said:
the “skill” lives at Amazon which translates what you say into values, which relays values through a our servers to be converted to a command that is then communicated to your PMS.

basically it goes User’s Voice > Amazon > our Server > User’s PMS

Elijah we know things are not perfect and we are working on it.

Does that mean that music is uploaded to amazon and then streamed to the echo?
or after the command, the echo is using the local network for streaming?

like a previous commenter, I am concerned about bandwidth usage.


#8

no it doesn’t mean your media it is uploaded anywhere. communication of commands needs the skill which is hosted on amazon which is remote to talk to your server. the skill cannot tell your server what to do if it cannot get to your server.

the actual stream of your media is local


#9

@BigWheel said:
no it doesn’t mean your media it is uploaded anywhere. communication of commands needs the skill which is hosted on amazon which is remote to talk to your server. the skill cannot tell your server what to do if it cannot get to your server.

the actual stream of your media is local

Thanks! that makes me feel a lot better.
keep up the good work


#10

Why not:
User’s Voice > Echo > Amazon > our Server > Amazon > Echo > User’s PMS
That would use existing communication paths for the Echo, without having to open the PMS to the outside.