How To Watch Netflix In Ubuntu 14.04 And Linux Mint 17

How to watch netflix on Ubuntu 14.04

Ever tried to watch Netflix in Ubuntu in your web browser? I bet if you tried, you must have faced a “system requirement” error page like this:

Netflix error in Ubuntu Linux

You can always try to install Netflix desktop app in Ubuntu but it involves Wine which is not favored by everyone and doesn’t work for everyone as well.

Netflix is now completely supported on Linux. You don’t need to do any extra efforts to watch Netflix on Linux anymore. At best, make sure that you have libnss3 installed (explained in part 1 of this tutorial).

Thanks to Google Chrome version 37 and HTML 5, now you can get native viewing experience of Netflix in Linux directly in your Chrome web browser.In this tutorial, we shall see

In this tutorial, we shall see how to watch Netflix in Ubuntu without Wine. I have written this tutorial for Ubuntu 14.04. But this should also applicable to Linux Mint 17 and other Linux distributions.

Pre-requisites:

  • Ubuntu 14.04 or Ubuntu 14.10 beta
  • Google Chrome version 37 at least.
  • An active Netflix account.

If you have all of the three above, let’s see how to watch Netflix in Ubuntu in native way.

How to watch Netflix in Ubuntu 14.04 and Linux Mint 17

The whole tutorial is divided in three parts. Which is to enable HTML5 viewing in Netflix, installing a new library and installing a user agent switcher in Google Chrome. Let’s see how to do it.

Part 1: Install libnss3

You can skip this part if you are running Ubuntu 14.10 as it already has the latest version for libnss (Network Security Services). For Ubuntu 14.04 install libnss3 via an unofficial PPA. Open a terminal and use the following commands:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:leonbo/nss
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install libnss3 libnss3-1d libnss3-nssdb
sudo apt-get upgrade

Restart your system once you are done with these commands.

Suggested read
How To Watch Netflix In Ubuntu 14.04 With Netflix Desktop App

Part 2: Install user agent switcher extension for Chrome

The next step is that we fool Netflix and let it believe that we are NOT accessing it from Linux but Windows. Each time you connect to any server, some information about your OS, browser etc is received by the server. A user agent switcher comes handy in such case as it changes this information. Get the user agent extension from the link below:

Install the User-Agent Switcher Extension for Chrome

Once you have installed the User-Agent Switcher extension, from the top right, right click on this extension and choose Options:

Install_Usre_Agent_Switcher_Chrome

In the Options, you have to add a new user agent with the following information:

  • New User-agent name: Netflix Linux
  • New User-Agent String: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 6.3; Win64; x64) AppleWebKit/537.36 (KHTML, like Gecko) Chrome/38.0.2114.2 Safari/537.36
  • Group: (It will be filled in automatically)
  • Append?: Choose ‘Replace’
  • Flag: IE

So in the end when it looks like the screenshot below, click on add to add a new user agent:

Add user agent to use Netflix in Ubuntu

This way you can just click on the user agent switcher extension and choose Netflix Linux from under Chrome option to watch Netflix account. Alternatively, you can add a permanent spoof on Netflx.com so that you won’t have to manually switch the user agent. For Netflix website, this user agent will automatically take in to effect.

In the same Options, add the permanent spoof in the following manner:

Add_User_Agent_Netflix_Ubuntu_2

Part 3: Enable HTML5 playback in Netflix

We are almost there. All we need to do now is to enable HTML5 viewing in Netflix. This will be done when you are logged in your Netflix account. Go to your account settings and look for Playback Settings there:

html5 playback in Netflix in Linux

Make sure that you have HTML5 viewing option checked:

HTML5_Netflix_Ubuntu_1

 Okay! So we are all set to go. Open Netflix in Google Chrome, log in. If you have not set permanent spoof or if it is not working, switch to Netflix Linux under Chrome by clicking on user agent extension. Here is a screenshot of Netflix running in my Ubuntu system in Chrome browser:

Suggested read
Skype Microphone Not Working in Linux Mint 17 [Quick Tip]

Use Netflix in Ubuntu 14.04

If you want to watch Netflix outside US, you can use a premium DNS service like Unlocator to access it in any part of the world. In case you don’t have a legal or moral obligation against piracy, you can install Popcorn Time in Ubuntu. Popcorn Time is a torrent based streaming service that has Netflix like interface.

I hope this tutorial helped you to use Netflix in Ubuntu 14.04 in a native way. Any questions or suggestions are always welcomed.

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oh my goodness. you genius man. im abroad staying at a friends and they have linux and i have been trying to get netflix working for 2 days. i have been in touch with netflix who were useless. this has solved my prob. thank you soooooooooooooooooooooooo much.

Running LInux mint 18.1 Ran the command indicated here, below is the result.
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:leonbo/nss
'This PPA does not support xenial'
Cannot add PPA: ''This PPA does not support xenial''.

You should paste ALL of the command lines same time in your prompt.

Author
Abhishek Prakash

This lib should already be available for Mint 18.1. Netflix should work out of the box for you if you are using Google Chrome.

Linuxmint 18 Sarah. I had this running for a couple of years. Last few weeks it kept freezing, locking workspaces etc. Yesterday the audio vanished. Tried everything, tried uninstalling and that froze too. Ran bleachbit, and then uninstalled via Software Manager. Managed to delete it completely.

Then tried reinstalling via Software Manager. It is now not listed.

Tried to reinstall via your instructions, terminal generates message:

'This PPA does not support xenial'

Cannot add PPA: ''This PPA does not support xenial''.

I can't install via Software Manager, and the terminal solution fails?

Doesn't work on either firefox or chromium.

(I have LinuxMint 17)

Thanks for the trick. . . still works on Ubuntu 5.10. No video on Netflix Ubuntu firefox chromium chrome

Now i'm getting Netflix error "M7121-1131-P7" which means it thinks I'm playing this on too many devices. But nobody else has my Netflix account info, and this is the only device.

Why do you ALL the time make the text that goes into terminal NOT copyable?

This means one has to write it down instead of just copy/paste. You are, as always very unuserfriendly

Author
Abhishek Prakash

They are very much copyable. It's just not well rendered on Firefox. If you use Chrome, you can see it being selected and copied.

I had all of the same problems as everyone else. No "HTML5" preference at Netflix. When trying to play a movie I got a message saying: "Something went wrong" (along with a code). Then, I tried what someone else in this comment section had luck with (i.e. "try it without the agent switcher"). I uninstalled the agent switcher, then cleared my browsing data, then closed the browser and relaunched it.

I then simply logged into Netflix and now movies play just fine "as is."

Note: I'm running the latest version of Lubuntu 15.10... A fresh installation on an old Pentium M laptop with Boot Loader edited with "forcepae -- forcepae" added to the end of the boot command. Everything is perfect. (I hope the guy who told me "no way, just go buy a new computer" stumbles onto this).

Anyway, thanks for your article. I was trying to install the old "Netflix-Desktop" app and I found out the hard way it no longer exists on Ubuntu servers for versions newer than 13.xx. Then did a search for "Netflix on Ubuntu" and that's how I found your article. Had I not tried your solution and then read the comment section after it failed, I would probably still be wishing I had Netflix instead of simply watching their movies by way of a simple installation of Google.

Perhaps Netflix figured out what everyone was doing and simply made it work with Google Chrome?

It doesn't say Prefer HTML 5 Player Instead of Silver Light. It's not that you can check or uncheck it. It just isn't there. And without that option, this entire article is useless.

Author

Ideally, Netflix is now natively supported in Ubuntu. You don't need for HTML5 playback option. Does it not work automatically?

I did not got the HTML5 player option visible on my preferences :)

I have the same issue

So everyone here knows, it seems to me that chromium does not work with this (i get an error that seems to not be fixed. Also, i went onto the google website and my Linux mint 17 OS installed the 32 bit deb file with no error. After that netflix seems to work withour fail

Author

In the User-agent switching, the "options" tab is disabled so I can't click on it, and in my netflix playback, there is not an option allowing for html5 playback. Any help? Linux Mint Cinnamon Rebecca, Chromium 40.0.2214.111. Thanks

Scratch that. I'm new to linux, forgive my "iggnance." I only saw chromium in the repository, so assumed it was just the linux version. Nixxed it, then went after chrome via terminal (gksudo replaces sudo in Mint for new linux users). Once that was done, Netflix went right to work. I didn't even need the user-agent switcher...it's running fine. "HTML5" still doesn't show up in my playback settings on Netflix, but it doesn't seem to matter...she's running like a champ. So happy I switched.

Thanks! This works perfectly for me in Mint 17

The-Unadulterated-Moose

It seems as though Netflix now accommodates Linux. I just gave it a go without tricking it into thinking I'm using a windows, and it worked just fine.

What system, what browser?

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