How to Ignore Files or Folders

If you have files or folders that you don't want Plex to scan and make available, you can have Plex ignore those files or folders.

The sections below explain what Plex will automatically ignore, and then what you can do to have Plex exclude files you don't wish to stream from your server.

How to Get Plex Ignore Files or Folders

What Plex automatically ignores

There are certain files and folders Plex will automatically ignore when it scans the library folders. Below is a list of what Plex will ignore and exclude:

  • Disk images:
    • Files with the extension .iso, .img, or .dvdmedia.
    • Sub-folders of disk image formats, such as VIDEO_TS, and BDMV.
    • Any other disk image formats.
  • Any file that includes "sample" in the file name and is less than 300 MB in size.
  • Local media assets, if it isn't enabled for the library:
    • Files or folders for trailers, behind-the-scenes, featurettes, etc.
    • Subfolders that include the words extras, samples, bonus, or bonus disc.

The filters for the above list are currently hard-coded into the scanner logic, so they can't be changed externally. The items listed above are excluded before the metadata matching begins.

Telling Plex what files or folders to ignore

If what you would like Plex to ignore, or exclude, is not included in the filtering in the previous section, you can manually specify Plex to ignore a file or folder.

This is done by creating a .plexignore file in the folder where the library content is located.

If you add the .plexignore file to the root of a library, then any rules specified in the file are applied to all subfolders.

.plexignore contents

The .plexignore file is simply a text file that contains different patterns to be applied to the files or folders for Plex to ignore. One pattern is specified on a single line of the file.

Each line of the file can contain the following:

  • Any blank lines are ignored.
  • Comments are denoted by starting a line with a #.
  • The * is a wildcard character, that will match anything.
  • Any pattern with a / character will match file names.
  • Patterns with a / will match folders and files relative to the folder containing the .plexignore file.

By using the above pattern rules you can create simple and complex patterns to tell Plex to ignore certain files or folders. Below are examples of such patterns.

Examples of .plexignore patterns

Ignore all files that have the extension .cr2:


Ignore folders that are called In-development:


Ignore all files with the name modified:


Ignore all files with the extension .cr2 in the editing folder:


In the above examples, you will notice that the forward slash is used for all patterns. The same forward slash should also be used on a Windows system.

By using the .plexignore file you can tell Plex what files or folders to ignore. You must also be cautious when using the .plexignore file, however, as including a pattern could prevent Plex from including a media item.