Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Absolutely brilliant: AlienBBC

I posted earlier my discovery of the Squeezebox, which streams audio files on your laptop to your audio system, in my case the Bose system, over your WiFi home network.

That is truly wonderful, but only works for files resident on the host computer. What about Internet audio streams?

Well, as usual if you ask the question "what will it take" rather than "can I" you get an answer that works. In this case it is


It is absolutely brilliant. It captures the BBC streaming audio and routes
it to the SlimServer, where it appears as the first entry on {Internet

AlienBBC is a plugin for SlimServer/SqueezeCenter, the software platform used by the Slim Devices line of networked music players.

It is primarily designed to allow the user to listen to BBC Radio streams but also adds the ability to listen to any RealAudio stream. Currently, it is capable of parsing and playing the following resources:

* All the main BBC Radio 'Live' streams
* The BBC 'Listen Again' Audio on Demand content
* All Available BBC Radio 2 Content
* All Available BBC Radio 4 Content
* The BBC7 Audio Archive
* The Available BBC Local Radio Stations
* Radio 5 Live Audio Archive
* Some of the ABC Content (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)
* A number of other streams, suggested by AlienBBC Users

In addition, the code will also parse any 'AlienBBC Playlists' (formerly 'AlienStream' playlists) available, and provides a more robust environment for the playing of those streams.

AlienBBC functions on Linux, MacOS/X, and Windows platforms.

There were some startup problems. Archived files were truncating after
about five minutes of play, while live play files were not.

Going on line at the slimserver forums:

led to a dialog that solves the problem. Depending on your version, there
are various "*convert.conf" files containing a *-bandwidth 100000* command
line option. Deleting these solves the problem.

In my case it was


I backed this up and then made the recommended -bandwidth option deletion.

And then the world was at peace.

Happy Boxing Day.

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