Sharing Music from Linux

Last weekend I finally got fed up with the movie player that came with Ubuntu for playing music and started looking for alternatives. It turns out Rythmbox is the music player that came with Ubuntu, but it wasn’t set as the default for opening audio files. It was rather easy to import my music directory into it, but about ten seconds into the import the ftp to my file server died and killed the import. I don’t know why it disconnected, but I figured there had to be a decent way to share the music directly from my server over the network instead of connecting with ftp and playing music from the file mount.

I finally got around to looking into that this weekend, and almost immediately found mt-daapd. Rythmbox automatically discovers DAAP servers on the local network on start, so I figured I’d try it. Supposedly, ITunes will discover DAAP servers too, so I’ll even be covered if I boot into Windows for some reason.

Mt-daapd was by far the easiest thing I’ve set up on my server. It installed with apt-get: sudo apt-get install mt-daapd. The installer even set it up to start on boot and started the service. Unfortunately, it didn’t have a clue where to find my music (since I don’t keep my music in my home directory), so I had to edit the conf file: sudo vi /etc/mt-daapd.conf and set the mp3_dir property to the directory all my music is in. At that point I restarted my server (to make sure the start on boot script was working before I forgot about it), opened Rythmbox, and everything just worked.

My only complaint now is that Rythmbox won’t let me search by genre, but it will let me sort by genre, so I can just select the set of songs from the list that I feel like listening to and add those to the play queue.

Misc update

I finally booted my laptop back to Linux, and it’s so much more usable now! I’ve been using Windows Vista since Christmas because I was gaming on my laptop and because I got itunes gift cards and I have itunes installed in windows. The problem I had was that I couldn’t access my file server from windows (it’s a linux server). I figured Samba hadn’t started or something last time I took updates and rebooted the server, so I tried SSHing in from my phone, then realized that I could just use my laptop, so I switched it to Ubuntu. Now Firefox is responsive, I don’t get pop-ups from MS Security Essentials, and the screensaver comes on consistently. In other words: this is a major improvement.

I never did figure out why my server wasn’t showing up on the network list in windows. Before my laptop was finished booting I tried typing in the IP address directly in windows explorer and that worked, but the network browser still won’t find it.

I uploaded the last of the rocket videos:

I ended up trimming off all the extra video of it hanging in the tree. There are a couple spots where you can see my dad and I walking around under it, but it was more long and drawn out than interesting.

The other video I produced this week was in skyrim:

I found a dragon that had a ledge behind it, so I snuck on to the ledge and stabbed it with my daggers for the sneak attack bonus. Unfortunately, I hadn’t improved my offhand dagger with blacksmithing so I didn’t actually one-shot the dragon. I finished it off using my bow when it landed – I haven’t fought many dragons as a melee character but I remember my mage getting bitten and killed when I got close.

It took me probably fifteen minutes to get into position for that attack because every time the dragon detected me it would fly up and breathe frost on me so I’d have to reload a save. Also, to get onto the ledge I had to find a spot to climb the mountain so I could jump down on it. This was the dragon on the mountain south of Riften.

I just realized I didn’t have a category for Games: Skyrim. I guess I really haven’t been blogging much since it came out.

Today I finally sat down and timed a solve of my 7-cube: 30 minuntes 56.77 seconds. That beats my previous time of 63 minutes by far, but I need to do a few more solves for a 3 of 5 average (technically they should all be in one sitting, but at 30 min per solve that’s not happening). I also did a few 3-cube solves and managed a 34.99 second solve, which is my new record for the method I’m using to solve it. I was trying to solve my rubik’s cube while on my exercise bike, but I was both slowing down on the bike and messing up algorithms so I gave up. If I’d had better light maybe it would have been an interesting challenge, perhaps tomorrow.

Behind Schedule

The plan today was to start a movie and finish restickering my 7 cube. That hasn’t quite happened yet.

The movie (Inception) came with a digital copy code so I can also download it through iTunes. That’s a nice feature (besides the download time), and it expires so I figured I’d start that downloading. The only problem is that I had the hard drive on my laptop crash a while back so I tend to back things up now, but I never did get around to configuring the Samba share on my linux server to share to the windows network. I’ve been using it by switching to linux on my laptop, but I figured I should just go ahead and get that set up.

Setting up Samba to share files was rather easy (Samba Guide), but I also have a printer hooked up to that server that’s supposed to be accessible over the network. I know when I first set it up I was able to print the test page, but I haven’t gotten it to print since. With Samba finally configured I could see the printer across the network, but I haven’t been able to get it to print still (even after finally getting win7 to find the driver).

Update: Even though win7 had found the correct driver through windows update and set that printer to use it the driver apparently wasn’t installed. Talore got bored watching me fight this and went to sleep on the shelf by the balcony, which happens to be right next to the printer, so when windows finally (on the fourth time I told it to do so) installed the driver and printed the test page Talore was awakened by the printer. Once it stopped printing she looked around a bit and went back to sleep.

Now I guess I need to figure out why my laptop complains that access is denied when I try to print from it, but I think that can wait. I also should probably figure out how to install the driver for the printer on my server so I can print to it without having the driver installed locally.

The other distraction I’ve had was my Pyraminx. I figured out how to solve it the day I got it and even timed some solves, but we now have scoreboards for the 2-5 cubes and the pyraminx so I need to get better at solving it quickly. I did get a new personal fastest solve of 27.69 seconds (the world record is under 3s), but my average now is slower than the day I got it.

For the sake of the 5-cube scoreboard I did 5 solves the other day to get a 3 of 5 average (9:45.18), but that took me around an hour for 5 solves so I may try to get faster at it but I don’t know that I’ll dedicate all that much time to it.

I have a single time put on the 4-cube scoreboard, but I haven’t memorized the algorithm to fix one of the parity errors (I figured everything but that out on my own) so a reasonably quick solve is completely dependent on luck for me. My 4-cube was also rather hard to turn, so I took it apart to clean it and it’s sitting on my table waiting for me to be finished with the 7-cube. From the looks of the insides of it cleaning and re-lubing it will help a lot, and it really needs it.