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  1. #1
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    Vortexbox on main computer ?

    Not quite sure where to post this but here goes.
    For some years I have been running an Apple IMac as my main PC which is hooked up to a Vortexbox device running LMS (and thence to router etc).
    It's been OK-ish - a bit awkward at times for someone with very little knowledge of Linux, networking etc but seems stable at the moment.
    However it does get a little frustrating when things go wrong (have to find my way around Terminal, SSH, Linux commands etc) and there are often file access problems getting the Mac to access music files on the Vortexbox device (as well as the Mac not natively working with FLAC files).

    So, thought it might be time for a wholesale change and start from scratch.

    I am drawn to the concept of a fanless, silent PC with SSD drive(s) to do both jobs - be the workhorse of my usual computing activity (eg office applications, mail, internet etc) as well as host my music. Being low power I don't mind leaving this switched on (low power consumption was one attraction of the VB device). I'm happy to move back to Windows and away from Apple's restrictive universe.

    So, is this simply a question of building the new PC, loading a copy of Vortexbox software on it, copying over my music library (FLAC with a mirror MP3 version for the car) hooking up to the router and off I go ? Would be so much easier to not run 'headless' and also give me access to better file management software such as Media Monkey. Or are there other alternatives (I know nothing of JRiver etc).

    Answers on a postcard much appreciated.

  2. #2
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    I don't think you want to do that.
    Using Vortexbox as a general operating system for your everyday tasks would be possible albeit certainly clunky and you would then be in Linux all the time.
    Running some kind of virtualization so you have two operating systems on the same hardware (Vortexbox and an OS of your choice) would not make things easier to maintain than having Vortexbox on a separate box as you have today.
    What parts of Vortexbox do you use? If all you use is LMS, why not install that on your new machine, be it MacOS or Windows?

  3. #3
    Senior Member
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    Vortexbox is a Linux (Fedora) operating system with LMS installed on it plus the CD ripping tools.

    As above you can't run it in Windows or OSX except with a Virtual Machine.

    You could install the OSX version of LMS on your iMac.
    You could get a Windows box and install the Windows version of LMS
    You could buy a Raspberry Pi and install LMS on that

    How large is your library ? Do you use the Vortexbox for auto ripping or do you use your iMac ?
    Pi3 with piCoreplayer music on QNAP TS419p via NFS iThingys/iPeng/Tablets/Jogglers
    Living Room - Joggler & SB3 -> Onkyo TS606 - > Celestion Ditton F20s
    Office - Pi -> Sony TA FE320 -> Celestion F10s / Pi & SB3 -> Onkyo CRN 755 -> Wharfedale Modus Cubes
    Dining Room -> SB Boom Kitchen -> UE Radio (upgraded to SB Radio)
    Bedroom (Bedside) - SB Touch -> Topping TP21 -> AKG Headphones

  4. #4
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    Maybe I'm missing the objective here, but what not simply having a dedicated raspberry pi3 with Max2Play or PiCorePlayer (could work with a plain Raspbian distribution, but that's a bit more Linux tinkering required). Buy a box or an assembled kit and you have a cheap, fanless, powerfull, small computer dedicated LMS server which is probably a better option. Your audio files (depending on your library size) can be on the SD card or on a external larger SSD. Put it somewhere and forget it.
    LMS 7.7, 7.8 and 7.9 - 5xRadio, 3xBoom, 4xDuet, 1xTouch, 1 SB2. Sonos PLAY:3, PLAY:5, Marantz NR1603, JBL OnBeat, XBoxOne, XBMC, Foobar2000, ShairPortW, JRiver 21, 2xChromecast Audio, Chromecast v1 and v2, , Pi B3, B2, Pi B+, 2xPi A+, Odroid-C1, Odroid-C2, Cubie2, Yamaha WX-010, AppleTV 4, Airport Express

  5. #5
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    I use the Vortexbox device for auto-ripping CDs and running LMS.
    My Raspberry Pi, running Picoreplayer, is at the other end of the chain, feeding my amp with an SPDIF output.
    So would I be right in that I just need to load a Windows version of LMS onto a Windows PC and manually rip CDs ( with EAC for instance).
    What would I lose not having Vortexbox software - incremental backups, auto upgrade of LMS (not that that has ever worked for me) . . . .
    Library is approx 1200 albums.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Mnyb's Avatar
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    If you want a linux desktop get any popular linux desitop distro.

    Its usually anpiece of cake installng lms there
    --------------------------------------------------------------------
    Main hifi: Touch + CIA PS +MeridianG68J MeridianHD621 MeridianG98DH 2 x MeridianDSP5200 MeridianDSP5200HC 2 xMeridianDSP3100 +Rel Stadium 3 sub.
    Bedroom/Office: Boom
    Kitchen: Touch + powered Fostex PM0.4
    Misc use: Radio (with battery)
    iPad1 with iPengHD & SqueezePad
    (spares Touch, SB3, reciever ,controller )
    server HP proliant micro server N36L with ClearOS Linux

    http://people.xiph.org/~xiphmont/demo/neil-young.html

  7. #7
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    er, no - I do not want a Linux PC.
    Accessing my music is a secondary consideration - I was exploring the option / ease of simply having one computer (probably Windows) to perform usual PC functions AND hosting my music library and running LMS (or similar) to stream content over wifi to my raspberry pi.

    That would mean I can ditch both my current IMac and Vortexbox device and have but one box (a quiet, fanless Windows based PC).

    But I am assuming I would miss the convenience features that the Vortexbox software offers - such as auto ripping, incremental backups, library mirroring (eg FLAC to MP3). I can do al those things manually - it's just more bother.

    What about alternatives to LMS or Vortexbox SW - I know nothing of alternatives - is JRiver one ? Does that both manage the library, rip and encode etc ?

    Thanks

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by liffy99 View Post
    er, no - I do not want a Linux PC.
    Accessing my music is a secondary consideration - I was exploring the option / ease of simply having one computer (probably Windows) to perform usual PC functions AND hosting my music library and running LMS (or similar) to stream content over wifi to my raspberry pi.

    That would mean I can ditch both my current IMac and Vortexbox device and have but one box (a quiet, fanless Windows based PC).

    But I am assuming I would miss the convenience features that the Vortexbox software offers - such as auto ripping, incremental backups, library mirroring (eg FLAC to MP3). I can do al those things manually - it's just more bother.

    What about alternatives to LMS or Vortexbox SW - I know nothing of alternatives - is JRiver one ? Does that both manage the library, rip and encode etc ?

    Thanks
    In that case, having LMS under Windows is fine, that's my main system. And if you like VB a lot, then run it inside a VirtualBox virtual machine. I'm using that for my tests when somebody has an issue with my plugins and VB. If you want to, you should be able to have your music files on your Windows partition and have the VB mounting that directory using "shared folders"
    LMS 7.7, 7.8 and 7.9 - 5xRadio, 3xBoom, 4xDuet, 1xTouch, 1 SB2. Sonos PLAY:3, PLAY:5, Marantz NR1603, JBL OnBeat, XBoxOne, XBMC, Foobar2000, ShairPortW, JRiver 21, 2xChromecast Audio, Chromecast v1 and v2, , Pi B3, B2, Pi B+, 2xPi A+, Odroid-C1, Odroid-C2, Cubie2, Yamaha WX-010, AppleTV 4, Airport Express

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by philippe_44 View Post
    And if you like VB a lot, then run it inside a VirtualBox virtual machine.
    And by that you could still use the auto ripping feature of VB, if you like.

  10. #10
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    I read the question as mainly being a matter of making things more robust and easier to use, and I don't see running VB on a virtual machine doing anything for ease of use, possibly the opposite. It will be just as "headless" and the default install will probably require a bit of tweaking if you want to keep the music collection in the host OS file system.
    Virtualization is pretty neat, but perhaps not the answer to the question at hand.
    I really don't have much of advice, it's not easy to come up with a simple solution that ticks all of the boxes (autorip, incremental backups etc), for such a use case I believe a dedicated server with VB is the least bad option.

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