View Full Version : AlienBBC and Mac installation instructions

Daniel Cohen
2005-04-01, 10:27
Now I have AlienBBC working on my Mac, I can give instructions. It's
much easier than before as one can just download some binaries, and
Fink is not needed.

I have been using the latest beta (actually I used 0.96, which I was
sent a pre-release of when I was having difficulties, but the
instructions should work with 0.94 if that's the latest on the site).
Slimserver 6.0. Mac OS 10.3.8, though this shouldn't matter.

If I remember rightly, the old version 0.12 on the main download page
stopped working when the BBC changed the layout of their site.

The betas do not work on SlimServer 5.4.0. I think they are supposed
to work on 5.4.1, but I have not tried. Some necessary modules are
included in SlimServer 6.0 but not in 5.4.0. I don't know if they are
in 5.4.1.

I am not sure if the Developer Tools and X11are still needed (I would
guess that the Developer Tools are needed but X11 is not). Anyway,
the Developer Tools are on the Mac OS installation CDs, as is X11 is
you are using Panther. Easy to install, and no harm in having them.
In fact I would recommend having the Developer Tools, as they are
needed for some other applications.

1. Download mplayer. It can be got from
Alternatively, get the version with a graphical interface from
http://mplayerosx.sourceforge.net/ . If you do this, use
control-click to Show Package Contents and mplayer itself is two
levels down.

Put mplayer somewhere convenient, such as /usr/local/bin. (This
folder is normally invisible, but it can be reached using Go to
Folder from the Finder's Go menu.)

2. One needs an audio codec called cook.bundle. This can be obtained from
http://www1.mplayerhq.hu/homepage/design7/codecs.html and download
the codec package RealPlayer 9 Mac OS X. This decompresses to an
installer package, which installs lots of files, including
cook.bundle, into /usr/local/lib/codecs.

Create a folder /Library/Application Support/ffmpegX/reallib and copy
cook.bundle into this folder (again, you can open the invisible
folder /usr/local/lib using the Finder's Go to Folder menu item).

3. You should probably debug the installation at this stage,
especially of you have obtained the codec or mplayer from other
places. Some versions don't work properly together. I think this is
because the newer versions of cook.bundle are intended for use with
RealPlayer 10, and mplayer uses a codec from RealPlayer 9.

So go to the terminal and try to run mplayer on any convenient
stream. For instance, type mplayer
http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio/aod/shows/rpms/radio2/paul_jones.rpm at
the command prompt and see if this produces sound. If it does,
mplayer is fine. If it doesn't, the display on the terminal may
suggest where the problem is.

4. Now you are ready to download AlienBBC from the beta page of
AlienBBC at www.mrtickle.org.

Decompress the file, and you get a folder with four items, two files
custom-types.conf and slimserver-support.conf, and two folder Bin and
Plugins. Control-click on SlimServer.prefPane and Show Package
Contents. Copy the two files into the server folder (inside
Contents). Copy the file mplayer.sh (which you may want to edit
first, see the later step) into the Bin folder inside the Server
folder. (Note. Copy, rather than move, as an upgrade of SlimServer
will lose these copies, you still have the originals and can copy
them into the new version.)

Depending on your installation of SlimServer, you will either have a
folder /Library/SlimDevices or ~/Library/SlimDevices. If this does
not already have a folder Plugins, you can move (moving is fine here,
as this does not get lost on an upgrade) the Plugins folder into this
folder. If you already have a Plugins folder, then move the folder
Alien (inside the Plugins folder of AlienBBC) into this Plugins

5. Nearly done, but you still have to make sure mplayer.sh can find mplayer.

One way is to edit mplayer.sh in a text editor (make sure the text
editor allows line feeds as line ending, and not just carriage return
which is the Mac default). You need to edit the second line


and replace it by the path to your copy of mplayer, for instance


I have been told of another method, but I haven't tried it. Use a
text editor to create a file called profile.txt in your home
directory and put one line of text in this file, the line

export PATH=$PATH:/usr/local/bin

Now go to the terminal and type in

mv ~/profile.txt ~/.profile

(and press return, of course). this creates a file named .profile in
your home directory (the file is invisible, as it begins with .). I
think you can also use a text editor in the terminal to create
..profile. An ordinary GUI text editor won't let you save a file with
a name that begins with . so you have to use this work-around if you
don't want to work with a text editor in the terminal, but it isn't
actually hard to do that.

6. Finally, what about using with 5.4.1. I'll leave that to someone else.
Daniel Cohen