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View Full Version : In anticipation of my new SQUEEZEBOX - what should I do?



NJRonbo
2006-02-12, 08:05
Welp! I ordered a SQUEEZEBOX!

My wireless model (color black) is due to
arrive on Tuesday 2/14.

Preparing for my new toy, I have already
downloaded and installed the system software.

Now I'd like to know what to do next....

I want to start downloading plugins. I
mainly want a stock ticker, news headline reader
and any other really cool enhancements to my
squeezebox.

What specific plugins would you guys recommend
I go after? Are they all available in the plugins
area?

Also, do I need any additional software to install
the plugins to the squeezeboz? And, just how do
you install software to it?

I want to start putting everything together now
so as soon as I get this baby I have all the essentials
I need.

Thanks for the help, folks!

EnochLight
2006-02-12, 09:37
Well the *first* thing you should start doing is begin ripping your CD collection to a lossless format such as FLAC (or if you don't care about audio quality, some other lossy format) using Exact Audio Copy and an appropriate compression codec.

That is, of course, if you have a CD collection to rip. If you already have all of your media on your hard drive then congrats!

NJRonbo
2006-02-12, 10:13
Already have my music loaded on an external
Maxtor One Touch hard drive.

The music is in the MP3 format -- basically
stuff that I took off of my MP3 player.

So, yes, I am ready to go on that front.
I just need to know about some of the better
display/function downloads I describved above
and a brief overview of where to find them and
how they get installed.

peecee
2006-02-12, 10:19
Download the latest released version of slimserver and let it loose on your collection. Then check out how well your music is tagged. That should take you a while to sort out. Just point your browser to http://x.x.x.x:9000 where your slimserver software will be running and check out the basic operation. Build some playlists or see if your existing playlists are recognized. Welcome to the slim experience!

ceejay
2006-02-12, 10:20
First have a look at http://wiki.slimdevices.com/index.cgi?BeginnersGuide and its associated pages. You might get some useful pointers there.

Specifically on plugins start at http://wiki.slimdevices.com/index.cgi?SlimServerPlugins

Then just get playing!

If you get stuck there's a special forum where you can ask any question you like without having to worry about apologising for being a Newbie... http://forums.slimdevices.com/forumdisplay.php?f=11

Then don't forget to enjoy the music!

Ceejay

fairyliquidizer
2006-02-12, 10:46
You may wish to also try MusicMagic Mixer with it, and try using it as the music database instead of your filesystem. Many people find it much more flexible and that the mix system (with some tweaks) is pretty damn good. www.predixis.com

mherger
2006-02-12, 11:57
> What specific plugins would you guys recommend
> I go after?

I would not want to do without the MusicInfoSCR screensaver. But then - I
might be biased ;-)

--

Michael

-----------------------------------------------------------
Help translate SlimServer by using the
StringEditor Plugin (http://www.herger.net/slim/)

slimdemage
2006-02-12, 12:08
Have your house CAT5'd, and prepare to use the device wired. Trying to make it work via wireless might drive you insane. If you are gluten for punishment and you must use it wireless, take a look at the published list of squeezebox-tested wireless routers.

Be ready to test the unit carefully, submit bug reports, try beta versions of firmware and server. Researching issues about the Squeezebox ahead of time might improve your experience. If the wireless device in the squeezebox fails or acts weird, be prepared to return the unit to Slim Devices for a full refund or repair.

Prepare a nice spot for the Squeezebox where you will be able to read the display, and place the unit away from sources of interference, such as 2.4GHz cordless phones. Have a good surge protector ready for the Squeezebox power adaptor.

DrNic
2006-02-12, 12:18
Have your house CAT5'd, and prepare to use the device wired. Trying to make it work via wireless might drive you insane. If you are gluten for punishment and you must use it wireless, take a look at the published list of squeezebox-tested wireless routers.

Be ready to test the unit carefully, submit bug reports, try beta versions of firmware and server. Researching issues about the Squeezebox ahead of time might improve your experience. If the wireless device in the squeezebox fails or acts weird, be prepared to return the unit to Slim Devices for a full refund or repair.

Prepare a nice spot for the Squeezebox where you will be able to read the display, and place the unit away from sources of interference, such as 2.4GHz cordless phones. Have a good surge protector ready for the Squeezebox power adaptor.

Although some valid points are raised, there is just a heavy tinge of pessimism in this post...
Sure, some people do experience these problems - you don't have to search too hard on the forums to find them, but there are easily 100's (if not 1000's?) to each one of these that just "plug'n'play". I was one of these, both with my old SB1G & the new SB3 (all wireless, may I add)....

In answer to the OP Q's:
Check out the "plugins" section of the website to see if what you are looking for is there.
Plugin installation is usually no more painful than downloading the plugin (.pm file, I think) and plonking it in your plugins directory. A reboot of the server usually brings the plugin to the attention of the slimserver.

stinkingpig
2006-02-12, 22:52
....
>
> I want to start downloading plugins. I
> mainly want a stock ticker, news headline reader
> and any other really cool enhancements to my
> squeezebox.
>

The built-in RSS reader plugin should get you going on this front.

> What specific plugins would you guys recommend
> I go after? Are they all available in the plugins
> area?
....

I recommed the Audioscrobbler and Last.FM plugins. The first one submits
your listening habits to the http://Last.FM site, and the second one plays
a radio station of music that you'll like (based on the first). Way cool.

I also really like LazySearch.

If you listen to a lot of Internet radio, AlienBBC is cool (but can be a
hassle to get installed).
--
Jack Coates At Monkeynoodle Dot Org: It's A Scientific Venture!
"I spent all me tin with the ladies drinking gin, so across the Western
ocean I must wander" - traditional

Wirrunna
2006-02-12, 23:43
Run SoftSqueez on a PC other than the server (the PC running SlimServer) connected in the way you are going to connect the Squeezebox - cable or wireless.
This will give you an idea of how your network will handle the music transfer and also how to drive the Squeezebox.

Pale Blue Ego
2006-02-13, 01:02
I want to start downloading plugins. I
mainly want a stock ticker, news headline reader
and any other really cool enhancements to my
squeezebox.

The Super Date Time plugin is sweet. Handles weather, stocks, and sports scores in an easy interface. Use the latest beta, 4.02b which just added stock tickers.

http://www.abovethelaw.com/squeeze/

NJRonbo
2006-02-13, 10:06
Folks,

Thanks so much for the advice here.

One thing does concern me....

I have a brand new Linksys Router (WRT54GX4). It
just came out a few months ago.

From all I have read, I thought that the squeezebox
is basically plug and play. You plug it in and it
finds your network.

Are you saying that it's more complicated than that?

snarlydwarf
2006-02-13, 10:39
Well it's more complicated if you have a secure (WPA) or fake-secure (WEP) network.

(Please don't use WEP... It's Not Secure.)

All I did was enter the encryption key for my network.

Some people, though, run into Wireless Compatibility Issues or wireless reception issues. 2.4Ghz is pretty crowded with not just wifi, but also cordless phones, microwave ovens, bluetooth and all sorts of other 'unlicensed' traffic. Depending on population density where you are, that may or may not be a problem. (It's not for me: heck, the people across the street don't even have a phone, let alone a cordless phone... or wifi...)

And some (most?) router makers want to make more impressive packaging, so instead of having a plain 802.11g standard-compliant router, they add super-duper-turbo-enhanced-speed features that can confuse products from other vendors. (Ie, my Belkin router, claiming 108Mbps, would probably confuse some other vendor who has their own secret enhanced mode.) Turning the non-standard modes is usually a good thing.

And, then, of course, there is Windows and various firewall or VPN software that does odd things. Most of the time the installer sets the WindowsXP firewall rules just fine. Well, actually it always sets them.... just sometimes Windows wants to reboot before they really take effect, and sometimes it doesn't. It doesn't seem to want to tell you "Hey, on this machine I need a reboot."

Remember that the boards are not a valid cross-section of slim users. They're filled with two groups of people (who occasionally butt heads :)):

1) the people (like me!) who are addicted to their squeezebox and everything works fine. Some of thise group may have had problems at one point, but sometimes they forget they had them or how they solved them. We're old fogies and getting senile.

2) the people who have problems and come for help. These can also be broken into two parts: people who realize the first group are grumpy sometimes and know that asking politely gets polite answers; and the people who want everything their way and don't seem to understand that yelling at other customers isn't going to accomplish anything. (I really doubt if anyone at Slim cares if you like me or not. :))

Most of the people who plug-it-in-and-go are sitting listening to music right now, which is probably more sane than hanging out on mailing lists or forums.

snarlydwarf
2006-02-13, 10:51
ah, and more to the point of this thread...

one of the beauties of the Squeezebox and Slimserver is the plugins to play with.

You can tweak a whole bunch of things. So, sure, assuming networking issues aren't a problem, you could plug it in and go.

But then you won't have all the neato plugins.

Kyle
2006-02-13, 11:09
The Super Date Time plugin is sweet. Handles weather, stocks, and sports scores in an easy interface. Use the latest beta, 4.02b which just added stock tickers.

http://www.abovethelaw.com/squeeze/

I'll also put in a plug for SuperDateTime, which may give you all the display options you want. Plus, Greg is always adding functionality. Heck, seems like hardly a week goes by that something isn't added to the options. As for plug and play, I've now bought two SBs -- an SB3 that I use at home and an SB2 that I just installed in a vacation place. Both got themselves up and running beautifully. The SB2 is even hooked into an old D-Link b-mode router with some kind of turbo enhancement. It never blinked -- found it and connected. If you do have a problem or two, be patient and the folks here will probably get you going. It will be well worth it.

NJRonbo
2006-02-13, 11:30
So, I take it that I basically go to the PLUGINS
area, download what I want (I will take your
recommendations) and place the download in a
special folder?

Once in that folder, I also presume that the
wireless squeezebox will be notified of its presence
and migrate that program to its receiver?

radish
2006-02-13, 12:16
So, I take it that I basically go to the PLUGINS
area, download what I want (I will take your
recommendations) and place the download in a
special folder?

Once in that folder, I also presume that the
wireless squeezebox will be notified of its presence
and migrate that program to its receiver?

No - the plugins are server plugins, nothing is sent to the squeezebox except the occasional firmware update.

NJRonbo
2006-02-15, 16:42
Guys,

Finally got my SUPERDATE TIME installed

http://www.abovethelaw.com/squeeze/

I found the area to configure it as well as adding stock
symbols (that you separate with a comma).

One problem....

Weather display works great but no stock results. I even
played around with the UP/DOWN/LEFT/RIGHT buttons and could
not get a stock display.

Any suggestions?