View Full Version : Anyone running AlienBBC on Mac OSX 10.3.9?

2006-12-24, 02:45
I'm trying to get AlienBBC going on SlimServer on my Powerbook G4: I followed precise Mac instructions on Alien's site; I installed it OK (and Lame and mplayer, as instructed); it shows up nicely on my SB3 ... but when I try to play a station: nothing. Anyone got it up and running successfully on 10.3.9? If yes, how did you do it?

2006-12-24, 08:46
I'm running it on 10.4 and it works fine. maybe the easiest solution is to upgrade your os. also, I've read that if you do a re-install from scratch it may work. no explanation for the need to re-install but for some reason it has helped some people.

2006-12-25, 01:47
I think this has been discussed on other threads.

Does mplayer itself work properly? I think the instructions explain how to run mplayer from the Terminal.

You may need an older version of mplayer. If so, then you may also need to install an extra library. We should be able to guide you through this if it is needed.

2007-01-02, 10:47
<<You may need an older version of mplayer. If so, then you may also need to install an extra library. We should be able to guide you through this if it is needed.>>

Thanks Danco. I would be very grateful if someone could guide me through the installation of an older version of mplayer and anything else necessary.

2007-01-02, 13:43
<<You may need an older version of mplayer. If so, then you may also need to install an extra library. We should be able to guide you through this if it is needed.>>

Thanks Danco. I would be very grateful if someone could guide me through the installation of an older version of mplayer and anything else necessary.

Do you know how to run mplayer from the Terminal? That's the first thing to try.
Error messages when you try this will help diagnosis.

But some other recent posts have suggested that the recommended version of mplayer only works on 10.4. I'm not quite sure which versions work on 10.3, but someone will know.

2007-01-02, 14:14
The problem is not the version of mplayer but on which system it was built because of the mplayer build script. If you use a version of mplayer older than 1.0pre8 you will have the dreaded "garbled audio" bug on Live streams.

These are examples of my understanding

An mplayer built on a G4 on 10.3.x will probably run on a G4 or G5 and on 10.3 and 10.4.x but not on a G3.

Similarly an mplayer built on a G3 on 10.4.x will not work on a 10.3.x no matter which processors and will work on a 10.4.x on G4 and G5 systems.

The mplayer on the AlienBBC site was built on a G4/10.4.x system so it looks like it won't work on G3/10.4 or any 10.3 systems.

2007-01-03, 06:30
Thanks BPA. So ... how do I get an mplayer built on a G4 on 10.3.x ?

2007-01-03, 06:37
The best way would be to build it yourself. Usually it is not too difficult but many of the issues relate to setting up the development env. (i.e. compiler etc)

I came across this link to give you an idea of what is involved.


The article is over 1 year old so there will be issues because things have changed in the year - such as
1. New versions of Apple Xcode
2. Mplayer is now on Subversion and not CVS

These can be overcome with help from other users.

2007-01-05, 05:53
Thanks again bpa.
I took a look at the link you provided and (sharp intake of breath) it's mind-boggling stuff. Or at least it is to me.
I started out on this by simply trying to get BBC stuff to play on my Slimserver/Squeezebox. I thought AlienBBC might make that easy. Am I really going to have to 'build' this thing for myself?

2007-01-05, 06:36
To be honest it will be no worse than installing AlienBBC except the steps themselves are cryptic and so seem very complicated. You will just be typing in a series of commands and fingers crossed - it will run.

You can now avoid the bulk of the stuff about CVS anbd libraries because they are now all bundled into one tar file and since you don't really care about building an "up-to-date with latest patch" version.

Essentially the steps are
1. Install the Apple Xcode tools and if any install test are provided - run them and make sure they work.
2. Download 1.0pre8 tar file for mplayer. Un-tar the file into a directory
3. Run the "./configure" command
4. Type "make" to compile and build - this will probably take between 20 and 40 mins.
5. If all goes well type "make install"

When you succeed I'll get a copy of the mplayer on the web site to help other.

2007-01-05, 11:43
Again thank you, bpa.

OK, I've installed Xcode successfully. I'm about to get the mplayer tar file you specify, but presumably first I should dump the non-working mplayer bits and pieces I already have.

When I've done all that, where do I type the 'configure', 'make' and 'make install' commands you mention? Is that somewhere in Xcode?

And yes, hopefully once I've got it all going, I can send you the working program for others to use.

2007-01-05, 11:50
One other thing, bpa. I see on the mplayer site three similar files to the one you mention, and I'm not sure which I need.

They are:

MPlayer-1.0pre8.tar.bz2.md5 (tiny)

The first looks nearest to what you describe, but the third does have 'OSX' in it.

Which is the one I need?

2007-01-05, 12:33
I'll post a more detailed response late this evening on the steps but to answer the last post.

The first file is a compressed tar file (Linux' version of zip) of the source code - this is the file you need.
The second MD5 file is a checksum to ensure that the first first hasn't been infected by virus etc.
The OSX file is a OSX compiled version of mplayer but I think it is for 10.4 (Intel & PowerPC).

2007-01-05, 14:40
I don't have an Apple system so the following is my "guess" at what you need to do based on Linux experience and the Jon Simpson's blog .

1. Open a Terminal Window - this will be a command line interface.
2. cd to a directory where you will store the mplayer source and you will build the new mplayer executable.
For example (comments in brackets - do not type) :
a. cd (this will bring you to home directory)
b. mkdir mplayersrc (this will make a directory called mplayersrc)
c. cd mplayersrc
3. From OSX GUI Download a copy of MPlayer-1.0pre8.tar.bz2 (found here http://www.mplayerhq.hu/MPlayer/releases/MPlayer-1.0pre8.tar.bz2) and move it into the mplayersrc (or whatever you named it) directory
4. Using Terminal window where you are currently in the mplayersrc directory and now contains the MPlayer-1.0pre8.tar.bz2 file. Use the following command to unpack the tar file - you should lots of text scrolling past - a line per file
tar xvjf MPlayer-1.0pre8.tar.bz2
5. There be one new directory MPlayer-1.0pre8. cd to this directory
6. Type the following command not the leading dot and slash
./configure --disable-gl --disable-x11

Some users have used the following but it makes no sense with the disable-X11 option.
./configure --disable-gl --disable-x11 –with-freetype-config=/usr/X11R6/bin/freetype-config
7. Assuming no errors - type the following command and compilation should start with lots of text scrolling over the screen
8 Assuming no errors type the following to test - you should get a banner
./mplayer --version

If you have errors after steps 7 - post the error messages.

9 If mplayer is OK with a banner then you need to install mplayer but I'm not sure excactly where. Post when you get this far.

2007-01-05, 16:06
Just a couple of comments to bpa's post.

The .tar.bz2 file may unpack to a .tar file automatically. If it does not, then double-clicking on it will unpack it. And a further double-click on the .tar file should unpack it to a folder. This avoids step 4. And also steps 1 and 2 can be avoided in the Terminal by just opening a new folder. But then you will have to use Terminal for the later steps.
As bpa says, the OS X file is probably for 10.4 - I don't know if it gives more info anywhere. Beyond that, it is actually a GUI version, and the Unix executable mplayer is buried deep inside it. If you want to try it, I can explain how to get the Unix mplayer from it.

2007-01-06, 01:34
Thank you bpa and danco.

I have got as far as step 8, and the
./mplayer --version
command returned the following:

MPlayer 1.0pre8-3.3 (C) 2000-2006 MPlayer Team
AltiVec found
CPU: PowerPC
Creating config file: /Users/XXX/.mplayer/config

Unknown option on the command line: --version
Error parsing option on the command line: --version

How am I doing?

2007-01-06, 02:01
I guess the --version option is just irrelevant to on the Mac. Anyway we know what version it is.

Next thing is to try to run mplayer on a BBC stream and see whether that works.

Run mplayer in the terminal with the options

-playlist http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio4/realplayer/media/fmg2.rpm

That should produce the Radio 4 live stream.

If that works, you just need to move mplayer into a suitable place. If it doesn't work, we need to see the log to find out why.

2007-01-06, 02:42
Well done - hope it wasn't too painful.

There is no version option in mplayer but it stops it trying to do silly things and proves that the basic executable is OK.

Follow Danco's advice - if Radio 4 works, then all you need to do install mplayer in the right place - in your case I think it may be a case of replacing the version of mplayer which doesn't work.

2007-01-06, 04:11
Thanks for your speedy and helpful responses, bpa and danco. I do feel I'm in safe hands, even if stuff is whizzing over the screen that means nothing to me. And, well, it was pretty painless, as you ask. Only three cups of tea.

I can't get mplayer to run in terminal, mainly because I can't see where it is. Do I not have to 'install' it first, and then run a test? Or is it staring me in face?

2007-01-06, 04:39
When you are in the terminal window, to run mplayer type

Note there is a dot and slash before mplayer - this says "use the mplayer in this directory"

So to run the test
./mplayer -playlist http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio4/realplayer/media/fmg2.rpm

If you want a few more diagnostics

./mplayer -v -playlist http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio4/realplayer/media/fmg2.rpm

2007-01-06, 05:20
Fantastic. I did what you said and ran the test: fine. I put it in the usr/local/bin folder, where the errant one used to live, and bingo! Lovely streaming BBC and all the AlienBBC benefits on my Squeezebox.

Thank you both for all your help. I really do appreciate it.

Would you like me to send this build of mplayer to you so others might be able to use it, bpa, as you suggested earlier?