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  1. #1
    Member philchillbill's Avatar
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    [Announce] 'MediaServer' *certified* Alexa skill for LMS

    There's a new full-function certified Alexa skill to control LMS in the Alexa skills store. It's called MediaServer and you can find it by browsing under the category 'Music & Audio' or by doing a directed search for any of LMS / Squeezebox / MediaServer in the Alexa app or web-portal. Because this is a certified skill, it's available to anybody with an Alexa/Echo device without any kind of developer or beta accounts. During skill account-linking, you fill in an externally-accessible https path to your LMS server and that's it. It has been extensively tested on a library with 70K+ songs and supports a natural, conversational interaction style. How well it will work for you will, of course, depend on how good your tags are. It uses a freemium model, and is available in English for both the en-US (for the USA) and en-GB Amazon stores (26 countries in EU).

    The skill supports 61 command categories, of which some examples:

    Play the album Ghost Stories by Coldplay.
    Play the compilation album American Road Trip.
    Play the single Sunny Days by Armin van Buuren.
    Play the song Chasing Cars by Snow Patrol.
    Play songs about Girls.
    Play songs featuring Eddie Vedder.
    Play a random album by Steve Winwood.
    Play a random single by Madonna.
    Play some Deep House.
    Play my Supperclub playlist.
    Add this track to my Fitness playlist.
    Bookmark this track.
    Blacklist this song.
    Do I have the album Giants by Chicane?
    Do I have the compilation album 101 Driving Songs?
    Follow me to the Sittingroom.
    Transfer playlist from Livingroom to Study.
    Synchronize the Bedroom, Bathroom, Office and Nursery players.
    Add the Guestroom player to the group.
    Remove Library player from the group.
    Unsynchronize my players.
    Sleep the Bedroom player in 8 mins 30 seconds.
    Sleep this player after the current song.
    Cancel sleep mode for the Livingroom player.
    What's playing?
    What's next?
    What's the duration of this song / playlist?
    What's the Bedroom player status?
    Discover my players.
    What players do I have?
    Assume the Livingroom player.
    I'm within earshot of Diningroom.
    Play / Resume.
    Pause.
    Stop Playback.
    Skip / Next Track.
    Previous Track.
    Goto track 12.
    Skip ahead 2 minutes.
    Skip back 44 seconds.
    Seek directly to 17 minutes and 12 seconds.
    Set the volume to 60.
    Increase the volume by 10.
    Decrease the volume by 25.
    Mute the Livingroom player.
    Unmute the Kitchen.
    Turn On the Library player.
    Power Off Bedroom.
    Power Down everything.
    Turn On shuffle.
    Shuffle again.
    Enable shuffle-by-album on the Kitchen player.
    Enable shuffle-by-song for the Bedroom player.
    Deactivate shuffle.
    Enable / Disable Repeat.
    Turn On repeat-playlist mode.
    Enable repeat-song mode.
    Deactivate repeat for the Basement player.

    Each Echo can be associated with a default Squeezebox ('assume') so as to allow subsequent player-name omission in utterances. Echos in open-plan spaces can be designated as being within earshot of each other to avoid confusion around what player is thus targeted. Finally, you can ask the skill to provide longer or shorter spoken responses/confirmations.

    Subscription: Certain of the above commands require a monthly subscription which is handled as an ISP (In-Skill Purchase) by Alexa. Say "Tell Media Server I want full access" and follow the spoken instructions. You will need to have enabled voice purchasing in the Alexa App (ask "Alexa, how do I enable voice purchasing").

    Extensive help with setup, plus an exhaustive command reference detailing all the ways commands can be spoken, can be found at https://mediaserver.smartskills.tech
    Last edited by philchillbill; 2019-11-11 at 14:59. Reason: changed URL

  2. #2
    Senior Member Apesbrain's Avatar
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    Very cool! But I need it for Google Home.

  3. #3
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    Interesting approach.
    The https section at https://smartskills.tech/mediaserver/#tab2 does a good job of describing things.
    It does mean that no LMS addon is required to be added into the local LMS.
    Will be interesting to see how many people go through the steps.
    Paul Webster
    http://dabdig.blogspot.com
    Author Radio France (FIP etc) plugin

  4. #4
    Babelfish's Best Boy mherger's Avatar
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    [Announce] 'MediaServer' *certified*Alexa skill for LMS

    But doesn't this require to expose your LMS to the internet? Don't be
    soothed by the use of https: if there's no password protection
    whatsoever, then I and John Doe would be able to control your players,
    too. https only protects the transfer from your door to the recipient (or
    the other way around), but not the door itself.

    Which brings us back to this:
    https://forums.slimdevices.com/showt...o-the-internet!

    --

    Michael
    Last edited by mherger; 2019-09-25 at 10:24.

  5. #5
    Member philchillbill's Avatar
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    Yes Michael, but a reverse proxy or ssl tunnel DOES implement password protection. Itĺs certainly not the same as exposing your LMS directly to the outside. The online docs for the skill explain this very clearly.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by philchillbill View Post
    Yes Michael, but a reverse proxy or ssl tunnel DOES implement password protection. Itĺs certainly not the same as exposing your LMS directly to the outside. The online docs for the skill explain this very clearly.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Is there a username/password in the Serveo set up? The instructions say to leave them blank.

    Sent from my SM-G900F using Tapatalk

  7. #7
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    This looks very interesting. The serveo tunnel setup is from the local end so I presume no port opening is required?
    VB2.4 storage QNAP TS419p (NFS)
    Living Room - Joggler & SB3 -> Onkyo TS606 -> Celestion F20s
    Office - Pi3+Sreen -> Sony TAFE320 -> Celestion F10s / Pi2+DAC & SB3 -> Onkyo CRN755 -> Wharfedale Modus Cubes
    Dining Room -> SB Boom
    Kitchen -> UE Radio (upgraded to SB Radio)
    Bedroom (Bedside) - Pi2+DAC ->ToppingTP21 ->AKG Headphones
    Bedroom (TV) - SB Touch ->Sherwood AVR ->Mordaunt Short M10s
    Everything controlled by iPeng

  8. #8
    Member philchillbill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by slartibartfast View Post
    Is there a username/password in the Serveo set up? The instructions say to leave them blank.
    Serveo has the option to use SSH public key authentication (PKA) but that involves public/private rsa keys which are not a traditional username and password and explains why they are to be left blank. Their site explains PKA. You can use serveo without PKA to create an unsecured tunnel, and combine it with apache to reverse-proxy towards your LMS machine with basic auth enforced. More involved but very secure. At least there's no need then to get an SSL cert and DDNS name and open ports. If you did things that way, the server path to fill in would still be serveo but you WOULD then fill in the username and password that you configured for the secondary apache.

    However, ngrok is by far the easiest option and it's very secure.
    Last edited by philchillbill; 2019-09-25 at 12:09.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by philchillbill View Post
    Serveo has the option to use SSH public key authentication (PKA) but that involves public/private rsa keys which are not a traditional username and password and explains why they are to be left blank. Their site explains PKA. You can use serveo without PKA to create an unsecured tunnel, and combine it with apache to reverse-proxy towards your LMS machine with basic auth enforced. More involved but very secure. At least there's no need then to get an SSL cert and DDNS name and open ports. If you did things that way, the server path to fill in would still be serveo but you WOULD then fill in the username and password that you configured for the secondary apache.

    However, ngrok is by far the easiest option and it's very secure.
    My router - Draytek Vigor - supports SSL Web Proxy with user/pass.
    Https://mypublicipaddress:443 proxies to http://lmsip:9000
    Presumably this would also work?
    VB2.4 storage QNAP TS419p (NFS)
    Living Room - Joggler & SB3 -> Onkyo TS606 -> Celestion F20s
    Office - Pi3+Sreen -> Sony TAFE320 -> Celestion F10s / Pi2+DAC & SB3 -> Onkyo CRN755 -> Wharfedale Modus Cubes
    Dining Room -> SB Boom
    Kitchen -> UE Radio (upgraded to SB Radio)
    Bedroom (Bedside) - Pi2+DAC ->ToppingTP21 ->AKG Headphones
    Bedroom (TV) - SB Touch ->Sherwood AVR ->Mordaunt Short M10s
    Everything controlled by iPeng

  10. #10
    Babelfish's Best Boy mherger's Avatar
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    [Announce] 'MediaServer' *certified*Alexa skill for LMS

    > Serveo has the option to use SSH public key authentication but that
    > involves public/private rsa keys which are not a traditional username
    > and password and explains why they are to be left blank.


    It's my understanding that this is not being used to protect access to
    the host, but the connection when using a custom domain of yours.

    IMHO ngrok is kind of a cloud based reverse proxy with additional
    features, whereas serveo is much simpler, but mostly a port forwarding
    service. No added http features besides the https wrapper. But your LMS
    would be as exposed to the internet as if you did forward the port on
    your router.

    --

    Michael

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