Sharing Local Music with Friends
The third decade of twenty-first century is strange—people figured out how to make matrices write stories in the style of King James Bible, but there’s no easy way to send a large file to your friend1.
Another thing you can’t easily do is to listen to your local music with your friend over the internet. Your only options are either some janky Discord bot that distorts the sound and can’t find any non-popular song, or two subscription on some streaming service that has the song you want to play.
But this is 2023, of course there’s some open source program, that will work brilliantly with just eight hours of fiddling. Here’s how to fiddle said program and a bit more in 30 minutes.
You play music on your computer, the audio stream is captured by a
program, that program sends the audio stream to a server. Your friend
opens a web page which contains a html
audio tag, which streams music from that server.
First, you need a server, ie, any computer that has an publicly accessible ip. On that server, install icecast2. On debian, it’s as simple as
apt install icecast2
Then, change the default password and listening port, the config file
/etc/icecast2/icecast.xml. You don’t need to touch
Now you can start icecast2 and forget about it, the command on Debian is
systemctl start icecast2
Now, install butt. If you use Mac, you can also use LadioCast.
In butt, open Settings—main—Server Settings—Add, and configure according to your server:
- Address: your server’s address
- Type: icecast
- Port and Password: the port and password you just set for your server
- Icecast mountpoint: anything you like. if it’s “xxx”, the streaming
url will be
Feed audio output
Now you need to feed os audio output
into your local streamer. Follow this article:
How to broadcast music files with butt on macOS. Then butt
will stream it to icecast2, and whoever listening on
address>:<port>/xxx will be able to hear what you are
A web page
Your friend needs a music player that supports streaming mp3. Or,
better yet, you can host a web page that has a html
audio tag that streams audio on
<server address>:<port>/xxx. Then your friend
only need to visit that web page. I’ve written a web page like that, you
can find the kit here: uikit. You need to
change the title in
index.html, and change the address in
script.js to your server’s address.
Additionally, I wrote two scripts that uploads the meta data of the
currently playing song to your server, so the web page can show the
title, artist, album cover, etc. There are two scripts,
spotify.sh, for each app. Change
the server address in them and run them locally when you play the music.
The scripts are incredibly dumb, and they only work on Mac, but they work