XBox 360 is Music to Your Ears

I’ve been running Firefly Mediaserver 2.4 (formerly mt-daapd) and Twonky Musicserver 2.8 for some time now in my home to stream music from my single audio repository to iTunes and my Netgear MP101 players. This past week we picked up an XBox 360 and wanted to take advantage of its ability to stream music while playing games. Because of our simple setup, pumping all of our audio components through a single receiver, this hasn’t been possible in the past. Now we can.

While Twonky Musicserver was free for some time, Twonky decided after the 2.9.1 version that they would no longer offer a free version. Certain that I could find a free alternative, I decided to save the US$30 Twonky was charging and try my hand at the older free version. Having unsuccessfully scoured the net for the 2.9.1 version, which some say was able to work with the XBox 360’s UPNP capability, I gave up on it. Firefly Mediaserver does not do UPNP, so that was out, although I still need it for streaming mp3s to iTunes over an ssh pipe. I still wasn’t ready to part with my hard earned cash.

Googling for UPNP XBox 360, I came across two other servers that looked promising. gMediaServer threw a bunch of errors and would not compile, no matter what I tried. Geexbox uShare compiled from source, but would not show up on the XBox 360 screens when searching for computers with music.

Working from a tip at http://forums.xbox-scene.com/index.php?showtopic=473403 I finally found 360MediaServer, a Java based service that worked right off the bat. All you need to do is run it (./start) and connect to its configuration page at http://127.0.0.1:7000/configure and fill in the few required fields to customize it. Giving it a FriendlyName of “Oporto:1” (the :1 is required for it to appear as a Windows Media Connect source) and pointing it to the directory full of mp3s, I was immediately able to browse through all the music from my XBox 360. My only complaint is that I cannot pick songs by Genre from the 360, but at least I have the music going where I want it. It’s only at version 0.0.1 right now after having been released only 20 days ago, so given time this should flesh out nicely. Thanks tawsi!

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