Sockso is an open-source (free) personal music server. It allows you to share your music with friends across the Internet, with a very simple and easy to use interface. Plus, it works in Windows and Linux. For a step-by-step guide to set up and use Sockso, keep reading.
In theory Sockso should work in OS X, since it’s a Java app. But I can’t get it to run (yet). I have an email into the author asking for suggestions (and I’ve pasted the errors I get trying to run it). Again, I’ll update this post if/when he replies.
- Start by downloading Sockso and unzipping it. Inside the folder you’ll find a number of files – if you’re running Windows, double-click the windows.bat file. If you’re running Linux, run linux.sh (you may need to chmod +x it first). For the sake of this tutorial, I’ll be using screenshots from Windows, but they’re very similar for Linux. Note: if you are installing Sockso in Ubuntu, see the linux tips section first
- When you double-click windows.bat a cmd.exe window will appear and a bunch of text will scroll by…
- Then the main Sockso window will appear. To begin adding music to for your friends to listen to, click the Collection tab.
- Click the Add Folder button.
- Select a folder of music that you wish to share. You may want to start with a folder that only contains a few files, to make sure everything works – but you can select as much as you want. Click the Open button once you’ve determined the folder you want to share.
- You should now see that folder listed in the main window. Return to the Music tab.
- In the left pane, you’ll notice a new Collection. Expand this collection by clicking the + (plus) signs.
- To create a sample playlist, drag some of the tracks from the left pane to the right. When you’re done, click the Save button.
- Give your new playlist a name, and click OK
- Now it’s time to test Sockso on your local PC. Open a web browser, and enter the address: http://localhost:4444. You should get a screen similar to the one below.
- Click the Latest link and you’ll get a listing of all the music you’ve added to Sockso so far.
- Click the play button () and the Flash player will launch (which is the default).
- You can change the type of “player” buy using the Play: menu in the upper left corner of your browser/Sockso interface (see screenshot below). For example – if you select M3U, instead of launching the Flash player, you’ll be prompted to download/open an .m3u file – which most commonly is associated with WinAMP or iTunes. That way the files will play in your media player instead of the Flash player.
- Now it’s time to test Sockso across the Internet. In the bottom left corner of the main Sockso interface, you’ll see a web address that ends in :4444. That’s the address you’ll want to give friends to access your music.
Here’s where it gets a tiny bit tricky – depending on your setup, you might be able to test this yourself. Enter the address in your web browser exactly as it appears in Sockso, and see if the Sockso interface comes up. If it does, send that address to a friend on your IM list and see if they can access Sockso. If they can access it too, you’re done! I should also note – your upstream bandwidth will limit just how many people can use your Sockso server. If too many people are trying to stream music at once, 1) it will be slow for them and 2) you’ll notice that web surfing is quite a bit slower, since they’re using your bandwidth. So unless you have a super-fast upload, you may want to limit your Sockso to just a few friends.
If it doesn’t work, and you have a Firewall installed, that means it’s blocking inbound requests to access port 4444. Check the instructions for your Firewall software on how to allow inbound connections to a specific port, and create a rule for port 4444.
If you have multiple computers behind a router, you’ll need to create a ‘rule’ for your router to forward requests to port 4444 to the PC running Sockso, which is outlined in the Router settings section below.
- The following steps and screenshots are specific to the D-Link AirPlus Xtreme G Wireless router. They’ll be very similar for most of the D-Link routers, and somewhat similar for other routers. If you don’t have a D-Link, it’s probably a good idea to check with the instructions for your specific router. But in a nutshell, what you’ll want to do is pass requests for port 4444 to the PC running Sockso.
D-Link users – select Advanced from the top navigation.
- Select Firewall from the left navigation. Check Enabled, give the rule a name (like Sockso) and then select Allow. For the Source choose WAN and enter * as the IP Start Range and IP End Range. Choose LAN as the Destination and enter the private IP of the machine running Sockso. If you’re not sure what that is, see the step below. For the Port Range enter 4444 in both fields. Finally, for Schedule select Always – unless of course you only want to share your music during specific times of the day. If that’s the case, choose the times using the appropriate drop-down menus.
- To determine your private IP – the one that your router assigns you – click Start and select Run. Enter cmd and click OK. At the command prompt enter ipconfig and hit enter. Your IP address will be displayed (amoung other addresses). It will probably be something like 192.168.x.x or 10.x.x.x.
- Click Apply to add your new rule.
- You’ll probably get a window confirming the settings were saved. Click Continue.
- And check to make sure the rule was created the way you wanted.
- Now it’s time to test again. Enter the address that Sockso displays in the bottom left corner (see step #14 in the previous section). If the rule was created and applied successfully, you should get the Sockso web interface this time. Again, have a friend on your IM list test it by giving them the address. If it didn’t work, the rule probably wasn’t created properly, or you have a software firewall in addition to your router firewall. There is also the chance that your ISP is blocking port 4444 across its entire network – which means you’ll need to set Sockso to use a different port. To do this, click the Options button in Sockso, and change the port. In truth, this should probably be the very last step in troubleshooting your problem – I’ve never heard of an ISP blocking port 4444 – but it’s possible.