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Old 07-19-2008, 08:50 PM   #1
Registered: Apr 2004
Posts: 340

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How do I play streaming audio from the command line?

I am trying to help an elderly relative.
He enjoys listening to BBC.
He as a visual impairment.
I would like an audio stream to auto-play upon login, to avoid the reading of the page.

There are several Audio (news) streams on this BBC page:

Assuming that I can copy and paste the specific URL, then -
How do I play that URL's audio stream from the command line?
(Without using a web browser.)

This is a Xubuntu system.
Old 07-19-2008, 10:41 PM   #2
Registered: Aug 2004
Location: Geelong, Vic Australia
Distribution: Gentoo, Ubuntu,and sometimes something from billy gates (when Im desperate)
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From that link you provided, I went a little further into that webpage to get the embedded player started in windows media format (or realplayer format) then copied the link from there which gave me and for realplayer format Then from the command line just enter

depending on your media player you have installed.

Im not too sure how to get this to start on startup but when you find the above command you are happy with, save it as a file with a text editor and change the file properties (from file browser, right click then properties) so it is executable then that file will start from the command line.

There will be somewhere in xubuntu that you can copy that file to so it will start up on startup.

Hope that gets you going.

ps. the above links have been abbreviated by this forum, so to get the full link right click on them and copy them, don't type them out as they look.
Old 07-20-2008, 04:09 AM   #3
Registered: Apr 2004
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Thanks dannyk1.
Old 07-20-2008, 04:14 AM   #4
Registered: Aug 2006
Distribution: Debian
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The BBC is great for accessibility info, they offer general solutions and also ones specifically for Gnome and KDE.
Old 07-20-2008, 05:13 AM   #5
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I listen to radio 4 sometimes with mplayer:

mplayer -playlist
Old 07-21-2008, 08:18 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by dive View Post
I listen to radio 4 sometimes with mplayer:

mplayer -playlist
And perhaps record it for offline listening:

$ mplayer -playlist \
  -vc null -vo null -ao pcm:fast:waveheader:file=BBC.wav
Old 07-21-2008, 08:26 AM   #7
Registered: Jul 2007
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you have to write a small html page which will be like desktop webcontent on windows
Old 11-28-2008, 03:12 PM   #8
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Cool Vibuntu 1.0 - Linux for the Visually Impaired !

I am happy to announce the release of Vibuntu 1.0 (aka Vinux) a remaster of the Intrepid Ibex live CD customised to the needs of blind and partially sighted users! It is designed to boot from a live cd or USB memory stick, log you in automatically and then start up the Orca screen-reader. Full-screen magnification can then be activated with a simple keystroke.

The type of magnification on offer depends upon whether you downloaded the 2D or 3D version of Vibuntu. The 2D version only offers basic options but will run on any computer, while the 3D version offers advanced features but requires a powerful 3D graphics card. If you are in any doubt as to which version is best for you or do not require magnification at all I recommend you download the safer 2D version. Vibuntu is available from the following URL's:

Inside the zip file you will find iso image and a text file containing the md5sum of the iso image (not the zip file).

You can use Vibuntu as a live CD, a portable operating system on a USB memory stick* or you can install it to your hard drive either alongside or as a replacement for Windows. In order to fit all of the accessibility settings on the CD I have had to remove some applications including: The GIMP graphical image manipulation program, the F-Spot photo-manager and the Ekiga voice over IP package. You can easily reinstall these and many more open-source applications if you choose to install it on your hard-drive. I used the RemasterSys package to create Vibuntu and I have included this package on the CD incase you want to make your own customised live CD. N.B. The default username and password is 'orca', and this will be retained even if you install it to your hard-drive, no matter what you type in during the installation process.

(*Using Unetbootin)

I would of course appreciate any feedback on Vibuntu. What do you think of the name? Is it corny enough? Would Vinux be better? Post any feedback good or bad on this thread.

Enjoy yourself,


P.S. What follows is a list of keystrokes you can use to control the screen-reader and magnification software. I will only provide a few basic keystrokes for Orca to get you started as they are all listed in the preferences window and are unchanged from the default settings. I have provided an exaustive list of the magnification keystrokes as I have customised them to make them easier to remember!


Open Preferences Window: insert+space
Open Main Menu: alt+F1
Move Through Menu/Text: up, down, left and right
Move Through Form: tab, shift+tab
Toggle Voice On/Off: insert+s
Quit Orca: insert+q


Toggle Magnification On/Off: insert+m
Increase Magnification: insert+(plus)
Decrease Magnification: insert+(minus)


Zoom In: win+z (win+left-mouse)
Zoom Out: win+x (win+right-mouse)

Zoom x1: win+1
Zoom x2: win+2
Zoom x4: win+3

Toggle Magnifier Box: win+m
Zoom In Magnifier Box: ctrl+left-mouse
Zoom Out Magnifier Box: ctrl+right-mouse

Resize Window: win+r
Zoom To Window: win+w


Pan Right: win+right
Pan Left: win+left
Pan Up: win+up
Pan Down: win+down

Lock Zoomed Window: win+l

Centre Mouse Pointer: win+c
Toggle Highlight Mouse Pointer: win+h


Toggle Invert Colours: win+i
Toggle Invert Window Colours: shift+win+i

Toggle Filter Colours: win+f
Toggle Window Filter Colours: shift+win+f
Switch Filter Colours: win+s

Decrease Window Brightness: win+(minus)
Increase Window Brightness: win+(plus)

Decrease Window Saturation: shift+win+(plus)
Increase Window Saturation: shift+win+(minus)

Toggle Dim Inactive Windows: win+d

This list of keystrokes will automatically load into Gedit when Vibuntu boots!
Old 11-29-2008, 11:00 AM   #9
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Installing Vibuntu!

Installing Vibuntu...

At the moment the Orca Screen-Reader does not support the Ubuntu Installer GUI (Ubiquity). Therefore for the time being to install Vibuntu to the hard-drive of your computer you will either need sighted assistance or you can try the following step by step instructions. N.B. These instructions will wipe your hard-drive and install Vibuntu with the English language, USA keyboard settings and the New York time zone.

1. Press Alt+F2 to open the Run dialogue
2. Type in the password 'orca' then press Enter
2. Type 'ubiquity' then press Enter
3. Press Alt+F to accept the default language (English)
4. Press Alt+F again to accept the default time zone (New York)
5. Press Alt+F again to accept the default keyboard layout (USA)
6. Press Down twice then Alt+F to partition the whole disk
7. Type in your name then press Tab
8. Type in your username the press Tab
9. Type in your password then press Tab
10. Type in your password again and then press Tab
11. Type in the name of the computer then press Tab
12. Press space bar to select automatic login then press Alt+F
13. Press enter to start the installation.

N.B. You can press Alt+B to go back a step at any time, or Alt+F4 to abandon the process.

The installation will take 10-20 minutes to complete
When the CD and Hard-Drive has stopped spinning press Enter to restart the computer
When the CD ejects remove it from the drive and press Enter again to restart the computer.

If you have any problems please port in the Vibuntu thread on the Ubuntu Forums.



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