new rhythmbox 3.4 released


Unusually early this time, Rhythmbox 3.4 has been released.

Its available for Yakkety users – but I’ve done some judicious hacking and its now also available for 16.04 users as well.

ubuntu xenial (before 10.2.6) [Running] - Oracle VM VirtualBox : 1_043

(screenshot taken with rhythmbox 3.4 + my alternative-toolbar plugin)

Thanks to the key Rhythmbox maintainer Jonathan Matthew we have a good release that incorporates a variety of fixes and improvements over the rhythmbox 3.3 available in xenial by default.

This version contains the following:

Overview of changes in Rhythmbox 3.4

  • New web-control plugin –> I couldn’t get this to work in Yakkety nor Xenial so lets skip over this bit…
  • Grilo plugin now uses Grilo 0.3 –> only relevant to Yakkety, downgraded in Xenial due to the older Grilo available
  • Soundcloud plugin fetches more search results and allows pausing
  • No longer uses webkit (partly due to OpenBSD W^X enforcement)–>my plugin coverart browser is broken due to GTK3.18 changes in xenial.  This webkit change basically will necessitate a rewrite 😦
  • Slightly better handling of keyboard shortcuts for playback
  • Core and some plugin data files compiled into binaries using GResources
    Bugs fixed:
    
    703910  Entering then leaving Party Mode breaks the app menu; Party Mode status incorrectly reported
    721926  TerraParser (lyric's plugin) is not fetching lyrics correctly
    759589  grilo: Port to 0.3.0
    765833  [regression] Cover art shown superposed over the song titles and artist names when cover art is 
    disabled
    766584  Referenced website replaygain.org is not about ReplayGain
    767318  Use correct pkg-config binary
    767466  daap: Fix warnings when configuring music sharing
    767524  "To translators: the context is" doesn't continue the sentence
    768545  Cannot change MP4 encoder settings
    769404  Memory leak

Stock Ubuntu 16.04 users should definitely benefit for 12+ months worth of bug-fixes and refinements.

IMPORTANT:

If you are using my plugin alternative-toolbar this version of rhythmbox introduces a nasty regression and breaks the plugin.  I’ve fixed this now for xenial users and is available in my rhythmbox-plugins PPA or via GitHub.  I’ve uploaded a fix to Debian Unstable and have created a bug-report on launchpad requesting a resync from Debian for Yakkety.

If you are looking to have the latest, I’ve packaged this together and is now available in my Rhythmbox PPA. This PPA contains the existing Ubuntu patchwork – hide on close, support for local and global menu etc. N.B. – I tend to update my PPA as and when I’m investigating what is new in upstream Rhythmbox.

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:fossfreedom/rhythmbox
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt full-upgrade

Note: sometimes the upgrade doesn’t quite work.  If you get a segmentation fault repeatedly on startup then uninstall and reinstall rhythmbox

sudo apt-get purge rhythmbox rhythmbox-plugins rhythmbox-data librhythmbox-core10
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install rhythmbox

 

Rhythmbox Alternative-Toolbar goes dark…


Taking some time-out from budgie-remix matters, I’ve released an update to my plugin for rhythmbox called alternative-toolbar.

For those not in the know, this plugin gives rhythmbox a stylish makeover – introduces a compact bar for most desktops and a headerbar for GNOME based desktops.

In this release the following changes have been made:

  • Option for dark theme
  • Display Browse Categories horizontally or vertically
  • Display app-menu correctly in budgie-desktop
  • Updated translations from Launchpad.net
  • correctly toggle search button via CTRL+F
  • option to force the display of the app-menu if required

For a full list of extras that are available for rhythmbox users via this plugin have a look a the README.

But lets have some pretty pictures to explain what’s new.

Dark-theme – For those that like their media players with a dark-style there is a new option in the plugin-preferences.

Screenshot from 2016-05-19 19:45:28

Normally Rhythmbox displays its filter options above the music.  For those of us without much vertical space to play with this doesnt allow us to see as much music in the grid-list.  This new option allows for the filter options to be displayed on the left hand-side of the music list making much more use of a normal widescreen display.

Screenshot from 2016-05-19 19:46:55

For budgie-desktop users you may have noticed that the App-menu was not displayed in the same position as other GNOME apps … well that’s been fixed.

ubuntu xenial [Running] - Oracle VM VirtualBox : 1_029

… and as an aside, there is a gsettings value to force the display of the app-menu if required.

The search button is now correctly toggle-able via the CTRL+F keystroke.

This version has also been accepted into Debian – so Yakkety users will see the plugin in the main repo soon.

For all 14.04, 15.10 and 16.04 users this version can be installed via my rhythmbox-plugins PPA:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:fossfreedom/rhythmbox-plugins
sudo apt update
sudo apt install rhythmbox-plugin-alternative-toolbar

 

New Rhythmbox 3.3 release for Ubuntu 14.04, 15.04 and 15.10


The official GTK 3.18 release of the Gnome stack of software was last september … but most unusually Rhythmbox never featured with a new release.

Well its here – and its now available for 14.04 (trusty), 15.04 (vivid) and 15.10 (wily) users.

trusty - VMware Player (Non-commercial use only)_116

(screenshot taken with rhythmbox 3.3 + my alternative-toolbar plugin)

Thanks to the key Rhythmbox maintainer Jonathan Matthew we have a good release that fixes a whole bunch of crashers and gives us new automatic Android compatibility.

TIP – if you are going to sync to an external card on you phone – rename your “Music” folder on the internal storage, create a “Music” folder at the top-level of your external card. Launch rhythmbox. Using the new android capability, you can automatically find and sync with the Music folder on your external card.

This version contains the following:

Overview of changes in Rhythmbox 3.3

  • New plugin supporting Android devices via gvfs-mtp
  • Encoding settings are now configurable per device type
  • Encoding settings can force lossless files to be transcoded

Bugs fixed:

733830 While extracting music from CDs, information in the “Year” field is lost
748857 Typos in documentation
749015 audioscrobbler: Fix displaying icon for libre.fm
751265 JSON import errors
751630 Sync Preferences Missing
751961 iradio: remove Radio GFM
752433 [PATCH] data: Add various mod files as supported MIME types
753359 Don’t handle RTL icons manually for GTK+ >= 3.12
753767 error: conflicting types for ‘rhythmdb_metadata_cache_purge’
755881 crash when adding files found during startup scan
756992 hangs after handling mod/xm/it (modplug) file when crossfade is enabled
757225 Freezing with crossfade backend and Pulseaudio with GStreamer 1.6.x
760192 commit 85c185d breaks compilation with -Wl,-as-needed
761030 Album-Art caching issue

Stock Ubuntu 14.04 users should definitely benefit for 24+ months worth of bug-fixes and refinements. Note – upstream has bumped the minimum GTK version above that found in Trusty … but don’t worry I’ve backed out those changes – you guys and girls aren’t missing anything vital!

We are not past Debian package import freeze to 16.04 so I expect Debian will upload v3.3 soon and this will make it into 16.04 proper.  Thus, I’ve not this time produced a build for 16.04 users … but may do so with future rhythmbox releases.

If you are looking to have the latest, I’ve packaged this together and is now available in my Rhythmbox PPA. This PPA contains the existing Ubuntu patchwork – hide on close, support for local and global menu etc. N.B. – I tend to update my PPA as and when I’m investigating what is new in upstream Rhythmbox.

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:fossfreedom/rhythmbox
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt full-upgrade

Note: sometimes the upgrade doesn’t quite work.  If you get a segmentation fault repeatedly on startup then uninstall and reinstall rhythmbox

sudo apt-get purge rhythmbox rhythmbox-plugins rhythmbox-data librhythmbox-core9
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install rhythmbox

Grilo is supported just enable the plugin found in the Plugins menu – this will give you the new media sources in Rhythmbox – the key being Jamendo – Royalty free music is just a click away. You also get UPnP & DLNA support as well.

Rhythmbox Alternative Toolbar now in Ubuntu and Debian


I’m pleased to say that Debian has accepted my very first uploaded package rhythmbox-plugin-alternative-toolbar … and for Ubuntu 16.04 users it has also been uploaded!

 

ubuntu xenial (Snapshot 1) [Running] - Oracle VM VirtualBox_113

… Straight from the software centre … or from the debian repos …

Debian -- Details of package rhythmbox-plugin-alternative-toolbar in sid - Opera_114

… or can be installed simply via:

sudo apt install rhythmbox-plugin-alternative-toolbar

Or 1 click:

http://apt.ubuntu.com/p/rhythmbox-plugin-alternative-toolbar

Or AptUrl:

apt://rhythmbox-plugin-alternative-toolbar

Links:

Ubuntu packageDebian Package

 

little things matter…


Little things matter.  Take for example this bug-report from 2003 (!!) – a request to add the ability to move the column order in Rhythmbox.

Lots of discussion, requests, tantrums later … but no-one has taken the proverbial bull-by-the-horns and implemented anything.

Hey-ho – if only I knew C well enough…

Well I do know python – so I’ve added to my “lets improve the GUI” plugin alternative-toolbar just such an ability – you can now drag by the column header in any order you want.

before & after…layers

Artist has been moved to the more logical position after the title & the genre has been moved from the end to a more prominent position.

Enjoy – happy holidays all!

P.S. – if this has inspired you to fix this properly via a C patch to Rhythmbox – then that would be great 🙂


 

To install – install via my PPA or via GIT, instructions here.

 

Rhythmbox Alternative Toolbar updated


Its coming up to six months since I last posted any news about my Rhythmbox plugin called Alternative Toolbar … but there has been lots of little changes since then.

So a quick recap.

Alternative Toolbar reworks the main Rhythmbox interface. For Gnome-Shell you get native header-bars. For everyone else you get a stylish compact toolbar.

ubuntu vivid [Running] - Oracle VM VirtualBox_093Compare this with the default rhythmbox interface…

Rhythmbox_094I was working closely with the Ozon design team to make lots of changes. Ozon unfortunately looks like they have called it a day. Anyway – if there are any distro’s there that wish to bring a re-imagined Rhythmbox look-and-feel I would be happy to work with you. Before you ask – I had a few short words from the Rhythmbox maintainer himself – he didn’t want this upstream 😦

So what has changed.

The sidepane has been reworked as well as the plugins dialog window.

  • New Rhythmbox_088

Old –  Rhythmbox_089

Plugins Dialog – ubuntu vivid [Running] - Oracle VM VirtualBox_090The plugin has been updated with a repeat one option so you can play your favourite track over and over again.

Ubuntu vivid - VMware Player (Non-commercial use only)_078You can even seek through tracks – backwards as well as forwards via Alt Right and Alt Left cursor keys.

Hover over the little coverart display and a larger version appears – move your mouse away to dismiss.

ubuntu vivid [Running] - Oracle VM VirtualBox_092

Have a look at the plugin preferences – lots of options to play with as well.

ubuntu vivid [Running] - Oracle VM VirtualBox_091

Thanks to the good-folk of the Launchpad Translation team the plugin is available in 25 languages and locales.

For non-Ubuntu users there are two further easy install methods – for Arch users there is a AUR and for Gentoo users there is an ebuild method. Have a look at the README for further details.

If you’ve installed this manually via github please update to grab all the latest new stuff and bug-fixes.

For users of my rhythmbox PPA just update as normal – or use the rhythmbox-plugin-alternative-toolbar package

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:fossfreedom/rhythmbox-plugins
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install rhythmbox-plugin-alternative-toolbar

new rhythmbox android support


some quick news for rhythmbox and android fans.  Upstream have added better android support.

Previously, android support was via the MTP plugin and protocol.  As many users know – this old plugin has not really worked producing spurious errors, crashes and failed syncronisation of music.

Committed in the upstream code-sources is a new plugin and I’ve uploaded this for Trusty (14.04) users via my PPA (installation instructions here).

This new android support is built-in so you don’t need to manually enable this plugin.  If you use the MTP plugin for your other MTP devices this existing plugin can remain enabled – otherwise just disable the MTP plugin via the plugins menu.

This is brand new stuff – so report any issues upstream to get the necessary fixes into next version of rhythmbox – probably around mid september.

Other changes – I’ve made the visualizer plugin a suggested package not a dependency – its not a dependency upstream so I’m falling into line here.  If you want the visualizer plugin – install the rhythmbox-plugin-visualizer package

I’ve added the needed grilo packages to the dependency list to stop an annoying grilo error message appearing when you launch rhythmbox via a terminal.  N.B. Grilo packages support Jamendo as well as the upnp & DLNA protocols.

I’ve dropped the zeigeist plugin from the dependency list.  It has never worked since the migration to python3 via rhythmbox 3 due to zeitgeist not supporting python 3 upstream.  You can safely remove the rhythmbox-plugin-zeitgeist package now to tidy up.

Other notes – it looks like rhythmbox upstream may move to GTK+3.12 or later – this means no more support for Trusty users.  Nothing upstream has actually been committed yet – but if it does I’ll need to judge if I can still produce a trusty package by dropping those commits. Watch this space.