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Bloodwound

Why does Aurender require AMM to display metadata from songs that are on NAS shares? Here's why.

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Simple explanation for this. Aurender didn't make their own player. They are using MPD and trying to pass it as their ownership, which it's definitely not, and doing so without even mentioning MPD or the GPL license on their homepage or anywhere in the firmware.

 

A while ago a developer made a separate fork of MPD with an Upnp plugin for MPD, (which eventually made it into MPD master). The way the Upnp plugin worked within the contraints of the MPD API was to use the "browse" feature of a MPD client to, well browse, the directoy structure of an Upnp server. Aurender forked this Upnp-fork of MPD, and my guess is that they modified the Upnp code to browse network shares instead of Upnp servers. Since MPD (and subsequently Aurender) does not read tags while playing, but only when scanning files, it makes sense that Aurender threw something of a hack (yes, that would be AMM) together to somehow support metadata when using the NAS feature.

 

Those who are a little familiar with MPD or Linux might wonder why Aurender simply didn't just mount the network share from NAS and symlink to it from the music directory, and at the same sidestep the need for AMM. The answer to that is: I am not sure, maybe because symlinking still requires a rescan of the music directory for MPD to pickup the symlink. It would be rather illogical if the customer added a NAS share, but was told that they need to wait for rescan of all their music, including the new music on the added NAS, before they could even manually browse the NAS. It could potentially take many many hours just to add a NAS. Also, to rely on the OS mounting the network share could have unforeseen consequences. As an Aurender is meant to be an "applience", it *could* make sense to let the player handle the network shares itself, which points back to a rewrite of the MPD Upnp plugin to support network shares.

 

As a consequence, this requires the use of AMM running on a MAC or PC, for the metadata to show when playing songs from a NAS.

 

Proof: https://github.com/aurender/mpd-upnp

 

And I believe they even licensed the mPad app. (mPad has since been improved, and using the iOS7 look, while the Aurender app is still an iOS4/iOS5/iOS6 app). How weird is that Aurender gets pretty much universal praise for their app, whereas ..say Bryston sometimes are criticised for relying on mPad. (which in it's current form is a better looking, with better usability than the forked Aurender app).

 

Btw using a Samba/NFS share directly as music directory in user space is now a feature of mainline MPD, so I would recommend Aurender to once again refork MPD. MPD does not support multi "music directories" yet (and I think there's already a request for this feature), but that feature would be trivial to implement. Then Aurender music library could support both internal storage and NAS at the same time, and have the possibility to rescan both music directories regardless of one another. That would get rid of AMM once and for all. Then again, that might be what they already planning to do..

 

But please take a lesson from Bryston and give credit where due, and don't try to blatantly steal open source software. I know you don't want to hand out the source code of your players, and that is the reason you try to hide the origin of your players software. After all, the W20 costs 17000$+ USD, so it's fully "understandable" that you don't want this associated with a small open source project. But as much as you want to, the Aurender playback software ownership does not belong to you, and you are required by the GPL License to hand out the source code by your customers request.


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You letter should be targeted to MPD and Aurender.


Aurender N10, Esoteric F-05 Integrated Amplifier, Synergistic Active USB, Oppo 203, Synergistic Atmosphere Level 3 UEF Speaker cables, Legacy Audio Focus SE. ClearAudio Emotion TT.

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Bloodwound - What you're saying is borderline libelous. You suggest you now exactly what is done and why it was done yet you admit you don't really know. Is there any way you can do some fact checking and report back the real story rather than speculation?


Founder of Audiophile Style and Superphonica

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Bloodwound - What you're saying is borderline libelous. You suggest you now exactly what is done and why it was done yet you admit you don't really know. Is there any way you can do some fact checking and report back the real story rather than speculation?

 

I don't really see any libelous about this. They are already using Linux, so 99,9% of their player software is already open source, even if they *had* written their own player. Also mostly all sound decoding libraries are released under the GPL license, and if your program links to any of these libraries, then your own program automatically becomes a GPL program. Come on, do anyone really think Aurender wrote the library routines themselves? There is nothing libelous about this. It is simply stating the facts.

 

I welcome Aurender themselves to chime in if they have anything to add. AFAIK the MPD project are already aware, but no copyright laws have been violated yet. But it will be violated if/once Aurender denies a request from one of their customers for the source code. Of course, hiding the origin of their their players makes them less "susceptible" for such a request.

 

Now, if anyone owns an Aurender, it would be easy enough to clone the internal drive, and to verify the origins of the software. Then again, if anyone owns an Aurender, then they are already a customer and can simply ask Aurender for the source code.

Also if someone has the direct link to a firmware update, send me a PM, and I could take a look myself. (In case someone might have any objections towards this, remember there is nothing immoral or illegal whatsoever to do this. Linux encourages sharing).

Since the mainboard in the Aurender S10 is a cheap ASRock mainboard (not cheap as in necessarily bad, that mainboard is literally cheap) with an integrated Atom x86_64 CPU, that means the Aurender firmware is a bog standard Linux install that will run on any PC or MAC. There is no proprietary ownership involved, this is pure GPL.


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I don't really see any libelous about this. They are already using Linux, so 99,9% of their player software is already open source, even if they *had* written their own player. Also mostly all sound decoding libraries are released under the GPL license, and if your program links to any of these libraries, then your own program automatically becomes a GPL program. Come on, do anyone really think Aurender wrote the library routines themselves? There is nothing libelous about this. It is simply stating the facts.

 

I welcome Aurender themselves to chime in if they have anything to add. AFAIK the MPD project are already aware, but no copyright laws have been violated yet. But it will be violated if/once Aurender denies a request from one of their customers for the source code. Of course, hiding the origin of their their players makes them less "susceptible" for such a request.

 

Now, if anyone owns an Aurender, it would be easy enough to clone the internal drive, and to verify the origins of the software. Then again, if anyone owns an Aurender, then they are already a customer and can simply ask Aurender for the source code.

Also if someone has the direct link to a firmware update, send me a PM, and I could take a look myself. (In case someone might have any objections towards this, remember there is nothing immoral or illegal whatsoever to do this. Linux encourages sharing).

Since the mainboard in the Aurender S10 is a cheap ASRock mainboard (not cheap as in necessarily bad, that mainboard is literally cheap) with an integrated Atom x86_64 CPU, that means the Aurender firmware is a bog standard Linux install that will run on any PC or MAC. There is no proprietary ownership involved, this is pure GPL.

 

There are a number of Aurender git repos on github, and so as far as I can see they openly publish their enhancements to Free Software such as MPD etc:

 

https://github.com/aurender

 

If there are source code changes to Free Software that they haven't put on github or somewhere else that is public, then the OP might have a point.


System (i): (iUSB3.0 Nano/RPi 2/Moode > 2Qute+MCRU psu; Gyrodek/SME V/Ortofon 2M Black/Pure Sound P10; Magnum Dynalab FT101A) > Glow Amp One > Klipsch RP-600M

System (ii): iUSB3.0 Nano/RPi 2/Moode > Bel Canto uLink+AQVOX psu > Chord Hugo > (Tandy LX5; JBL LSR305 ; Audeze LCD-3)

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There are a number of Aurender git repos on github, and so as far as I can see they openly publish their enhancements to Free Software such as MPD etc:

 

https://github.com/aurender

 

If there are source code changes to Free Software that they haven't put on github or somewhere else that is public, then the OP might have a point.

Those repos are forks that have been static since the time they were forked from the original projects. Not that it matters, anyone are free to fork whatever they want, and do whatever they want with gpl software. You just cant take ownership of it.


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I have recently emailed Eric Shim (the Aurender guy who forked mpd-upnp) regarding getting the GPL sourcecode as used in Aurender products. To my surprise, 2 days later his MPD fork has now disappeared, as this page now returns a 404 error:

 

https://github.com/aurender/mpd-upnp

 

[TABLE=class: ajC]

[TR=class: ajv]

[TD=class: gG, colspan: 2][/TD]

[TD=class: gL, colspan: 2]What is Aurender trying to cover up?

[/TD]

[/TR]

[/TABLE]

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I have recently emailed Eric Shim (the Aurender guy who forked mpd-upnp) regarding getting the GPL sourcecode as used in Aurender products. To my surprise, 2 days later his MPD fork has now disappeared, as this page now returns a 404 error:

 

https://github.com/aurender/mpd-upnp

 

[TABLE=class: ajC]

[TR=class: ajv]

[TD=class: gG, colspan: 2][/TD]

[TD=class: gL, colspan: 2]What is Aurender trying to cover up?

[/TD]

[/TR]

[/TABLE]

 

That is a very good rhetorical question. But unless you own one of their players, they are within their rights to deny you the GPL source code. If you do have an Aurender player and still get denied the source code, I would recommend forwarding the correspondance to the MPD project.


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It's correct they should only release any GPL code + their modifications and any derived works to their customers. As they do not include the source when buying an Aurender (it only comes with a binary form of the OS and player), they should include a written offer, which they didn't.

 

But probably a typical Aurender customer is somebody who doesn't visit many forums or build something themselves, or want to play with the source.

 

So the chance an Aurender customer will ask for the source is probably very unlikely.

At the same time, it is obvious that the GPL is not mentioned anywhere in their manual, folders, website, .... which is a GPL violation itself.

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What is MPD? I've heard of Playback Designs, but not MPD. Can I buy the MPD player, instead of Aurender. Which models correspond to the W20, N100, etc. I am assuming that Aurender has rebadged the MPD Player, like Oppo has been rebadged. The Aurender players are pretty expensive, especially if they are just buying MPD players and rebadging them. I've got a call into my local Aurender dealer to see what he knows.

 

Thanks, Larry


Analog-VPICl3,3DArm,SoundsmithZephyrII+MiyajimaZeromono,Bottlehead and Herron VTPH2APhonoPres,2Ampex ATR-102s, Doshi3.0TapePrePro

Dig Rip-Pyramix,IzotopeRX3Adv,MykerinosCard,PacMicroModel2

Dig Play-PC with mch NADAC Roon and HQPlayer,Oppo95

Electronics-Herron 360Pre,CJ MET1mchpre,Cary2A3monoamps

Speakers-AvantgardeDuosLR,3SolosC,LR,RR

Other-512Engineering-MarutaniSymmetrical Power,ArtKelmGroundOneIsoTrans,AudioDiskeSystemVinylCleaner,AirTightRecordFlat

Music-15KRecs(90%classical),1.5KR2Rtapes,1.5KCD's,500SACDs ,50TBripped files

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What is MPD? I've heard of Playback Designs, but not MPD. Can I buy the MPD player, instead of Aurender. Which models correspond to the W20, N100, etc. I am assuming that Aurender has rebadged the MPD Player, like Oppo has been rebadged. The Aurender players are pretty expensive, especially if they are just buying MPD players and rebadging them. I've got a call into my local Aurender dealer to see what he knows.

 

Thanks, Larry

 

MPD is not a hardware vendor but a open source software project being used by hobbyists and also by by various hardware vendors including - as it seems by above - Aurender _AND_ - my observation by spending much time reading Minimserver trace logs - probably also Auralic:

 

21:40:51.111 Thread-3109: User-Agent: Music Player Daemon 0.18.5, Host: 192.168.1.167:9790, Accept: */*, Icy-Metadata: 1

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Thanks. I have an Oppo SACD/CD player, a R2R tape player, a record player. Didn't know software were also players. Last time I wrote software was in Fortran IV on punch cards.

 

Larry


Analog-VPICl3,3DArm,SoundsmithZephyrII+MiyajimaZeromono,Bottlehead and Herron VTPH2APhonoPres,2Ampex ATR-102s, Doshi3.0TapePrePro

Dig Rip-Pyramix,IzotopeRX3Adv,MykerinosCard,PacMicroModel2

Dig Play-PC with mch NADAC Roon and HQPlayer,Oppo95

Electronics-Herron 360Pre,CJ MET1mchpre,Cary2A3monoamps

Speakers-AvantgardeDuosLR,3SolosC,LR,RR

Other-512Engineering-MarutaniSymmetrical Power,ArtKelmGroundOneIsoTrans,AudioDiskeSystemVinylCleaner,AirTightRecordFlat

Music-15KRecs(90%classical),1.5KR2Rtapes,1.5KCD's,500SACDs ,50TBripped files

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MPD is not a hardware vendor but a open source software project being used by hobbyists and also by by various hardware vendors including - as it seems by above - Aurender _AND_ - my observation by spending much time reading Minimserver trace logs - probably also Auralic:

 

21:40:51.111 Thread-3109: User-Agent: Music Player Daemon 0.18.5, Host: 192.168.1.167:9790, Accept: */*, Icy-Metadata: 1

 

Ok I know enough .... just play a shoutcast stream through aurender via the curl libraries (which mpd supports, I helped find a bug in the curl library of mpd 0.19.X ) and tcpdump the user agent ....

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MPD is not a hardware vendor but a open source software project being used by hobbyists and also by by various hardware vendors including - as it seems by above - Aurender _AND_ - my observation by spending much time reading Minimserver trace logs - probably also Auralic:

 

21:40:51.111 Thread-3109: User-Agent: Music Player Daemon 0.18.5, Host: 192.168.1.167:9790, Accept: */*, Icy-Metadata: 1

 

Auralic too? At least they managed to hid it a little better. But this is no big surprise, but I didn't want to accuse them of something without some indication of proof. (Notwithstanding that when you are linking to gpl sound decoding libraries without releasing the source, you also are violating copyright laws. It is a grey area, but if you are developing your *own* player, then at least it's partially forgivable..even if it's really not, so to speak)

 

In my head it should fairly trivial to use the Auralic "firmware" with a cubox-i. You should also email them about releasing the gpl source as you clearly are a customer. Forward the communication to the MPD project if you get a negative answer. It's not fair that these companies rip off the hard work done by countless volunteers and make millions in the process.


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As a response to these (and other) comments; I have just started http://www.computeraudiophile.com/f10-music-servers/open-source-commercial-audio-products-23893/

 

Please look and add your support (if you agree).


Eloise

---

...in my opinion / experience...

While I agree "Everything may matter" working out what actually affects the sound is a trickier thing.

And I agree "Trust your ears" but equally don't allow them to fool you - trust them with a bit of skepticism.

keep your mind open... But mind your brain doesn't fall out.

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Breaking news: Aurender uses MPD, but not mpd-upnp, which Eric Shim forked to play with it, but they don't use that version in their products. They use 0.17 with some modifications.

 

Here's their reply sent to my gmail account. I'm taking the liberty to paste it here, as it seems they want to comply with the GPL which is a goog sign, and for me it ends my research. So any Aurender customer can ask them their modifications made to MPD. They don't use mpd-upnp ( a forked version with upnp support ) but appear to have modified 0.17

 

Hello Robert,

 

First of all, thank you for your interest in Aurender.

 

 

 

We do supply the kernel source and mpd source we modified for our users.

 

 

 

However, for the MPD, actually, we don't use that one for our products, as you know we don't UPnP and don't have a plan to support at this moment. The reason I forked is, just my curiosity. Our base is 0.17.

 

 

 

Best regards,

 

Eric

 

 

Who am i?

 

In the past I have integrated MPD in our own product which builds on another opensource project (vortexbox 2.2) and always mentioned it in our manual, and provided info about where to find sources. We have build something on vortexbox and provided more recent MPD builds for our own customers. We did a lot of research into augmenting MPD's sound quality, that's why I was so curious when I found aurender's mpd-upnp on github.

 

I have even submitted patches to the mpd mailing list that improve the sound quality of the 0.19 version.

 

So I rest my case and I'm glad this has been clarified. These days I no longer use MPD, as integration with spotify and qobuz was not optimal, and 0.19 had some serious curl issues that took too long to fix and broke Qobuz and LMS as streaming source, so we jumped to another player that sounds even better. In the meantime, those 0.19 issues have been solved.

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Breaking news: Aurender uses MPD, but not mpd-upnp, which Eric Shim forked to play with it, but they don't use that version in their products. They use 0.17 with some modifications.

 

Here's their reply sent to my gmail account. I'm taking the liberty to paste it here, as it seems they want to comply with the GPL which is a goog sign, and for me it ends my research. So any Aurender customer can ask them their modifications made to MPD. They don't use mpd-upnp ( a forked version with upnp support ) but appear to have modified 0.17

 

 

 

Who am i?

 

In the past I have integrated MPD in our own product which builds on another opensource project (vortexbox 2.2) and always mentioned it in our manual, and provided info about where to find sources. We have build something on vortexbox and provided more recent MPD builds for our own customers. We did a lot of research into augmenting MPD's sound quality, that's why I was so curious when I found aurender's mpd-upnp on github.

 

I have even submitted patches to the mpd mailing list that improve the sound quality of the 0.19 version.

 

So I rest my case and I'm glad this has been clarified. These days I no longer use MPD, as integration with spotify and qobuz was not optimal, and 0.19 had some serious curl issues that took too long to fix and broke Qobuz and LMS as streaming source, so we jumped to another player that sounds even better. In the meantime, those 0.19 issues have been solved.

So, part of your "sky is falling" speculation was incorrect. Aurender wasn't hiding anything when the company removed MPD-UPnP.

 

Also, you need to state your industry affiliation in your signature so people know you have a vested interest.


Founder of Audiophile Style and Superphonica

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I am too glad to hear that I was pretty much spot on and did not make any libelous claims.. I don't know if the upnp fork was a base for the NAS browing integration but that won't matter if the source is indeed available. Yes there were indeed a lot of problems with curl in the past. Just of curiosity, what player are you using now? I know mplayer seems to overcome the dynamic urls qobuz/tidal use.


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I am too glad to hear that I was pretty much spot on and did not make any libelous claims.. I don't know if the upnp fork was a base for the NAS browing integration but that won't matter if the source is indeed available. Yes there were indeed a lot of problems with curl in the past. Just of curiosity, what player are you using now? I know mplayer seems to overcome the dynamic urls qobuz/tidal use.

Your assertions about Aurender using MPaD are incorrect.

 

Also, your assertions about them using the forked version and why you say they used that version are incorrect.


Founder of Audiophile Style and Superphonica

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I'm using a more recent build of squeezelite than which vortexbox 2.3 provides, into which I have implemented memory playback. As this will benefit others, I will probably submit our mod to Triode once is has been tested (currently we have three testers), so more can benefit from this.

 

My affiliation: we are one of the many integrators of vortexbox (2.3) into a high-end solution. We don't try to mask it. My account's name is a pseudonym, I will gladly disclose it to Chris.

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Your assertions about Aurender using MPaD are incorrect.

 

Also, your assertions about them using the forked version and why you say they used that version are incorrect.

 

I agree that some details may have been wrong, but the core idea was the fact aurender didn't write their own player, and used mpd and "sold" it as auplayer, seems to be correct.

 

Aurender probably has an internal fork of the mainline mpd, that way they can still merge updates from mpd 0.17.X into their own modified version. But these days, mpd development is 0.19 and some bugs are backported/fixed also in 0.18

 

I'm on the mpd mailing list

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I agree that some details may have been wrong, but the core idea was the fact aurender didn't write their own player, and used mpd and "sold" it as auplayer, seems to be correct.

 

Aurender probably has an internal fork of the mainline mpd, that way they can still merge updates from mpd 0.17.X into their own modified version. But these days, mpd development is 0.19 and some bugs are backported/fixed also in 0.18

 

I'm on the mpd mailing list

I agree with the core idea being Aurender using some GPL software. I think the original post would have gone over much better without the speculation and "reasoning" pushed by the OP.


Founder of Audiophile Style and Superphonica

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We still don't know if they used that fork as a base for the NAS functionality, which is very much like the specific upnp functionality in that fork. Just substitute the upnp calls for samba calls... Or maybe they backported the native samba client from .18, or maybe they wrote it themselves.

 

I could ask the original authors of that fork of the likeliness of my assertion, but my my point is that if Aurender are willing to share their modifications then we might as well find that out through looking directly at the code instead of going through hoops and speculate. I might be wrong or I might not, I'm not even inclined to find out since that is not important to me, what is important is that they follow the GPL guidelines.

 

As for mPad, I only used that argument to back up my claims that they are using MPD. They haven't denied using mPad as a base for their app, and even if they do use mPad, I have absolutely no problems whatsoever with that, as mPad is closed source.

 

My core point was that they are using a modified MPD, and I was right about that.


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