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Petition to create a desktop Air Video client for Windows/MAC OSX  XML
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Joined: 04/23/2010 21:44:39
Messages: 19
Location: Massanutten, VA

I'd love a desktop client. Perhaps an (and, forgive me) Adobe Air client would be nice.

However - we need to quit asking for the Mac/Windows port of this, and work on it ourselves. It is true your AirVideo servers will respond on the right port via HTTP. We need to work out how the iClients are getting the stream started. It could be something simple of getting VLC or Native QuickTime X to run it.

I'm game to work with some more experienced folks. I'll give up some server space etc for testing. Just let me know.

Let's work the problem, people. Let's not just keep whining.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 07/06/2010 17:22:04

"He's a live bear. He will literally rip your face off"
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Joined: 07/11/2010 17:37:32
Messages: 7

I'm game to have a go. I'm a bit concerned however that what we're trying to do would be to openly "break into" the technology that the fine folks here at inmethod have gone to some lengths to protect. I don't really want to do that, out of respect for them and their work.

With that said, I half justify it to myself because I'm not aware of any alternative product - open source or not - that is directly able to do what we all want... ie act as a server that can run all the time at home, allow us all to access our own content, but also transcode into whatever bitrate we want etc to allow those of us that travel a lot to watch what we want without having to copy it over first. I mean, on the iphone is one thing, but to be able to do that on my laptop would be a perfect result. I had a look at orb which is nearly there, but I don't like the idea of having to register with them and run everything through their servers. I would much rather have a server and client that are all running locally.

The only thing that makes me think we won't have much luck with this is the following. If I run a stream on the iphone, and then do a ps ax on the mac that's serving up, grep for ffmpeg, and I see the following:

3722 ?? RN 1:20.54 /Applications/Air Video Server.app/Contents/Resources/ffmpeg --conversion-id 48cecc3f-1c8f-4e9d-80bc-3c1ff36d0892 --port-number 46631 -threads 4 -flags2 +fast -flags +loop -g 30 -keyint_min 1 -bf 0 -b_strategy 0 -flags2 -wpred-dct8x8 -cmp +chroma -deblockalpha 0 -deblockbeta 0 -refs 1 -coder 0 -me_range 16 -subq 5 -partitions +parti4x4+parti8x8+partp8x8 -trellis 0 -sc_threshold 40 -i_qfactor 0.71 -qcomp 0.6 -map 0.0:0.0 -map 0.1:0.1 -ss 0.0 -i /Volumes/Videos/test.avi -cropleft 0 -cropright 0 -croptop 0 -cropbottom 0 -s 568x320 -aspect 1.775 -y -f mpegts -vcodec libx264 -bufsize 512k -b 1200k -bt 1300k -qmax 48 -qmin 2 -r 23.976 -acodec libmp3lame -ab 192k -ar 48000 -ac 2 -

The interesting things to me are that --conversion-id isn't a standard ffmpeg option, and neither is --port-number. The other interesting thing to me is that it says it's streaming out on port 46631 - and a port scan shows that the mac is open on both 45631 and 46631. But, I only have to map 45631 at the router...

The other thing from the command line is that I don't know what protocol it's using to stream (udp/rtp etc).

I also know that I can't just point VLC at my IP on port 45631 or 46631 - it errors immediately - can't get the stream.

Also - if you point a web browser at http://macmini(or whatever):45631 - it serves up a simple text file saying "Air Video"... maybe there's something in there that the media player only in the iphone can control?

Anyone else out there more experienced than me in the world of ffmpeg (I don't really know much about it) care to have a try?



Joined: 07/11/2010 17:37:32
Messages: 7

Ha... some packet sniffing later and now I see why it won't work...

1) ffmpeg isn't streaming out the data - it's chopping it into segments and passing it to Air Video's internal http server...
2) if you start a stream and look at the packets themselves, the iphone is asking for the file more or less as follows:


that gumph after the segment_ corresponds to the conversion id that you see in the command line options for ffmpeg...

from that, I'm guessing that the part* increments up, and the iphone knows what it's going to change to somehow (it's getting a bit beyond what I can fathom in my ignorance!). So a straight media player like vlc is never going to understand it...


Anyway... off to watch some footy.

Joined: 07/11/2010 17:37:32
Messages: 7

Last night again I did some more digging.

What the browser on the iphone grabs is actually something like:


*but* I don't see any media player for the PC yet which will play this. VLC will gamely try but will end up erroring on every .ts that's included - same with winamp...

now, even more, I see why the devs here are sticking to the party line "we have no plans to create an alternative client" - although it'd have saved me an evening of geeking if they'd come out with "we've built our project on a technology that isn't currently supported by anything other than iphones/ipads" in the first place


Joined: 06/13/2010 18:21:46
Messages: 18

Quicktime X supports it

Joined: 07/11/2010 17:37:32
Messages: 7

So it does... Shame it's only available on Snow Leopard!

But for now... a quick guide for someone who wants to watch their material on their macbook... it's not exactly easy, but hey...

1) log in and start the film on your iphone that you want to watch... (you can come out of the app as soon as it's started)
2) open terminal on the os X server (if you're at a hotel away from home - you'll need to forward port 22 to your mac so you can ssh in) - type "ps ax | grep ffmpeg"
3) look for the part that says --conversion-id=BLABLABLABLA
4) open quicktime X on your macbook and go to the following URL:

http://[PUBLIC IP OF YOUR SERVER]:45631/live-playback-2.2.1/index_[CONVERSION-ID-goes-here].m3u8

Hey presto!

NB, as soon as you start another stream on your iphone, it'll generate a new conversion-id and you'll have to start the process again to make it work properly.

NB also I've only briefly tested this - I don't know if there's a heartbeat or whatever that might kill the ffmpeg thread after a while when there's no iphone attached.

Joined: 04/22/2010 03:01:44
Messages: 1
Location: USA

I would pay for this application if it does come out. Keep up the great work.
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Joined: 07/13/2010 16:31:35
Messages: 1

I rarely ever pay for software, always borrow it from someone or get it from work. But if an Air Video client comes out for the PC or Mac, I'll be the first in line with cash in hand.

Joined: 07/11/2010 17:37:32
Messages: 7

I would too... fact is, there isn't a browser available for the pc that can understand the way air video server presents the stream. Maybe when browsers like Quicktime X become available for other platforms, then the devs here will maybe get the opportunity to be more serious about making a desktop client. For the meantime though, the little instructions I wrote for anyone on Snow Leopard - that's the only way you'll get anything close to a mac "client" any time soon yaa boo hiss. I know.

Oh well. Time to go and buy an ipad then I suppose!

Joined: 09/22/2009 17:06:26
Messages: 2

I'd pay for a desktop client as well.

Joined: 07/27/2010 05:14:19
Messages: 1

A Mac client would be great. A web accessible page would be amazing! I also registered just to show my support for this endeavor, and would gladly pay for the feature.

Joined: 07/29/2010 01:25:21
Messages: 1

Yes please. I love the apps, but wish I could share my movies with others I know who don't have iPhone or pad. I know there are other streaming solutions, but ease of use you have pulled off is fantastic and I wish a desktop Mac/Pc version existed. I think the amount of users you have would go thru the roof. Thanks again. Cheers. Dave

Joined: 08/03/2010 05:05:32
Messages: 1

now that the initial mobile device development cycle and we're well and truly hooked, how about it guys... an OS X version of air video? p-l-e-e-e-a-s-e!!

Joined: 08/05/2010 20:11:47
Messages: 1

omar_iphone wrote:
I would very much like to be able to use Air Video on my Mac Book or Windows based Laptop and stream video content from my PC.
This is software that I would be willing to pay for, as I know the developers have done a top quality job with the iPhone client.

If enough of us add our names to this petition list, perhaps the developers will create a desktop Air Video client for Windows/MAC OSX?

Please add your name to the list and keep this thread going.
(And admins; if you could please make this a sticky so its stays at the top of the forum?)

1. Omar P

So do I it's perfect on iPhone and iPad so I would immediately pay to have it also on my Mac and pc!!!!!! Please!!!!!

Joined: 07/08/2010 05:39:12
Messages: 8

The protocol has been implemented 3 times already: The AirVideo client, in a ruby gem (http://github.com/jphastings/AirVideo) and again for an Android version (http://code.google.com/p/avroid). Getting the non-converted stream playing is quite easy, as some of you have discovered. The live stream is more involved and no one seems to have it yet, but http://justdevelopment.blogspot.com/2009/10/video-streaming-with-android-phone.html documents the process. I'm actively working on the Android angle, and am happy to share the code back out for the various desktop versions or welcome you to contribute to the Android version.
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