Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Pass HTTP Basic Authentication from Apache to Tomcat

In order for Tomcat to receive http basic authentication credentials from Apache change the AJP13 connector configuration in the Tomcat server.xml file. Add tomcatAuthentication="false" to the Connector line like the line below.

<Connector port="8009" protocol="AJP/1.3" redirectPort="8443" tomcatAuthentication="false" />


Sunday, November 15, 2009

WANTED: 64-bit Amazon MP3 Downloader for Linux

The Amazon MP3 Downloader for Linux works well. Unfortunately there isn't a 64-bit version. I have requested a 64-bit version through Amazon's website. Please do the same. While you are at it request Ogg and FLAC downloads.

Response from Amazon

Hello from Amazon.com.

Thanks for writing about the trouble you're having with the Amazon MP3 Downloader. I notice you were recently sent a promotion to purchase $5.00 worth of MP3's from Amazon.com . While we would like to be able to offer our MP3 down loader software to all of our customers in as many operating systems as possible, the closest we currently have to your operating system is a 32-bit version for Ubuntu. It may be faster for you to bypass our software altogether and download your music directly from our website as MP3 files.

I've included instructions below to download your music directly as an MP3 file. I have also included a link to the Linux 32-bit version of our MP3 downloader software. I can't estimate how long it would take to compile, test and get business approval for a 64-bit version of the downloader.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

VLC Streaming - Whole Home Audio

VLC is a free open source cross platform media application. It plays and streams almost every media format known to man. I am using VLC streaming to achieve whole house audio. I have several Ubuntu PCs connected to audio receivers throughout the house.

To get them all playing the same song I fire up VLC on my server where all my media resides with the following command:
vlc /var/lib/mythtv/music/ --sout udp:

On each client I issue the following command:
vlc udp://@

That is all there is to it. I now have four stereos all playing the same tune. Whole house audio is great for parties or Saturday chores.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

NETGEAR Powerline Ethernet Adapter

To extend my local area network to the far end of my house without pulling wire I installed the NETGEAR Powerline AV Ethernet Adapter Kit model XAVB101. While the throughput of 56 Mbps is no where near the advertised speed of "up to 200 Mpbs" it is good enough to stream HD video from my MythTV server. Below are results from my network throughput test using the iperf command on Ubuntu Karmic 9.10.

laptop0:~$ iperf --format [Mbits] -c -t 10
Client connecting to, TCP port 5001
TCP window size: 131 Kbit (default)
[ 3] local port 39955 connected with port 5001
[ ID] Interval Transfer Bandwidth
[ 3] 0.0-10.0 sec 562 Mbits 56.1 Mbits/sec

The installation is dead simple. Plug one powerline adapter into the power outlet near your Ethernet switch. Connect the powerline adapter to your switch with the supplied Ethernet cable. Plug the other powerline adapter into the power outlet near your remote computer. Connect the powerline adapter to your computer with the supplied Ethernet cable.

Bottom line: If you can easily run Cat 5e cable, do it. Cat 5e will give you the best throughput. The next best thing might be this or some other brand powerline Ethernet adapter. In my circumstance it saved me the hassle of pulling wire to a hard to reach spot of my home. It's a keeper.