Area Connection and select Properties. Highlight
Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) and click the Properties
button. Click the radio button beside “Use the
following IP address.” Now, for your IP address,
very carefully type the first 3 numbers from the
original IP address you found in Step 1 (often, they
will be 192. 168.0) but enter a fourth number that
is different from the fourth number of your original
You’ve created a new IP address for your server.
Make a note of it!
Now enter the Subnet Mask, Default Gateway,
and Preferred DNS Server, using exactly the same
values that you found for these items in Step 1,
without making any changes. Click OK twice to
close the windows.
3. SILENCE XP
Since you’re going to connect your stereo to your
server, you won’t want to hear every bonk and
chime that Windows plays when it wants you to
know something. Open Control Panel and double-click Sounds and Audio Devices. Click the Sounds
tab, pull down the menu under the Sound Scheme
heading, and choose No Sounds. This refers only
to the sounds generated by the operating system.
Sounds that come from your music player are
controlled separately. Click OK to close the window.
4. INSTALL WINAMP
We’ll use Winamp software to play the music
because it’s a very nice, full-featured media player
with a free plugin named AjaxAMP, which will let
us control the music remotely through a web page.
Download and install the software from winamp.com
During installation, Winamp wants to install
some “extras.” We don’t need these, so unselect
the Winamp toolbar, free extras, and free music.
After installing Winamp, run it. It will prompt you
to add music the first time you run it. Click “Don’t
show this again” and click the Cancel button. Close
Install AjaxAMP, then open Winamp again, pull
down the Options menu, and select AjaxAMP
Preferences. Change the server port to 80. Click
Library, and then Add Directory, and select the
topmost folder containing your music collection.
Fig. A: AjaxAMP screen with the controls and library
listing easily accessible. Fig. B: You don’t have to
leave the table to change the tunes.
5. PLAY THE MUSIC
Open a browser window, and in the Address bar, type
the new IP address you assigned to your server in
Step 2. Bookmark it for future use. If everything went
as planned, you should see the AjaxAMP web page
with the controls and the play-list on the left side of
the screen and your library on the right side. Choose
a song, click Play, and music should start playing.
I implemented this system using Linux originally,
and the Windows version can be tweaked with
additional features such as auto logon. Check
makezine.com/13/upload_musicsystem for details.
My family uses our music control system all the
time. It actually encourages my kids to explore our
whole music library instead of just their favorite
CDs. We also have spoken-word recordings, so we
can listen to books while we do chores or prepare
meals. When friends visit, they can click their favorite songs from several albums. And, the system is
great for parties. Rock on!
When not fixing servers, Andy Seubert fires up the retort in his
backyard to make homemade charcoal for blacksmithing.