Webstream - Smoothly taking over

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Webstream - Smoothly taking over

Post by Adger » 02 May 2012 14:30

(This is probably only relevant for users using PFOA for streaming to a server that they share with others on a "per show"-basis. Successfully tested with Shoutcast V1 servers.)

One of the main problems when sharing a streaming server is the "between shows gap" that occures when taking over the server from the previous show. When communication is laggy or impossible and timing not reliable chances are that the stream goes silent for some time. Most of us have experienced this one way or another.

By intensive testing and playing around with PFOA for some time now I found a somewhat "quick & dirty workaround":

When you connect to a server that is "in use" connection will fail with an error. This is a good thing(tm)!

"Why?" you ask? Well, PFOA offers a a "retry on connection"-fail-recovery-feature. In the "Streaming Server Configuration" you will find a "Reconnect on Error every:" checkbox along with a number field. Dispite this option reading "REconnect" (implying a loss of connection) this also applies to the first connection attempt. Further you can link a "toggle autoplay"-macro once a server is connected: Settings and Options -> Events/Commands -> Streaming -> OnServerStarted : add a "PLS_CURRENT_AUTOPLAY_ON" or whatever suits your needs.

So. Tick this checkbox, set "retry every" to a reasonable amount of time (10 is default, but I found 5 to work perfectly), code a macro for "connect to server" that toggles autoplay and give it a try.

Oh, and since ShoutCast servers are usually installed using a "connection lost" buffer that covers a few seconds from before the connection is lost, you will carry over what ever was in the buffers from the show that ran before yours and start your show seamlessly. DO NOT wait for the buffers to run empty since that will give you exactly that "gap" which you are trying to avoid!

Some Minutes prior to your timeslot you can fire up PFOA, load your PFL, click "connect to server" and just relax and wait. Once the moderator using the timeslot ahead of your show terminates her connection, PFOA will take over and start all by itself. Saves me tons of nerves every day.

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