Was using Winamp 5 for the past year but recently switched back to v2.95, which is allegedly the best version out there.
Although it's 10 years old (!!), it's still the best music player available: lightweight, fast, responsive, and kept simple.
I had hopes for the Windows 7 Media Player. But it turned out to be a dreadful experience.
Me: Can't I pause that song by hitting space?
WMP: No, there are no keyboard shortcuts!
Me: I wanna play all the songs of this folder!
WMP: Ok, but I'll mess up the order! By the way, are you interested in purchasing
more songs from this artist? Cause I got a VirginMega link just right here!
Me: No thanks...
WMP: Why not? I mean, iTunes gets away with it, why can't I?
Me: I just want to play some music.
WMP: Really?? JUST that??
Me: I wish.
I agree, I've used foobar2000  for over ten years when Winamp (my previous goto music player) started to get all crashy and hangy for no good reason. It's pretty solid, can handle massive playlists and has nice clean and simple UI with no cruft. My only wish is that they did foobar2000 for Android.
Peter was notable for maintaining a lot of the audio output backends for Winamp. People who had problems with their Creative Labs sound cards (read: basically anyone who owned one) causing playback glitches in Winamp would post about it on the Winamp forums and peter would get really cranky and eventually figure out how to fix it. (:
HN has an amusingly childish policy of hellbanning individuals it deems inappropriate or otherwise objectionable--hellbanning hides the banned account's comments to everyone unless you set "showdead" to true in your account preferences.
Some users have started kindly informing the hellbanned posters that, for whatever reasons, don't seem to notice that no one ever responds or upvotes their comments.
If I may get on my soapbox (if I wasn't already), I find the whole thing symptomatic of Silicon Valley's culture of networking hell and reputation management. It's a policy of elitism; a policy that disenfranchises in the name of some fictional notion of quality; a policy that demonstrates just how rotten the tech industry is at heart.
Why do I go that far? Because community culture is indicative of so many things. This is the community and atmosphere that pg set up, that pg creates, moderates, and maintains.
pg may not be formally 'responsible,' but he's certainly at the head.
Because I'm an asshole, but not enough of one to get hellbanned (at least on this account), I am in some state of suspension: an artificial delay imposed on every request.
(That's what I don't get about HN's moderation: what, did you think I wouldn't notice that you're essentially trying to herd me like chattel? I stubbornly keep this account kicking out of simple contrariness.)
That's all well and good, but let's take a look at what the trigger was https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=5615120 . If you ran a community -- and realistically there's nothing stopping you from doing so -- would you tolerate that kind of nonsense? I know I wouldn't want to hang around there if you did.
You're right (to continue going slightly meta), it's a policy of elitism, but in the same vein as Wikipedia. They too are still around as a result.
Side note: Quality is quantifiable to a degree and is by no means a fictional notion.
Discussion forums are for discussion. Angry conversation is an emergent property of some discussions, on the net or off, but not the sole response to anything you may disagree with.
My own opinion on hell-banning or any other forms of account "punishment" is that it is, as you say, cowardly and ineffective, as long as the user has no idea that it has occurred. Either inform the user, or completely ban the account. Otherwise you're leaving people screaming into the wind when you could just tell them no-one is listening.
The whole point is that it's not about punishment, it's about preserving the tone.
Telling somebody "you've been banned" will make them upset. Some people get severely offended and they want to fight. So they go and create new accounts and start over, or they seek revenge in other ways. It can be very time consuming to deal with. Granted, this will still happen because some people will realize that they've been hellbanned, but the ones that simply get the impression that people aren't responding to their trolling will get bored with it and go away. Which is a win.
WMP is why I bought an iPod. As a Microsft employee at the time, I struggled longer than any mortal should to get WMP to sync music to my 2003-era Windows Phone. I eventually realized that any kind of synchronization and general usefulness in using WMP with a Windows Phone was nothing but marketing lies. So one day I said, "get in the car, honey, we're going to buy iPods."
iPods led to iPhones, which led to iOS development and Macs, to the point that there are no more Windows machines in the house and I haven't done Windows development in about five years.
All kicked off by the fact that MSFT couldn't make a software music player that didn't suck.
The nice thing about old, simple software is that the attack vectors are often known publicly and are easy to work around. In the instance of Winamp, older versions of 2.x have a buffer overflow exploit in the playlist parsing. So.. don't load playlists from untrusted sources, something most people never do anyway.
> This is a great example of why I don't move all my data to the cloud
Music is a great use-case for keeping data in the cloud. You can have a consistent music library and can use any player client-side. Personally I prefer the spotify "all-you-can-listen" model, but I have a bunch of MP3s that aren't on spotify that I seamlessly stream from dropbox (either to winamp or the spotify client, which allows you to sync local files).
Off the top of my head: You tie your data to one provider instead of simply physical media, you lose discoverability (will your kids browse your album choices 30 years from now?), exporting/importing quality is at the mercy of the provider (for example Amazon dropped several dozen mp3s when I migrated a few gigs to Google), and of course you place your data at the mercy of a business, (is any tech company eternal and/or always interested in providing cloud services?)
The cloud is way overdone, after giving a variety of services a go over the last few years, I'm actually pulling back.
I'm also an Rdio and Netflix subscriber, but running Plex on my server allows me to 'roll my own Netflix' and stream movies and music to my iPad or other computers, or even from my server to any computer in the web browser. I'm happy.
Plex is the only solution that I have found that seamlessly plays video on my flatscreen through my mobile with the content being served from my laptop.
Before you ask - yes I used to be running xbmc, minidlna, etc. previously. No, they are nowhere as good (actually, to rephrase, the client-server model is not xbmc's focus, which is completely wrong IMHO).
So you can set up apache to host movies on a home network, then stream them with VLC? That sounds like a fantastic solution. Is there a solution for playing music this way on something resembling a stereo that supports playlists?
I also use subsonic and love it. It's unfortunate that the author moved to a monthly/yearly subscription model. Luckily, I am grandfathered into a lifetime premium membership with a free dynamic DNS address, which is really nice.
It's ONE DOLLAR per month. ONE DOLLAR! And it's only if you want the extra features. Would you rather have ads be inserted between your songs or something? The development of the app needs to be paid for one way or the other.
You miss the point. The idea is not to be able to listen to all music, but any music from one's collection.
Putting this down to greed? What an incredibly short sighted, ignorant thing to say. Perhaps we should have stopped at black & white feature phones because only greed could mean we wanted to access the whole internet on the move?
It isn't a "solved problem" because there are still issues with the solution.
You don't need to. Since subsonic is Open Source, there's naturally multiple forks with the licensing code removed. The best fork, which also adds features, is madsonic. I recommend it. In addition, if you already have subsonic, the license code is simply a check if your password = the md5 of your email. So using "firstname.lastname@example.org" and "23463b99b62a72f26ed677cc556c44e8" will make it think you're a valid subscriber and give you all features.
I hear a lot of people claim that, but the reality is that many people run applications they don't realize are Java, and a lot of the infrastructure you rely on runs Java behind it.
As a JavaEE architect/developer, I whole-heartedly agree that you shouldn't run Applets in your browser anymore. In fact, unsigned applets will no longer run after January of 2014, which will break a lot of the banking infrastructure and a couple important client applications at my day job.
This isn't even a java applet. It's java server side code. There is absolutely no reason for the former poster to boycott this aside from ignorant pig-headedness (and this is coming from someone who isn't exactly a fan of java himself)
I think he has a tiny point actually: I saw a number of people around me removing Java (or not installing it on new computers) after the numerous vulnerabilities reported recently. Just a data point but well - I wonder if this could affect sales of java-based product etc.
This is why. The never ending stream of security issues. The installer hijacking my browser search bar. The never ending nags about new versions, which hijack my browser all over again. It's just not worth it. I have removed Java from all my computers and will never install it again.
I fully realize many web sites and services are implemented in Java, that's not what I was talking about. I will not install or run anything that needs Java. Period.
You can run Java applications and secure them from the web. Just disable Java applets from your browser (most have an option in the browser itself; those that don't will have extensions to do the same - like you would to block Flash plugins)
One can very easily not run any desktop Java apps, and not run any applets. That's what he meant, and that's what matters.
Who cares if he still uses some website that is build on servlets server side, or if his tv/car/fridge has a Java running CPU? That's totally besides the point.
Java is not "everywhere". In fact it's getting nowhere fast (including it's use on microcontrollers and devices). The only exception is server side, where it's also not what it used to be these days...
What does "serious" mean in this context? Is it another way of saying high load? Enterprise? Is scientific computing serious? How can you say that one platform is used for "much more serious stuff" when you almost certainly have no idea what 99.9% of all python (or Scala) installations are being used for.
All my iTunes Match content came from my computer, can be copied to my computer, and can be backed up independently.
There's no reason that The Cloud and Owning Your Files has to be a binary choice. The Cloud can be a great compliment to your local file storage, rather than a replacement for it.
Another example: store your music in Dropbox, which clones it to all your devices (where applicable), and then use Tunebox (https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/tunebox-dropbox-music-player...) as your frontend. Now you have a 'cloud' music service where you control the content, someone else handles the distribution, and everything is cloned locally on all your machines (for your other players to use). Then you can trivially back up your music files from Dropbox to a local backup (or a third-party backup service if all you want is some form of company-independent redundancy.
Hurray for the CD purchasers! I thought I was the only one left doing this! I too cannot abide a cloud based service for listening to music.
I understand the merits of Google's music service but given the fleeting nature of cloud based services, I would rather have a physical copy of something that I can rerip if necessary (and look at the sleeve notes). Having to download music over my limited mobile connection whilst out and about doesn't sound like fun, particularly when the cost of an iPod Classic (with sufficient storage for all of my music, unlike the Touch) is negligible, and the dodgy nature of coverage in hilly areas in the UK.
I am chuffed that CD buyers still exist!
Isn't this true of data in general. Not just specific to music. It's unfortunate that Amazon dropped some mp3s but that is more of an exception than the norm right ? If we are talking about data integrity, there are several ways in which this can be mitigated. I think it's worthwhile to have all your music stored in a location that is accessible from anywhere and from any player
I glad my music collection was on physical media when tornadoes knocked power out to just about the entire county. I had something to cure the boredom besides drinking and rioting! (Well, once the weather stopped trying to kill us all.)
I'm also glad my music is on physical media every time I don't have to pay insane rates for a couple hours of wifi on a flight just to listen to my music, or when I'm killing time somewhere where cell service is spotty at best.
I don't yet live in the future where access to the cloud is a given, and I prefer my devices don't become completely useless without a data connection.
Edit: My primary physical media isn't a pile of CDs—I have plenty of those too, but stopped carrying them the moment I got an MP3 player. Now I carry almost my entire collection on my phone and a whole lot more than that on my laptop. I see nothing wrong with having copies of things in the cloud (remote backup FTW), but I'm not about to take a shotgun to my local disks.
You can check out our personal cloud software Tonido (http://www.tonido.com). It organizes all your music, video collection and makes it available from anywhere. We have very good mobile apps for iOS, Android and even for Windows 8. You don't need to take our word. Just check the app ratings and reviews in app stores.
you don't even need tonidoplug for it. If you have an old PC or Linux box and you can mount your NAS containing your music, you can just install the free version of Tonido Desktop and stream all of it.
I think they complement each other rather than directly compete with each other. I have all my files stored locally, but I also have them all uploaded to Google Music so I can listen to them on my phone. Even if Google Music shuts down, I have local copies.
This is the smart strategy. If you're that concerned about the hands you're putting your music in, then all or nothing isn't a good plan.
Instead, diversify and maintain. I use iTunes Match, Google Music and keep everything locally as well as a backup on my server. It all happens automatically when music is added to the local library. Nothing is lost, and redundant access is gained.
Server. Cloud. If it's your personal music it's not going to matter whether you have a cluster of servers or your single VPS with a service running on it. This cloud buzz is like ajax of 5 years ago. Can we use the terms 'online' and 'hosted' rather than this vague cloud buzzwordry? It's a plague upon tech sites and tech marketing.
>all these major cloud player can just stop their service on their whim
If you are concerned with minimizing monetary loss rather than preserving working copies of your media  you can treat that as an argument for choosing a media provider that allows you to pay a monthly fee. If (when) their service gets discontinued you switch to another one; the only problem you would face is migrating your favorites, bookmark, playlists and the like .
 Which makes sense when the specific things you want to access (watch, listen to, read, play, etc.) are not rare and can be found elsewhere.
If (when) their service gets discontinued you switch to another one; the only problem you would face is migrating your favorites, bookmark, playlists and the like .
I don't think this is a good strategy, you are putting yourself at the mercy of content license negotiations that are done by a bunch of idiots with their heads up their asses that you have absolutely no control over. There is no guarantee that the music you "rent" from one service will be available for you to "rent" on another service.
For those who are shaking their heads at the idea of their collection fitting on dropbox, or listening to single tracks of whatever is on Spotify, I recommend Subsonic. I stream my whole collection from my home connection to my phone.
No thanks to the cloud regarding my music. Even though I use the crap out of Google Music, it sucks at keeping track of diffs between locally and the cloud. I change album art and other metadata all the time. Real pain in the pass. And then there's always the case of where one won't have Internet access, especially when driving.
I strongly agree with this comment. I still wish there is an easy solution for hosting all my music in different original format without a high cost, but also playable through a cloud player. Music is something that I need it constantly but don't really mind if it is lost in a few years. I used to run Subsonic on beagleboard but it barely keeps up with converting flac to mp3 at stream time. I am looking at http://meetlima.com/ but I don't think that is what I want. iTune integration will become a huge issue unless it pops up as a Shared music.
I have used it for all these years because it "just works". I have 2 needs in a music player - play whatever I have locally, and stream me something different when I want to. Winamp did both of those, and I never had an issue with it.
It is hard to "surpass" something that meets my needs perfectly and has given me no issues for over 10 years.
The main reason I use Winamp is because it has global keyboard shortcuts for controlling playback. I'm not sure if any other media players have that, if anyone knows of one that does I would love to know.
Out of curiosity: I use AHK to do basic testing automation for a windows application that I have literally zero ability to control programatically (to achieve actually good automated testing). Anyone have a better option for this kind of use case?
I don't have any demographic information to share. But I personally attempt to rate my files. It gives a nice way to categorize by quality. That way I can have abjectly terrible music in my collection, but filter it out for the purposes of not ever wanting to listen to it.
I've heard some good things about it. I'll give it a try. Winamp is timeless because it's so simple and powerful. I loved the play next queue. If I felt like a few songs I could throw them on the temporary queue without interrupting what was going on. Great for playing music for others too.
foobar has similar features its just confusing at first cuz it puts playlists in tabs. super powerful but takes some getting used to. facets is the necessary add-on because it basically gives you a really powerful search whereas by default there is... none.
the other component i use is the ipod manager i forget what its called but you can find it easily. it lets you add/delete songs pretty easily & if you use flac/wav/whatever it can even convert to mp3 on the fly if you set up the encoder right. that way you can keep lossless on comp but have mp3 on ipod without making an mp3 directory
I also recently switched back to Winamp. It just works and it's easy to control.
There's also a plugin called Chipamp which ensures you have all the latest plugins required to play video game music files (nsf, rsn, usf, psf, etc.). This is the best PC tool for listening to video game music.
deadbeef is a very nice lesser-known linux music player that's heavily influenced by foobar2000. quodlibet is probably my second favourite, but it's written in python, so it can be a bit slow/heavy on resources at times. banshee is great for large libraries and as an iTunes replacement.
You can install Tonido (http://www.tonido.com) in your desktop and listen to your music from anywhere (iOS, Android, Windows 8). Your data, music and app is all local to system but still can access from anywhere as cloud.