|Original author(s)||Karl Vollmer|
|Stable release||3.7.0 / May 26, 2014|
|Operating system||[OS Independent]|
|Type||streaming media / file manager|
Ampache is a free software Web-based Audio file manager / web Media Server. The name is a play on the two words Amplifier and Apache. It was originally written to take advantage of Apache's Mod_mp3 but has since been adapted to use its own streaming method. Ampache's Mascot is a squirrel called Fraz, originally drawn by Kirsten Petersen, later digitized by Ben Shields, and redesigned by Agnès Champavier in 2008.
Ampache was released in 2001. Its original author, Scott Kveton went on to create the OSUOSL at Oregon State University and passed off Developmental lead to Karl Vollmer who has been responsible for it since early 2003.
Ampache's goal is to allow access to a person's music from anywhere in the world. It is written specifically for private/small group implementations, but does allow an admin to enable public registration. Ampache's primary objective is to maintain a simple, secure and fast web front end that will run on almost any hardware and any platform that supports PHP. It is also written to accommodate large music collections.
Extensions / APIs
Ampache also provides an API for pulling out meta data in the form of XML documents. Ampache data can be accessed via the many methods supported in the API, originally created for use with Amarok2, but which can also be used to create other front-ends to Ampache. Access to the API is controlled by internal Access Control Lists; for performance reasons, all requests currently have a 5000 result limit. The following applications are known to have plug-ins that use Ampache's XML API
- Amarok (2.x)
- Coherence (UPNP A/V MediaServer)
- Rhythmbox Plugin
- Terratec Noxon iRadio
- Just Player (Android Application with more features)
- Traxstar (Traxstar Radio Automation based on Ampache (beta))
- Ampache Mobile (WebOS Client)
- AmpachPre (WebOS Client)
- AmpacheX (iPod Touch/iPhone Application)
- iAmpache (iPod Touch/iPhone application)
- Lullaby (Native Android Application - Based on Amdroid's codebase)
- Ampacheberry (Ampache client for the BlackBerry)
- Ampache HTML5 Player (Google Chrome App)
Ampache and Education
Ampache's features make it a powerful instructional and assistive technology for students with language-based learning differences. At the Chelsea School, a group of advanced technology students recognized Ampache's potential for providing important accommodations and modifications that serve their learning styles; they built and configured an Ampache server that was put to work to enhance teaching and learning in the classroom.
By adding audio recordings of instructional-level texts and assignments to an Ampache catalog, the instructor empowers students to individually and independently listen to a streaming text while reading a print version of the material; used in that way, Ampache allows students to avail themselves of curriculum material and instruction-level texts they may not otherwise have access to. Ampache thus serves as a compromise between three common accommodations: text-to-speech software, a human reader, and audiobooks.
Ampache's video-streaming features have also been used to enhance teaching and learning at the Chelsea School. Rather than having students watch instructional videos as a group, the assigned material was streamed to their individual workstations. Independent viewing reduces distractions, and allows students to progress at their own pace, pausing to take notes or repeating segments for clarification.
Ampache has been featured in numerous online blogs and technical articles. Of note is the O'Reilly book Spidering Hacks, which details security testing of online applications. Ampache was found to be immune to standard spidering hacks, and by focusing on security during its development, has continued to be. The Code Philosophy listed on Ampache's wiki specifies security as one of the most important considerations during application development.
Systems with Ampache packages
|Version||Release date||Important changes|
|1.01||April 29, 2001||First public release|
|1.07||May 4, 2001||Improved Interface|
|1.10||May 8, 2001||First PHP Only Version of Ampache|
|1.20||July 22, 2001||ID3v1.1 support added along with Genre support|
|2.0||February 5, 2002||Many feature enhancements per-user statistics added; restarting Apache no longer necessary when new songs are added|
|3.0||April 5, 2002||Randall Ehren joined development team, XML-RPC functionality added, allowing multiple Ampache instances to be linked; mod_mp3 not longer used|
|3.1||December 23, 2003||Complete re-write of Ampache code by Karl Vollmer and Robert Hopson; modifications to individual Apache config no longer necessary for Ampache to run|
|3.2||August 11, 2004||Downsampling, RSS Feeds and Now Playing added, along with numerous improvements to Album art and Meta-data gathering|
|3.3||May 17, 2005||Added GetText support, batch downloading, user registration and WMA,M4A,FLAC support; first version with native PHP installer|
|3.3.1||June 21, 2005||First themeable version of Ampache; abandoned non-standard installation method (/docs); implemented URL method for MPD plug-in|
|3.3.2||October 1, 2006||Optional bandwidth-based bit rates for downsampling; Keyword Quick search on all pages; adopted new authentication system (Vauth) and new IP based ACL system.|
|3.3.3||January 26, 2007||AJAX actions introduced in various places, plus Democratic Play, Integrated Last-FM player, Integrated Flash Player and Added HttpQ support|
|3.4||May 10, 2008||Complete re-write in PHP5; AJAX'd interface; Active Playlist, XML API, Dynamic Playlists added; vastly-improved browsing system introduced|
|3.5||May 5, 2009||Added support for Web 2.0 Style object tagging, Video Streaming, IPv6; additional dynamic playlist options and improved mobile device support|
|3.5.1||June 24, 2009||Corrected issues with API and ‘tags’, as well as certain endless loops in audio tag reading code|
|3.5.2||November 19, 2009||Fixed multiple bugs in API, plus tag reading issues; added album "Unknown (Broken)" for any files malformed or damaged by Ampache|
|3.5.3||December 20, 2009||Security release—highly recommended upgrade|
|3.5.4||February 2, 2010||Fixed bugs introduced in last release, plus significant improvements and fixes for localplay methods; also corrected size calculation for up to 4TB catalogs; new installations will include additional two default ACLs for API use|
|3.6-alpha6||May 30, 2013||Completed Tagging support; improved Dynamic Playlists|
|3.7.0||May 26, 2014||New theme, Subsonic API, Plex API, favorites and wanted features, iframed player (jPlayer), plus many user experience improvements|