Windows/Mac/Linux: Open-source, Mozilla-powered media player Songbird just released their first beta of their newest release, adding official Windows 7 support, video playback, and support for syncing to devices that use SD cards for storage.
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Windows/Mac/Linux: Previously mentioned Songbird, the open source, Mozilla-powered, supposedly iTunes-killing media player has updated to 1.4.2, bringing a host of new features, including AAC metadata support, a new feather (skin), CD ripping and support for many mass storage devices.
A bug that caused music to be deleted off some iPods has been fixed by the Songbird developers. The fixed and updated add-on has been uploaded to Songbird's servers, and anyone with the add-on installed should be prompted for an update on launching or checking for it. Did you lose any tracks, even just temporarily, to Songbird's confused database?
Songbird's developers are telling users to disable or uninstall the iPod support add-on, normally recommended and installed at first start-up, because it can erroneously delete music from your music device. It's a pretty unfortunate setback for Songbird, which just shipped its lighter, faster 1.1 release, and had cleared up many of the nagging bugs and quirks that made its (unofficial) claim to being an iTunes killer seem far-fetched. If you found out the hard way that Songbird didn't respect your iPod's contents and don't have the tracks backed up on your system, grab one of our recommended free software tools for recovering deleted files and point it at your iPod. The random-delete problems of Songbird's iPod add-on will be tracked at this Bugzilla post, and we'll update on this blog, of course, when it's fixed. Thanks (but also sorry!) to Steven. iPod Add-On Woes
Windows/Mac/Linux (All platforms): The free, multi-platform iTunes assaulter (if not quite killer) Songbird busts out great improvements for a 1.1 version, including a one-click album art grabber, performance improvements, and loads o' little tweaks. The killer new feature is a single menu option, under "Tools," that scans your entire music collection and grabs the relevant album art from Last.fm's web site. That alone makes the oft-improved, awesomely extensible music manager worth a look. But most of the big improvements in this release have been under the hood, so to speak:
Like Firefox, the open source media player Songbird is a pretty neat alternative to a big-name competitor on its own, but the ability to extend it through add-ons is what really makes it boss.
We considered the release candidate of the potential "iTunes killer"—Songbird a sloppy mess, then backed up a bit when it's 1.0 release was official. Now we're geeked to show you a few add-ons that make Songbird a great place to organize your MP3s, iTunes purchases, iPods and whatever else you listen to.
iPhone/iPod touch only: One of the great strengths of Songbird, a jukebox app intended to serve as a more open-ended iTunes killer, is its Firefox-like extensibility. The 779Media group jumps out of the gate with a remote-control application for iPhones and iPod touch devices that, while simple in functionality, does give you basic play/pause/back/forward control from anywhere your home wireless network reaches. After installing the Songbird add-on for Windows, Mac, or Ubuntu 8.10 and the app on your device, you simply launch the app, hit the "info" button to choose your computer, then control your tunes. It desperately needs a full library listing to match up against Apple's own Remote app, but it's a nice start. Songbird Remote is a free download for iPhones and iPod touch models running at least the 2.0 software. For a closer look at Songbird itself, check out our screenshot tour. Songbird Remote
Windows/Mac/Linux: The long-awaited cross-platform media player Songbird officially reaches its 1.0 release today. The open-source application—built on the same platform as Firefox—promises to bring exciting new innovations to a software jukebox market that has become arguably quite stale. Like Firefox, Songbird is extensible, meaning that users can customise the look, feel, and features of Songbird to their heart's content. We took you on a screenshot tour of Songbird last month, and from a feature standpoint, not much has changed. From a functionality standpoint, Songbird has gotten much, much better.
Earlier today we featured the first release candidate of Songbird, an open-source, cross-platform media player cut from the same cloth as Firefox. Songbird has been in development forever, but now the exciting media player is finally approaching its 1.0 release, and we were eager to sink our teeth into it. Keep reading for a closer look at Songbird—including where it soars and where it sucks.
Windows/Mac/Linux: Songbird, the open-source media player built on Mozilla code, has reached a feature-complete release candidate stage, meaning you can take a look at how the 1.0 release will look and feel before any remaining bugs are knocked down. New since the 0.7 beta is the use of the GStreamer backend on every platform, to improve reliability and extendability, support for WMA, AAC, and Ogg Vorbis media files, drag-and-drop album artwork management, and the ability to use existing smart playlists as the default rules for new smart playlists. There's a bunch of other improvements and efficiencies, so feel free to grab a copy and see what's new before the player's official release. Songbird is a free download for Windows, Mac OS X and Linux systems. Songbird Nightly Builds
It seems like a lot of people might grumble about iTunes but they keep using it. But a Wired piece on open source music player Songbird caught my eye yesterday. Built on the Mozilla platform, it's aiming to be as customisable as Firefox, and describes itself as a "desktop media player mashed up with the web".
What does this mean? Songbird was designed for people to be able to access music from the web as well as from their own computer's music collection. So it includes a web browser for streaming and downloading music. When you navigate to a page which has embedded music on it, Songbird will display a simple playlist window of all the available music on that page so you don't need to hunt for the links. Nice.
I'm curious, and I'm downloading it right now as I type. If you've tried Songbird, I'd be interested to hear your thoughts on it.