In this update we re-worked the server and auto-dj configuration pages, added monitoring and auto-restart capabilities and performed an overall code cleanup to speed browser loading and UI response.
Up to this point it was impossible for us to infer which customer was using the auto-dj feature or not, so monitoring of the auto-dj service has been enabled for all customers in the system. The monitoring system will automatically check and start the service if it is offline. If this is not the desired affect, login to BoomBox and disable the Monitor option in the Auto-DJ section of the services page.
(Montreal: January 10th, 2017) Today SoniXCast announced expansion of their retail hosting operations through acquisition of four Canadian stream hosting providers expanding their reach to include additional data center’s in the cities of Toronto, Dartmouth, Quebec and Vancouver making SoniXCast the largest retail stream hosting provider in Canada. The names of the companies involved in the acquisitions remain undisclosed by request of the outgoing proprietor’s pending a formal announcement that will be made once all legal formalities have been resolved.
The acquisitions involve customers on the popular CentovaCast platform which is a competitor of SoniXCast’s BoomBox software and the management team at SoniXCast has indicated that all customers will be converted over to BoomBox by the end of the year.
“BoomBox has reached a stage in which it can mirror many of the features found on many popular platforms including CentovaCast and customer demand is now pushing development to look beyond the legacy stream server platform.” SoniXCast founder and BoomBox lead developer Brian Walton stated today.
Today’s announcement comes right after bellmedia’s disclosure that they will be partnering with Clear Channel and SoniXCast to provide iHeartRadio media services in Canada on the AnyCastIP platform. Since partnering with Clear Channel last year, SoniXCast has expanded listenership 10 fold on it’s radio platform and expanded to 4 countries in the North American region.
As reported by the AP (www.ap.org)
Source Client Interruptions: Customers on cabhs33 and cabhs34 were experiencing issues with the server component dropping source clients at random times of the day. This was due to the fact that the newer systems had updated operating system kernels that included process prioritization which was incompatible with the shoutcast server executable which caused it to restart internally. We repaired the issue by excluding the shoutcast executable from the process prioritization queue and setting the process priority to maximum value. This issue did not occur on other servers in the SoniXCast cluster as they have an older version of the operating system installed without process prioritization support. However future system updates will include such support, so patches have been rolled out to all servers within the cluster in order to avoid future outages.
Event Scheduling Issues: Related to the previous issue, the transcoders (Auto-DJ) were not properly reloading, meaning that that setting changes and events were also not being reloaded. We’ve repaired this issue as well on all servers.
Development Updates: We’ve replaced the timer which polls services and makes the frontend more responsive for users with an updated timer that uses less resources and resolves the issue of high memory use in the browser.
SoniXCast has partnered with UptimeRobot.com to provide real-time monitoring solution for all SoniXCast services. Useful for diagnosing connection problems, consumers can view the current status of all SoniXCast services including the BoomBox control panel, Api, CDN, Nameservers, Servers, AnyCastIP and corporate websites.
We are offering customers two status pages where they can check on SoniXCast Web Services:
https://www.sonixcast.com/uptime: Is our own homegrown solution which is built into BoomBox and all other Web Services and Sites and display’s verbose uptime graphs and status’ for each SoniXCast Web Service.
http://status.sonixcast.com/: Provided by UptimeRobot has been setup in case of the unlikely event that the SoniXCast CDN (provided by Amazon S3) goes down. Users will need to enter “SoniXCastStatus16” in order to login and view current status.
We are proud to announce the release of our Global Music Library (GML) for BoomBox 2.2. With it producers can choose from over 100,000 registered titles to add to their playlists. No more uploading, organizing or tagging tracks. Just search for the tracks you like or add all from a particular genre build your station in minutes instead of days.
We draw new titles from multiple worldwide sources, process ’em, tag ’em and put them up for use by SoniXCast Radio Station producers on a daily basis. Besides the usual sources (record company mustering), we also tap into the indie and creative commons libraries. Even language specific titles like from Germany, France and Asia!
Integrated directly into BoomBox (Our own homegrown Radio Automation and Control Panel), SoniXCast Radio Station Producers can quickly and easily search and assign tracks to playlists eliminating the need to tag, encode and then upload hundreds of tracks. Playlists are setup in minutes taking the drudgery out of building your Radio Station.
We’ve indexed over 30 possible search parameters for each title so that finding a title is as simple as entering a search term, hitting enter and choosing from the provided results. You can even limit your search by music genre. And it’s fast! We built specialized system designed specifically for managing large amounts of search queries. You’ll never wait long to find what you’re looking for.
Every track we receive from our worldwide partners is encoded for maximum performance and listening pleasure. Metatags are provided by iTunes and Echonest/Shazam! with no hidden messages or comments. So that your Station statistics are always clean and accurate compatible with all 3rd party players and statistics tools.
You can even preview a title or view track information before adding it to your playlist. View anything you need to know about a title from the Artist biography to broadcasting Bitrate, even the price to buy nearly instantaneously thanks to Apple’s iTunes powerful search API!
SoniXCast is the fastest growing Radio Station Provider in the industry. Have a song that you want to popularize or do you want to syndicate your Daily or Weekly broadcast? Simply contact our support department and we’ll not only get you setup in our rotation, but we’ll announce your content to over 1400 SoniXCast Radio Stations. More marketing and popularization features, so get on board early to take advantage of them while they’re still free.
We just released a Playlist Manager Update for BoomBox 2.2. The rewrite of the UML (User Music Library) introduced issues with assigning tracks to playlists and corrupted a small amount of data for some customers. Users will notice no new features or interface changes. Just that assigning tracks to playlists will be more responsive.
Broadcast licensing is a big feature of SoniXCast products and making sure that music tracks are properly licensed is a big part of making sure that Stations stay legal. Tagging of music tracks is as diverse as the individual who manages them which presents great challenges for the BoomBox licensing system. Add to that; Indexing one’s Music Library is an abstract concept for many. Especially after uploading loads of music via FTP. This can cause huge problems while building playlists leading to problems like a playlist not playing correctly to crashing of the transcoder (auto-dj) service.
To answer this issue, we’ve developed a feature that watches for changes in each customers music folders in real-time and automatically indexes music tracks if a change (delete, overwrite, upload) is detected. This ensures that database stays in sync for proper playlist generation and that tracks are properly licensed for broadcast.
The process runs completely in the background and requires no user intervention. Which means: customers simply upload files and usually by the time they are ready to build their playlists, their files have been processed and are ready for broadcast. Of course, those with large music libraries will have to wait a few minutes until all files have been process, but for most indexing takes only a couple of minutes.
We are proud to announce the full release of BoomBox 2.2. This release includes all components requested by customers in previous versions and more. This release also addresses many of the issues found in the bug database.
A few components are still pending release for this coming week (August 22th through 28th) and will be announced separately. Below are the pending releases along with a short reason why they missed this release.
The first thing to take notice of is the version change (lower right hand corner of every page). BB-RA is short for “BoomBox Radio Automation” which is the proper classification of the software as future versions will enable live broadcasting from any browser via WebRTC, extended by the actual version number. This is useful going forward as we will maintain multiple versions to allow customers the option to upgrade (which usually requires a service restart) at their own convenience.
We eliminated the top menu from BoomBox 2.2. Now everything is done from the collapsible and automatically resized (according to screen resolution) sidebar via intuitive icons. Read the documentation for detailed information on the functions associated with each icon, but most beginners who have ever used a smartphone or tablet before should immediately recognize what to do.
Everybody will recognize the server and local clocks used for calculating time offsets for events, but now the clocks are syncronized using the global ntp pool and are guaranteed accurate to the second. Also new is the radio station player which shows realtime playback and listener statistics. Click on the Play Button to listen yourself or use the context sensitive icons to view more information on the currently playing track at iTunes or the average listener tune-in times.
Services (Server/Transcoder (Auto-DJ) are now managed directly on the dashboard. This allows customers quick and easy access to make password and feature changes without navigating a bunch of screens. Our new service monitoring feature notifies the customer whenever a service cannot be started or goes down for any reason. In the sidebar services can be stopped or started using the convenient “on/off” switch and service up-time is shown in real-time. Click on the wrench to view the server admin interface.
Users and Playlists are also primarily managed from the sidebar via intuitive icons. Simply click on the item itself to open the management screen where you can assign tracks, set passwords and more importantly schedule when tracks will be played or users can broadcast AND jingles will be injected. Our new advanced event management system mimics many of the features found in other professional radio automation tools and allows the customer to build complex radio programming schedules.
Upload, move or tag your own music tracks using iTunes (see above for release status) or combine with our global music library (see above for release status) for ready-for-broadcast tracks to build your playlists quickly and easily.
BoomBox 2.2 change log for Sunday, 08/21/16 (11:00 MST):
BoomBox 2.2 change log for Tuesday, 08/23/16 (09:00 MST):
BoomBox 2.2 change log for Sunday, 08/28/16 (05:00 MST):
Important Notice: BoomBox is self healing. Meaning many issues are fixed whenever you save your transcoder (auto-dj) settings from the dashboard. Quite often we issue micro-patches which are only applied when service settings are saved. This is preferable by most than showing an upgrade message each time we issue a patch. If you are experiencing an issue, try saving your transcoder and try again before contacting support.
We will announce any new patch or changes as they are release. We encourage everybody to contact support with any issues or post your issues and feature request into the bug database at blog.sonixcast.com
We are proud to announce a load of updates for BoomBox this Father’s Day June 19th, 2016! Here’s is list of updates and fixes we put in:
Enjoy the updates and fixes and enjoy your Father’s Day!
Your SoniXCast Team