As you may well be aware, recent security features included by major web browser developers, notably Chrome (fromv55 onwards) and Safari — but no doubt with others to follow — means that players running in these browsers can no longer be used to listen to Radio Riel, including the official Stream Licensing player that we are required to point at as part of our North American music licensing, and Web-based use of the highly-regarded TuneIn curated directory service. It should be noted that stand-alone players like WinAmp, MUSES, TapinRadio and VLC and the TuneIn app are not affected, and neither are in-world players, for example in Second Life viewers.
The technical reason for this is that these browsers are blocking web addresses with HTTP 0.9 headers and port numbers that are non-standard (ie not port 80). None of our streams are running on Port 80, and as all our streams run on a single server, only one of them possibly could.
The steps taken by Chrome and Safari have affected an enormous number of internet radio stations around the world: we are not alone here. It has in fact caused a great deal of consternation.
The solution to this is a fairly fundamental one — there is no easy way round it — and it is to change to a different music server system. We currently use ShoutCast Version 1, which was last updated in 2004. We, like many internet broadcasters around the world, have continued to use this server because it is popular, well-understood and well-supported, and reliable. In addition in our case, it was supported by Centova who make our music server front-end that stores detailed records for copyright licence reporting.
There are two alternative options. One is to migrate to Shoutcast v2, which is the current, and much more sophisticated successor to ShoutCast v1. The other option is to go for the open-source Icecast 2 server system. As we are very much in favour of open-source solutions, we have chosen to go with the latter: specifically the Icecast-KH branch that is specified for use with Stream Licensing.
At the same time we are moving our stream hosting. For most of our almost 10 years of operation, our streams have been hosted by the same provider, and Jamie has given us wonderful service for those years: we are most grateful to him for his support. He is now assisting us in a move to our own dedicated server, which will have the space for our existing six streams plus Fantasy Faire Radio, provide additional library storage and listener sockets, and give us room for future expansion.
This inevitably means that there will be changes in the addresses you use to listen to our streams. The most obvious change is that as well as a port number in the address, there is a mount-point name (usually “stream”) on the end of each address. However the IP address of the streams will change too.
Luckily, this affects us more than it affects you. We have already set up aliases for all six of our primary streams — they are accessible (or copyable) from the list in red top left of this page. They take the form “http://[name].radioriel.org” — eg “http://music.radioriel.org” for Main, “http://steampunk.radioriel.org” for Steampunk, and so on. What you can do right now is to check if any of your bookmarks, etc use the IP address (eg “http://220.127.116.11:8020” or the servername (eg “http://music.slserver.com:8020”) and change them to the appropriate alias (the link destination for each of the stream names at the top of this page). So, for example, change “http://music.slserver.com:8020” to “http://music.radioriel.org”. If you have done this, then you will not have any problem accessing Radio Riel’s streams when we change over servers.
The changeover will happen in early February and we’ll let you know more as the time approaches.
Thank you for listening!