Streaming Music in Mumble: a Step-by-Step Guide

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01
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Step 1: Download and Install Winamp Music Player

(This tutorial is continued from this Mumble article)

ACTION: Download Winamp Media Player 5.62. Once downloaded, perform the simple Winamp installation, using the default settings that pop up. The installation for Winamp should be identical for both 32-bit and 64-bit versions of Windows.

Note: Winamp is a deprecated technology. That means is that it works well, but the programmers have chosen to no longer continue building new versions of the product.

EXPLANATION:

While there are many music players, Winamp is the easiest and most reliable for single-boxing a Ventrilo music player. You can get a free Winamp Standard version at the Winamp site. There is a pro version available for $20 USD. Both the free and pro versions will play Ventrilo music without any limitations.

More details on this Winamp requirement are available here.

02
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Step 2: Download and Install Virtual Audio Cable Software

ACTION: This step is very easy: you only need to download and install the VAC software. Once it is successfully installed, there is no need to even open VAC or configure VAC -- VAC runs silently in the background, automatically creating a music stream called "Line 1 - Virtual Audio Cable". We will use this Line 1 in an upcoming step.

Trial version of VAC available here.
Full version of VAC available here ($30 USD)
Other versions of VAC are available at various download sites around the Web.

EXPLANATION:

VAC is 'routing' software for audio. This means: VAC lets you transfer music and voice signals from different software packages and microphones to play in other software or speakers/headphones of your choosing. This obscure-but-useful tool is the key to streaming music while also maintaining full voice communications in ventrilo.

VAC is a product authored by Eugene Muzychenko, a gifted programmer.

More details on this VAC requirement are available here.
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Step 3: Manually Disable Windows Driver Signing

This step is the easier alternative to installing DSEO. If you are not confident doing technical configurations, then use this F8 reboot process. You can then skip to Step 5.

To allow Virtual Audio Cable to run, you need to command Windows to allow 'unsigned drivers' to execute on your machine. This is a benign procedure, and will not put you at any more risk if you practice good computer hygiene as a rule.

ACTION: Reboot your computer. As it is loading, press your F8 key repeatedly until the Windos software launches the 'boot options' black screen. You will then navigate with your arrow keys to select 'Disable Driver Signature Enforcement'. Then press Enter and allow the computer to boot completely. That's it. This procedure is a manual bypass that works for as long as your computer doesn't restart. When you do have to reboot, you will need to repeat this procedure each time.


EXPLANATION:

Microsoft does not like developers making software for the Windows OS, unless the developers pay licensing fees. These fees can be prohibitively expensive, and some authors choose to offer their wares as "unsigned drivers". Microsoft likes to deter these authors' products by having the User Account Control lockout any products that have not paid licensing fees.

On the provision that you practice good computer hygiene through daily antivirus checks, running unsigned drivers on your computer is very low risk. Using this F8 reboot technique is one way to bypass driver signing. The other choice is to install DSEO software.

More details on disabling this driver signing requirement are available here.
04
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Step 4: Command Windows to Allow VAC to Run "Unsigned"

ACTION: This step may not be necessary, if Windows runs VAC without any error messages. However, if you do get VAC error messages after installing Virtual Audio Cable, you must command Windows to allow VAC to run "unsigned". There are four substeps to this procedure:

1) Disable Windows UAC:

Start menu > (in the search command box, type: MSCONFIG) > Tools > Change UAC Settings > Launch > (set the slider to Never Notify).

As you set the slider to "never notify", the Windows UAC dialog box will give the warning "not recommended". You can safely disregard this warning... DSEO is a benign product that will not threaten your computer's security as long as you practice good computer hygiene by running your antivirus every day.

2) Download and install DSEO here.

3) Take 5 minutes to follow the DSEO instructions at the web page here. You will need to point the DSEO signing to the full pathname of VAC.

**Note: the pathname to VAC driver will likely be "C:\Windows\System32\drivers\vrtaucbl.sys"

4) Once you have enabled Test Mode and have "signed" the vrtaucbl.sys file with DSEO, you can restart your computer.

5) Optional: here is an even-more detailed walk-through of the DSEO procedure, written by Tech F1.

6) NOTE: DSEO is mistakenly flagged as malware by some antivirus programs, like Avira, McAffee and Panda. This is a false alarm, and unfairly describes DSEO as malicious. The product is absolutely safe, just not encouraged by the Microsoft corporation. Read more details here.

EXPLANATION:

This is the most technically-challenging step of the whole process, because you are lifting the hood of your operating system to remove an annoying lock instituted by fearful administrators at Microsoft.

Microsoft does not like developers making software for the Windows OS, unless the developers pay licensing fees. These fees can be prohibitively expensive, and some authors choose to offer their wares as "unsigned drivers". Microsoft likes to deter these authors' products by having the User Account Control lockout any products that have not paid licensing fees.

On the provision that you practice good computer hygiene through daily antivirus checks, running unsigned drivers on your computer is very low risk. DSEO is simply the most reliable free product to do this bypassing of Windows UAC and driver signing.

More details on this DSEO requirement are available here.
05
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Step 5: Set Winamp Preferences to Output "Line 1, Virtual Audio Cable"

ACTION: In Winamp: Options menu > Preferences... > ("Plug-ins") > ("Output") > Nullsoft DirectSound Output > Configure > (set device to Line 1: Virtual Audio Cable)

EXPLANATION:

VAC is running invisibly in the background, waiting to transfer audio signals for you to where you direct it. This transfer conduit is called "Line 1". You can optionally create more lines to send audio to other software, if you decide to get more complex with your audio.

In the steps ahead, we will use "Line 1" from Winamp to be the input into your new Mumble user name.
06
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Step 6: Create a Windows Desktop Shortcut to Launch Mumble Twice

ACTION: With your desktop Mumble shortcut launch icon: Right-click and set the "target" to say

"C:\Program Files\Mumble\Mumble.exe" -m

EXPLANATION:

By adding the command -m to the Mumble shortcut, you command it to allow multiple copies to launch. You will then launch the first copy to be your own voice login. You launch Mumble a second time to use your Jukebox login for the music.
07
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Step 7: Launch 2 Copies of Mumble and Manually Configure One to Jukebox

ACTION: With your desktop Mumble icon: you will ultimately launch two copies of Mumble. One will be for your regular Mumble self, and other for the music streaming. This takes a few sub-steps, as described:
 
  1. Double-click and launch the first instance Mumble, but do NOT join the server yet.
  2. Close the server browser and open the Audio Wizard tool.
  3. Under Input Device, choose Line 1 (Virtual Audio Cable).
  4. Under Output Device, choose Default Sound Device or any option other than Line 1. This setting's sound will be muted later.
  5. Disable Attenuate Other Applications While Other Users Talk. This will keep the music at steady volume while people are talking.
  6. Right-click on the server, choose Edit, and change your login name to be 'Jukebox' or some other stylish name for your music machine.
  7. Navigate to Configure --> Settings and set transmit to be Continuous.
  8. Click Apply and OK.
  9. Now, launch a second copy of Mumble, which will remember your settings from the steps above.
  10. Login with both the first and second copy of Mumble.

Housekeeping items:
  • On your music machine login: mute the login of your regular self, and also mute your music machine. You will listen to the music through Mumble, not directly from your own computer.
  • Try keeping the music volume low, and let people manually turn up the volume on their end.
  • REMEMBER: the above steps do not save in Mumble when you close. Every time you launch Mumble, you need to repeat all of the instructions above. It is easiest to just leave your two ID's logged in when you are away from keyboard. Perhaps have the server admin create an 'AFK' channel for you to park your logins for convenience.


EXPLANATION:

The first copy of Mumble will be your regular voice connection.
The second copy of Mumble will be the streaming music from Winamp.

Make sure you enable the 'deafen self' command for the second copy of Mumble... this will prevent the music playing twice in your headphones.