Rock Your World with Firefly

No, I'm not talking browncoats and spaceships. Unfortunately, that ship has sailed. If you're the musical type, however, installing a Firefly Media Server is fairly simple. It was renamed from mt-daapd, so your distribution still might call it that. After a quick install, visit the Web configuration, usually at http://localhost:3689 with the default login mt-daapd and password mt-daapd. You can configure your music location, smart playlists and just about every other aspect of the media server. Then comes the cool part.

On any software or hardware on your network that supports daap (often known as the iTunes protocol), you should be able to play your music remotely. Firefly does a decent job of scanning your music collection and updating the clients on the network. You can add m3u playlists, and Firefly will serve up playlists as well.

I find the best way to listen to music on XBMC is via daap. It makes configuring playlists and adding media simple. It's also cross-platform, so those folks using actual iTunes can listen to their tunes as well.

UPDATE: Thanks to OctaneZ in the comments for pointing out an active fork of Firefly. Since Firefly hasn't been updated in a while, it might be worth checking out. (Of course, my music collection hasn't been updated in a while either, but that's another story altogether!)


Shawn is Associate Editor here at Linux Journal, and has been around Linux since the beginning. He has a passion for open source, and he loves to teach. He also drinks too much coffee, which often shows in his writing.


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Change transcoding formats i Firefly or Forked-daapd?

Andreas G's picture

Hi everybody!
I have tried both Firefly (mt-daapd) and forked-daapd. Both works ok but i would like to change transcoding of my .flac-files from wav to mp3. My phone can play streamed .mp3:s fine but not transcoded .flac:s, guess they transcode to .wav. Even Banshee won't play transcoded .flacs though Rhytmbox does. Does anybody know about a daap-server for Linux where you can set transcoding formats for .flac to mp3?


Jerry McBride's picture

If you like GNUMP3D... then you will love EDNA. Grab the latest sources from CVS. Edna is much faster than Gnump3d. A very important detail if you have a huge mp3 archive, like I do.


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Danny_1234's picture

With all due respect, I don't understand why this article was posted.

On the hunt for new-and-improved media streaming solutions, I was intrigued enough to click the thumbnail. No screenshot linked to it.

Undeterred, I clicked the link and read your story. I want to try this software; it's a "quick install" -- beautiful. Google sends up the project homepage: it's completely blank.

A project from M. Blache could be interesting, but one has to compile it from scratch. Not something a newly-minted Linux user is able to do, regrettably. To whom this article is targeted?

I have no ax to grind. I'm not trolling. You might withdraw this article since the project is moribund. If not completely dead already. I'd love to read an article about streaming music servers that are currently available.


Honeybadger's picture

mt-daapd just works when you are OK with default settings. As soon as you need re-encoding of flac or other services, mt-daapd gets very wonky. I not yet a developer, but there were a lot of complaints on the codebase being extremely messy and dirty. Which could be why development has ceased. I found gnump3d which seems to be very solid and light weight. It's easy to setup and streams over port 80 - which can be good for the office if there are strict firewalls. It also gives you a nice web-ui. I know that banshee has poor support for gnump3d, but that might not be so bad. There's also a decent android app that supports gnump3d: ServeStream.
Try it out Shawn - 5 minutes from dl to deployment. If not for yourself, then at least it deserves some attention from LJ.

GNUMP3d and ServeStream

William Seemann's picture

I stumbled across this article (disclosure: I'm the developer for ServeStream) and I would also recommend trying GNUMP3d. As the previous post stated, the setup is extremely easy. I would appreciate it very much if someone from Lj would give GNUMP3d and ServeStream a try.


OctaneZ's picture

While I appreciate the sentiment of trying to expose users to a great open source implementation of the DAAP protocol especially for mixed environments. I am afraid (and kind of hoping that this is a repost) it is rather dated. MT-DAAPD (cum Firefly) has been fairly dead for many years.

The mt-daapd code was forked and rewritten by Julien BLACHE and released as
forked-daapd and is actively maintained and added to unlike the original mt-daapd or firefly. It is packaged for many distributions.
Git tree: git://
Release tarballs:


Shawn Powers's picture

Firefly has always "just worked" for me, so it never occurred to me to look for an active fork. I updated the original post as well.

Thanks again!

Shawn is Associate Editor here at Linux Journal, and has been around Linux since the beginning. He has a passion for open source, and he loves to teach. He also drinks too much coffee, which often shows in his writing.