If you are an audiophile and need some free and open-source Linux music server software to create your own self-hosted live streaming audio server for your massive collection of music files then you are at the right place.
We already covered the best open-source Linux based media server software to build your own media server using an old home PC. The media server tools, we have listed in that article are can also be used as music servers such as Plex, Kodi, and Emby media servers. Apart from this server software, we are also going to list a few dedicated open source and free DIY audiophile music server software here in this listicle, have a look maybe they somehow help you…
But before diving into the article let me tell, who need such kind music server software?
A person, who has a large collection of music or just wants to create his own Spotify like a server to stream music locally or remotely anywhere both on Desktop PC (like Windows, macOS, and Linux) and mobile platforms like Android, iOS, and Windows-based smartphones.
The purpose of os a music server is to deliver a music track which stored on the server storage when requested by the client. These Music HTTP servers should be capable of providing music files over the local area network and to other computers connected to the internet.
The Open-source software category has a wide range of multimedia server software; capable enough to turn your computer into a Jukebox. It does not end here, even there is a dedicated Linux music server distro called VortexBox which comes in the form of a bootable ISO file and can directly convert your old bare metal PC into a full-fledged music server.
Note: If you are using any of the given software to stream music over the internet (commercially) then be sure that you have copyright ownership of those tracks if they come under the copyright. However, for personal or music under free licenses can be stream without any issue.
List of Best Free Linux Music Server Software
Build your own audiophile music server using free and opens source software
- Emby Server
- Ampache – Music Streaming Server
- Daphile- Dedicated Headless Music Server
- VortexBox music server distro
- Music Player Daemon
Plex – Media Server
Yes, we know that the Plex is the media server but it is an all-rounder player. This means it can use to stream music and video both including images. The reason it is on the top list because of its client application availability. The Plex is almost available for every device such as Android, iOS, Smart TV, Windows phone, Apple Tv, Xbox one, Plays station, and more. It uses a client-server architecture to work as a home theatre PC. You can install the Plex server on Windows, macOS, Linux likes Ubuntu, FreeBSD, and other NAS server platform and Docker. That’s why it is one of the best music server software available for free. See: How to install Plex media server on Ubuntu
It is open-source media server that let you handle the home videos, music, and photos both locally and remotely. It is available as a client for both Desktop PC and smartphones. Emby apps are available for Android TV, Amazon Fire TV, Chromecast, Roku, Xbox, Home Theater Computers, and more. The parental control and dlna services are also there. The interface of this media cum music sever is really beautiful and I am using it for my personal usage. Their server application is available for Windows, MacOS, Linux, FreeBSD, NAS, and Docker. You may want to know: How to install Emby server on Ubuntu to create your own music server.
The is another well-known free music server software to stream your favorite music on the go. It supports MP3, OGG, AAC, and any other audio or video format that streams over HTTP. The transcoding engine of the Subsonic allows you to stream lossy and lossless formats by converting to MP3 on-the-fly. See: How to install Subsonic on Ubuntu Linux.
It can work with any network media player such as VLC, Windows media player, iTunes Winamp, and XMMS including embedded Flash player. The tag parsing and editing of MP3, AAC, OGG, FLAC, WMA, and APE files are also possible using the Jaudiotagger library.
Also the Subsonic provide a wide range of language support which is up to 28 along 30 different user themes to suit your personality. The user can also set his own personal avatar. Now come to the availability of the Subsonic server, it can be installed on Windows, MAcOS, Linux, Red Hat / Fedora, Synology NAS and also available as a Stand-alone version (all platforms), and WAR version (all platforms).
The Subsonic client app is available for Android, iPhone, Windows Phone, Mac, Sonos, Chrome and more. It means, if you go for Subsonic then you will not going to get compatible issues. The videos streaming in the Subsonic is paid. However, if you need a server application just for streaming the Music then you can go for it. You can also listen what you’re playing on the Last.FM using automatically register, via the built-in Audioscrobbling support.
Play music directly on the server’s audio hardware using the jukebox mode and also it is very easy to install on Raspberry Pi and Odroid C2 boards.
Madsonic is a web-based media library and media streamer with jukebox functionality. Based on Java technology, Madsonic music server software can run on most of the platforms, including Windows, macOS, OSX, Linux and Unix variants. Apart from a personal streaming media server, it can also be used a jukebox locally. To stream and play music from Madsonic sever either you can use different clients those support the Madsonic or Subsonic REST API or web browser via an intuitive web interface.
It is a completely open-source and free Media streaming software and a fork of closed source Subsonic Server. So, if you don’t want to pay for Subsonic then you can use the MediaSonic. Some key features of it are easy to use interface,
Flexible and adaptable, Supports most media formats, Customizable user experience, Integrates web services, and Mobile Apps.
Ampache – Music Streaming Server
Ampache is another popular free and open-source music streaming server software. It is web-based audio/video streaming application and file manager. The Ampache allows to stream music directly into the browser using the HTMl5 player on almost any internet-enabled device. To get the lyrics of songs you can also connect the Ampache to ChatLyrics and Lyrics Wiki to import Metadata from MusicBrainz. It provides Subsonic API backend which allows the user to use Subsonic clients. Ampache supports multiple network music players to play songs such as VLC, WinAMP, Foobar2000, Windows media player and almost any player that has the HTTP stream capability. Furthermore, it can also work with Plex, DAAP clients, UPnP/DLNA and XML-API clients.
Airsonic can be said as an open source alternative to closed source Subsonic media server but with all capabilities because it is a fork of Subsonic. It is a free and web-based media streamer designed to handle the very larger collection of music files stored on your local disk. However, it mainly optimized for Mp3 streaming but can support any audio or video streaming over HTTP like from OGG and AAC to WMA, FLAC, and APE.
With help of transcoder plug-ins, Airsonic can convert any audio format, including WMA, FLAC, APE, Musepack, WavPack and Shorten. It can also work as a local jukebox.
Airsonic comes with an integrated Podcast receiver and as based on Java technology it can run almost all platforms, including Windows, Mac, Linux and Unix variants.
Mopidy is also open source and free MPD and HTTP music server written in Python that runs in a terminal or in the background on Linux computers or MacOS with some network connectivity.
For controlling the Mopidy from frontend you can install some extensions. Also, it can be easily run on the Raspberry P either using Raspbian or Arch Linux to create an affordable Jukebox.
Moreover, has the capability to play music from your local disk and from cloud services like Spotify, SoundCloud, and Google Play Music via an extension on phone, tablet, desktops or web clients.
Basically, you can say it a headless music server software that can be controlled by installing extensions and plays music via a browser or MPD client. With Mopidy’s extension support, backends for new music sources can be easily added. IF you are looking for hackable private music streaming server or personal music server then it is for you.
Serviio is a free media server that can work as your private streaming server. It supports the streaming of music, video, or images on your connected home network. Apart from the free edition, it also has a pro edition with enhanced sharing possibilities. Serviio can work with Smart TVs, PPlayStation3, XBox 360, smartphones, tablets, and more. For different devices, it uses a particular profile in order to tune the maximum potential of that device’s potential or minimize lack of media format playback support (via transcoding).
As it based on Java technology which allows this music server to run on most platforms such Windows, Mac and Linux including NAS like embedded systems.
Dedicated Music server operating system
VortexBox -Dedicated Linux Music Server Distro
VortexBox is a Fedora-based Music Sever Linux distribution that can easily turn your computer into a music server or Jukebox. It can automatically rip CDs to FLAC and MP3 files, ID3-tag the files, and download the cover art.
To play music files served by the VortexBox you can use any network-based player like VLC; it means you can use it to stream songs on Windows, macOS, Linux, Android and iOS devices.
Daphile- Dedicated Headless Music Server
Daphile stands for Digital Music Convenience for Audiophiles which is a music server and player operating system meant to run as dedicated headless music server PC. It is based on open source Squeezebox Server, Squeezelite, and Linux.
The Daphile being a headless server which means not graphical user interface but that doesn’t mean it is complicated. After installing the Daphile you will get an IP address just open it in the browser and you totally control your music library from anywhere locally or over Internet remotely.
The Daphile Headless music server OS features Bitperfect and gapless playback, Extensive audio format support, Native DSD playback up to DSD512, PCM resolutions up to 384kHz/24bit, High-quality audio resampling including PCM to DSD conversion, Convolution filtering for DRC and equalizer, “Play from RAM” to minimize CPU load and disk activity during playback, Automatic audio device configuration with multiplayer support, CD ripping with AccurateRip verification, automatic metadata tagging, and cover art, Supports external file servers as a music source, Easy configuration and installation through the web interface, WiFi hotspot support (if compatible hardware exists), Software update via the web interface, Network-attached storage (NAS) service and last but not least Whole system included in just about 200MB ISO-file
Few other dedicated free music/ media server software and worth to try if you are a Windows/Linux user:
Icecast is an audio/video streaming media server that right now supports Ogg (Vorbis and Theora), Opus, WebM and MP3 streams. It can be used to create an Internet radio station or a privately running jukebox and many things in between.The Icecast support number clients for Windows, macOS and Linux/Unix some of them are liquidsoap
RoarAudio, butt (broadcast using this tool), Mixxx, Music Player Daemon (MPD), Traktor DJ Studio, Ices, DarkIce, DeeFuzzer, FreeJ, IceGenerator, Muse, Ezstream, Ladiocast macOS, Edcast reborn Windows, StreamS Live Encoder Windows, Cool Mic Android, KoalaSAN iOS, iCast iOS, ShoutVST and more…
Sockso – Personal Music Server
Sockso is a free, open-source, personal music host server that is really easy to setup for everyone. It is available for Windows, macOS, and Linux. If you do not want a high-end production music server and just basic need of streaming music or listen with your friends then Sockso can be used. IT is very simple to install just download and double-click on it. It supports MP3, OGG Vorbis, Flac, and WMA. Features GUI interface, Online flash music player, playlists, search, Download single tracks, or entire albums/artists or playlists and more capabilities.
Jinzora music server software allows streaming digital media through an internet connected computer, home stereo set or a hardware jukebox device.
Music Player Daemon
Music Player Daemon (MPD) is a server-side application for playing a variety of sound files through plugins and libraries and can be controlled by its network protocol.
So, these are some best available open source free audio streaming software those will definitely help you to create your own self-hosted music streaming server. However, its all depend on one’s requirement but the Plex, Emby and Subsonic/Madsonic are few ultimate solutions to create the whole package of entertainment. I didn’t try the dedicated music server Daphile but you can do because of it really an interesting one…
If you have any question or want any installation guide on music server software, let us know, the comment box is all your!!
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4 thoughts on “14 Best Open source and free Music Server Software”
Thanks for the article!
Sockso looks like it’s dead. The download links are all 404, and the last update I can see is from 2011.
Nice and comprehensive article.
I use Rapid RPlayer. It is a MP3 Player, Broadcaster and streamer all in one solution.
It is an alternative to Winamp, Edcast/Altacast or Butt and Icecast/Shoutcast
No third party apps required.
Download at http://srock.co.za/player.html
I have a Pinnacle Audio Folio Music Server which is used in our hospital chapel whose harddrive has failed. I have tried to get hold of the server software but Pinnacle Audio appears to be no more. The server is controlled using a Nokia N800-1 handheld device. Any suggestions on how to either get hold of the original server software or any server and client software I can use instead. Files are ripped from CD and then queue using the handheld for services.