Howto: Install cplay for the XO

When the Sonata package for Sugar failed to behave like I expected, I knew I was going to have to roll up my sleeves to get a basic, ogg-friendly audio player in place for my little XO.

And since I don’t really want anything fancy, and don’t need any wacky music-management suites just to play a few tunes off a USB drive, I turned to cplay to get the job done – low profile, low maintenance and high-performance no matter what the hardware.

cplay isn’t in Sugar’s default repositories, and rather than tapdance around the issue, I decided to compile it from scratch. That turned out to be the best idea yet, since compiling it, even on the Geode, took only seconds. Here’s how to do it.

First, you need two things from Sugar’s repositories: vorbis-tools, which will give you the ogg123 command-line player, and make, for the dirty work. First open a Terminal Activity, then switch to superuser.


Now install those tools from the repositories. Needless to say, you’ll want to be connected to the Internet for this step.

yum install make
yum install vorbis-tools

That was the hard part. Now download the source code for version 1.49 of cplay.


Decompress that file into a directory with this command

tar -xvzf cplay-1.49.tar.gz

Move into the directory that it created.

cd cplay-1.49

Now make.


Now install.

make install

Done. See? I told you it was easy. Installing it puts it at /usr/local/bin/cplay, which is a little awkward since the path for the default terminal account doesn’t include that in $PATH. You can change that variable manually to include it, or set up an alias for the program in your bash profile … whichever seems easier.

Start up cplay, and if you like, create a symbolic link from your home directory to the /media folder, which saves a step when adding songs to the playlist. If you need a primer on how to use cplay, you can get one here.

And once again … CONSOLE PROGRAMS FTW! 🙂

3 thoughts on “Howto: Install cplay for the XO

  1. n2j3

    I second your “CONSOLE PROGRAMS FTW!”. On the subject of mp3/ogg players, ever tried ? It’s console-based, themed (!), and ships with audioscrobbler support too (if you’re into that sort of thing). Not sure on whether it would work on the XO though.

  2. K.Mandla Post author

    Thanks, I shall have to try those. I remember MOC from a long time ago, but never tried it. Herrie is definitely new to me. 😀


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