UPnP clients

UPnP is a set of specifications for media sharing, playing, remote control, etc, across a home network. The specs are supported by a lot of consumer devices (like smartphones, TVs, Xbox, and PlayStation) that are often labeled as being DLNA compatible or certified.

The DLNA guidelines and UPnP specifications defines several device roles, of which Mopidy may play two:

DLNA Digital Media Server (DMS) / UPnP AV MediaServer:

A MediaServer provides a library of media and is capable of streaming that media to a MediaRenderer. If Mopidy was a MediaServer, you could browse and play Mopidy’s music on a TV, smartphone, or tablet supporting UPnP. Mopidy does not currently support this, but we may in the future. #52 is the relevant wishlist issue.

DLNA Digital Media Renderer (DMR) / UPnP AV MediaRenderer:

A MediaRenderer is asked by some remote controller to play some given media, typically served by a MediaServer. If Mopidy was a MediaRenderer, you could use e.g. your smartphone or tablet to make Mopidy play media. Mopidy does already have experimental support for being a MediaRenderer, as you can read more about below.

Mopidy as an UPnP MediaRenderer

There are two ways Mopidy can be made available as an UPnP MediaRenderer: Using Mopidy-MPRIS and Rygel, or using Mopidy-MPD and upmpdcli.

upmpdcli

upmpdcli is recommended, since it is easier to setup, and offers OpenHome compatibility. upmpdcli exposes a UPnP MediaRenderer to the network, while using the MPD protocol to control Mopidy.

  1. Install upmpdcli. On Debian/Ubuntu:

    apt-get install upmpdcli
    

    Alternatively, follow the instructions from the upmpdcli website.

  2. The default settings of upmpdcli will work with the default settings of Mopidy-MPD. Edit /etc/upmpdcli.conf if you want to use different ports, hosts, or other settings.

  3. Start upmpdcli using the command:

    upmpdcli
    

    Or, run it in the background as a service:

    sudo service upmpdcli start
    
  4. A UPnP renderer should be available now.

Rygel

With the help of the Rygel project Mopidy can be made available as an UPnP MediaRenderer. Rygel will interface with the MPRIS interface provided by the Mopidy-MPRIS extension, and make Mopidy available as a MediaRenderer on the local network. Since this depends on the MPRIS frontend, which again depends on D-Bus being available, this will only work on Linux, and not OS X. MPRIS/D-Bus is only available to other applications on the same host, so Rygel must be running on the same machine as Mopidy.

  1. Start Mopidy and make sure the MPRIS frontend is working. It is activated by default when the Mopidy-MPRIS extension is installed, but you may miss dependencies or be using OS X, in which case it will not work. Check the console output when Mopidy is started for any errors related to the MPRIS frontend. If you’re unsure it is working, there are instructions for how to test it in the Mopidy-MPRIS readme.

  2. Install Rygel. On Debian/Ubuntu:

    sudo apt-get install rygel
    
  3. Enable Rygel’s MPRIS plugin. On Debian/Ubuntu, edit /etc/rygel.conf, find the [MPRIS] section, and change enabled=false to enabled=true.

  4. Start Rygel by running:

    rygel
    

    Example output:

    $ rygel
    Rygel-Message: New plugin 'MediaExport' available
    Rygel-Message: New plugin 'org.mpris.MediaPlayer2.mopidy' available
    

    In the above example, you can see that Rygel found Mopidy, and it is now making Mopidy available through Rygel.

The UPnP-Inspector client

UPnP-Inspector is a graphical analyzer and debugging tool for UPnP services. It will detect any UPnP devices on your network, and show these in a tree structure. This is not a tool for your everyday music listening while relaxing on the couch, but it may be of use for testing that your setup works correctly.

  1. Install UPnP-Inspector. On Debian/Ubuntu:

    sudo apt-get install upnp-inspector
    
  2. Run it:

    upnp-inspector
    
  3. Assuming that Mopidy is running with a working MPRIS frontend, and that Rygel is running on the same machine, Mopidy should now appear in UPnP-Inspector’s device list.

  4. If you expand the tree item saying Mopidy (MediaRenderer:2) or similiar, and then the sub element named AVTransport:2 or similar, you’ll find a list of commands you can invoke. E.g. if you double-click the Pause command, you’ll get a new window where you can press an Invoke button, and then Mopidy should be paused.

Note that if you have a firewall on the host running Mopidy and Rygel, and you want this to be exposed to the rest of your local network, you need to open up your firewall for UPnP traffic. UPnP use UDP port 1900 as well as some dynamically assigned ports. I’ve only verified that this procedure works across the network by temporarily disabling the firewall on the the two hosts involved, so I’ll leave any firewall configuration as an exercise to the reader.

Other clients

For a long list of UPnP clients for all possible platforms, see Wikipedia’s List of UPnP AV media servers and clients.