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Rainwave Site and Radio Controller

Project README

Rainwave Radio Controller

This is the git project for the Rainwave website, https://rainwave.cc.

Rainwave is a system to control an external player such as MPD, or a streaming source such as Ices or LiquidSoap. It cannot play or stream audio by itself.

The software stack and data flow for broadcasting:

  • LiquidSoap asks Rainwave backend what song/MP3 file should be played
  • Rainwave backend replies with a song/MP3 file
  • LiquidSoap plays the song, encodes the stream, and sends the audio to Icecast
  • Icecast distributes audio to users
  • Icecast tells Rainwave API when users tune in/out

Rainwave only supports reading tags from MP3 files.


Authentication for Rainwave users is dependant on Discord.

  • Enable external auth by placing your app keys in the config file
  • If you're just running Rainwave for streaming audio, you do not need Discord.
  • If you are just testing/developing locally, you do not need Discord.

If using Icecast, Icecast 2.3.3 or above is required.

If using LiquidSoap, LiquidSoap 1.1 or above is required.

Prerequisites on Debian/Ubuntu

Rainwave is designed to run on Python 3.7 using pipenv. It also requires installation of various media libraries to run volume analysis on its files.

git clone https://github.com/rmcauley/rainwave.git
cd rainwave
sudo apt-get install pipenv libpq-dev python3.7-dev libmemcached-dev
sudo apt-get install gir1.2-gstreamer-1.0 \
     gstreamer1.0-plugins-base \
     gstreamer1.0-plugins-good \
     libcairo2-dev \
cp rainwave/etc/rainwave_reference.conf rainwave/etc/$USER.conf
pipenv install

Postgres Setup

sudo -u postgres createdb rainwave
sudo -u postgres psql -d rainwave -c "CREATE EXTENSION IF NOT EXISTS pg_trgm"

Configure Rainwave

Edit your configuration file in the Rainwave etc/, and follow the instructions within to setup your install. Please read through the entire config carefully. Some options are very important.


  • Until you're ready to deploy a production version, it's best to leave development mode on and keep Rainwave single-processed.
  • Do not create a station with ID 0 - ID 0 is reserved.

Potential gotcha:

If you start seeing "Peer authentication failed" messages when running Rainwave, you may have to edit your pg_hba.conf after this if you get errors trying to connect. The pg_hba.conf is usually located at /etc/postgresql/[VERSION]/main/pg_hba.conf. If you're running this all on the same machine, add this line to the file:

local    [DATABASE NAME]     [DATABASE USER]         md5

Adding Music to your Rainwave Library

Locate the "song_dir" entry from your configuration file and copy/paste your music library to this directory.

  • Your MP3 tags must be accurate. Rainwave reads the tags to obtain track information, which is necessary to manage song rotation.
  • Upload a minimum of 1,000 songs. Rainwave requires a minimal library of this size to operate correctly.
  • Place albums in separate directories if using album art. To add album art, create a file named "folder.jpg" and place it in each album directory for it to appear. (sorry, embedded album art is not supported)
  • Rainwave and LiquidSoap support unicode MP3 tags, but do not support unicode filenames. Please rename files that contain accents and symbols. Rainwave will reject and skip files that contain accents or symbols.

First Start and Test

Open a terminal/command line to your Rainwave repository directory. You need to initialize the database and then add your songs to the database:

python db_init.py

Now have Rainwave pick up the music you added to your song_dirs:

python rw_scanner.py --full

This will run a full scan of your song_dirs. To monitor song_dirs continuously without using CPU, run rw_scanner.py without the --full switch.

Once done, open another terminal/command line and start the music management backend that LiquidSoap talks to:

python rw_backend.py

Once that is started successfully, open another terminal/command line and start the public-facing website and API:

python rw_api.py

Now use the same tool LiquidSoap uses to test that everything works:

python rw_get_next.py

If successful, you should see a song file name as output.

Open the beta URL at /beta/?sid=1 to see your Rainwave.

If you are not running against an installed phpBB and want to emulate being logged in, open /api4/test/login_tuned_in/1.

Deploying to Production

Installing a Production Rainwave

Before running install.py:

Copy your Rainwave configuration file to /etc/rainwave.conf and tune for production. e.g. Turn off development modes, turn down logging, increase number of processes to the number of CPUs you have.

Init scripts are included for systemd but are not installed for you by default.

install.py will attempt to automatically run /etc/init.d/rainwave with start and stop arguments if the script exists.

sudo python install.py when ready, and Rainwave will be copied to /opt/rainwave, and will minify and bundle Javascript to be put into the "baked" static directory.

Rainwave depends on three daemons:

  • rw_backend.py to act for LiquidSoap
  • rw_api.py to act for browsers
  • rw_scanner.py which monitors the filesystem for new/changed songs

Updating a Running Rainwave

During installation, Rainwave has no safety mechanisms or rolling restarts. Rainwave will appear to be shutdown for a few seconds to the outside world while installing/updating. If the restart fails, Rainwave will be offline. (GitHub Issue)

Icecast and Listener Tune In/Out Recognition

For user tune in recognition to work, you have to use Icecast's user authentication system. Sample Icecast configurations are included in Rainwave's etc/ directory.

LiquidSoap Configuration

A sample LiquidSoap configuration is included in etc/.

Developing The Front-End

To edit the site:

  • Using Visual Studio Code is recommended
  • Install the Python and Prettier extensions for VSCode.
  • Set "RW_ENVIRONMENT" environment variable to "develop"

File locations:

  • HTML files for the index and admin panels can be found in templates/.
  • HTML templates for the main site can be found in static/templates5/.
  • CSS files are in static/style5 and the entry point is r5.scss.
  • Image files are in static/images4.
  • JS files are in static/js5:
    • Execution starts from main.js.
    • No libraries or frameworks are used

Rainwave rebuilds CSS on each page load of /beta when development mode is on, and /beta serves the Javascript without minification or bundling. No need for npm, package managers, or watchers.


You can get help for deployment and development through the main developer, Rob, on the Rainwave discord:

Open Source Agenda is not affiliated with "Rainwave" Project. README Source: rmcauley/rainwave
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