Monday, 22 June 2009

Minirok 2.0 - Minimalist Audio Player for KDE4

Introduction
Written in Python, Minirok is a minimalist audio player which ships with a simple and intuitive interface, which kind of resembles the Amarok 1.4 interface, except all the major features were removed.

The latest version was released on June 1st, and it is the first release for KDE4. If you want the KDE3 version (although it is rather poor when it comes to features), you can download and install release 0.9.2 from the official homepage.

What does it do?
First of all, it plays music. Minirok is very lightweight when it comes to resources and if you need a simple player with basic features for KDE4 you're tired of Amarok or JuK, then probably it's time to give Minirok a try.

Minirok can't compete with a player like Amarok in terms of features, but it definitely is a good player for its category of small, fast and non resource-hungry applications.

Minirok 2.0 - clean and simple
The playlist is simple, resembling the one from Amarok 1.4, and you can choose which fields are to be shown and which not. Available fields are Track, Artist, Album, Title and Length. At the moment Minirok does not provide a way of sorting or saving the playlist, but the last playlist used is loaded automatically when Minirok is restarted.

It even supports Last.fm song submission, but you will need to install and configure lastfmsubmitd, a daemon which runs in the background and can be used by other players too (like MOC for example, which I reviewed here).

Minirok supports global keybindings, it allows songs queuing, random mode, repeat track or playlist, stop playing after a certain track. This release is still the first one in the 2.x series, so several features are still missing. For example the Configure Toolbars dialogue is empty, while adding music is done only via keyboard, by typing the path to the music directory in the drop-down text box on the left.

Update: There was a problem with the play/pause and stop buttons, which were not visible in the environment in which I tried Minirok, Kubuntu 9.04 with KDE 4.2 and all the updates to date. I'll come back with more info on this as soon as I get to try it again. (Thanks go to Adeodato Simó, the Minirok author, for pointing this out for me)

Configuring Minirok

Installation
You should be able to run Minirok easily. After downloading the minirok-2.0.tar.gz package from the homepage, uncompress it and run the minirok.py script, which is already executable. On Ubuntu for example, you may need to install two packages, python-mutagen and python-gst0.10:

sudo apt-get install python-mutagen python-gst0.10

With your user password. Then run python.py by either double-clicking on it or in a Konsole using:

./python.py

Conclusion
If you only want to listen to music and you don't care about advanced features, then give Minirok a try. It's definitely not bloated, it ships with a clean interface integrated into KDE4 and provides the minimum options needed to manipulate the playlist.

7 comments:

Adeodato Simó said...

Hello, I'm the author of Minirok, thanks a lot for your review.

As can be seen in the screenshots in the Minirok homepage, there is of course a toolbar with buttons for the play/pause/stop/etc. actions!

The fact that it's not showing for you, and that the configure toolbars dialog is empty, signals some kind of problem in your instalation.

Can you check whether the minirokui.rc file has been installed in /usr/share/kde4/apps/minirok/minirokui.rc or equivalent?

Please feel free to mail me with further details.

Craciun Dan said...

Hi!

Well I looked on the screenshots on the homepage before making the review and saw that the buttons were there, however they were not displayed when running Minirok.

I'll check it out as soon as I can (I'm on a Debian Lenny box right now) and will come with feedback.

Thanks for the correction, and I'll try to see what went wrong that the buttons were not visible. I ran Minirok as explained in the article on Kubuntu 9.04 with all the updates to date.

In the meantime, I think I'll modify the article accordingly, so it doesn't reflect a misfeature.

libervisco said...

I just installed minirok from here: http://chistera.yi.org/%7Eadeodato/code/minirok/files/packages/minirok_2.0-1_all.deb

and it crashes as soon as I try to open a folder.

Here is the console output, the last two lines are from the crash:

AttributeError: 'module' object has no attribute 'Element'
KCrash: Application 'minirok' crashing...
sock_file=/home/daniel/.kde/socket-memenode/kdeinit4__0


Looks like a cool program though, Amarok just feels too heavy.

wvmac said...

Minirok runs great on Fedora 11. It just doesn't show the icon in the task bar. Besides that, it is a nice player for kde4.

When I ran it from minirok.py it did not show the tool bar buttons, but once I installed it they appeared.

Thanks for the nice app and thanks to tuxarena for bringing attention to it.

pvandewyngaerde said...

minirok in dutch means miniskirt

Anonymous said...

I like the feel of minirok, and it seems to work well. One issue -- it pegs the processor running the python script @ 100% while playing. (Minirok 2.0).

Anyone else have this problem?

Anonymous said...

I installed Minirok 2.0 on Arch repository which moves the files from the tar to /opt/minirok. However, the icons and styles aren't showing up. Any help is appreciated.