studying my hobby


Shairport: Debian as Airtunes Server

(2 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)

Recently some friends and me were talking about streaming music from iTunes to my dockstar with an usb sound device connected.
I knew there is a solution, so I started some research an found shairport at The project looks quite interesting and I tried to set everything up that I am able to play my music remotely.

First there are some dependencies you need to install:

apt-get install build-essential libssl-dev libcrypt-openssl-rsa-perl libao-dev libio-socket-inet6-perl libwww-perl avahi-utils pkg-config

Now all you need to do is download the sources, make and install them:
Get the sources at

Untar them and navigate into the extracted directory. Now start make:


If this is done, test it:


You should be able to select the shairport server in iTunes. If you now play music it should stream to your dockstar.

If you want to install shairport as a service type:

make install
cp shairport.init.sample /etc/init.d/shairport
insserv shairport
/etc/init.d/shairport start
  • Steli


    great tutorial as always. Does the Server show up in iOS devices as well?

    • shyd

      thanks for your comment!
      I can’t tell you, because I don’t have an iOS device.

  • Steli

    Would be great if you’ve had a friend come over and test it out. I could sell my appleTV then… :)

    • shyd

      We will try within next week! Then I will report back.

    • shyd

      I couldn’t test it so far, just Android devices around me
      Why don’t you give it a try?
      [edit] if I take a look at some issues at github it seems to work with an iPhone.

  • la_tristesse

    Do you know forked-daapd. It’s basically a itunes server emulation which can be controled from your ios-device. I’m would really love to see a tutorial for that. I’ve tried to compile for myself but failed.

    • shyd

      You can simply install it with apt-get install forked-daapd

  • Steli

    FYI. It works from all iOS and itunes devices. Shairport 0.05, Terratec Aureon Dual USB with optical connection. No crackles, no underruns :)

    • shyd

      Thanks for the info! Nice to hear it works as expected

  • Mikle

    I’ve got as far as unpacking the compressed files but I can’t work out how to compile the files with the sudo make. I’m fairly new to linux so any help would be really appreciated, thanks!

    • shyd

      Can you provide more detailed informations, e.g. error messages? What distro are you using?

  • Tien Nhan


    Just wonder what sort of usb connected device that you use ?

    • shyd

      I think you mean the sounddevice?
      It works with Speedlink VIGO USB Soundkarte
      Now I am using the optical output of an older Creative Soundblaster live! 24-bit external.

  • Chris

    Did you actually get this working properly? Seems everyone Ive found who’s done this on a dockstar gets tons of missing frame / underrun errors / static during playback.

    • shyd

      Hmm, I was just testing around with it, can’t remember any errors.

  • Stefan

    Very nice. After also setting up the sound module and alsa on raspberry pi it worked perfectly!

    • Mathias

      How did you do this?

      • imseamless

        set output to hdmi:
        sudo amixer cset numid=3 0

        set output to analog:
        sudo amixer cset numid=3 1

  • Hey,

    “insserv shairport” does exactly what it should, but shairport doesn’t start after boot. Any ideas?

    • shyd

      what does chkconfig –list | grep $(runlevel | awk ‘{ print $2}’):on say about shairport?
      If it looks good, do you get any errors on /etc/init.d/shairport start?

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  • DeAuthThis

    I’m in love with this thing! Ever since I purchased a car stereo that supported this I’ve been in love with it.. I’m installing it on routers, pcs, etc… and just having a ball!

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