So, here’s how it went down:
Since I have an older craptop, I have all the drivers to run Windows 98SE. Windows 9x is great for embedded applications like this. I remember from when I was scheming to build a MAME cabinet with nice arcade controls wired up to a disassembled keyboard. I saw a link on someone’s project page to DWJukebox. I thought it was pretty neat. A recent episode of Systm made me remember MAME and all the cool hackery people have done around it. Anyhoo, Friday evening boredom led to this project.
Here was the plan:
- Install Windows 98SE
- Install all required drivers
- Map a drive to network share containing mp3’s
- Install and configure DWJukebox
- Replace explorer.exe with “C:\path\to\wincab.exe” in the shell= line of C:\windows\system.ini
DWJukebox should now be the only thing running when the computer is turned on. Brilliantly simple! In theory…
Since nothing works as well as originally planned, I had a few snags.
Installing the OS and drivers and mapping network drive all worked perfectly.
Wincab failed to load. It could not initialize digital sound driver or something… I’ve had issues with sound cards before, so one of the first things I tried was reducing the hardware acceleration of the sound card. I adjusted it one increment at a time, and it only works on the no acceleration setting. So, finally, Wincab.exe worked pretty well until I tried to set it as the shell.
It failed with a message about it not finding jbdefptr.ptr. I had been cruising around the support forums for DWJukebox and many posts had portions of jbdebug.log attached, so I enabled logging, but it didn’t put the jbdebug.log in the program folder like I expected, it put it in the root of the C:\ drive!
Since this is a dedicated computer that I’m not going to be using for anything else, I just moved DWJukebox to the root of the C:\ drive, updated the C:\windows\system.ini and rebooted.
It’s ALIVE! Er… well, it boots into DWJukebox and plays mp3’s from a network share.