Wednesday, September 06, 2006

How to watch the Mighty Reds on the Internet with English Commentary!

Thanks a billion Mark (McGrath) for sending this in mate, its handy for expats and anyone else who aint got access to live coverage of our games.

Stuck/living in a very (c; foreign country and want to watch the mighty Reds almost as if you were back at home? Found the `chinese'method for watching the images but can't under / stand the commentary?

Well this post is for you!

What you need:

1.) A decent internet connection, but if you have 2.) this is a given!
2.) Your favorite `chinese' method to watch the football
3.) Realplayer, or other internet radio listening tool! But what
folllows is relevant to realplayer.
4.) List of UK based proxy servers
5.) BBC radio 5live for the english commentary, through the proxy server

+ a web browser, I will be using firefox and all info is relevant to it!

Obviously the most difficult is 4 & 5.) As the rest comes as standard
on an winXP box!

What I do:

1.) Get the chinese method working so I can at least see the game!
2.) Mute the sound as I can't under / stand it!
3.) Find a list of UK based (very important!) proxy servers. Proxy
servers are usually used to mask your identity and/or location when
browsing! But now we actually want the BBC website to think we are in
the UK!

I'm not going to give you my list of servers because unlike the chinese images system the more use the proxy server has the more the quality of service degrades! Google will be able to help you with a very extensive list of servers! This step can take a while as you may have to try several before you find one that works! During the WC2006, initially I had to try 20 servers/ip addresses! And also note that
just because your source says that the server is in the UK does not actually mean that it is there! A tool called traceroute will be able to confirm.

When you have these you will have a list like which is an ip address and may include a port number! or 8000 or 8080

When you have these, write / print them down!

4.) Now fireup firefox. Go to Tools -> Options -> General

press Connection Settings at the bottom! Normally you will have Direct connection selected! Change this to Manual proxy configuration.

5.) Enter in the ip address you have from step 3.) and the port if there is one and also select Use for all protocols!

6.) Go to website and select listen live! If you fail to connect to the internet, check the numbers in 4.) again, if they are correct then it is a dud/bad server! Forget it move on to the next one on your list and repeat 5.) When it works the connection will appear slow as you are going to the proxy server first.

7.) This is the first step, you are now connected through a server but does the BBC website think you are in the UK? During a premier match of football if the server thinks you are in the UK you will hear the BBC commentary. If not you will hear some stuff about contract obligations in a loop! If this is the case go back to step 5.) and try the next number on your list. When you get the cometary, enjoy. Please
note that you may have to try anywhere up to 20 or 30 ip addresses to achieve success.

Now you can stop here and enjoy! But I like to surf a little in the meantime if things are slow during a game. But as I am passing through the proxy server my browsing will be v e r y v e r y s l o w! So I usually: Listen using stand-alone Real Player option at the bottom of the BBC Radio Player window.

Notice that the link is called surestream.ram and not surestream_int.ram if you had not come through a proxy (int for international!)

8.) Trying to listen to the link in RealPlayer may fail because you need to set up the proxy server in RealPlayer too. In relplayer go to Tools -> Preferences -> Connection -> Proxy Then select Change settings. In the HTTP Proxy panel select Use Proxy and insert ip address and port from step 5.) Then try and play the station again. Just press play! You have english commentary on the game!

9.) Now wait for some significant point in the english commentary e.g. a corner then pause the player. Now watch the chinese images and when the images catch up with the sound (this can take up to 1min30) you remember in your head, press play

10.) Now, images and english and commentary! Wayhey!!!!!!

Bonus advice!

It usually a good idea to add the radio station to your favourites. The .ram file changes occasionally so you will have to repeat this process of downloading/adding to favourites of the .ram file!

Large numbers of connection to a given proxy server will degrade the service!

The proxy servers will change more frequently and will obviously have to be updated when they fail. Failures are usually terminal so forget it for the future.

Don't forget about Radio Five Live Sports Extra for busy sports days. Once you get steps 6 & 7.) working then the sky is the limit! And pretty I'm sure this method will work around for other internet radio languages too! Its not exclusive to english!

Please note that if you are already using a proxy server then I'm not sure how this method will work for you. You may have to look into port tunnelling etc at the base PC level!

Mark McGrath


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Where do you go for live video over the web?It would really come in handy this a link if you could.thanks

Thats alot of work to get English commentary.Assuming you have e-season ticket at the offical website you can listen to it live over there.I'm just curious whats the delay from audio to video.Games in the U.S. are delayed a few minutes compared to the audio on the website.


Anonymous marcu said...

I use SopCast for the chinese video others use pplive. Its basically P2P for video instead of file sharing: the more people watching the better the quality!

During the last world cup my delay was about 90 seconds between sound on BBC radio 5 live (which is closer to live than what the bbc had for their HDTV cover) and chinese CCTV5 for images via sopcast.

It might be a lot of work but some of us can't afford the subscriptions fees necessary for the e-season tickets! The method described is free: if you exclude the hardware and access costs to the internet, which could be free as free Wi-Fi is more more prevelent! Its even possible to get free hacked winXp licences if you need to! Sopcast does in fact run on linux anywaz which has been free since the begining!

Maybe your time is worth more than mine! But for me its the prinicple!


Anonymous Anonymous said...

point taken I understand it's free,but c'mon it does'nt cost you an arm and a leg to get an e-season ticket it's very affordable.Support LFC they need to start saving for a new

Annual = £44.99 per year.
Monthly = £4.99 per month.

thanks again for the links


Anonymous marcu said...

you're right thats not too bad! I was under the imporession it was worse than that! But there are students out there who live on pea sandwiches ...

And what about the cricket and rugby? I dont think the LFC e-season ticket helps, does it? (c;

All the george, marcu


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