I recently purchased a linux VPS from http://slicehost.com just to learn and play around with.

I currently ssh into the machine via Putty from various Windows boxes.

Is there anyway to throw some mp3s on the remote server and then have them play locally?

Server is currently running Ubuntu Server 10.04.1.


Well, as others have mentioned, there are these music servers that you can use.

If you want to do it over ssh, you can mount your VPS using sshfs and then access the mp3's there from a music player. I've used sshfs quite a lot with Linux, but apparently it exists also for windows here: http://dokan-dev.net/en/download/


If you were logging in from another *nix box I guess you could do something like:

ssh <myserver> 'cat <path to file>' | mpg123

Since you're using PuTTY I'm not sure how you would accomplish something similar. You could either set up sshfs (mounted remote filesystem over ssh) - there are Windows clients (Dokan I think). You could also have a tunnel, remote webserver serving only local and using SOCKS on your client, but that all sounds far too complicated for what you want to do.

  • Or the opposite way, from the remote computer : cat <path to file> | ssh <myclient> play -. – Skippy le Grand Gourou Mar 9 '16 at 13:59
  • Also, you can switch play - or mpg123 by any command line sound reader installed on the client, as long as it's able to understand the input sound format — which you can change using e.g. sox instead of cat. – Skippy le Grand Gourou Mar 9 '16 at 14:01

For raw files you will need network file system access. That is not easy to do over ssh.

What you CAN do is to have a music server - like icecast or shoutcast - running on your slice, and then use the tunnel facility of ssh to forward a local port on your machine to the remote port your server is running on on the slice.

You can then take any compatible client and point it to the local port and it should start playing.


Yes you can play music from a remote server to your local server. But, not via SSH. SSH just gives you access to the box with which you can install other software to do that and to upload files and so forth. The streaming & playing of media locally needs to be done by other software.

Have a look at this link. It lists a bunch of streaming media servers, most of them open source and should work on your slicehost VPS.


  • How is up/downloading different to streaming? I'm doing it using sshfs, so I'm sure it's doable. ;-) – Sebastian May 13 '11 at 6:35
  • Its a different connection type! streaming connection remains open, and works in a server/client model. – IanVaughan Jun 27 '11 at 12:46

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