Installing Winamp for your
Windows or Linux PC in 2020!
Winamp...it really Whips the Llama's Ass!
That odd phrase was heard by an entire generation of MP3/OGG/WAV/FLAC
(choose your preferred music file) users in the late 1990s and early
2000s. Winamp is still considered by many (including myself) to be the
best online music player ever created is still available for your
convenience to use on both Windows and Linux! But whatever happened to
Winamp? Well, it is still kicking in a variety of formats and ways, so
you can still listen to your music with that lightweight and easy to use
UI. I view Winamp as one of the prime ways to take back your media from
big corporations. After all, you bought all of those CDs! And those MP3s
from Amazon and Bandcamp and Traxsource. Time to make your own playlists
and load them up and jam like it is 1998! Here's the major versions of
Winamp and Winamp-identical music players in the new millennium.
Winamp 5.8 (NOT recommended!)
Winamp is currently owned by Radionomy, a company that aside from
releasing one version with virtually no changes two years ago for
Windows 10 entitled Winamp 5.8, has left the software to rot and
remains closed-source. The main developers of Winamp keep a cursory
amount of support because they bought the company for popular online
radio service Shoutcast. It's serviceable as a program still in 2020,
but not the best you can do. You can download it here: Winamp
Winamp Community Update Project
This project by former Winamp Developer Darren Owen (aka Dr. O) has
allowed for great strides to be made in the original Winamp codebase.
Dr. O has taken it upon himself at https://getwacup.com
to let individuals use a more updated version of Winamp in 2020. It's
still a work in progress, but runs much better than Winamp 5.8,
despite missing a few features like being able to rip CDs.Dr.
O's WACUP comes with a bunch of really good plugins like Album Art,
updated sound processing, and quite a few extra perks for any longtime
Winamp fan. WACUP and Winamp both don't play well in WINE, and never
got a Linux version of the program, so Linux users may be frustrated
with some of the quirks of difficulty dragging screens or having
Winamp in the notification tray when using Wine with Chicago95 in
Linux. So there is the next option for Linux users...
Audacious is the Free and Open Source version of Winamp
classic for Linux and Windows. It has support for a variety of Winamp
themes, and the UI looks just like Winamp classic. However, many of the other features of Winamp, such as
custom themes and plugins aren't supported and some of the UI doesn't quite jive with
the whole program (for example, the Album Art display feature). But for the most part,
it pretty much looks and feels just like Winamp on the UI side, and
that's pretty cool for the long-term health of Winamp really. You can download it in many Linux distributions using
neat project from the Internet Archive has created
great free and public domain music hosted on the Web Archive in a
player that looks just like Winamp!
Unfortunately, Winamp is only for the desktop, not for mobile phones
where we do most of our listening on. An Android app that syncs with
Winamp was developed early on in the Android lifespan and has not been
updated in years. It won't run in Android 10. Your best options for
something similar to Winamp for Android (which was itself quite a good
music player) is the VLC app. While not perfect, it's free and open
source, so you know your privacy is trusted.
What's Winamp without some really cool skins? Check out any of these links for some ones I think are way cool for school. You can find a bunch of old ones on the internet archive as well.
Next Up: Using IRC to talk to
friends (and strangers!)