Protocols in liquidsoap are used to resolve requests URIs. The syntax is: protocol:arguments, for instance:, say:Something to say etc.

Most protocols are written using the script language. You can look at the file protocols.liq for a list of them.

In particular, the process: protocol can use an external command to prepare resolve a request. Here’s an example using the AWS command-line to download a file from S3:

def s3_protocol(~rlog,~maxtime,arg) =
  extname = file.extension(leading_dot=false,dir_sep="/",arg)
  [process_uri(extname=extname,"aws s3 cp s3:#{arg} $(output)")]
add_protocol("s3",s3_protocol,doc="Fetch files from s3 using the AWS CLI",

Each protocol needs to register a handler, here the s3_protocol function. This function takes the protocol arguments and returns a list of new requests or files. Liquidsoap will then call this function, collect the returned list and keep resolving requests from the list until it finds a suitable file.

This makes it possible to create your own custom resolution chain, including for instance cue-points. Here’s an example:

def cue_protocol(~rlog,~maxtime,arg) =
  [process_uri(extname="wav",uri=uri,"ffmpeg -y -i $(input) -af -ss 10 -t 30 $(output)")]

This protocol returns 30s of data from the input file, stating at the 10s mark.

Likewise, you can apply a normalization program:

def normalization_protocol(~rlog,~maxtime,arg) =
  # "normalize" command here is just an example..
  [process_uri(extname="wav",uri=arg,"normalize $(inpuit)")]

Now, you can push requests of the form:


and the file will be cut and normalized before being played by liquidsoap.

When defining custom protocols, you should pay attention to two variables:

  • rlog is the logging function. Messages passed to this function will be registered with the request and can be used to debug any issue
  • maxtime is the maximum time (in UNIX epoch) that the requests should run. After that time, it should return and be considered timed out. You may want to read from protocols.liq to see how to enforce this when calling external processes.