Installing Amarok on Arch Linux

I have always liked Amarok, the (initially) default KDE media player. It’s very feature-rich, nothing compared to Elisa. Moreover, it has two crucial features that I haven’t found in any other players:

  • it saves statistics (play count and stars) directly into the music file
  • it synchronizes statistics with iPod

Unfortunately, while still maintained, you won’t find pre-built packages in mainstream distributions (e.g., Ubuntu). Thus, you must install that from sources, which is problematic. However, for Arch Linux, there’s an AUR package, which takes care of the compilation and, most of all, its dependencies.

In this blog post, I’ll summarize the steps for installing Amarok to access iPods (I still have an iPod classic).

First, you need to install the Phonon backend required by Amarok:

If you want to use Amarok with an iPod, you must first install

IMPORTANT: the iPod library (this must be present when Amarok is compiled from sources; if you forget about that, you’ll need to recompile Amarok, e.g., by specifying “–rebuild” as a command line argument to the AUR helper):

Then, we’re ready to install (i.e., compile from sources) Amarok from the AUR repository (I’m using the “yay” AUR helper here, but if you use another one, use your preferred one):

Now be patient: it will take several minutes for the compilation to finish (about 20 minutes on a decent machine)!

If you’re on KDE, you can now enjoy Amarok.

If you’re on GNOME, there’s still something to fix. In particular, you’ll see Amarok lacks lots of icons:

You need to install Breeze icons:

And now you can also enjoy icons:

Concerning the iPod: first, you have to mount it, and then you start Amarok so that Amarok can see the mounted iPod.

Enjoy your music! 🙂

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