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I have created a virtual machine for virtualbox for the participants of my training session Interactive experiments in sound synthesis with Nsound, numpy and matplotlib at EuroPython 2014 in Berlin. It provides a ready to run Manjaro Linux System with an XFCE desktop and all the software necessary to follow the course.

Update (2014-07-22): if you already are at EuroPython and downloading the virtual machine appliance is too slow, please contact me via email (see below) or on Twitter (@TheUnifaun) and we’ll meet and I’ll transfer the file to you via USB stick or SD card.

Here are the instructions on how to get your environment for the training session up and running. These instructions should work regardless of whether you use Windows, OS X or Linux:

  1. Download and install Virtualbox or use your distribution’s package manager to install it.
  2. Download the virtual machine appliance I created. The size of the download is about 1.6 Gb.
  3. Start virtualbox and select “File > Import appliance” from the menu. Select the file “Manjaro XFCE Minimal i686 EP2014.ova” from the location to where you downloaded it and follow the prompts to create a virtual machine. You will need about 4.1 Gb disk space for the new VM.
  4. Start the virtual machine and wait until the login manager has loaded.
  5. Log in with user soundxp (display name = Euro Python) and password ep2014.
  6. Open a terminal window by clicking the second icon from the left on the panel at the bottom of the screen.
  7. Type workon soundxp (Enter)  to activate the Python virtual environment for the course. You working directory will now be ~/work/soundxp and the shell prompt should be prefixed with (soundxp).
  8. Type aplay audio/danceloop.wav (Enter) to verify that sound output works.
  9. Start the interactive IPython shell by typing ipython -i startup.py (Enter). This will display some information about your Python and IPython version and some warning messages from the ALSA sound system and then wait for input at the prompt In[1]: . The ALSA messages can be ignored, but make sure the Python version is 2.7.8.
  10. Type /pl mynameis (Enter) to test sound output from Python and you should hear a voice say “My name is Nick Hilton and I started Nsound”. This may display some messages about buffer underruns or the sound may crackle. We will discuss how to optimize sound output during the course.
That’s it! Feel free to experiment with the VM  and if you have any trouble, please contact me at chris -at- chrisarndt -dot- de or seek me out during the conference (I will be there from Tuesday). And please remember to bring some headphones (and of course your laptop) to the training session!

See you soon at EuroPython in Berlin!