This is an alternative search page for BBC iPlayer programmes, BBC podcasts, and BBC Live Streams. It automatically generates playlists for podcasts, radio and live radio so that media players such as VLC can be used to automatically open the streams. By clicking the programme description a detailed page of the programme meta-data together with some of the international/UK-only available stream URLs. It is based on a mashed-up version of the now-unmaintained get_iplayer Web PVR Manager. Some user’s said they liked to use the Web PVR Manager as an iPlayer search portal so I decided to host one for you. This is a ***beta*** service so don’t expect wonders!
What it Does Not Do
- Stream anything from linuxcentre.net. All streams are direct from the BBC
- It does not provide any means to record programmes except podcasts.
- The UK-only stream URLs will not stream outside of the UK as they are GeoIP locked by the BBC. Just select the ‘Use International Streams’ option to get streams that are available worldwide.
I’ve only tested with Firefox 3.5. Ensure you have any ‘NoScript’ type plug-ins disabled). It does not work correctly in IE6/7/8/9 but let me know if there are any fixes/patches that you can suggest…
To get the streaming to work as intended you will need to install VLC Media Player (you should associate m3u playlists with VLC in your browser for immediate playback).
System requirements are very minimal however, if you want to watch BBC iPlayer TV programmes you will need a powerful system due to infeasibly inefficient video playback using abobe flash.
Using iPlayer Search
There are several different action buttons along the top and bottom of the search results:
- Play – select the checkbox next to the podcast programme(s) you want to playback and click this to download an m3u playlist (you should associate m3u playlists with VLC in your browser for immediate playback).
- You can play back the programme using the Play link on each programme. The Play link for podcasts just generates an m3u playlist with a single programme in it. (you should associate m3u playlists with VLC in your firefox browser for immediate playback). For other programme types you will be redirected to the BBC iPlayer page
- Clicking Info or any programme description text will get it’s full info and more stream URLs for VLC playback (except TV)
- Clicking any underlined programme text will search only for that clicked text
- Clicking the Thumbnail will go to the episode web site
- You can sort columns by clicking the heading
- Columns can be added and removed by clicking the checkboxes in the Columns tab.
- Apply Settings applies the options in settings tabs to the current search.
- Save As Default saves the options in settings tabs and a few of the standard settings such as Programme Type. The settings are saved as browser cookies.
Saving a Search
At the bottom of the search page is a link which you can bookmark. Opening this link again will repeat the current search.
- The layout currently sucks badly.
- Doesn’t work with Internet Explorer yet.
- Info lookup can be slow at times.