Using ENconveyor and Dropbox for PRX Downloads



By using ENCO’s ENconveyor and Dropbox, your station can automate the download and conversion of programs and promotional announcements from Public Radio Exchange (PRX). The files that are downloaded can be set to be delivered to your audio library and replace the prior copy of the program. The following is specifically for use with PRX and does not serve as a general configuration template or guide.


PRX and SubAuto Configuration

 

The first step in acquiring your files for the audio library is to set the delivery method from the FTP site. This may be done through SubAuto, a web-based delivery service from PRX. SubAuto needs to be configured to deliver audio files with a short filename, meaning the resulting files will be named a 5 digit cart number.

Pictured above is the SubAuto delivery configuration screen. The delivery is set to produce a short filename with the default filenames listed under Cart Numbers. You may choose to overwrite these values to keep consistent with the cut IDs you already use in your automation system.



ENconveyor Configuration



The next step is to configure ENconveyor to scan the FTP site for the files delivered by SubAuto. Before configuring ENconveyor, you should verify that SubAuto has properly delivered those files to the FTP site by navigating to the FTP site address assigned to your station and logging in using your assigned credentials. If SubAuto is configured properly, you will be able to view and download the programs for which you have a subscription. The filenames should be the 5 digit number you assigned in the SubAuto delivery configuration screen. If you have configured SubAuto correctly, you can begin configuring a rule in ENconveyor.



To begin configuring a rule, run ENconveyor and click on the ADD button. If you are using ENconveyor v.14.0c.169 or later, there is a template that you can use called PRX Sample Rule. To use this template, simply click on it and click the EDIT button. Either way, the rule configuration screen will appear.

 

 

The FTP address you were assigned should go in the FTP Site field and FTP should be selected. FTP active mode should be checked. FTP port field should be left blank unless you are not accessing the FTP on port 21.

The source directory is what directory and sub-directories the rule must open to scan. The directory field should not start with ‘/’ but rather should start with the first directory.

The Source Filename can look for a specific file such as 32425.wav or can be set to download multiple files based on the wildcards you use.

The list of available wildcards can be accessed by clicking the WILDCARDS button.

 

The most commonly used wildcards used for Source Filename are ‘*’ and ‘?’ which are used to denote any string of characters or any single character respectively. You will need to analyze the filenames in the specified directory to determine how to use the wildcards. For example, if the program audio files are named 32420-32425 and the promotional announcements are named 32430-32433, your wildcard to download the program audio files only might be 3242?.wav. This wildcard would download the files 32420-32425 but not 32430-32433.


The Destination Directory field should contain a directory on the local drives of the machine or on a shared or network drive. Dropbox will need to be configured to scan the Destination Directory of ENconveyor to ingest into the audio library. To find a location, click the BROWSE button and navigate to the desired directory. Destination Filename can remain blank if you wish to use the short filename provided from SubAuto. If you wish to overwrite the filename, you can do so with a literal name or by using wildcards.


The Destination Formatting is where you can force convert the files that are downloaded. If you force convert the files before Dropbox is able to process the Cart
Chunk data, the file will lose all associated metadata. To avoid this loss of metadata, switch the conversion off by selecting ‘Source’ for all three options.

You can schedule the automated download of files by using the rule’s Scheduling panel. ‘Continuous’ will scan on a cycle a specific number of minutes apart. ‘Scheduled’ will run a scan at specified times according to a schedule grid.


NOTE: The scheduling grid is only available after the rule has been saved and edited. To modify the scheduling grid, click Save & Exit and edit the rule you just saved.


The Email Notifications section allows key personnel at your station to be notified of site failures, missing programs, or if there is nothing new at the time of a scan. ENconveyor can even be configured to send notifications to a mobile device via SMS.


Before saving the rule you just configured, click the EVALUATE button and verify that the Resulting Source and Resulting Target are what you anticipated. If the Resulting Source and Resulting Target are correct, you may save the file by clicking Save & Exit at the top of the window. Pushing the Esc key will exit without saving changes to the rule.



DropBox Configuration



Now that ENconveyor is scanning the FTP site and downloading the specified file(s) to the destination directory, you can begin configuring DropBox. ENCO’s DropBox operates much like ENconveyor, but instead of copying files off of an FTP server, DropBox copies files locally from one directory to another.

To create a rule for DropBox, open the application and click ADD at the top of the window. Select a name for the rule and specify a folder to scan. The ‘Scan Folder’ will, in most cases, be the same directory as the ‘Destination Directory’ in the associated ENconveyor rule. The ‘File Mask’ will be the same as the ‘Ext’ in in the associated ENconveyor rule. The scan interval should be set to an interval long enough to provide DropBox time to fully convert and move the files before performing another scan of the

 

The ‘data type’ section is used to determine how the Cut Information details such as Title, Artist and other metadata information will be read.

For example, if you are creating a rule to ingest PRX files or NPR Content Depot audio files, choose Cart Chunk. In these files, Title and Artist information is saved in the Cart Chunk format within the audio Enter the Drive letter for the Library Drive along with the Library Name. Typically, this will be F: and CUTS.



Enter the drive letter for the Audio Drive and the Audio Location drive letter. More often than not, these will be the same drive, so the two fields will Enter the file Extension for the converted audio cut along with the DAD Group name you wish these cuts to be associated with.

 

NOTE: One rule is needed for each DAD group. If you want to put the PRX programs in one group and the PRX promotional announcements in a different group, you will need to create two unique but similar rules. To do this easily, setup the rule for one group and copy the rule on the main DropBox screen, edit the copied rule and save under a unique rule name.

If you are using audio files with the short filename, you should select ‘Suggested Cut’ as the preferred method of selecting a Cut ID and check the ‘From filename’ checkbox to designate the first five (5) digits of the filename as the Cut ID. The ‘OverWrite’ option will replace the existing cut with the new cut. While enabling OverWrite is recommended for most daily or weekly shows, you must exercise caution so as to not replace the current episode with next week’s episode before the current episode gets a chance to air.


Because DropBox processes a file’s metadata prior to converting the file, you are able to force convert the file using DropBox. You should select a format and sample rate that is compatible with the other files in your library and will work properly with your sound card. You may also choose stereo or mono output or may decide to let the source file properties override the converter. The file can also be normalized to a standard level. More information about DropBox can be found in the DAD User Guide on our website.



Scanning and Scheduling


Now that ENconveyor and DropBox are properly configured, you should conduct the initial scan by clicking on the ENconveyor rule and clicking RESET followed by RUN. This will scan the FTP site for available files that match the criteria specified in the rule and download the files to the destination you specified.

 

You should also enable the DropBox rule that moves the files from the ENconveyor destination to the DAD Library. Do so by clicking the checkbox to the left of the rule in the main DropBox Once ENconveyor downloads the files and DropBox places the files in the DAD Library, you can begin scheduling the cuts.


Often times, stations will already have a program log in place that will reference the cut numbers of these new files at the specified times. If this is not the case, you will need to reconfigure the music scheduling software that is used to produce the program logs. Remember that the only relevant data that is exported from the scheduling software is time and cut ID, so the title and audio data will change when it is overwritten by DropBox and the new audio data and title will be used.



NOTE: PAD data sent to HD-Radio channels, web sites, or RDS encoders will be handled by PADapult or a RAMA Box and will typically contain Title and Artist from DAD. If this metadata is not desirable, it can be replaced by scheduled messages in PADapult or by utilizing the Billboard field in the Modify window of the DAD Library.


NOTE: If cuts in the library display a Title identical to the Cut ID, go back and modify the ENconveyor rule. Select ‘Source’ as the format, sample rate, and channel configuration (mono/stereo).


NOTE: Email or SMS notifications require an outgoing mail server. To configure, click SETUP in ENconveyor and CONFIG in DropBox. Consult your email provider for email relay settings.