Using File Transfer Protocol (FTP)

What is the Community Radio Network?

The Community Radio Network is the CBAA’s program distribution and sustaining service, delivering radio programs in a real-time audio stream via satellite, and making individual program files available on-demand for integration with local playout systems. Over 110 regular programs are available each week to community stations, as well as the National Radio News to subscribers.

Content is available through a variety of methods including live satellite and audio file ingest, which allows stations to time-shift content on their local schedule.

What is File Transfer Protocol (FTP)?

File Transfer Protocol (FTP) is one method of file download available to stations. It allows stations to:

  • Download preferred radio content and news for airplay at any time
  • Automate the download of preferred content at regular time each week or day
  • Time-shift preferred programs to preferred times
  • 'Set and forget'. With static filenames, a combination of automated downloads and playout software keeps fresh programming going to air with minimal fuss.

The Community Radio Network can provide limited support for FTP downloads. Stations will need to have an FTP client on their end - either standalone software, or an add-on client.

Contact the CBAA to be given credentials for FTP access either by email or by calling 02 9310 2999.

How do you use FTP?

Manual downloads

To get started manually downloading files, Filezilla offers an easy, free installation to get underway:

Programs such as Filezilla, WinSCP will provide a degree of automation through queuing when accessing multiple files. Transfers can also be automated through use of batch scripts and Windows Task Scheduler using some of these programs.

NB. Browsers such as Google Chrome vers. 88 onwards do not allow FTP access through the URL pane. Extensions from the Chrome Web Store can be added to offer limited access.

Automated downloads

Some radio automation packages provide FTP download scheduling functions – check what software already in use at your station may allow when it comes to FTP.

If additional software is required, the Community Radio Network cannot guarantee the serviceability of any particular client, however we are aware of the following being used successfully:

Most FTP clients that offer automation do come with a cost - please use the above links as an index of some options.

When are files distributed?

Community Radio Network programs are uploaded after their weekly initial live playout, usually within two hours of original air time per the published schedule.

Please see the Program Guide (also linked on the right) for distribution times.

National Radio News hourly bulletins are available 6 minutes before each hour. State-based bulletins are available weekdays at 17:20 NSW-time.

How are files named?

Whether it's a daily or weekly program, each new edition will replace the previous file of the same name, allowing links and file names to remain common.

This solves the need for station personnel to update their playout software each week with a new set of files, provided the files are downloading to the same location.

For example, 'Service Voices.mp3' will update each week with the same filename, as will 'Rural News.mp3' each weekday.

How do you find out about service updates?

Along with some material posted to the CBAA website the Community Radio Network provides important service updates via a weekly newsletter. Feel free to sign up any station/broadcaster addresses to future emails.

Community Radio Network logo

A guide to the programs currently being broadcast/distributed via the CBAA's Community Radio Network to community radio stations all over Australia.