Chris’ Chromecast Console

Following on from Piccastr, I’ve been working on a Windows implementation of a Chromecast tool. Chris’ Chromecast Console is what I’ve come up with. It’s the result of a lot of work translating the program to work simply on Windows. But I don’t suppose you want to hear much about that, so let’s detail what it does!

It sends photos, videos, or music straight from your PC to your Chromecast. There’s no need to redirect through a mobile phone, the internet, or anything else. You can send directly from your Laptop to the Chromecast. Some key features:

  • Put JPG, PNG, BMP, GIF pictures on your Chromecast by clicking on it. Chris’ Chromecast Console supports EXIF rotation to correct image orientation before sending it to the Chromecast (no more sideways images!)
  • Or put lots of pictures in a folder and play them all as a slideshow (or if your laptop has an SD card reader you could play a slideshow straight from your camera’s SD card).
  • Play MP3 or WAV files by clicking on them.
  • Or put lots in a folder and play them on loop.
  • Volume Control (because I’m sure the neighbours don’t appreciate the loudness of the music I’m listening to to help me learn Dutch)
  • Show a picture slideshow and play music on loop at the same time.
  • NEW: Recurse pictures in subfolders option
  • Play MOV/WEBM/MPG/MP4/AVI/OGG/M4V Video files directly from your PC to your chromecast (when you also install FFMPEG). Video Support is Experimental (but cool!)
  • Adjust FFMPEG transcoding string to your geeky heart’s content (or not if you don’t want to!)
  • Option to Autoconnect to a Chromecast device (if it is turned on) when you open the program. Who wants to waste time clicking connect?!
  • Option to Restore the app connection if another app tries to take control of the Chromecast (i.e keep your slideshow running).
  • Self-Aggrandizing Program name with ample, awesome, alliteration.

COST

This program is now free, gratis. The only thing I ask is that you help spread the word about it on your social media accounts.

INSTALLING

There’s some requirements for your computer to run the software. First and foremost you’re going to need Apple Bonjour installed. If you’ve got iTunes then you already have it. If not, the simplest way to get it is to install Bonjour Print Services from this link:
Bonjour Print Services
(No Longer Required)

The next requirement is optional. If you want to play videos then you need FFMPEG. FFMPEG is a genius program that converts video formats. My program uses this to convert any video you play into a format the Chromecast can play before sending it. You can get it here: (download the 32bit Static Version)

FFMPEG Download Page

Phew! Done that? Now finally the program itself. You can get it from here:

Download Chris’ Chromecast Console

Once you’ve installed it, if you’re using FFMPEG, you’ll want to open it and go into options and browse to where FFMPEG is on your system.

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Have Fun, use the comments on this post to provide your feedback.

24 comments on “Chris’ Chromecast Console”

  1. Ivan says:

    Works with WXP? I am interested on purchasing, but I would use it in an old PC with Windows XP in the hotel where I am working. I have tried with the demo but do not works 🙁 (Piccastr applet is OK, but it seems that this console is more complete). I want to be sure that I can make it work before purchasing. Thanks.

    1. Chris says:

      Sorry, I don’t have XP to test. I’d suspect not as I don’t think the frameworks are present on XP. Your experience with the demo seems to confirm that. Might be time to update your version of Windows 🙂

  2. Cid Felipe says:

    Any change in chromecast necessary?

    1. Chris says:

      No, it just needs to be on the same wifi as your computer.

  3. Mark says:

    Thanks Chris! It works great for me.
    Question: is there a way to set the slideshow delay to 3 seconds? In “Settings” the lowest interval to choose is 10.

    1. Chris says:

      Not yet. I could add it in the next time I update but things are a bit busy at the moment so it may take a while.

    2. Chris says:

      Now added. Reliability at the faster delay rates may depend on your network connection quality though.

  4. Thanks. Can’t figure out how to register the program?

    1. Chris says:

      Click check for Updates and make sure you have the latest version installed. Then there should appear a “Purchase License Key” option on the menu bar at the top.
      Or you can just go to http://www.chrisridings.com/buy/payment.php

  5. Gary says:

    Is there an ability to cast to multiple Chromecast devices simultaneously?

    1. Chris says:

      No. You can open two copies of the program and select in each individually, but they will obvious not then be in sync.

  6. Johan says:

    Thanks for the License change!! Just downloaded the program to have a look at it. If it does what I hope for, I certainly buy a license.
    I have quite some ideas on this …
    1.
    Could text be shown alongside the picture?
    Choosing from
    – the file’s name
    – the picture’s title in the pictures EXIF
    – …
    2.
    All my pictures have geo information in their EXIF.
    Using them would be awesome, only, I don’t know how to do this best. Getting a google map with the gps data on it between each picture is clearly overkill. Maybe every 10 pictures with a line between the points?
    3.
    Any luck to use a folder with subfolders? Eg I have 3000 pictures from our last US trip and put them in different subfolders so each folder is between 600 and 800 files. But I would love to have them all in one slideshow without changing my folder structure.
    Taking it one step further. I have one folder ‘Fotos’ that has folders per year. Each year has folders per event. Some events have subfolders (see before).
    It would be magnificent to put in “Fotos” and then go through everything in order.
    And it would be absolutely incredible if one could choose “random” so everything would be shown at random.

    Well some ideas. Easy to get them, to develop them is (I am sure) quite a different thing!
    But you know – asking is free!

    Keep up the good work and learning Dutch!

    1. Chris says:

      Subfolders is definitely on the todo list. It’s just a case of me getting some time to fit it in.
      Text/etc is possible. But it’d really take more demand for this as a feature.

      en Nederlands is echt moeilijk! Maar, in twintig jaar of zo zal ik het onder de knie hebben 🙂

    2. Chris says:

      Subfolders are now added.

  7. Jay Goldberg says:

    Still asking for bonjour to be installed on the computer. Is it needed? I would prefer not to install it.

    1. Chris says:

      No, it’s not needed. The message is wrong. But it still comes up if for some reason the software can’t access the Bonjour ports. Check that nothing Bonjour related happens to be running and your antivirus/firewall software isn’t blocking it.

      1. Jay Goldberg says:

        thanks for the response. I checked task manager and nothing called bonjour is running. The error when I start is “Couldn’t find Bonjour installed or running. Please see instructions on http://www.chrisridings.com“. I added ChrisChromecastConsole to the program list of allowed programs to communicate through Windows Firewall. Also checked netstat -a for Bonjour ports that are being used and could not find any.

        1. Chris says:

          Okay. I’ve managed to reproduce it on my computer. No Bonjour running but Windows is insisting something is blocking that port. The error message is misleading because I forgot to take it out when I switched the program away from Bonjour. Will update you when I work it out!

          1. Jay Goldberg says:

            Thanks, much appreciated.

          2. Chris says:

            I’ve uploaded a new version that resolves the problem on my test machine. So if you re-download and re-install then hopefully that’ll sort it for you.

  8. Jay Goldberg says:

    I uninstalled, then re-installed and asked for it to run after installation. It crashed “ChrisChromecastConsole has stopped working. Check online for a solution… etc.” Looking at the problem details it shows in Problem Signature 09: System.InvalidOperationException.
    You can email me directly if you want me to help debug this on my machine.

  9. I got shellexecuteex code 5 message when I first installed. I had been getting the bonjour not running message but got his one when I tried to delete and reinstall. Avast said thye found something suspicious in the file and they had to send it to the 2hour lab.

    Thanks for these programs

    1. Chris says:

      It’s clean. I think Avast is detecting that the install program starts a .net framework install in the background to make sure you have the right version available. In the meantime, yYou can probably install this one: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=40779 and then run the setup and allow Avast to block the install in the setup.exe as it’s the very last thing that the setup.exe does.

  10. barry roysdon says:

    Thanks for your help earlier.
    The program now seems to pass through Avast after a 15 second review and downloads ok, but on the first attempt to run it windows 7 says it detected a problem and closes the program. Too vague to give yo any guidance I’m sure, but I thought I would pass it along.
    Thanks

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