[Jack-Devel] AES67 / SMPTE ST 2110-30

Chris Caudle chris at chriscaudle.org
Mon Oct 23 18:09:06 CEST 2017

On Mon, October 23, 2017 4:32 am, Philippe Bekaert wrote:
> ALC Networx and audinate (several times) concerning patent issues

My limited understanding is that the original Dante protocol is or was
covered by a patent regarding the non-standard clocking method they used,
but Ravenna specifically uses only IEEE and IETF specifications which
should be not covered by any current patents, with the exception of
features which should be part of the hardware (e.g. if the Ethernet
adapter vendor is licensing a patent for some hardware feature we should
not need to care).  I have not heard of any patents asserted against IEEE
1588-2008, and protocols like RTP and RTCP have been implemented for many
years by browsers and media players, so I think there should be no patents

> many choices for the implementation of each of the required components
> (full implementation generic libraries, or ad hoc pieces of open source

My preference would be re-use anything available, days are too short to
re-implement software which is already working.  That presumes that a
library for what is needed is well maintained, and that the function is
not so simple that understanding how to use the library is not more work
than just implementing for the jack driver.

One thing that will influence what libraries you may choose to use is
whether you want to make the software cross platform or linux only.  My
thinking there is that there are virtual sound card implementations for
Windows and Mac OS already, so jack on Windows and Mac OS can use the
existing sound system interface.
If you implement as linux only, you could potentially take certain
shortcuts such as requiring that the user install linuxptp and synchronize
the system clock to the audio PTP domain first.  That way you could use
the system clock as the clock for scheduling the net driver.

> Right now, I'm using the free merging AES67 sound card driver on a
> macbook pro to generate AES67 streams, and later also to receive.

I do not have a Mac, so I did not even think of that. That is a good
choice, essentially the equivalent of the free Lawo R3lay driver I was
testing on Windows.  The only disadvantage I can see is the driver is
limited in what buffer sizes and sample rates it supports, so you can only
test a subset of what is possible to support, but definitely should allow
getting all the basic work completed with just software implementations on
each end.

> I'm running ptp4l (hardware timestamping support, on a server) or ptpd
> (if you don't have hw ts - on my laptop)

I believe ptp4l should also support software timestamp.
I can run ptp4l on my workstation to synchronize to my BeagleBone ptp
master, and ethtool reports that there is no PTP hardware clock available:

Time stamping parameters for enp3s4f0:
        software-transmit     (SOF_TIMESTAMPING_TX_SOFTWARE)
        software-receive      (SOF_TIMESTAMPING_RX_SOFTWARE)
        software-system-clock (SOF_TIMESTAMPING_SOFTWARE)
PTP Hardware Clock: none
Hardware Transmit Timestamp Modes:
        off                   (HWTSTAMP_TX_OFF)
        on                    (HWTSTAMP_TX_ON)
Hardware Receive Filter Modes:
        none                  (HWTSTAMP_FILTER_NONE)
        ptpv1-l4-event        (HWTSTAMP_FILTER_PTP_V1_L4_EVENT)
        ptpv2-l4-event        (HWTSTAMP_FILTER_PTP_V2_L4_EVENT)
        ptpv2-l2-event        (HWTSTAMP_FILTER_PTP_V2_L2_EVENT)

I am continuing to copy the jack-devel mail list for now, hopefully there
are some others who will be interested in participating, if not eventually
we can take this to a private distribution until something is ready for
wider testing.

Chris Caudle

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