File Writer output plugin for Winamp 2.x FAQ

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Q: I am trying to save tracks from Audio-CD/MIDI/WMA to files, but nothing happens, why?
A: (Audio-CD) The problem is that traditionally the sound from Audio-CDs is sent to the soundcard directly (over a physical cable, you could see it running from your CD-Drive to your soundcard, if you were to open-up your computer case), so the application normally doesn't even get to "see" the sound.
Fortunately there is a different method of playing Audio-CDs, this method is called Digital Audio Extraction (DAE for short). There are some excellent stand-alone programs that use this method to extract the audio from Audio-CDs, but if you want to use Winamp you can also use a special input plugin, called Copah's CD-Reader plugin. You can find this plugin at
A: (MIDI) For midi files something similar is true, the files are played to a special device, so the output plugin doesn't get to see the sound. This can be circumvented quite easily, just have a look at the settings of the MIDI input plugin, on one of the tabs it has a couple of options that address this issue (the tab Output, at least the checkboxes 'Sample data from' and 'Send to output' should be checked, on newer versions it's on the tab 'Sampling', the checkboxes 'Sampling enabled' and 'Send to Winamp's output system should be checked).
A: (WMA) Because Microsoft doesn't want people to copy copy-protected WMA files, Nullsoft was asked (told) to let the WMA input plugin forward the sound to the soundcard directly, bypassing any output plugin. Fortunately this was only done after a few versions had already been released that did use output plugins, these versions can be found at, in the plugin list or on the forums, and at RareWares.

Q: How can I record from ShoutCAST streams?
A: Simple answer: You can't. More complicated answer: Yes, you can, but you'll need some additional software. You can either use Virtual Audio Cable (see ShoutCAST in the LineIn plugin documentation), or use a special program called a streamripper (I don't know any, so use Google). BTW, the reason that you can't is that it is usually illegal to save ShoutCAST streams (this isn't always true though!).

Q: I would really like to write MP3/Ogg Vorbis files with this plugin, how do I do this?
A: All you have to do is download the LAME dll (for mp3, see below for where to get it) or the Ogg Vorbis dll's (see below for where to get it) and put the dll('s) in one of the following directories: There are some common mistakes/problems people make/have:
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