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The Options Server to Configure Your Time Machine

NOTE: These instructions are for the Raspberry Pi Based Time Machine.  If you bought your Time Machine after January, 2024,  these instructions do not apply to your Time Machine. These instructions may also be found on the Wayback Machine

Options Server

The Options Server

The Options Server is a web page hosted by your Time Machine. It allows you to configure things which can not be configured through the Time Machine knobs and buttons. Setting these options is not meant to be operable while tripping!


You can connect to the Options Server on a browser which is on the SAME WiFi. Note: You can use your phone's browser.

To connect to the options server, point a browser on a computer or phone connected to the same wifi to the address <IP_ADDRESS>:9090. In my case it is

Your Time Machine will briefly display your IP address at startup. You may also display the IP address on the screen by holding the "Year" button for 2 seconds.

The browser displays the options which you can set. NOTE: if you set an option to something that the Time Machine cannot understand, it will use the default value for every option. So be careful, and if things don't look right after you make a change, go back and check the options.

After changing an option, press the "Submit" button, and wait for the page to update. Then press the the "Restart Timemachine Service" button to restart the Time Machine with these changes in effect. 

The options currently supported are:

  • COLLECTIONS String. You can put a single or comma-separated list of valid collection names in this field. Eg. GratefulDead, Phish, RobertHunter, PhilLeshandFriends, JonahCohen. Note: It may take a few minutes to load the archive initially when you have a list of collections. Subsequently, the Time Machine will load faster.  Default: GratefulDead

  • SCROLL_VENUE (obsolete: always true) true or false. Whether to scroll the name of the venue if it doesn’t fit on the screen. Default: true

  • FAVORED_TAPER String. If this string appears in the tape identifier, the tape will get 2 extra “stars” in the tape-ranking algorithm. Default: miller

  • AUTO_UPDATE_ARCHIVE true or false. Whether to continually check if there are any new tapes at or Default: false.

  • UPDATE_ARCHIVE_AT_STARTUP true or false. If true, then immediately update the metadata (i.e. list of tapes available) upon restarting the service. Note, because this takes about a minute, the default value is false.

  • PULSEAUDIO_ENABLE set to "true" in order to use pulseaudio. This is handy for connecting to Bluetooth or and external USB DAC.

  • Audio Sink: A dropdown menu. When PULSEAUDIO_ENABLE is true, this will show all of the possible places where you can route the audio, for example the analog headphone jack, the digital HDMI out, bluetooth (when applicable), and USB DAC's if you have them.

For v3 Time Machines, you will also see the option

  • BLUETOOTH_ENABLE set to "true" to enable bluetooth connections

Re-connect to WiFi

Changing the WiFi After Connecting

Let's say you have connected to a network, but you would like to change which wifi that you have connected to:

  • Reboot the Time Machine

  • Press and release the "rewind" button while the screen is displaying "Welcome" in red letters.

  • The Time Machine will prompt you to connect to the network from scratch.


You will see the first 15 letters of the wifi name when it is one of the non-selected choices (in white characters). You will see the last 15 letters when it is the wifi that will be selected (in red characters). So altogether you should be able to see up to 30 letters of the wifi name, at different times.

Wifi names appear in alphabetical order. So if you have 2 wifi names with 45 character names, and the only difference between the names is between the 15th and 30th character, then you must deduce which one to select based on where it appears alphabetically.

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