Just a quick note-down. I was mildly surprised to find that the modern Linux environments I use (that’s Ubuntu and OpenSUSE) do not gracefully support MIDI as they do stuff like MP3 and WAV. Too old a file format? Hmmm, come to think of it, I’ve been on Linux for more than two years now and this is the first time I have ever tried to listen to a MIDI file. Oh well.
The answer is Timidity. I won’t claim it is the best answer – I was lazy and wasn’t up to doing detailed research, so I just installed a bunch of programs off the repository that look like they might do the job, and tried them one by one. Disappointingly, most of them wouldn’t work out the box despite promising descriptions. So as it turns out, the first program that Just Worked ™ was Timidity. So here I am telling you about it to save you time ;) You’ll need to install it off the repo in Ubuntu, while OpenSUSE appears to have it installed by default.
To play a MIDI file, simply do
Command-line haters can get a nice gtk-based GUI too by installing the extras packages for Timidity and doing:
I know a complete solution should also make it so that click/double-clicking on a MIDI file automatically opens the appropriate player, but I’m too lazy to check for something that gets all that done on installation, especially since I only wanted to play one MIDI file. Just manually configure your system to call timidity or something.