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VLC updates

I wanted to blog about this yesterday, but I wasn’t able to find time to do so. Well if somebody hasn’t seen it yet, yesterday VideoLan project released VLC 0.8.4 final. So I started working on putting it in portage. Most of the work was already done as I was able to get all the betas but the last one (that was mainly a fix for Win32 users).

I prepared a couple of extra patches while going with it, tho, and updated the maintainer’s guide according to that. The most important one is letting libdts to be linked as a plugin instead of builtin, so that it does not get linked to the final executable, at least not directly. Currently, vlc-0.8.4 is the target stable for vlc, as it seems to fix most of the bugs we could have found. 0.8.2 version will go away in the next days after I test it more deeply.
There’s also a -r1 version, tho. This version adds hal support (backported from 0.8.4a version that might or might not be released for Linux/Unix), and make ffmpeg a plugin instead of builtin, finally relieving vlc from being linked to a lot of libraries. This still does not remove the builtins completely, as there’s still libtheora and libogg that gets linked and I don’t really like that.

What I’m going to try when I’ll have time is to have also libvlc as a shared object; if I had time, I would probably start looking for adding support into Kaffeine for it, it would be an interesting thing to have at hand, but probably requires lot of tinkering for now πŸ˜›

Ah the skins2 interface is now enabled with skins useflag, please test it.

I’m going to take direct maintainership of vlc later today just to make simpler to me looking for vlc bugs and to allow autorepoman to signal me of problems.

Today I’m also letting the last touches to the new revision of flac that cleans up the ebuild and adds the manpages, and obviously cleans up the patches we’re applying. The list of changes can be found on CVS as now all the important patchsets I work on are hosted there.

On another note, I’m happy to see that my idea about the maintainers’ guides does not seem to be dying completely πŸ™‚ Thanks Paul for supporting this πŸ™‚

Comments 2
  1. Just tested the Windows version on XP SP2. This is my first time trying this program, and I must say I’m impressed at the streaming capabilities, the not needing to download external codec packs, and the fact that it’s the first thing that’s been able to play an H246 ogg video I got somewhere. I came up with a couple of bugs, as well as some comments/suggestions. I realize that it’s still beta, so I don’t expect it to be perfect, but I want to help make it better.A couple of buggy things:1) Playback of WMV files exhibits an extreme lag between when the pause button is pressed and when the video actually pauses. Specifically, the audio stops but the video keeps going for a couple seconds, and then when it is unpaused the audio starts but the video takes a couple seconds to start up again. The same thing happens to a much much lesser extent with Quicktime files.2) The skins interface has a tendency to show either just the playlist or just the player window when switching from Firefox (and probably other fullscreen apps) to VLC.3) Right-click menus don’t automatically disappear when you click outside of the program’s window. Also, the video screen’s right-click menu doesn’t disappear even when clicking somewhere else within the program.A couple of comments/suggestions:1) This is more of a personal preference thing, but it seems to me that the buttons that look like rewind/fast forward should actually do that. Variable speed could then be implemented either by cycling through the speeds each time the button is pressed, or by having fast forward and rewind sliders or knobs. Just an idea.2) I would say that it would make more sense to move “Switch interface”, “Bookmarks” and “Extended GUI” from the Settings menu into the View menu.3) Not all of the menu items in the wxWidgets interface are accessible from the right-click menu in the Skins interface. Specifically, “View / Stream and media info” and “Settings / Bookmarks” are missing. Given that everything else is pretty much in the right-click menu already, it seems to me that simply replicating the menu structure within the right-click menu would provide a more complete and consistent implementation. The Extended GUI options could even be available in Skins mode, just in a separate pop-up window. Likewise, the Skins Playlist could have all of the wxWidget Playlist features available by putting that menu structure into that right-click menu.4) The Preferences dialog is, to me, scary in terms of the amount of intricate detail. Maybe more stuff needs to be hidden when the “Advanced options” toggle is unchecked–including whole menu trees if possible. Also, maybe some of the extensive tree-like nature can be combined into single dialogs to make it easier to navigate and less branchy. Just to give an idea, the only options I would use are basic, general Audio and Video settings, basic Visualization settings, basic OSD settings, general playlist settings, and Hotkeys settings.5) Ctl-A doesn’t select all of the items in the Playlist. That’s a pretty universal shortcut, I’d say.Hope these ideas are helpful. Keep up the good work, and I’ll be excited to see this program mature. Cheers,-Michael Klein

  2. Michael, unless Diego has something up his sleeve that I didn’t know about he isn’t a VL developer. He packages videolan for this thing called Gentoo, so testing it on XP is pretty irrelevant.Anyways… whats up with packagers and always wanting everything to link dynamically? πŸ˜›

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