My holidays gift to xine: fixes

I’m not sure how this happened today, but as it happened, I might as well consider it my own holidays gift to xine and xine users (which also mean most of Amarok users too).

Last night Reinhard Nissl submitted a patch to xine-devel to fix a race condition in ALSA output code, the one bug I hoped to fix before 1.1.3 and I wasn’t able to, so I wandered through’s tracker to find the bug number to report it on the ChangeLog with to close it. While doing so, I ended up looking to other bugs too, closing some of the invalid ones, fixing the ones I could, as usual.

After fixing some of the bugs, I decided to try to improve the error reporting during xine build, so that it reported undefined symbols at buildtime, rather than crashing at runtime (as I was being hit by that again because of a missing include while I was fixing something else), from that I ended up fixing xine-lib so that the libFLAC-based plugin actually worked, rather than just building, with libFLAC 1.1.3, and from that, I also ended up changing one more configure option from —enable to —with.

The funny part is that xine-lib has two different FLAC demuxers, one built-in the audio demuxers group, entirely implemented within xine-lib itself, and the other using libFLAC functions, and two different FLAC decoders, one being always the libFLAC based one, and the other being FFmpeg’s FLAC decoder itself. Pretty nice that you can still play FLAC files even if xine-lib is built with the flac useflag off 🙂

Today I was also planning on updating a couple of maintainers’ guides, as well, as looking into DocBook to start documenting autoepatch, but I doubt I’ll be able to do so this night, so they’ll be postponed till I have time to do them.

Now for the sad news, as Thomas Cort (tcort) retired from Gentoo, the libmtp package is currently lacking a Gentoo maintainer; if you’re using this library with Amarok and find some problems, well, I’m sorry but I cannot help on that at the moment :/ I might end up removing libmtp useflag in next versions of Amarok if it starts requiring newer versions than we have in portage, unless someone steps up to maintain it. I’d be happy to help with it, but I don’t have an MTP-compatible device to use it with.

Also, Alastair (liquidx) seems to have disappeared again, this time without a devaway message.. I tried contacting him for bluez-related ebuilds, as I’d like to get them in portage (as I’m using them myself at the moment), but he hasn’t answered yet. This also means that BlueTooth phones support for ALSA is still waiting; although I know it’s boring to wait indefinitely, ALSA herd can’t do anything about it at the moment, as, uh, it consists of me, myself and my own clone, and I don’t own an headset that would work (I tried the one I got with the E61, but even with Mac OS X it does not perform that well, it was designed for phone calls, not audio listening).

Why did I give those two news together? Well, the reason is quite simple: I want users to understand that sometimes packages end up unsupported because, well, nobody has the hardware to handle drivers or libraries, so there’s unfortunately little to do even after months :/