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xine, removals and additions

A new entry talking about the progresses of xine, in particular of the 1.2 branch, hope I don’t bore anyone to death with these, I know they interest just a few people.

First of all, Darren merged Matthias Kretz’s (Vir, the guy behind KDE4’s Phonon) changes to allow handling gracefully the death of the underlying audio output device (or daemon); this applies to the unplug of USB devices, as well to PulseAudio daemons disappearing during playback. This is merged in both 1.1 and 1.2, although you’d probably need 1.2 to get enough improvements to make it really usable.

I also scheduled the removal of aRTs output from xine-lib-1.2 on Thursday; this output plugin was quite unstable, causing more problems than solving, and as aRTs is going to die together with KDE 3, it makes no sense to keep it around. I’m thinking about disabling it by default in 1.1.7 too.

Right now instead I’m looking to work on Apple Core Audio Format support; in the usual spirit of Apple’s formats, there are quite complete specifications, that allows to implement it without having to try and see on every variation of the files, like is sometimes needed with Microsoft Wave files (that can contain quite a few formats internally, and there is very little documentation about the most obscure of them).

The bad side is that the format is quite complex for a simple audio-only format, I’m not surprised that Apple uses Mpeg4 instead for iTunes, so it will take me quite a bit before being able to have it working.

Why do I want to add support for Core Audio Format? Well, xine-lib-1.2 is likely going to work much better on native OS X, and it might be worth supporting it well when running there; besides the documentaiton on MultimediaWiki is missing and it’s an opportunity to give something back to that project, where I usually find the interesting bits to fix bugs on xine.

On a different note, the new PSU for Farragut arrived today, together with a few new fans for Enterprise, and the situation is quite improved: Farragut does not make the same noise as before (and consumes 8% of my UPS less), while Enterprise have the disks stable at 35┬░ Celsius rather than going over 50.

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