Saturday, December 21, 2013

compiling vlc-warp from git

Paul Bourke has put his vlc-warp on github, tried compiling it for Linux. Before vlc-warp, wanted to check if vlc 2.1 would compile. Downloaded from and started following the instructions. (Initially, I tried without reading the instructions, quickly ran into dependency issues like the one discussed here.)

Tried it first on my dual boot Kubuntu 10.04. But trying to get the dependencies using
sudo apt-get build-dep vlc
did not go through - the package versions of the dependencies in 10.04 were too old. So, decided to try it using a Live DVD, Ubuntu Studio 13.10 was available with a colleague with his OSFY magazine subscription.

Initially, tried with the vlc source downloaded onto a Windows FAT32 drive. There, ./configure was not executable - apparently, the drive was mounted noexec or something like that. So, copied the source to the home folder, and started again.

Next error was, "Unable to find a source package for vlc" when trying the
sudo apt-get build-dep vlc
For this, selected both the "source files" and "universe" repositories in the package manager, did
apt-get update, then tried
sudo apt-get build-dep vlc
again, worked now.

./configure took a couple of minutes to run, and make took around 20 minutes on my machine, with an AMD Athlon dual-core 1.9 GHz processor. At the very end, make gave a couple of fatal errors, saying make-alias did not work. Most probably this was due to copying over the source from the Windows drive, which made all the files including make-alias and configure lose their executable permissions. But the only issue was that there was no vlc binary in the root folder, I had to go to the bin folder and choose the vlc-static binary. That worked. And I could choose the OpenGL video output - that is critical for vlc-warp to work.

Then tried with the actual vlc-warp. First tried downloading the source as a zip file using the link given on github. That did not work - make gave errors saying no git repository found or something like that. Then did it properly using
git clone
as given in the VLC build instructions. Then,
worked fine, twenty minutes later, I had the binary. Tried it out with a standard mesh file from Paul, performance was similar to the Windows version.

In summary: first check with VLC 2.1 installed on your machine if OpenGL video output is available, and if it works. Only if that works will vlc-warp 2.1 work. If your machine does not have a supported graphics card, the OpenGL option either won't be available, or using that option won't get you video using vlc. In that case, vlc-warp won't work either.

Edit: More caveats!

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