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Level 7

FYI - VLC w/HLS support

I haven't seen mention of it yet so I figured I'd throw it out there -
there's a patch for VLC that adds HLS support that seems to work pretty well:
http://techblog.unwiredappeal.com/2010/03/vlc-http-live-streaming-module-patch.html

My machine isn't powerful enough to transcode into H264 on the fly with sacrificing some serious quality, but it's still pretty nifty.
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Level 15

Re: FYI - VLC w/HLS support

It took the better part of the weekend, but I was able to get this to work. I'm transcoding his Nasa TV example and viewing it via my Roku now. If anyone wants to know the details of what it took to do it, let me know.

-JT
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Level 7

Re: FYI - VLC w/HLS support

Does this mean that vlc can transcode any video into a roku compatible format in real time? If so I would like to try it out, let me know how you did it if you could.
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Level 15

Re: FYI - VLC w/HLS support

I suppose being able able to transcode in real time would depend on how powerful a computer you have and what the capabilities of vlc are. I haven't had any time to experiment and I'm kind of new to vlc (I had been using HandBrake). I pretty much just tried the NASA TV example and didn't have much luck with changing any of the parameters from those given in the example (you have to change the audio codec to aac from mp3, though). My laptop (the world's slowest 2.4GHz Pentium4) was able to transcode NASA TV in real time, for what it's worth.

I thought about adding a real time conversion to the mymedia project so it could display any kind of video, but I have to wonder about that approach. You can use this patched version of vlc to convert a video to HLS, but what's the point really? You still end up with two versions of the same video, although I suppose you could use the patched vlc's capability to automatically delete the .ts segments as they're no longer needed.

Anyway, here's what it takes. The patch didn't work on the latest version of vlc. I didn't spend any time trying to figure out what the problem was, I just tracked down this one that's referred to in the blog. Next I had to get all of the tools to actually build vlc. I built it natively on win32 which is not recommended (for good reason). Tracking down everything I needed was a nightmare. You have to get the right version of everything. I suppose this would be the case on any platform, but it was definitely a pain for win32. If you want to build under Windows, I recommend this guide. It will get you pretty close. There were still a few issues I had to overcome. If you plan on trying to attempt a win32 build, let me know.

Since I'm not all that familiar with vlc, I don't know how much of the 33meg (zipped) of the version I built is actually necessary. If you really want to try it, let me know and I'll try to figure a way to get it to you

Hope this helps!
-JT
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Level 7

Re: FYI - VLC w/HLS support

Yeah, seems like a lot of trouble with not too much result, but if your ultimate goal is to get transcoding to work with my media that would be great. The limited file support of the roku seems to be my biggest problem right now. Converting with handbrake takes forever (I've done it with one movie, which took about 12 hours, the same movie took less than 30 minutes to rip).

If only the roku had better file support. Is that one of the many promises that have been made and are supposed to happen "someday"?
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Level 8

Re: FYI - VLC w/HLS support

"shshchch" wrote:
Converting with handbrake takes forever (I've done it with one movie, which took about 12 hours, the same movie took less than 30 minutes to rip).


Something is wrong there. I use handbrake and a 2 hour movie encodes in about 2 hours for me.
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Level 7

Re: FYI - VLC w/HLS support

"philsoft" wrote:
Something is wrong there. I use handbrake and a 2 hour movie encodes in about 2 hours for me.


It could simply be that your computer is much faster than his.
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Level 15

Re: FYI - VLC w/HLS support

I've found that the command line version of HandBrake works much faster than the GUI, but it's probably because I haven't figured out how to match the GUI parameters with the ones I use on the command line. I'm a command line kind of guy anyway, so I haven't looked into it. For the record, here's the options I use:
HandBrakeCLI -i infile -o outfile.m4v -O -r 29.97 -S size
where "size" is the size of the original file in megabytes, (i.e., if the the original file is 348,134,654 bytes then "size" gets replaced with 348).

-JT
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Level 8

Re: FYI - VLC w/HLS support

"hammerpocket" wrote:
"philsoft" wrote:
Something is wrong there. I use handbrake and a 2 hour movie encodes in about 2 hours for me.


It could simply be that your computer is much faster than his.


Maybe, but my computer is almost 4 years old. It is an AMD Athlon64 x2 4200, and that processor has been available for about 5 years.
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