With the holiday season approaching, we've seen a few library releases for the open Blu-Ray playback libraries!
Tuesday, December 24 2013
Tuesday, December 3 2013
So, here is an update about our port on WinRT platforms.
I now say
WinRT platforms, but that means:
- Windows 8/8.1 ModernUI
- Windows Phone 8
- XBox One? (who knows?)
The WinRT platforms have mostly 2 flavors: x86 and ARM. And we'll try to be on both of them.
VLC port status
We have now:
- support for all usual VLC formats, including MKV and FLAC,
- audio :D
- video, (with correct aspect ratios),
- basic subtitles support,
- file and network stream support,
- a simple, but working UI,
- passing the WACK certification,
- working on Windows 8 and 8.1.
Readying the release
We are preparing the release, fixing the important bugs, notably an audio crash that got us rejected from the store. We have numerous small bugs that are annoying, notably some thumbnails, crashing and the audio browsing part.
We hope to work on it until this week-end and then submit once again.
As soon as we have one release out, all the code will be open sourced, and we will welcome contributions, notably on the UI/XAML part.
At the same time, we're spending quite a bit of time to get a working version for ARM, so we can deploy on Windows RT too. We don't know exactly how much time, but we hope it's a matter of weeks. The issues are mostly compiler related.
Windows Phone should not need a lot of extra work for the API, but will require some work for files management. Adaptation of the basic UI should be simple enough.
Thanks a lot.
Thursday, November 14 2013
So, we've released today VLC 2.1.1. It's mostly a release to fix the numerous bugs and regressions that always happen at major.0 releases.
But why are there so many regressions at every major releases of VLC?
The main two reasons are:
- we still don't have enough people testing the prebuilt and release candidates versions...
- our major releases cycle is too long.
While I don't know what to do for the first, we will shorten our development cycle, starting from 2.2.0.
But for once, this release introduces new features, notably a new decoder to support HEVC (H.265).
We did that because we could not ignore this major codec and introduce it only at our next major release.
We worked quite a bit on Opus and VP9, because we want to help pushing those formats.
As for HEVC, VP9 and Opus integrations are quite young, so you should expect issues or shortcomings...
As you might have seen, we have not pushed 2.1.0 through the update system, for the reasons you've seen above.
But 2.1.1 is different and will be pushed through the update system.
On Windows, 2.1.1 introduces a new installer that will allow us to upgrade to future versions without asking the options at every install! 2.1.1 should be the last annoying installer that you will see on Windows.
Mac OS X 2.0.9
We did a release of source for 2.0.9, but unlike on Windows, we did binaries too for Mac OS X. Why is that?
Well, as you might have seen, we've discontinued VLC for PowerPC and Intel32 for 2.1.x. This is mostly for technical reasons, (notably to support correctly OS X.9), but also for timing reasons (there are few Intel macs that are 32bit only, and it's time consuming to support them).
So PowerPC users will upgrade to 2.0.9, where we fixed many bugs affecting them, as one would expect.
But, a contrario from what you would expect, Intel32 and Universal Binary users on 2.0.8 will be upgraded to the 2.0.9 Universal Binary.
This will allow users using the Intel32 version of VLC but running on a 64bit-capable machine to upgrade to a 64bit version of VLC. Indeed, the 64bit slice of this UB will upgrade to 2.1.1 afterwards, but not the 32bit slice which might upgrade to 2.0.10, if ever there is one
I hope this clears a few questions...
Wednesday, August 28 2013
This is a major version, totally more than 7000 commits, improving a lot most parts of VLC and fixing the important issues of the 2.0.x branch.
- Port of the VLC engine to Mobile OS, including Android, iOS (again), WinRT. This denotes new audio and video outputs, OpenGL ES improvements, including shaders; but also work on the hardware decoding for mobile.
- A new audio core, including rewrite of most audio output modules. This improves the stability, reactivity (no more volume change lag), volume control (logarithmic), performance, precision (up to 384kHz).
- An important work on correct playback of new formats and old non-standard files, fixing most of the small regressions on rare formats that we've seen in the 2.0.x branch. New codecs have been added, including G2M4, MSS1/2, SCTE-27, Real Lossless or Ulead DV Audio
- New protocols and input support have been added like Smooth Streaming, improved MPEG-DASH, improved Blu-Ray; but also a new VNC support and an AVCapture module for OSX.
- Hardware decoders (Mac OS X, Android) and encoders (Intel QuickSync Video) were also added in this release, to focus on performance.
- The OS X interface has seen a lot of polishing and fixes, which finishes the work started in 2.0.0 to renew the interface.
- For developers, libVLC and most libVLC modules are now licensed under the LGPL, a copyleft license that should allow more flexibility for application developers.
- For web developers, the webplugin has been partially rewritten and now support windowless, allowing CSS transform like 3D and overlaying objects above the video, like Flash does.
- Many other issues fixed that I forget about.
You can get it now:
Please test it and file bugreports,
Thursday, August 1 2013
WinRT still advances
As people who follow @videolan know, we keep working quite a bit on our port to the WinRT platforms. It is probably the port where the most effort is spent on those days, and is probably the most difficult.
The good news is that we are improving quite a bit, and we are closer to having something on the store.
Precision about VLC ports
VLC development is closer to a bazaar than to a cathedral building, and while the core advances altogether, people, who are volunteers, work on what they want, and on the features they want. This is very often true for VLC modules, and this is even more true for the ports to the mobile platforms.
- VLC for Android is mostly developed by Ludovic Fauvet, Sébastien Toque and Edward Wang;
- VLC for iOS is mostly the work of Felix Kühne and Gleb Pinigin;
- VLC for WinRT is mostly developed by Rafaël Carré, Geoffroy Couprie, Kellen and me.
Therefore, doing work on one platform does not slow down the development of other platforms ports.
On the contrary, porting VLC to more platforms improves the portability of VLC, and helps finding weird bugs or misdesigns that benefit all the other ports, when they are fixed!
For example, the work on OpenGL ES for Android helped the port to iOS. Or the work on WinRT helped the normal VLC for Windows.
So, last time we spoke about our advance, we had to fix 16 forbidden calls to 4 Windows dll, from 5 dlls and all the socket code. And those required WinRT direct calls from C.
We fixed most of the issues, including the WinRT static calls, meaning that we rewrote a lot of idl, idl tools and header files. We are at 5 forbidden calls (3 tonight, I hope), to 1 Windows dll, from only the VLC core. We still have the socket code to fix though.
The remaining calls are on the threading initialization, and so far, we are not able to create those WinRT objects from a C codebase. We are looking at alternatives, including using a C++ library to work-around this issue.
For the socket code, we have an idea for that too, and I hope I can share it soon to you.
As soon as we are down to 0 calls, we can upload something on the store, for the backers to test it.
We've done another round of sending of goodies.
Therefore, if you had a certificate, a key-holder, a mug or a cone, you should have received them before the end of the week.
If you had a t-shirt or a hoodie, they might not have reached you yet. Note that, if you had one of these, the keyholder and certificate will arrive at the same time.
If you have not received your goodies, please e-mail us about it, to the email where you received your confirmation from. If you are at a total loss, please mail me or contact me
Sorry again for the delay, but we're doing the best we can, so far. Have fun!
Monday, July 29 2013
Today, we've published quite a few version of VLC, for your pleasure.
The first release is a stable release of VLC: 2.0.8.
This is a necessary update to fix a few crashes and security issues that are important enough to deserve an upgrade.
Unfortunately, there is no much fun in this release
Still, grab your version of VLC 2.0.8!
VLC for Android 0.1.3
Unfortunately, this broke the video output of VLC on Android. Moreover, the saddest part was that Google started deploying the upgrade right away on the Nexus devices.
Therefore, we had to do a quick bugfix branch and a 0.1.3 release to fix this problem.
But the most interesting release is probably the second pre-release of VLC 2.1.0, named "Rincewind".
Many features are present in this new branch. I will describe the highlights.
- VLC 2.1.0 development cycle allowed us to ports VLC to mobile OSes, including Android, iOS (again) and WinRT (ongoing).
This is important because it will help VLC to be more portable for tablets, phones, smartTVs or boxes.
- Following the numerous issues on the audio side of VLC 2.0, the audio core has been mostly rewritten, including a rewrite of most audio output modules, and of many audio filters.
This should allow us to fix volume delay, crackling, multi-channels issues and improve performance.
- We introduced many hardware decoders and encoders, for performance reasons, for mobiles and desktop in order to decrease the power usage when using VLC.
This includes OpenMaX for Linux and Android, Media SDK on Windows and VDA on Mac OS X.
- We added support for numerous new codecs, formats and protocols, including a preparation for Ultra-HD, notably for new codecs, like VP9 or HEVC, that are arriving soon.
- A few new video and audio outputs, filters and converters, to increase VLC capabilities, have been addded.
- Some interfaces, notably the Mac OS one, got a bit of polishing, to solve the few rough edges VLC has.
- A relicense of most of the libVLC library code license to LGPL has happened, to allow wider spreading of our technology.
This also extends to numerous language bindings.
- Some important improvements on the Webplugins, including windowless mode and increasing reliability, are also part of the package, to please our web developers friends.
Fun fact: there have been 6999 commits since the split of 2.0.0 from master and the tagging ofr 2.1.0-pre1, creating a diff of more than 4 million lines
You can download this preversion now!
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