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VLC media player is a highly portable multimedia player for various audio and video formats.

Using VideoLAN for playback

The command line for the video player should be:

vlc file://%s vlc://quit

or use

vlc %s vlc://quit

if you are experiencing problems playing files containing spaces in the file name.

This will execute vlc passing the file to play in a URL format. The vlc:quit portion adds the quit message to the end of the playlist so that VLC will exit once the playlist is completed. Also, there is an option in the vlcrc for "play-and-stop", which will stop after every playlist item. This will allow you to have a much cleaner command-line option of just "vlc". Whether you want this function as a default it up to you. There are many other options in

$(HOME)/.config/vlc/vlcrc (v0.9.0 and above)
$(HOME)/.vlc/vlcrc (v0.8 and older)

These are the options that I suggest. You should read through the configuration file and create your own settings.

intf=dummy    #starts vlc with no interfaces such as web, telnet, or wxWidgets
fullscreen=1  #tells vlc to playback in fullscreen
width=1920    #vlc will start in a window, I use these settings
height=1080   #to make the initial window the full size of my screen
spdif=1       #have vlc audio output over digital S/PDIF
osd=0         #vlc on screen display is different from MythTV, disable to look consistent
rt-priority=1 #a possible speed-up, setting vlc up for real-time priority level
control=lirc  #add LIRC as a control input

There are also key-bindings in the vlcrc, They should mimic your MythTV key bindings so that your remote controls are consistent. You should only have to uncomment each line that starts with "#". Here is one example:


In your lircrc, you don't have to map individual keystrokes, simply use the vlc-defined identifiers from the vlcrc, as an example:

#Stop playback and exit
 prog = vlc
 button = Back
 config = key-quit

Using VideoLAN for checking DVB signals

In conjunction with tools like tzap VLC can be a useful visual check:

vlc ./channels.conf

The file needs to be named 'channels.conf'. The format should be the same as what tzap uses. The channels from the file should appear in the playlist widget.

On Top issues

If you're having issues with VLC starting up behind mythfrontend, consider this fix. Install 'wmctrl' from apt/yum/wherever and use the following command for "Default Video Player"

wmctrl -r "mythfrontend" -b add,below; vlc -f -video-on-top file://%s vlc://quit; wmctrl -r "mythfrontend" -b remove,below

This is working for me in Ubuntu 7.04.

A somewhat expanded fix solves on-top problems when using VLC as the DVD player under Mythbuntu 9.04:

wmctrl -r "mythfrontend.real" -b remove,fullscreen -b add,below; vlc -f -video-on-top dvd://%d vlc://quit; wmctrl -r "mythfrontend.real" -b remove,below -b add,fullscreen; wmctrl -a "mythfrontend.real"

If, like Mythbuntu, your desktop environment is XFCE, it may also help to disable focus stealing prevention in XFCE's window manager settings.

Also, instead of using wmctrl, you may alternatively try "focus follows mouse" with auto raise and auto focus selected in the XFCE window manager settings.

External Links: