Help:Video

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Video formats archived on xFamily.org

The xFamily.org Video Archives contain several types of video file formats. These include:

  • Audio Video Interleave (.avi) — Most of the AVI container files we have archived use the XviD, DivX or MPEG-4 codecs. We recommend using the VLC media player (which includes all the necessary codecs by default).
  • Quicktime (.mov) — You will need the Quicktime player (or another compatible player like VLC) to play these files.
  • RealMedia Video (.rm) — We recommend using the latest version of Real Player to play these files.
  • Windows Media Video (.wmv) — We recommend using the latest version of Windows Media Player to play these files. You may also be able to play these files in other video players.
  • Macromedia Flash Video (.flv) — We reccomend using the latest version (and at least version 7) of the Macromedia Flash player and plugin that is available for your operating system to view these videos. Most users will already have this installed. If the plugin is missing or not installed, you will be directed to a download link. Due to software changes resulting from a patent dispute between Microsoft and Eolas Technologies Inc., Windows Internet Explorer users with Internet Explorer ActiveX update - patch 912945 or other recent updates or patches installed may need to click on the video window twice (once to activate the plugin and once more to play the video) to view Flash videos or presentations. We may develop a workaround for this issue but alternative browsers such as Firefox do not have this limitation.
  • Ogg Theora (.ogg) — Ogg Theora video playback is supported by popular media players such as mplayer, xine, helix player and VLC. You can also install Directshow filters to play these files in Windows Media Player and any other directshow application (eg. BSPlayer).

How to play the video files

Your browser should be configured to use an apropriate video player when you click on a link to a video file. If not, you may need to configure this (refer to your browser's documentation), or alternatively you can first save the file on your hard drive. Some playback problems can also often be solved by first saving the file to your computer. This is especially true for relatively large files and/or if you have a slow connection to the Internet. In most browsers, you can right click a link and select "Save Target As" or "Save Link As" from the pop-up menu. In browsers for Mac OS (for example, Safari) you may need to press a control key while clicking on the file to get the "Save As" pop-up menu.

Video player software

Frequently asked questions

  • I tried playing one of the video files and I get sound but no video or video but no sound. How do I solve this problem?
It's possible you don't have the apropriate codec (a format coder-decoder) installed. Not all video players come with every codec neccessary to play all the different video files archived on xFamily.org. For example, if you are trying to view a movie clip using an AVI container and the XviD codec, your player needs an XviD or MPEG-4 codec. You should be able to solve the problem by using another player (for example, VLC) that includes the codec by default or downloading and installing the appropriate codec. Linux users who can see the Flash videos but not hear the sound may need to disable the aRts sound server, change the permissions of their sound device or reconfigure their browser to use artsdsp.
  • How do I play Windows Media Video files on Linux or other operating systems besides Windows and Mac OS X?
Try VLC, xine or MPlayer with the apropriate codecs installed. Here is one way to do this on Linux. Alternatively, you may wish to use apt-get, yum or whatever installation and packaging system your distribution uses. In that case, please consult your software documentation for details. This may not work for all versions of Linux particularly on platforms other than x86 and PPC.
1. Go to http://www1.mplayerhq.hu/homepage/design7/codecs.html and download the "essential codecs" or "all codecs" package.
2. Unpack the archive into /usr/lib/codecs.
3. Symlink /usr/lib/codecs to /usr/lib/win32
4. You should then be able to use your player of choice to play most Windows Media Video Files.
If you have problems, please ask for help on a general Linux support forum or contact your software vendor for technical support. You may also request help on the xFamily Multimedia Forum (see link below).
  • I have a question or problem not addressed in this help page? Where can I get help?
Please post your question or problem on the xFamily Multimedia Forum.

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