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View Full Version : I didn't know these were already here... (A Codec Discussion)



Captain Smiley Pants
February 26th, 2011, 11:32 PM
So today I've been messing around on a Debian 64bit GNOME Live DVD and trying it out on my new computer to see what works, what doesn't, etc. I think it's the latest stable version, not entirely sure myself but I can double check later.

I open my music folder, assuming that none of my music would work (using .mp3s) but just wondering what program is assigned to that sort of file type when, lo and behold, my music started playing.

This was different; usually on Ubuntu I'd have to install certain codec packages, or have some software check for me where a suitable codec was.

I open my movie folder. There are .mp4s, .avis, .mkvs, a whole slew of stuff. Everything played!

I try to play a commercial DVD; still need libdvdcss2, of course (or whatever is used today, I usually don't even bother with buying physical copies of movies anymore).

So here's what I'm getting at: For every distribution, what is the difference in how codecs are handles and provided? Are there good enough free codecs to work with most file types? Does it matter by where the distro came from? And so on (feel free to discuss your own details regarding free or closed source codecs).

cariboo
February 27th, 2011, 12:19 AM
I know the gstreamer packages replace the need for a lot of codecs we used to have to install. I haven't really paid that much attention to them, as everything but commercial dvds just work out of the box.

Khakilang
February 27th, 2011, 06:12 AM
I usually had to install Ubuntu restricted extras to play music and movies. But I heard Linux Mint include most of this codec.

cariboo
February 27th, 2011, 08:26 AM
The latest Ubuntu installer gives you the option to download and install codecs right at the start of the installation process. Actually it started with the 10.10 release.

Zlatan
February 27th, 2011, 11:13 AM
The latest Ubuntu installer gives you the option to download and install codecs right at the start of the installation process. Actually it started with the 10.10 release.

the OP was about LIVE media

stmiller
February 27th, 2011, 06:55 PM
Maybe that particular live DVD contained the needed codecs?

The default Debian install has no non-free codec support.

There has always been debian multimedia for debian to easily add, however:

http://debian-multimedia.org/dists/stable/main/binary-i386/

Each disto handles this differently for various reasons - mainly to remain GPL software as a release, and also to comply with US and other laws. If you aren't in the US, most of the restrictions to this stuff don't apply to you.

Captain Smiley Pants
February 28th, 2011, 08:32 PM
the OP was about LIVE media
Eh, it can be about that too :)

Zlatan
February 28th, 2011, 08:49 PM
Eh, it can be about that too :)

Sure, no problem with me, sorry for interrupting:)

3Miro
February 28th, 2011, 09:18 PM
mp3 codecs are not "free as in freedom". There are restrictions on what can and cannot be done with them. Hence, Ubuntu (and other foundation/corporation distributions) usually don't package those by default. On the other hand, community based distros (like Mint and PSLOS) come with more codecs and drivers pre-installed.

ubuntu-freak
March 1st, 2011, 12:33 AM
Each disto handles this differently for various reasons - mainly to remain GPL software as a release, and also to comply with US and other laws. If you aren't in the US, most of the restrictions to this stuff don't apply to you.

Makes me think of a song by Morrissey called "America Is Not the World".

Anywho, the previous Debian leader Steve McIntyre made a nifty Debian 5 rehash for Linux Format in the UK a couple of years ago, with all GStreamer codecs pre-installed. I was surprised at first, but then I realised I wasn't in the US.

Captain Smiley Pants
March 1st, 2011, 10:56 PM
Weird question; is there a distro known for not supporting .ogg file types?