Ubuntu: problems with xine, MPlayer and RealPlayer

The place to post if you need help or advice

Moderators: ChrisThornett, LXF moderators

Ubuntu: problems with xine, MPlayer and RealPlayer

Postby Marrea » Mon Jul 25, 2005 9:47 am

I recently decided to try Ubuntu - on both a laptop (Toshiba 1800) and a spare desktop (Tiny Pentium II). While full of admiration for the excellent apt-get install which I used to install xine (plus libdvdcss2), MPlayer and RealPlayer (following the instructions in the Unofficial Ubuntu 5.04 Starter Guide - http://ubuntuguide.org/), I was subsequently somewhat dismayed to find that:

(1) DVDs will not play smoothly in xine on either the laptop or the desktop
(2) MPlayer crashes and scrambles the screen (blue and black vertical lines) on both laptop and desktop as soon as I try to play a DVD
(3) RealPlayer won't play news videos from the BBC site on the desktop. Initially, the program wouldn't even open at all until I removed the SWF plugins.

On (1) I have made sure DMA is enabled, I have tried all the various video drivers, and I have changed the bit depth from 24 to 16
On (2) I have no idea what to try
On (3) I have tried lots of different options in RealPlayer Preferences

Nothing seems to resolve the issues. So all I have managed to achieve after installing these programs is the ability to view BBC news videos on the laptop. Hey, one out of six ain't bad !! DVDs play fine on the Windows side of both computers incidentally, and I have not had this problem with either SuSE or Fedora. Makes me wonder whether Ubuntu is perhaps not best suited to multimedia.

Unless anyone can give me any pointers, I shall continue to research this and see if I can solve the problems.

One thing someone might possibly be able to help on. How do you change default programs in Ubuntu? Every time I insert a DVD, Totem opens. How would I change this to xine, assuming of course I can first get this program to play smoothly? Oh, and by the way, Totem won't play DVDs properly either.
User avatar
Marrea
LXF regular
 
Posts: 1873
Joined: Fri Apr 08, 2005 9:32 pm
Location: Chilterns, West Hertfordshire

RE: Ubuntu: problems with xine, MPlayer and RealPlayer

Postby M-Saunders » Mon Jul 25, 2005 10:39 am

(1) I had the exact same symptoms, but a quick hdparm -d1 /dev/hdc soon fixed that. If you're absolutely sure DMA is enabled, it must be another issue...

(2) The MPlayer build is screwed on Ubuntu. It's rather complicated, but essentially down to linking with a certain library. So it won't play DVDs and has problems elsewhere -- your best option is to remove it and compile from source.

M
User avatar
M-Saunders
LXF regular
 
Posts: 2893
Joined: Mon Apr 11, 2005 12:14 pm

RE: Ubuntu: problems with xine, MPlayer and RealPlayer

Postby M-Saunders » Mon Jul 25, 2005 10:59 am

http://www.ubuntuforums.org/showthread. ... libavcodec

That's the discussion regarding the MPlayer crashiness. It's just a borked build.

M
User avatar
M-Saunders
LXF regular
 
Posts: 2893
Joined: Mon Apr 11, 2005 12:14 pm

Postby Marrea » Mon Jul 25, 2005 12:26 pm

Thanks M-Saunders for pointing me in the right direction on MPlayer. I will do as you say and try compiling from source and see how I get on.

As regards jerkiness/dropped frames in xine, yes, I'm quite sure DMA is enabled on both laptop and desktop. It was already enabled on the desktop but not on the laptop so I enabled it on the latter with the usual hdparm -d1 /dev/hdc command. As you say, there must be some other problem. I will need to investigate further.

Otherwise, I'm quite happy with Ubuntu so far.
User avatar
Marrea
LXF regular
 
Posts: 1873
Joined: Fri Apr 08, 2005 9:32 pm
Location: Chilterns, West Hertfordshire

Postby Erin » Mon Jul 25, 2005 8:36 pm

Run Xine from the command line and see what it pumps out as messages. See what cr@p is running in the background, MPEG2 which is what DVD is is rather intensive. Maybe you need to run xine-config or whatever the file is. It runs fine here under Ubuntu. Not sure if there is a late build in backports. Have never liked MPlayer. It doesn't agree with my Voodoo FX card either!

Erin
Just beneath my skin I'm screaming. Faithless::Insomnia.
Dual PIII 550 with Ubuntu [semi-bleeding].
User avatar
Erin
LXF regular
 
Posts: 141
Joined: Thu Apr 07, 2005 7:35 pm
Location: The Olde Smoke south of the River

Postby Marrea » Mon Jul 25, 2005 9:20 pm

Well, I've managed to get xine sorted. I thought I'd just run xine-check, which reported that DMA was not in fact enabled for my dvd drive. Odd that, as I had run the hdparm -d1 /dev/hdc command previously. Anyway, I opened up a root terminal and ran the command again. Re-ran xine-check which reported DMA was now enabled. So xine now plays DVDs OK. As regards video drivers, either auto or xv seems to be best.

And now that I have installed totem-xine (which I didn't realise was necessary), Totem plays DVDs OK as well. However, there doesn't seem to be a Stop button - just Play/Pause - and the Eject button doesn't eject.

I have removed MPlayer but have not yet had time to do anything further with a source version.

RealPlayer will have to wait for another day.

Thanks for your help both of you.
User avatar
Marrea
LXF regular
 
Posts: 1873
Joined: Fri Apr 08, 2005 9:32 pm
Location: Chilterns, West Hertfordshire

Re: Ubuntu: problems with xine, MPlayer and RealPlayer

Postby Marrea » Thu Jul 28, 2005 10:45 am

Marrea wrote:One thing someone might possibly be able to help on. How do you change default programs in Ubuntu?


Hmmm, I thought I'd found the answer to this in the form of the /etc/gnome.defaults.list file, where I replaced every instance of totem with xine and then rebooted. I put a DVD in the drive and still that b****** Totem opened !

So I thought, right, I'll just remove Totem altogether. However, Synaptic said ubuntu-desktop would have to go as well. I thought, no problem, after I've uninstalled them both, I'll just reinstall ubuntu-desktop. Unfortunately when I tried to do that, Synaptic said that if I wanted to install ubuntu-desktop, totem would also have to be installed. So it seems as if totem and ubuntu-desktop are inextricably linked. I have currently left it with both totem and ubuntu-desktop uninstalled.

When I then opened up xine and played a DVD I discovered that somehow DMA had been turned off again, so had to re-set that once more.

There must be somewhere in Ubuntu where you can set your own preferences for default applications (apart from that section on the "start" menu where you can choose the browser, e-mail and terminal). I seem to recall you can do this in SuSE using KDE fairly easily. This is an aspect of Linux that can be frustrating at times. There are tons of books which go into great detail about how the core of the operating system works but information about where and how to configure desktops to your own individual liking is much harder to come by. Or is it that I am just not used to Gnome perhaps?
User avatar
Marrea
LXF regular
 
Posts: 1873
Joined: Fri Apr 08, 2005 9:32 pm
Location: Chilterns, West Hertfordshire

RE: Re: Ubuntu: problems with xine, MPlayer and RealPlayer

Postby Erin » Thu Jul 28, 2005 6:39 pm

From the "System" menu in Gnome 2.10 go to "Admin > Removeable Drives and Media" and the Totem option is in there. From memory Ubuntu-desktop is only an umbrella package and installs two tons of sh!te. To quote; "It is safe to remove this package if some of the desktop system packages are not desired. However, it is recommended that you keep it installed, because it is used to carry out certain upgrade transitions (such as adding new packages to the system).". You don't need it simply.

DMA dafaults to non-DMA on a reboot. I know you need to add it to a config file but which one, not sure. Ask Google and all will be forthcoming.

Cheers, Erin

PS: xV is the desired driver from memory. Also, non idea about Totem. I use Xine.
Just beneath my skin I'm screaming. Faithless::Insomnia.
Dual PIII 550 with Ubuntu [semi-bleeding].
User avatar
Erin
LXF regular
 
Posts: 141
Joined: Thu Apr 07, 2005 7:35 pm
Location: The Olde Smoke south of the River

Postby Marrea » Thu Jul 28, 2005 8:41 pm

Erin

That's great. Very many thanks. I've now changed totem to xine in the Removable Drives and Media (incidentally, it's System > Preferences, rather than System > Admin, but I found it). At last, xine opens when I insert a DVD !!

It's strange that the DMA setting defaults to off on a reboot. SuSE doesn't do that. I'll do a bit of googling as you suggest and see what I can find.

Yes, I read that warning in Synaptic about removing ubuntu-desktop and was a bit concerned because I thought it implied I wouldn't be able to add new packages - but from what you say, I don't need to worry too much?

I don't like Totem, so do not particularly want it on my system. I always use xine in SuSE so am more used to that player anyway.
User avatar
Marrea
LXF regular
 
Posts: 1873
Joined: Fri Apr 08, 2005 9:32 pm
Location: Chilterns, West Hertfordshire

Postby Erin » Thu Jul 28, 2005 9:06 pm

John Lee Hooker is on ITV3 as we speak and I do not have ubuntu-admin nor -desktop installed. You can do whatever without them but they force the full default Ubuntu environ on you. Remove them :-) I did mean prefs but it has been a hard day doing a C576 Team Leader course (CTRL people will understand).

Enjoy Xine and -desktop free Linux!

Erin
Just beneath my skin I'm screaming. Faithless::Insomnia.
Dual PIII 550 with Ubuntu [semi-bleeding].
User avatar
Erin
LXF regular
 
Posts: 141
Joined: Thu Apr 07, 2005 7:35 pm
Location: The Olde Smoke south of the River

Postby Marrea » Thu Jul 28, 2005 9:55 pm

Erin

Thanks. I wouldn't have wanted to interrupt your John Lee Hooker viewing. Gotta get our priorities right.

I've done some googling.

The file is /etc/hdparm.conf and all I had to do was add at the end:

command_line {
hdparm -d1 /dev/hdc
}

Now DMA stays turned on after a reboot.

(I think because I enabled DMA in SuSE in YaST, rather than using hdparm, it probably automatically sets it up to stay turned on when you reboot.)

I'm really enjoying Ubuntu. :D and am gradually finding my way around.
User avatar
Marrea
LXF regular
 
Posts: 1873
Joined: Fri Apr 08, 2005 9:32 pm
Location: Chilterns, West Hertfordshire

Postby Erin » Sun Jul 31, 2005 2:20 pm

YaST is just a front end to a CLI driven world of text and config files. Not meaning to start a flame war but if you can learn the CLI side of *nix, quite often you are in a far better position to fix/use *nix than those who rely on a GUI. Keep up the good work with your research, it is a very positive way to learn how to get the OS to work for you.

John Lee Hooker was on Blues Brothers showing at the time. A fine film with a superb soundtrack.

Erin
Just beneath my skin I'm screaming. Faithless::Insomnia.
Dual PIII 550 with Ubuntu [semi-bleeding].
User avatar
Erin
LXF regular
 
Posts: 141
Joined: Thu Apr 07, 2005 7:35 pm
Location: The Olde Smoke south of the River

Postby Marrea » Sun Jul 31, 2005 5:36 pm

Erin wrote:Not meaning to start a flame war but if you can learn the CLI side of *nix, quite often you are in a far better position to fix/use *nix than those who rely on a GUI.


I quite agree with you actually. I'm finding that I'm having to use the command line quite a lot with Ubuntu, which is good. Last night, for instance, I was busy learning how to mount my Windows partition and how to add it to /etc/fstab. Again, this is something which I think SuSE must have set up automatically because I certainly don't remember having to do anything to see my Windows files in that distro.
User avatar
Marrea
LXF regular
 
Posts: 1873
Joined: Fri Apr 08, 2005 9:32 pm
Location: Chilterns, West Hertfordshire

Postby jer1ch0 » Sun Jul 31, 2005 9:59 pm

Just on a sidenote - how can I remove that horrible christmas tree decoration when Xine first starts up?
jer1ch0
LXF regular
 
Posts: 135
Joined: Sat Apr 09, 2005 10:42 am
Location: Ireland

Postby coolclassic » Mon Aug 01, 2005 11:01 am

Whilst you are connected to the internet and using xine right click>settings>skin downloader. Take your pick
The world is your playground why don't you play.
User avatar
coolclassic
LXF regular
 
Posts: 108
Joined: Fri Apr 08, 2005 2:15 pm

Next

Return to Help!

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest