LinuxQuestions.org
Download your favorite Linux distribution at LQ ISO.
Go Back   LinuxQuestions.org > Forums > Linux Forums > Linux - Newbie
User Name
Password
Linux - Newbie This Linux forum is for members that are new to Linux.
Just starting out and have a question? If it is not in the man pages or the how-to's this is the place!

Notices

Reply
 
Search this Thread
Old 01-02-2010, 05:00 AM   #1
jhobdell10
LQ Newbie
 
Registered: Jan 2010
Distribution: Linux Linpus
Posts: 3

Rep: Reputation: 0
Distro or media player issue


Hello all

I'm going to be as brief and as fair as possible. Frankly I'm getting sick to death of Linux already (only had it for a week) because its inner workings seem utterly incomprehensible to me and it's starting to make me very angry. This particular instance is about video. I've spent hours trying to find a simple answer to the question "Can I play AVI files on Linpus?" and for every answer there's a swathe of Linux speak that I have no hope of understanding or I attempt the suggested course of action with no success.

That said I don't want to give up because I still hate Microsoft way too much and besides: I can't afford to send back my netbook and start over.

So I'm on an ACER Aspire One with Linux Linpus. So far I've tried Mplayer (seriously don't understand all the gobbledegook on their site), VLC (no luck), Realplayer (useless) etc etc.

My question at this point is whether I can in fact get AVIs to run on my netbook as it exists or do I need to switch to a different Distro of some description? I tried Ubuntu on my old desktop but to be honest I don't trust it very much.

I seriously cannot stress enough how much of a Linux retard I am so if you feel gracious enough to reply, assume that I know NOTHING.

Perhaps I should also point out that having given up a ridiculous amount of time to trying to use Ubuntu on my old machine and now Linpus on this, all I want is to be able to watch videos, surf the net (no problems there) and convert the occasional file (maybe AVI to MP3 or 4 if that's an easier option than finding an AVI compatible media player).

Thanks so much for your help and understanding guys.
Happy New Year too!
 
Old 01-02-2010, 07:39 AM   #2
Simon Bridge
Guru
 
Registered: Oct 2003
Location: Waiheke NZ
Distribution: Ubuntu
Posts: 9,211

Rep: Reputation: 197Reputation: 197
Can I play AVI files on Linpus?

Simple answer = No.

But it is possible to install software which will do that for you. To do that you need to understand about codecs. You also need to understand that there is a lot of politics that has been hidden from you - probably behind your dislike of Microsoft.

Quote:
I'm on an ACER Aspire One with Linux Linpus
Acer deliver a light (read: incomplete) version of linpus with their netbooks - in some countries it is commandline only so you are lucky anything works at all. They have a history of shipping broken gnu/linuxes and there are a bunch of us trying to talk them around to behaving themselves.

You are pretty much expected (by Acer) to install another linux on this thing - or XP, or 7 - suggest UNR (Ubuntu Netbook Remix). You've tried Ubuntu before with little understanding dawning I take it? Gnu/linux does use a different paradigm from the regular proprietary model that bleeds into everything.

We do not normally recommend linpus for beginners precisely because it is difficult to understand. Adding to this, netbooks usually need a special implimentation which takes into account the limited resources. So you get a gui with tabs etc instead of the desktop you are probably used to.


Quote:
all I want is to be able to watch videos, surf the net (no problems there) and convert the occasional file (maybe AVI to MP3 or 4 if that's an easier option than finding an AVI compatible media player)
Here you have the nub of the issue.

There is a video format that will play effortlessly in all gnu/linux distros. It is called "theora" and it has the suffix .ogv for reasons we need not go in to.

There is also an audio codec called "vorbis" which has suffix .oga

These formats are also html5 standards, and will play in html5-compatible browsers like firefox without needing a special player like flash does. In fact, you can right-click on any ogv file and have it play in your browser just like that.

Most distros have a program called "convert" which changes any format to ogv or oga via a mouse click. There is also a program called ffmpeg2theora which converts any Motion Picture Entertainments Group format (normally used in avi files) to theora or vorbis. Both these programs usually need to be installed.

The problem with avi and others is that there is often a royalty imposed on people who want to make players for them. Most gratis distros do not risk installing players because of this and other legal problems.

However, you could try linux mint or SimplyMepis - which do tend to ship with restricted formats. Of course, if you want to spend some money, you can purchase a commercial distro with this function built in.

However - no matter what, you are going to have to unlearn a lot of MS speak and learn a lot of linux speak. The price of freedom is hard work - you are always welcome to use a mac.
 
Old 01-02-2010, 07:56 AM   #3
MysticalGroovy
Member
 
Registered: Sep 2009
Location: Greece
Distribution: Slackware
Posts: 106

Rep: Reputation: 21
as Simon said above, you should go for a netbook optimized distribution such as Ubuntu Netbook Remix or others (you can see a list and comparison here)

now on the codecs side, by installing an netbook optimized distro you should have the necessary codecs to view .avi files by default (havent tested any of these distros thought, Im just guessing...)

if not, however, using the package manager of your distro of choice it shouldnt be that hard to install the necessary codecs and a media player that suite your needs.
(mplayer/vlc/xmms or even amarok)

I suggest starting by getting rid of Linpus and installing another distro

Last edited by MysticalGroovy; 01-02-2010 at 07:58 AM.
 
Old 01-03-2010, 03:49 AM   #4
jhobdell10
LQ Newbie
 
Registered: Jan 2010
Distribution: Linux Linpus
Posts: 3

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 0
Thanks a lot for all the information guys. This makes sense. As a first start I'll do some experimenting with a couple of different distros. I've had Mint recommended a couple of times already so I'll start there.

Thanks again.
 
Old 01-03-2010, 04:04 AM   #5
lupusarcanus
Senior Member
 
Registered: Mar 2009
Location: USA
Distribution: Arch
Posts: 1,022
Blog Entries: 19

Rep: Reputation: 146Reputation: 146
Try Ubuntu 9.10, which is available on their site, free of charge of course, for downloading. After you install it you can go to Applications -> Ubuntu Software Center and type in "restricted" in that cute little search box, and click the "Ubuntu Restricted Extras" arrow and click on install (it will prompt you for your password). After that you should have most of those proprietary (jargon for Winblows) stuff like MP3, WMA, AVI and all that jazz.

Linpus from what I hear, sucks really badly, to put it simply

EDIT:!! I have an Aspire ONe too! Welcome to the world of Linux, fellow user. Ubuntu (regular edition) works perfectly!

Last edited by lupusarcanus; 01-03-2010 at 04:07 AM.
 
Old 01-04-2010, 02:02 PM   #6
jhobdell10
LQ Newbie
 
Registered: Jan 2010
Distribution: Linux Linpus
Posts: 3

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 0
OK I'm hoping this will be the end of this thread. I can't figure out how to turn my USB stick into a bootable drive. Do I only need to change the boot order or what? Lots of sites keep talking about a usb-creator programme which I don't have and can't find (the command line entries they suggest do nothing - is that Linpus or a lack of repositories?)

Thanks.
Jonathan
 
Old 01-04-2010, 02:40 PM   #7
Simon Bridge
Guru
 
Registered: Oct 2003
Location: Waiheke NZ
Distribution: Ubuntu
Posts: 9,211

Rep: Reputation: 197Reputation: 197
1. You need the stick to contain a bootloader, a file system, and an operating system.
2. You need a bios capable of booting off usb media + campatible architecture
3. you need to change your boot order

See
http://www.pendrivelinux.com/

A pendrive distro can be useful - allows you to carry your computer with you to run on different peoples hardware - though you cannot run x86 linux off a ppc. Some people use a mini-CD to boot and a pendrive for files since most computers are set with the optical drive as 1st boot device - means they don't have to fiddle their mate's bios to boot linux.
 
  


Reply

Tags
avi, distro, mplayer, vlc


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
media and media player problem? xyz Linux - Software 3 09-25-2009 04:05 AM
How to Set VLC Media Player as Default .wmv Player JonBL Linux - Software 2 04-24-2008 01:06 AM
LXer: Hack Your Media Player - Neuros OSD Open Source Media Player LXer Syndicated Linux News 0 01-21-2008 05:40 AM
Default Media Player Not Playing Windows Media Player Files kenlitting Suse/Novell 2 11-29-2006 11:05 AM
Is there an audio player with content library like Media Player? Merlin53 Linux - Software 4 11-24-2004 06:42 PM


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 06:42 AM.

Main Menu
My LQ
Write for LQ
LinuxQuestions.org is looking for people interested in writing Editorials, Articles, Reviews, and more. If you'd like to contribute content, let us know.
Main Menu
Syndicate
RSS1  Latest Threads
RSS1  LQ News
Twitter: @linuxquestions
identi.ca: @linuxquestions
Facebook: linuxquestions Google+: linuxquestions
Open Source Consulting | Domain Registration