video and FreeBSD?

Polytropon freebsd at
Thu Feb 18 07:29:23 UTC 2010

On Wed, 17 Feb 2010 11:33:32 -0800, Gary Kline <kline at> wrote:
> 	Guys,
> 	If I wanted to capture a video stream (say 30fps) in RAM and 
> 	store it or write to a file and/or sent it to a website or on 
> 	to another computer, what ports are avalable for this kind of 
> 	live capture?

I use mencoder for that. The input for video is a PCI
video card (Haupauge something, using bktr driver), and
audio is captured from a standard PCI sound card (cmi driver).
Postprocessing to file or piping the information is

> 	Is there one standard for moving images [jpg, mov, avi]? 

Not that I know. "Moving images", e. g. animated images,
are often implemented using the GIF format.

Video, often combined with audio, are encoded using a
certain mechanism (e. g. MPEG) and then encapsulated
into a container that takes care of video and audio

> 	Or does this depend on the camera or associated hardware?

Often cameras provide one arbitrary may of representing
the information. My cheap Aiptek (AEG Snap) camera, for
example, stored images in PNM format, while my Canon S3 IS
already uses JPG for that. Other cameras I know use a
certain bitmap format. It's the same with video: Some
cameras produce AVI, oders MPEG. Those information can
be obtained as strem ("webcam functionality") or as a
file ("download from camera").

> 	There isn't much in ports; or it may be that I'm just not
> 	searching on the right keywords.

The port mplayer / mencoder / gmencoder is your universal
BSD army knife for most tasks. :-)

Other interesting ports are gtkam and gphoto2, and of course
there's a KDE tool which's name I can't remember, but it's
something with "K".

It would be easier to find a good tool if you could be more
specific on what exactly you're trying to achieve.

Magdeburg, Germany
Happy FreeBSD user since 4.0
Andra moi ennepe, Mousa, ...

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