I’ve just custom-compiled LiVES.


I like video-editing software, even if I rarely use it. LiVES is an example of video-editing software, available for Linux. It can be installed under the newer Debian / Stretch, from the package-manager, but when we do so, it seems to suffer from two problems:

  1. The GUI does not seem to display properly. We’re used to seeing artwork as part of the BG, of the application-window, but instead only see a black background. Yet, the application launches fine and without error-messages.
  2. When we try to open or import various video-files, the import is without sound, or just does not succeed.

At the same time, I know that I’ve subscribed to the Debian / Multimedia repository because usually, doing so gives me access to more, or more-powerful-versions-of, multimedia software.

Problem (2) seems to be the real issue, and is due to Debian trying to switch the users from using ‘MPlayer’ to using the ‘MPV’ package instead, as the all-purpose media decoder. In fact, installing ‘mpv’ as a dependency, actually forbids installing the legacy ‘mplayer’ package.

There are two possible solutions to this:

  1. Edit the package, to change its dependencies, so that we can use it with the legacy ‘MPlayer’, or
  2. Uninstall the package-manager version of ‘LiVES’, Uninstall ‘mpv’, and Build LiVES from source-code, but install (legacy) ‘mplayer’ from the package-manager first.

Solution (1) would be precarious.

I chose solution (2).

(Edit 12/11/2017 :

I should note, that LiVES detects during its first run, not at compile-time, whether we have ‘MPlayer’, ‘MPlayer2′, or ‘MPV’ installed, and what the capabilities of the detected players are. With ‘MPV’, that test for capabilities already did not pass with 100% success. )

As for problem (1) above, this seems to be due to a bug with the Gtk3 support in the source-code, for LiVES v2.8.7 . We could try to fix this, by giving the command

./configure –disable-gtk3

But if we do, then we end up with an undeclared macro, which at this stage of the game, the source-code absolutely needs.

And so in response to problem (1), I chose to keep the Gtk3-dependency, and to accept that the GUI doesn’t look right. This detail in the GUI doesn’t hinder LiVES from working in full. It just doesn’t look pretty.

(Edit 12/11/2017 : )

I did notice after some playing with the application, that this black background-color, seems to be an interim fix of some sort, on the part of its programmers.

We can actually choose a different BG-color, by going into Tools -> Preferences -> Themes/Colors , and I chose a dark-gray BG-color instead.



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