Tag Archives: ubuntu

Messing with ffmpeg

Today evening I wanted to quicly upscale one SD video to HD with ffmpeg, which was my encoder of choice for quite a long time.

But it ain’t easy. First, default Ubuntu 12.04 ffmpeg didn’t support h264. Switching to VP8 didn’t help as output quality was awful and several how-tos had unsupported options. It all looked like ffmpeg was outdated. And it was. Ubuntu ships Libav, a fork of ffmpeg, v 0.8 w/o x264 support.

Luckly, there’s a ppa with latest version (0.10) of original ffmpeg on launchpad. Using

ffmpeg -i in.mov -acodec copy -vcodec libx264 -crf_max 7000 -q 50 -s 960×720 HD.mov

I could convert my 4:3 ratio SD file into 720p one. I wish I used Avidemux and hopefully it would just simply work.

Unmounting external USB drives in Ubuntu 9.04

UPDATE root issue discussed below was fixed in Ubuntu 9.10 – unmounting and spinning down the drive works just fine from GUI

As some people know there are problems with correct unplugging of external USB hard drives on linux, Ubuntu in particular. The problem is that none of graphical managers support drive spindown when unmounting/ejecting the external hard drive. This can cause severe damage to HDD.

There’s an old bug in LP for that. The summary is that you can use a script by Clem-Vangelis and Dave Rosky to do the work. Later someone posted a link to scipt by Yan Li, which does even some more stuff.

But since Ubuntu 9.04 those scripts have stopped working – the drive kept spinning. Googling around I found a similar problem and found out the problem was in udev rules. There was a manul solution in comments of LP bug #388506 mentioning udev rules editing: in ubuntu 9.04 I needed to copy the 60-persistent-storage.rules file, modify ACTION!="add|change" to ACTION!="add". This way the scripts worked. Somehow when this rule is present my home partition couldn’t be mounted. So this rules file must be removed after external drive unmount.

To make things easier I merged the scripts by Clem-Vangelis,  Dave Rosky and Yan Li, updated it with udev rules workaround and done some other things. The script is as follows:

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Ubuntu 8.10 on HP Compaq nx6310

The specs
CPU: Intel CeleronM works out of the box
Chipset: Intel 945GM works out of the box
Video: Intel GMA 950 works out of the box DualHead included (yay! finally)
VGA (D-Sub) / DualHead: DualHead works out of the box. External dispaly on/off (Fn+F4) doesn’t work.
Optical drive: Matushita DVD-RAM UJ-840S works out of the box
Lan: Broadcom BCM4401-B0 works out of the box
WiFi: Broadcom 4311 doesn’t work out of the box. Need’s to fetch a firmware from the Internet
PCMCIA: Texas Instruments ( 8039 ?) not tested
Firewire: Texas Instruments ( 803a?) not tested
USB 2.0: works out of the box
Laptop lid indicator: doesn’t work at all

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Ubuntu 8.04 on HP Compaq nx6310

The specs
CPU: Intel CeleronM works out of the box
Chipset: Intel 945GM works out of the box
Video: Intel GMA 950 works out of the box (needs tweaking if you want DualHead)
VGA (D-Sub) / DualHead: external dispaly on/off (Fn+F4) doesn’t work out of the box. Need’s tweaking if you want DualHead. Though, it broke later anyway. External monitor works just fine.
Optical drive: Matushita DVD-RAM UJ-840S works out of the box
Lan: Broadcom BCM4401-B0 works out of the box
WiFi: Broadcom 4311 doesn’t work out of the box; easily configurable
PCMCIA: Texas Instruments ( 8039 ?) not tested
Firewire: Texas Instruments ( 803a?) not tested
USB 2.0: works out of the box
Laptop lid indicator: doesn’t work at all

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jhead EXIF editor

I’ve been to a great eurotrip with my friends lately. We got lots of great pictures taken on two digicams. But…

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