Introduction to FFmpeg

FFmpeg is a solution to record, convert and stream audio and video. It is a very fast video and audio converter and it can also acquire from a live audio/video source. Designed to be intuitive, the command-line interface (ffmpeg) tries to figure out all the parameters, when possible. FFmpeg can also convert from any sample rate to any other, and resize video on the fly with a high quality polyphase filter. FFmpeg can use a Video4Linux compatible video source and any Open Sound System audio source.

This package is known to build and work properly using an LFS 12.1 platform.

Package Information

  • Download (HTTP): https://ffmpeg.org/releases/ffmpeg-6.1.1.tar.xz

  • Download MD5 sum: 341d719415b7f95bb59f5016f2864ac6

  • Download size: 10 MB

  • Estimated disk space required: 237 MB (add 1.5 GB for the FATE suite/tests, add 792 MB for documentation)

  • Estimated build time: 1.3 SBU (using parallelism=4; add 3.2 SBU (with THREADS=4) to run the FATE suite after sample files are downloaded; add 0.3 SBU for doxygen docs)

Additional Downloads

FFmpeg Dependencies


Recommended for desktop use


Doxygen-1.10.0, Fontconfig-2.15.0, FriBidi-1.0.13, frei0r-plugins-1.8.0, libcdio-2.1.0 (to identify and play CDs), libdrm-2.4.120 (for kmsgrab input), libwebp-1.3.2, opencv-4.9.0, OpenJPEG-2.5.0, GnuTLS-3.8.3, PulseAudio-17.0, Samba-4.19.5, Speex-1.2.1, texlive-20230313 (or install-tl-unx) for PDF and PS documentation, v4l-utils-1.26.1, Vulkan-Loader-1.3.277, XviD-1.3.7, a graphical environment, dav1d, Flite, GSM, libaacplus, libbluray, libcaca, libcelt, libdc1394, libdca, libiec61883, libilbc, libmodplug, libnut (Git checkout), librtmp, libssh, libtheora, OpenAL, OpenCore AMR, Srt, Schroedinger, TwoLAME, vo-aaenc, vo-amrwbenc, and ZVBI

Installation of FFmpeg

First, apply a patch that adds an API necessary for some packages to build:

patch -Np1 -i ../ffmpeg-6.1.1-chromium_method-1.patch

Install FFmpeg by running the following commands:

./configure --prefix=/usr        \
            --enable-gpl         \
            --enable-version3    \
            --enable-nonfree     \
            --disable-static     \
            --enable-shared      \
            --disable-debug      \
            --enable-libaom      \
            --enable-libass      \
            --enable-libfdk-aac  \
            --enable-libfreetype \
            --enable-libmp3lame  \
            --enable-libopus     \
            --enable-libvorbis   \
            --enable-libvpx      \
            --enable-libx264     \
            --enable-libx265     \
            --enable-openssl     \
            --disable-vulkan     \
            --ignore-tests=enhanced-flv-av1 \
            --docdir=/usr/share/doc/ffmpeg-6.1.1 &&

make &&

gcc tools/qt-faststart.c -o tools/qt-faststart

HTML documentation was built in the previous step. If you have texlive-20230313 installed and wish to build PDF and Postscript versions of the documentation, issue the following commands:

pushd doc &&
for DOCNAME in `basename -s .html *.html`
    texi2pdf -b $DOCNAME.texi &&
    texi2dvi -b $DOCNAME.texi &&

    dvips    -o $DOCNAME.ps   \
done &&
popd &&

If you have Doxygen-1.10.0 installed and you wish to build (if --disable-doc was used) or rebuild the html documentation, issue:

doxygen doc/Doxyfile

The fate-suite tests include comparisons with installed files, and should not be run before the package is installed. Therefore, if you desire to run them, instructions are given further below.

Now, as the root user:

make install &&

install -v -m755    tools/qt-faststart /usr/bin &&
install -v -m755 -d           /usr/share/doc/ffmpeg-6.1.1 &&
install -v -m644    doc/*.txt /usr/share/doc/ffmpeg-6.1.1

If the PDF and Postscript documentation was built, issue the following commands, as the root user, to install them:

install -v -m644 doc/*.pdf /usr/share/doc/ffmpeg-6.1.1 &&
install -v -m644 doc/*.ps  /usr/share/doc/ffmpeg-6.1.1

If you used doxygen to manually create the API documentation, install it by issuing the following commands as the root user:

install -v -m755 -d /usr/share/doc/ffmpeg-6.1.1/api                     &&
cp -vr doc/doxy/html/* /usr/share/doc/ffmpeg-6.1.1/api                  &&
find /usr/share/doc/ffmpeg-6.1.1/api -type f -exec chmod -c 0644 \{} \; &&
find /usr/share/doc/ffmpeg-6.1.1/api -type d -exec chmod -c 0755 \{} \;

To properly test the installation you must have rsync-3.2.7 installed and follow the instructions for the FFmpeg Automated Testing Environment (FATE). First, about 1 GB of sample files used to run FATE are downloaded with the command:

make fate-rsync SAMPLES=fate-suite/

The fate-suite directory is created and the files are downloaded there. That command actually runs an rsync command to obtain the sample files. You may want to compress and keep this directory for testing again, for testing in another system, or for when a new version of ffmpeg is released. Then, unpack the sample files in the source directory, and run the make fate-rsync ... command above to sync with the upstream repository. The download size and time are drastically reduced by doing this. Estimated values in "Package Information" do not include the download SBU. Some samples may have been removed in newer versions, so in order to be sure local and server fate samples are identical when you use previously saved samples, run the following command:

rsync -vrltLW  --delete --timeout=60 --contimeout=60 \
      rsync://fate-suite.ffmpeg.org/fate-suite/ fate-suite/

Next, execute FATE with the following commands (there are more than 3800 tests in the suite):

make fate THREADS=N SAMPLES=fate-suite/ | tee ../fate.log &&
grep ^TEST ../fate.log | wc -l

where N is an integer, N ≤ number of cores in the system.

A successful run should return no errors or warnings, just a list of tests and total amount at the end.

Command Explanations

find ... ;: Fixes permissions of documentation files and directories.

--enable-libfreetype: Enables Freetype support.

--enable-gpl: Enables the use of GPL code and permits support for postprocessing, swscale and many other features.

--enable-version3: Enables the use of (L)GPL version 3 code.

--enable-nonfree: Enables the use of nonfree code. Note that the resulting libraries and binaries will be unredistributable.

--disable-static: This switch prevents installation of static versions of the libraries.

--enable-shared: Enables building shared libraries, otherwise only static libraries are built and installed.

--disable-debug: Disables building debugging symbols into the programs and libraries.

--enable-libaom: Enables AV1 audio and video decoding via libaom.

--enable-libass: Enables ASS/SSA subtitle format rendering via libass.

--enable-libdrm: Use this switch if libdrm-2.4.120 is installed to build the kmsgrab input module which is useful for screen capturing or streaming.

--enable-libfdk-aac: Enables AAC audio encoding via libfdk-aac.

--enable-libmp3lame: Enables MP3 audio encoding via libmp3lame.

--enable-libvorbis --enable-libvpx: Enables WebM encoding via libvorbis and libvpx.

--enable-libx264: Enables high-quality H.264/MPEG-4 AVC encoding via libx264.

--enable-libx265: Enables high-quality H.265/HEVC encoding via libx265.

--enable-openssl: Enables HTTPS protocol for network streams.

--disable-vulkan: Disables Vulkan for the current version of Vulkan-Loader-1.3.277 due to an API conflict.

--ignore-tests=...: Disables tests that fail to run on BLFS without the optional packages. Currently the AV1 test is disabled as it needs dav1d to do AV1 decoding on the CPU. The test might work if you have a GPU that can decode AV1, but this was not tested.

--enable-gnutls: Use this option instead of --enable-openssl, if you want to use GnuTLS instead of OpenSSL for HTTPS protocol.

--disable-doc: Disables building html documentation. This is only needed if Doxygen-1.10.0 is installed and you do not want to build the html documentation.

--enable-libpulse: Enables support for Pulseaudio for audio output.

gcc tools/qt-faststart.c -o tools/qt-faststart: This builds the qt-faststart program which can modify QuickTime formatted movies (.mov or .mp4) so that the header information is located at the beginning of the file instead of the end. This allows the movie file to begin playing before the entire file has been downloaded.



Support for most of the dependency packages requires using options passed to the configure script. View the output from ./configure --help for complete information about enabling dependency packages.


Installed Programs: ffmpeg, ffplay, ffprobe, and qt-faststart
Installed Libraries: libavcodec.so, libavdevice.so, libavfilter.so, libavformat.so, libavutil.so, libpostproc.so, libswresample.so, and libswscale.so
Installed Directories: /usr/include/libav{codec,device,filter,format,util}, /usr/include/libpostproc, /usr/include/libsw{resample,scale}, /usr/share/doc/ffmpeg-6.1.1, and /usr/share/ffmpeg

Short Descriptions


is a command-line tool to convert video files, network streams and input from a TV card to several video formats


is a very simple and portable media player using the ffmpeg libraries and the SDL library


gathers information from multimedia streams and prints it in a human and machine-readable fashion


moves the index file to the front of quicktime (mov/mp4) videos


is a library containing the FFmpeg codecs (both encoding and decoding)


is the FFmpeg device handling library


is a library of filters that can alter video or audio between the decoder and the encoder (or output)


is a library containing the file formats handling (mux and demux code for several formats) used by ffplay as well as allowing the generation of audio or video streams


is a library containing functions for resampling audio and video.


is the FFmpeg utility library


is the FFmpeg post processing library


is the FFmpeg audio rescaling library, it contains functions for converting audio sample formats


is the FFmpeg image rescaling library