1GStreamer 1.13.x development series
2
3WHAT IT IS
4----------
5
6This is GStreamer, a framework for streaming media.
7
8WHERE TO START
9--------------
10
11We have a website at
12http://gstreamer.freedesktop.org/
13
14You should start by going through our FAQ at
15http://gstreamer.freedesktop.org/data/doc/gstreamer/head/faq/html/
16
17There is more documentation; go to
18http://gstreamer.freedesktop.org/documentation
19
20You can subscribe to our mailing lists; see the website for details.
21
22We track bugs in GNOME's bugzilla; see the website for details.
23
24You can join us on IRC - #gstreamer on irc.freenode.org
25
26GStreamer 1.0 series
27--------------------
28
29Starring
30
31  GSTREAMER
32
33The core around which all other modules revolve.  Base functionality and
34libraries, some essential elements, documentation, and testing.
35
36  BASE
37
38A well-groomed and well-maintained collection of GStreamer plug-ins and
39elements, spanning the range of possible types of elements one would want
40to write for GStreamer.
41
42And introducing, for the first time ever, on the development screen ...
43
44  THE GOOD
45
46 --- "Such ingratitude.  After all the times I've saved your life."
47
48A collection of plug-ins you'd want to have right next to you on the
49battlefield.  Shooting sharp and making no mistakes, these plug-ins have it
50all: good looks, good code, and good licensing.  Documented and dressed up
51in tests.  If you're looking for a role model to base your own plug-in on,
52here it is.
53
54If you find a plot hole or a badly lip-synced line of code in them,
55let us know - it is a matter of honour for us to ensure Blondie doesn't look
56like he's been walking 100 miles through the desert without water.
57
58  THE UGLY
59
60  --- "When you have to shoot, shoot.  Don't talk."
61
62There are times when the world needs a color between black and white.
63Quality code to match the good's, but two-timing, backstabbing and ready to
64sell your freedom down the river.  These plug-ins might have a patent noose
65around their neck, or a lock-up license, or any other problem that makes you
66think twice about shipping them.
67
68We don't call them ugly because we like them less.  Does a mother love her
69son less because he's not as pretty as the other ones ? No  - she commends
70him on his great personality.  These plug-ins are the life of the party.
71And we'll still step in and set them straight if you report any unacceptable
72behaviour - because there are two kinds of people in the world, my friend:
73those with a rope around their neck and the people who do the cutting.
74
75  THE BAD
76
77  --- "That an accusation?"
78
79No perfectly groomed moustache or any amount of fine clothing is going to
80cover up the truth - these plug-ins are Bad with a capital B.
81They look fine on the outside, and might even appear to get the job done, but
82at the end of the day they're a black sheep. Without a golden-haired angel
83to watch over them, they'll probably land in an unmarked grave at the final
84showdown.
85
86Don't bug us about their quality - exercise your Free Software rights,
87patch up the offender and send us the patch on the fastest steed you can
88steal from the Confederates. Because you see, in this world, there's two
89kinds of people, my friend: those with loaded guns and those who dig.
90You dig.
91
92The Lowdown
93-----------
94
95  --- "I've never seen so many plug-ins wasted so badly."
96
97GStreamer Plug-ins has grown so big that it's hard to separate the wheat from
98the chaff.  Also, distributors have brought up issues about the legal status
99of some of the plug-ins we ship.  To remedy this, we've divided the previous
100set of available plug-ins into four modules:
101
102- gst-plugins-base: a small and fixed set of plug-ins, covering a wide range
103  of possible types of elements; these are continuously kept up-to-date
104  with any core changes during the development series.
105
106  - We believe distributors can safely ship these plug-ins.
107  - People writing elements should base their code on these elements.
108  - These elements come with examples, documentation, and regression tests.
109
110- gst-plugins-good: a set of plug-ins that we consider to have good quality
111  code, correct functionality, our preferred license (LGPL for the plug-in
112  code, LGPL or LGPL-compatible for the supporting library).
113
114  - We believe distributors can safely ship these plug-ins.
115  - People writing elements should base their code on these elements.
116
117- gst-plugins-ugly: a set of plug-ins that have good quality and correct
118  functionality, but distributing them might pose problems.  The license
119  on either the plug-ins or the supporting libraries might not be how we'd
120  like. The code might be widely known to present patent problems.
121
122  - Distributors should check if they want/can ship these plug-ins.
123  - People writing elements should base their code on these elements.
124
125- gst-plugins-bad: a set of plug-ins that aren't up to par compared to the
126  rest.  They might be close to being good quality, but they're missing
127  something - be it a good code review, some documentation, a set of tests,
128  a real live maintainer, or some actual wide use.
129  If the blanks are filled in they might be upgraded to become part of
130  either gst-plugins-good or gst-plugins-ugly, depending on the other factors.
131
132  - If the plug-ins break, you can't complain - instead, you can fix the
133    problem and send us a patch, or bribe someone into fixing them for you.
134  - New contributors can start here for things to work on.
135
136PLATFORMS
137---------
138
139- Linux is of course fully supported
140- FreeBSD is reported to work; other BSDs should work too
141- Solaris is reported to work; a specific sunaudiosink plugin has been written
142- MacOSX works, binary 1.x packages can be built using the cerbero build tool
143- Windows works; binary 1.x packages can be built using the cerbero build tool
144  - MSys/MinGW builds
145  - Microsoft Visual Studio builds are not yet available or supported
146- Android works, binary 1.x packages can be built using the cerbero build tool
147- iOS works
148
149INSTALLING FROM PACKAGES
150------------------------
151
152You should always prefer installing from packages first.  GStreamer is
153well-maintained for a number of distributions, including Fedora, Debian,
154Ubuntu, Mandrake, Gentoo, ...
155
156Only in cases where you:
157- want to hack on GStreamer
158- want to verify that a bug has been fixed
159- do not have a sane distribution
160should you choose to build from source tarballs or git.
161
162Find more information about the various packages at
163http://gstreamer.freedesktop.org/download/
164
165COMPILING FROM SOURCE TARBALLS
166------------------------------
167
168- again, make sure that you really need to install from source !
169  If GStreamer is one of your first projects ever that you build from source,
170  consider taking on an easier project.
171
172- check output of ./configure --help to see if any options apply to you
173- run
174  ./configure
175  make
176
177  to build GStreamer.
178- if you want to install it (not required, but what you usually want to do), run
179  make install
180
181- try out a simple test:
182  gst-launch -v fakesrc num_buffers=5 ! fakesink
183  (If you didn't install GStreamer, prefix gst-launch with tools/)
184
185  If it outputs a bunch of messages from fakesrc and fakesink, everything is
186  ok.
187
188  If it did not work, keep in mind that you might need to adjust the
189  PATH and/or LD_LIBRARY_PATH environment variables to make the system
190  find GStreamer in the prefix where you installed (by default that is /usr/local).
191
192- After this, you're ready to install gst-plugins, which will provide the
193  functionality you're probably looking for by now, so go on and read
194  that README.
195
196COMPILING FROM GIT
197------------------
198
199When building from git sources, you will need to run autogen.sh to generate
200the build system files.
201
202You will need a set of additional tools typical for building from git,
203including:
204- autoconf
205- automake
206- libtool
207
208autogen.sh will check for recent enough versions and complain if you don't have
209them.  You can also specify specific versions of automake and autoconf with
210--with-automake and --with-autoconf
211
212Check autogen.sh options by running autogen.sh --help
213
214autogen.sh can pass on arguments to configure
215
216When you have done this once, you can use autoregen.sh to re-autogen with
217the last passed options as a handy shortcut.  Use it.
218
219After the autogen.sh stage, you can follow the directions listed in
220"COMPILING FROM SOURCE"
221
222You can also run your whole git stack uninstalled in your home directory,
223so that you can quickly test changes without affecting your system setup or
224interfering with GStreamer installed from packages.  Many GStreamer developers
225use an uninstalled setup for their work.
226
227There is a 'create-uninstalled-setup.sh' script in
228
229  http://cgit.freedesktop.org/gstreamer/gstreamer/tree/scripts/
230
231to easily create an uninstalled setup from scratch.
232
233
234PLUG-IN DEPENDENCIES AND LICENSES
235---------------------------------
236
237GStreamer is developed under the terms of the LGPL (see LICENSE file for
238details). Some of our plug-ins however rely on libraries which are available
239under other licenses. This means that if you are distributing an application
240which has a non-GPL compatible license (for instance a closed-source
241application) with GStreamer, you have to make sure not to distribute GPL-linked
242plug-ins.
243
244When using GPL-linked plug-ins, GStreamer is for all practical reasons
245under the GPL itself.
246
247HISTORY
248-------
249
250The fundamental design comes from the video pipeline at Oregon Graduate
251Institute, as well as some ideas from DirectMedia.  It's based on plug-ins that
252will provide the various codec and other functionality.  The interface
253hopefully is generic enough for various companies (ahem, Apple) to release
254binary codecs for Linux, until such time as they get a clue and release the
255source.
256