Admins eHow SysAdmin Tips & Tricks

July 15, 2009

How to install ffmpeg on Debian Lenny from SVN

Filed under: Debian,General — Tags: , , , — admin @ 11:36 am

From :

FFmpeg is a complete, cross-platform solution to record, convert and stream audio and video. It includes libavcodec – the leading audio/video codec library.

Installation Guide :
download the following debian package and install it :

dpkg -i debian-multimedia-keyring_2008.10.16_all.deb 

Add the following lines to your /etc/apt/source.list :

nano /etc/apt/nano sources.list
deb lenny main
deb-src lenny main

update your apt cache :

apt-get update

install needed utils :

apt-get install checkinstall yasm git-core subversion

install ffmpeg dependencies :

apt-get build-dep ffmpeg

Install x264 :

git clone git://
cd x264
checkinstall --pkgname=x264 --pkgversion "1:0.svn`date +%Y%m%d`" --backup=no --default

Install libtheora :

tar xzvf libtheora-1.1.1.tar.gz
cd libtheora-1.1.1
checkinstall --pkgname=libtheora --pkgversion "1.1.1" --backup=no --default

remove old libx264-dev :

apt-get remove libx264-dev

download the latest release of ffmpeg using subversion :

svn checkout svn:// ffmpeg

configure and make ffmpeg :

cd ffmpeg/
./configure --enable-version3 --enable-libmp3lame --enable-libtheora --enable-libx264 --enable-libgsm --enable-postproc --enable-libxvid --enable-libfaac --enable-pthreads --enable-libvorbis --enable-gpl --enable-x11grab --enable-nonfree
checkinstall --pkgname=ffmpeg --pkgversion "4:0.5+svn`date +%Y%m%d`" --backup=no --default

and we are all set 🙂
just one more note , if you are going to convert flv files to 3gp files like me 😀 use the following command :

ffmpeg -i input.flv -s 176x144 -vcodec h263 -acodec aac output.3gp
  • MrOk

    Very Nice, a good and working guide.

  • Thx dude 🙂

  • bendiss

    Great work!

  • Tolga

    I keep getting \ERROR: libx264 not found\, when configuring ffmpeg.
    Although I believe the required version \libx264-76\ is in place.
    Anything I can do about this?

  • mojolive

    Hell just a qucik question.. I am getting an error about installing.

    –enable-libx264 YOU MUST HAVE VERSION 0.7.8 or newer.. ????

    how to correct this in Debian lenny, is there a command to update the libx264??? if so could you please explain with the right commands.. i am jsut learning so i am a copy paste guy.. for the mean time. thankyou for you nice tutorial though.. 🙂 and for anyones time to answer this question.

  • Thomas

    Heya, looks very nice but with the current rev I am receiving an error when configuring: ‘ERROR: libtheora not found’. If you omit ‘–enable-libtheora’ it’ll compile just fine though.

    Perhaps is related to this? (I tried r20588 but to no avail … )

  • FiFtHeLeMeNt

    the guide has been updated.

  • May 2010 – this install tutorial is still working fine ! thanks a lot …

  • Michael

    I am getting some weird errors when compiling ffmpeg. Here is some:

    libavcodec/mp3_header_compress_bsf.c: In function âmp3_header_compressâ:
    libavcodec/mp3_header_compress_bsf.c:41: warning: cast discards qualifiers from pointer target type
    CC libavcodec/mp3_header_decompress_bsf.o
    libavcodec/mp3_header_decompress_bsf.c: In function âmp3_header_decompressâ:
    libavcodec/mp3_header_decompress_bsf.c:36: warning: cast discards qualifiers from pointer target type

    among others

    Are these just to be ignored or is something very wrong? I have a lot of them :S

    Thanks in advance


  • Brandon

    ffmpeg seems to have removed support for libfaad, if you omit –enable-libfaad it configures without error. Thanks for this, it was a big help.

  • James Tan

    Got an error during ffmpeg “./configure” that –enable-libfaad is not valid.

  • Great tut, was looking around for something exactly like this.

    Nice one!!

  • Magnus

    Great, thanks a lot!

    BTW, if the ffmpeg configure fails with “unknown option –with-libfaad”, replace it with “–with-libfaac”. I haven’t investigated what this actually means, it’s just a quick work-around for now…

    Thanks again, great guide!

  • Sun


  • Pingback: Michiel . van Vlaardingen » Blog Archive » Fixing ffmpeg aac hickups()

  • Phil Ten

    Great guide ! Thanks !

    I mention a small issue, with ffmpeg I get the following error:

    Unknown option “–enable-libfaad”.

    it seem this option totally gone. Compile fine once removed.

  • Anonymous

    Thank you for your comment , I fixed the guide.

  • ???? ??????

    I’m install it on Ubuntu 10.10 && Debian lenny/
    I’v an error:
    ERROR: libx264 not found

    Solv it:

    cd ./x264
    ./configure –enable-shared –enable-gpl –enable-libmp3lame –enable-libamr-nb –enable-libfaac –enable-libfaad –enable-nonfree –enable-libx264

  • booga

    The guide is working great; however can you update the configure and make ffmpeg lines?  It does give an error on –enable-libx264.

    Any ideas would be greatly appreciated 🙂

  • artur

    ffmpeg moved from svn to git repository. You should get it from git for a up-to-date version :

    git clone git://

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