Shop open for business!

Ok, so as promised the is now live with all our codecs!. You guys have no idea all the practical issues delaying this, the last that hit us today being the credit card system suddenly refusing payments in dollars so we had to switch the shop over to Euro.

Anyway the press release is out and hopefully we get some good coverage. This release should also be a response to Eric Raymonds request
for someone to save him from the lack of codecs

As you will see if you go to the shop we support Windows Media codecs on Linux x86_32, Linux x86_64, Linux PPC, Solaris Intel and Solaris SPARC, just as we do with our MP3 plugin. Depending on interest other platforms could follow.

For Linux x86_32 and Linux x86_64 we also have MPEG2, AC3 and MPEG4 Part available. AAC is underway.

People will also notice that we rebate heavily if you buy the codecs in bundles, this is because we really prefer to stear people away from the single codecs purchases as they cost us as much as a bundle per transaction, which means more money to the bank and less to us :)

The codecs are distributed inside tarballs together with instructions. We realize this is not as painless an install as one could wish for. But doing packages for a million and one distro’s was not a plausible solution either. That said we are working on a codec installer/updater which will automatically download and install any codec bought in the shop. It will also upgrade those codecs as updates becomes available. The idea is that a purchase of the codecs gives you a year of updates, after which you can buy an discounted update to continue getting updated codecs and bundles.

So I hope people like the shop and also for anyone reading this wanting a site license, we do offer that, but that will be handled outside the shop. The shop is targeted at people looking for 20 or less licenses.


#1 Brad Griffith on 01.16.07 at 07:08

Hey Christian. Congratulations on the release. I have a couple questions.
First, are you planning to continue this project, adding support for Quicktime and possibly other formats? If not, why?
And, have you discussed deals with any distributions in regard to distributing these codecs in a more seamless/discoverable way? It would be great if I could just purchase the codec package through gnome-app-install in Ubuntu and have the updates available to me through standard apt-get/synaptic/update-manager tools. I know that there are a couple of specs on the ubuntu site about commercial apt channels, etc.
I think easier installation and distribution will be a critical element in the success of such projects (at least insofar as the codecs aren’t automatically bundled by distributors/hardware vendors).

#2 Patrick on 01.16.07 at 07:19

If you buy the “Complete set of playback plugins” option and you release an AAC decoder within the next year will that be considered an update or will you have to buy that decoder separately?

#3 Christian on 01.16.07 at 07:34

Brad: the answer to both questions is yes. We do plan on doing Quicktime to the extent that we can by supporting the Quicktime container format and the AAC and H264 codecs.
We are also talking with the distributions in order to support this more seamlessly.

Patrick, if you buy the complete package now it will include a free update to the new package with AAC included.

#4 Brad Griffith on 01.16.07 at 07:42

Awesome. I’ll pick up the bundle later tonight.

#5 Ronald S. Bultje on 01.16.07 at 07:56

If you read Eric Raymond’s pledge carefully, you’ll notice he very much wants someone to distribute this stuff _without_ that being their core business. As he says it, it should be dumped as soon as it’s served its purpose. Would Fluendo be willing to do that?

Otherwise, congratulations, good to see one piece of vapour finally being reality. Any idea when will DVD playback plugins be ready?

#6 Murray Cumming on 01.16.07 at 08:29

> We realize this is not as painless an install as one could > wish for. But doing packages for a million and one distro’s > was not a plausible solution either.

Just pick 2 or 3 distros, and charge extra for it. Though I suppose you might need to earn some money on this first to justify the time.

However, the ability to install codecs in the user’s home directory so they don’t clash with the distro’s packaging system, combined with an installer, makes the current method not so bad.

Well done.

#7 Christian on 01.16.07 at 08:32

Ronald: As you might have noticed with Flumotion we are moving toward a service model so we don’t bet our future on properietary codecs.

As for the DVD player (it will not just be DVD plugins although the codecs of course will be) its still a little off even if Jan is making great progress these days.

#8 Ronald S. Bultje on 01.16.07 at 09:24

Good to hear. Would you be willing to give those codecs (the decoders) away free-of-charge to distributions signing for it?

#9 Erik Snoeijs on 01.16.07 at 09:27

Just wanted to say thanks :) i’ve been waiting for this for a while now.
Just bought the whole pack and it worked like a charm.
Also just love the price, very do-able for just about everyone i think.

#10 Martin on 01.16.07 at 10:18

Why is it more expensive to buy the “Windows Media Playback Bundle” than it is to buy the two components separately?

#11 Christian on 01.16.07 at 10:30

Martin: The bundle contains the 3 plugins available around Windows Media. Not two.

#12 Joel on 01.16.07 at 10:43

Thanks for the great service! About purchasing, how does it work with USD? I live in the US and would very much like to buy the bundle.

#13 Christian on 01.16.07 at 10:46

Ronald: not sure what you are asking. But if you are asking if we are willing to cover all patent fees for the next 20 years for all distributions then the answer is no :)

#14 Christian on 01.16.07 at 10:53

Joel: well payment is done via visa or mastercard so the bank will automatically convert for you at they normal exchange rate.

#15 Joseph on 01.16.07 at 12:27

will the Windows Media one (and future AAC) ones do the craptastic DRM schemes too? How about Real Media?

#16 obi on 01.16.07 at 12:59

Seems the “complete set” is not available in Linux/PPC flavour; is this an oversight, or are they simply not all ported yet?

#17 Joseph on 01.16.07 at 15:14

Comments on LWN article. Of particular note: will all of the plugins support encoding?

#18 Brent on 01.16.07 at 16:11

So what is the EULA for these codecs? Do I pay-per-installation, pay-per-computer, pay-per-user, or pay-per-lifetime?

Please make this clear on the fluendo shop site. Thanks!

#19 Zaheer Merali on 01.16.07 at 18:13

I believe that it is pay per computer. Ronald, it is not feasible to give away the plugins to distributors because for each plugin distributed a patent licence fee has to be paid. However I am sure Fluendo will be happy to negotiate with distributors for bulk distribution of the plugins. This is where the distributors have to step up and show that they want their users to be able to play patented formats.

#20 mmmmh on 01.17.07 at 03:17

Gnome is doing the most stupid thing it ever did. It’s betting our lovely, free software platform on a product made by proprietary lovers who won’t be able to sustain themselves if they don’t sell DRM and proprietary codecs.

God, Xine, VLC, Mplayer are so much better than any gstreamer based crap. There will be one day where Christian Schaller won’t have any money at all and won’t be able to hack on gstreamer and this piece of shit will die by itself, unlike Xine, whose developers are not paid to maintain it.

#21 Thomas Zajic on 01.17.07 at 10:03

I was planning on buying the whole codec pack, but wanted to try the free MP3 codec first to see if it would work. Turns out that it doesn’t, as the codec requires GLIBC_2.4 symbols.

I’m on Slackware 11.0 with a self-compiled GNOME/ desktop. Any plans on supporting older glibc versions as well?

[root@disclosure]:~# ldd /usr/local/lib/gstreamer-0.10/ > /dev/null
/usr/local/lib/gstreamer-0.10/ /lib/tls/ version `GLIBC_2.4′ not found (required by /usr/local/lib/gstreamer-0.10/


#22 Thomas Zajic on 01.17.07 at 10:05

Slackware 11.0 ships with glibc-2.3.6, BTW:

[root@disclosure]:~# /lib/ head -1
GNU C Library stable release version 2.3.6, by Roland McGrath et al.

#23 Zaheer Merali on 01.18.07 at 04:08

Thomas, I believe the plugins are being recompiled with glibc 2.3 so that people on glibc 2.3 based distros can use them.

#24 Thomas Zajic on 01.18.07 at 18:21

Really? Now that’d be great – although I received an e-mail from Christian (I also contacted Fluendo directly through their Webshop) explaining that glibc-2.4 is a hard requirement for the time being, and that there were no plans currently to support older glibc versions.

Oh well, let’s wait and see. Thanks for the heads-up!

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