Bits from the Debian Multimedia Maintainers

This brief announcement was published in the debian-devel-announce mailing list and I repeat it here for your information.


Since there has been a lot happening in the Debian Multimedia world during the Squeeze release, so we figured we should give you an update on that.

Who are we?

In the dark old ages, there were two teams involved in multimedia: the Debian Multimedia and Debian Multimedia Packages teams. Please note that neither of them is related to (which is maintained by Christian Marillat, and is known to break current ffmpeg-based applications like mplayer and vlc in Debian Squeeze.). During late 2008, both teams were merged into one, the Debian Multimedia Maintainers team, to avoid effort fragmentation. Since then, there has been a lot of work done:

Consumer Multimedia in Debian

Consumer Multimedia is about playing and, well, consuming multimedia.

Squeeze will feature:

  • FFmpeg 0.5.2, finally uncrippled thanks to zack! No mp3/h264 encoder, though. (still in NEW).
  • mplayer 1.0rc3, finally with mencoder enabled.
  • VLC 1.1.3
  • VDPAU hardware acceleration in ffmpeg/mplayer (but feedback is welcome!)
  • Guayadeque 0.2.5
  • gmusicbrowser 1.0.2

Squeeze will not feature:

  • FFmpeg 0.6 (But already available in experimental)
  • Hardware acceleration with VA-API (packages also in experimental, for support on Intel hardware).

Producer Multimedia in Debian

Producer multimedia is software for producing multimedia. Squeeze will

End user applications:

  • Ardour 2.8.11
  • Audacity 1.3.12
  • Composite 0.006
  • Csound 5.12. The QuteCsound frontend is also available.
  • FluidSynth 1.1.1
  • Hydrogen
  • Internet DJ Console 0.8.3
  • Jokosher 0.11.5
  • LiVES 1.3.4
  • mhWaveEdit 1.4.20
  • morituri 0.1.1
  • QTractor 0.4.6
  • Rosegarden 10.04.2
  • SooperLooper 1.6.14
  • Traverso 0.49.1
  • X Jack Video Monitor 0.4.13
  • Yoshimi 0.058.1

Platforms and technologies:

  • JACK versions 0.118 and 1.9.6 (aka, jackd1 and jackd2). You can choose to install any of them (but only one at a time).
  • LV2 plugins are supported. Ardour has support for them, and there are a bunch of them provided in Debian.
  • LADSPA plugins are still supported.
  • DSSI updated to 1.0.0, many plugins are available.
  • FireWire sound devices are supported with libffado, and is supported by JACK.

Squeeze will not feature:

  • JACK session support.
  • Ardour 3 (it’s not out yet, so it did not make it in time for squeeze).
  • SuperCollider. There is a package in the works, but did not make it to Squeeze.
  • Toonloop: This live stop-motion animation editor has been packaged only recently.
  • NASPRO: Convenient library to implement LV2 dynamic manifest plugins. It’s available in Sid.
  • Mixxx: 1.7 series had RC bugs, and 1.8 was too late for squeeze.

Debian Multimedia Blend

There is also an effort to start a Debian Multimedia Blend to give a better overview about what multimedia applications are available in Debian. There is a short list for a quick overview as well as a long package list separated in sections to give a more detailed overview (including translations, screenshots, popularity of package etc). You are invited to help improving the tasks either directly in SVN or by sending patches to Andreas Tille <> or (see below). Note that not all of the packages listed in the tasks pages are maintained by the Debian Multimedia team, since they are aimed at producing useful package sets instead of showing only our own packages.

For those who want to squash some bugs in multimedia packages there is also the bugs page generated by the Blends tools, or our team bug page.

Other activity

The team has seen a lot of growth since the merger. Of the current 52 members of the Alioth team, 20 were added during 2009 and 18 in 2010, many of whom are involved in upstream development as well as the debian packaging. The number of packages has also grown, with 112 of the current 205 git repositories in our team area having its first commit during 2010.

Where to reach us

The Debian Multimedia Maintainers can be reached at, should you have any questions. We have also decided to repurpose the old address for user and more general discussion. We would like to invite everyone interested in multimedia to join us there. Interested developers/packagers can also join us at the first address. Some of the team members are also in the #debian-multimedia channel on OFTC.


Alessio Treglia on behalf of the Debian Multimedia Maintainers

1 thought on “Bits from the Debian Multimedia Maintainers

  1. Pingback: [Breves] Dibian 6 RC2 disponible y Final para perimera quincena de Febrero « Soft-Libre

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