Burn AVI to DVD on UbuntuLinux

Source: http://www.shedworx.com/files/vista-movie-maker-icon.jpg

Earlier today, a colleague dropped by with an AVI video that he needed help burning to DVD. Rather than pull out my Mac, I decided to just see if I could accomplish the job on my Peppermint ICE (Ubuntu running LXDE with some nice modifications). But how to accomplish that?
AVI stands for Audio Video Interleave. Files of this format have .avi extension. Being developed by Microsoft in 1992, it has become so wide spread that many people consider it de facto standard for storing video and audio information on PC.AVI combines audio and video into a single file in a standard container to allow simultaneous playback. It's advatage is it's simple architecture, due to which AVI runs on a number of different systems like Windows, Mac's, Linux, Unix and is supported by all most popular web-browsers. (Source
I knew how to do this on Mac and Windows...but I hadn't done it on GNU/Linux.

So, I did what most people do these days...I googled it. And, the first hit, the first link was to these instructions.

Step 1: Install Dependencies for Devede
The first step involved installing the programs needed. I didn't know what I needed until after I downloaded the program and tried to install it...P-Ice told me what needed to be loaded first, so I did:
sudo apt-get install libfaac0 mencoder mplayer dvdauthor vcdimager apport-hooks-medibuntu
This step went fairly quickly...and now that it's done, I won't have to worry about reinstalling this software again.

Step 2: Install Devede
Admittedly, I'd never heard of this program before I read about it online. But the beauty of it is, I didn't need to. All the instructions were online to get it going along with screenshots, and, for me, that's the beauty of working free, open source solutions--someone has taken the time to map their journey. Of course, I hope this post adds clarity to that journey in some way (and it does for me).

sudo dpkg -i dev*.deb

Step 3: Setup the DVD Titles and Add Video files
You can read more detailed instructions online, but here's generally what the program DeVeDe looks like on the inside...surprisingly, it was pretty easy to get it going. Thank goodness.

You can see in the screenshot above what the DeVeDe program looks like. On the left side of the window, you see the titles that appear in your DVD Menu when you play the DVD on your TV. On the right, that's where you load the video files. What's neat is that in the Title Properties, you get to control the video files, when they play, etc.

As you can see, the Properties for DVD Menu Item #1 allow you to some measure of control over videos playing. To keep it simple, I set the Part 1 title to play video #1 in the sequence.

This is the window you use to ADD a video. Notice it lets you adjust the volume to 250%, as well as other choices. I didn't spend a lot of time on this screen...fortunately, it all worked quite well!

This is what success looks like at the end of the process.
Success in this case involved DeVeDe creating a Video DVD ISO file that I could then use a program like Gnomebaker or K3b to burn to DVD media. It worked flawlessly in preparing the file. One of the neat features was the "Adjust disc usage." The two videos I had to put on ONE DVD ended up being larger than the 4.7 gig DVD I had to burn them on. After I clicked the "Adjust disc usage" the video files were adjusted to fit on the DVD media...I have no idea how I would have made the adjustment otherwise, so I'm glad it took care of that for me!

Overall, DeVeDe made the process of burning AVI to DVD media quite painless. Rendering took about 52 minutes, burning to media about 19 minutes at 2x (speed).

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Everything posted on Miguel Guhlin's blogs/wikis are his personal opinion and do not necessarily represent the views of his employer(s) or its clients. Read Full Disclosure


MrAG said…
Your instruction to:
sudo apt-get install libfaac0 mencoder mplayer dvdauthor vcdimager apport-hooks-medibuntu

works almost fine except you receive a final terminal message of:
Unable to locate package apport-hooks-medibuntu

what that means, I've no idea. any suggestions?
Miguel Guhlin said…
@MrAG - You probably need to enable the Medibuntu repository so that software can be loaded from there. Do that by following these commands:

Enable Medibuntu in the Source Packages.

Do that by going to START->PREFERENCES->SOFTWARE SOURCES. Then, click on the OTHER SOFTWARE tab, and put a checkmark by clicking in the box next to "http://packages.medibuntu.org/lucid free non-free" then click CLOSE. A window will pop up with the option to RELOAD. Click RELOAD.

at the command line in terminal, type in "sudo apt-get update" to pull in all the new packages, then try "sudo apt-get install apport-hooks-medibuntu" and report back what happens!

MrAG said…
I've looked at countless tutorials on this and yours is clearly the best so far, BUT. . .

I installed Natty next to XP and know nothing (not your fault). Where exactly is this "Start?" I followed your initial instructions and when I went to install DeVeDe, was told to first "remove" Libavcodec52 and others. When I try to remove them, I was told I also needed to first "remove" VLC. What? I can't use VLC and DeVeDe on the same pc?

I will give this another go shortly. I write because it would be great to have a complete tutorial for other 'newbies' like me to follow. Thank you...A
Miguel Guhlin said…
@MRAG The "START" is where you click to access your programs, etc. I'm borrowing the Windows term for lack of a better term.

I use VLC and DeeVeeDee on the same computer. I'd just uninstall the vlc (sudo apt-get remove vlc) to get the DeeVeeDee program installed.

You are on Ubuntu Natty Narwhal? Hmm...I'm on Peppermint ICE. Bound to be some minor differences.
MrAG said…
Thanks. I was able to get the apport hooks medibuntu from the URL you supplied. It apparently is a small program only used to report on any crashes, probably not necessary anyway. To install DeVeDe I first had to un-install VLC, the libav files and a ffmpeg plugin. I also had to do a "catalog repair" which was all done by prompts, so not hard to follow (do it with your fingers crossed). Installing DeVeDe and running it were very straight forward. I've not yet tried to reinstall VLC, maybe next week. But I was able to burn and play a dvd from an avi file. 11.04 (Natty) I believe makes things fairly easy to do once you get these little hurdles out of the way. I very much appreciated having your tutorial. Cheers.

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