Documentation:Format String

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Starting with VLC media player 0.9.0, the following options specify a character formatted time string, rather than just a plain character string:

  • --marq-marquee
  • --snapshot-path
  • --snapshot-prefix
  • --sout-file-format
  • --sout-livehttp-index

Time variables are those defined by the strftime C function. The following expansions are most common:

  • %Y : year
  • %m : month
  • %d : day
  • %H : hour
  • %M : minute
  • %S : second

For an extensive list have a look at [1] (or the strftime manual page on Unix systems).

Input meta

VLC-specific meta-data expansions are available for the following options:

  • --input-title-format
  • --snapshot-path (in version 2.2.0 and later)
  • --snapshot-prefix (in version 2.2.0 and later)

The following expansion are performed:

  • $a : artist
  • $b : album
  • $c : copyright
  • $d : description
  • $e : encoded by
  • $f : total decoded frame count (since VLC started)
  • $g : genre
  • $l : language
  • $n : track number
  • $o : track total
  • $p : now playing
  • $r : rating
  • $s : subtitles language
  • $t : title
  • $u : url
  • $A : date
  • $B : audio bitrate (in kb/s)
  • $C : chapter (as in DVD chapter number)
  • $D : duration
  • $F : full name with path
  • $I : title (as in DVD title number)
  • $L : time left
  • $N : name (media name as seen in the VLC playlist)
  • $O : audio language
  • $P : position (in %)
  • $R : rate
  • $S : audio sample rate (in kHz)
  • $T : time code of the video
  • $U : publisher
  • $V : volume
  • $Z : now playing (artist - title)
  • $_ : new line
  • $<any other char> : <any other char> (for example: $$ transforms to $)

You can insert a space between the $ sign and the character to tell it to not display anything if the meta data isn't available. For example: $ T instead will display "" while $T would display "--:--:--", if no time is available. If a time is available, it would display something like "01_22_13" (for a snapshot from one hour, 22 minutes and 13 seconds in a video).

Source code

If you want to know how this works, check out src/text/strings.c (search for vlc_strfinput)

The variable b_empty_if_na refers to the leading space feature: Add option to format strings to prevent displaying dashes if the meta info was unavailable (ie: if time is unavailable, "$T" will display "--:--:--" while "$ T" won't display anything). This is of course completely untested :)

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