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Revision as of 16:22, 9 December 2011 by Etix (talk | contribs) (simplification)
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How to compile VLC media player for Windows.

Building Methods

If you want to build VLC from source, you have several choices:

Method Documentation Notes
Cross-compile with Mingw on Linux This page Preferred method (uses cross compilation). On Windows, you should do it in a virtual machine.
Native compilation with MSYS+MINGW Win32CompileMSYSNew Native compilation method. MSYS is a minimal build environment to compile Unixish projects under Microsoft Windows.
Native compilation with cygwin Win32CompileCygwinNew Build using cygwin as your compile environment. Error prone, and slow.

Obtaining the toolchain

Each build method requires its own toolchain:

Get the source code

$ git clone git://

Prepare 3rd party libraries

Before compiling VLC, you need lots of other libraries. Here is how to get them:

 $ mkdir -p contrib/win32
 $ cd contrib/win32
 $ ../bootstrap --host=i586-mingw32msvc
 $ make prebuilt

Go Back

Go back to the VLC source directory:

 $ cd -

Configuring the build


First, prepare the tree:

 $ ./bootstrap


Then, you can to configure the build with the ./configure script.

Create a subfolder:

 $ mkdir win32 && cd win32

Use the standard configure:

$ ../extras/package/win32/ --host=i586-mingw32msvc

NB: use YOUR Xcompiling prefix here, like i486-mingw32

or just run configure manually:

$ ../configure --with-contrib=/usr/win32 --host=i586-mingw32msvc

See '../configure --help' for more information.

Building VLC

Once configured, to build VLC, just run:

 $ make

Packaging VLC

Once the compilation is done, you can either run VLC directly from the source tree or you can build self-contained VLC packages with the following make rules:

Command Description
make package-win32-strip (might be package-win-strip) Creates a subdirectory named vlc-x.x.x with all the binaries 'stripped' (that is, smallest size, unusable with a debugger)
make package-win32-7zip Same as above but will package the directory in a 7z file.
make package-win32-zip Same as above but will package the directory in a zip file.
make package-win32 Same as above but will also create an auto-installer package. You must have NSIS installed in its default location for this to work.

Well done—you're ready to use VLC!