This is a guide for cross-compiling VLC for Windows CE on Linux with a step-by-step instruction to download, install, configure and build your VLC.
First, you might want to take a look at compiling instructions for Win32, as the process is roughly the same, and it includes useful discussion and explanations.
Prepare your environment
VLC uses automake, autoconf and friends for compilation. Make sure they are up to date and usable for your system.
To compile VLC, we use Mingw32CE, a cross-development environment for Windows CE. Download the latest version on Sourceforge.
Go the the directory where you dowloaded CeGCC, and untar it, for example:
% tar xjf arm-mingw32ce-0.59.1.tar.bz2 -C /
You should now see the folder /opt/mingw32ce.
Get the source
% cd /path/to/your/vlc/folder/
If you are using the Git version, start by bootstrapping your VLC.
% cd /path/to/your/vlc/folder/ % ./bootstrap
Get the contribs
You can get official WinCE contribs on http://download.videolan.org/pub/testing/contrib/, for example contrib-20091114-wince-bin-gcc-4.1.0-runtime-3.15.2-only.tar.bz2. Uncompress them in
You need to tweak your configure line.
./configure is used to check whether your system is able to compile VLC. Also you choose the functionalities of your build.
% ./configure --help
will show you the various options
Create a new file named conf-vlc.sh and add in it:
PATH=/opt/mingw32ce/bin:$PATH \ CPPFLAGS="-I/usr/wince/include -D_WIN32_WCE=0x0500" \ LDFLAGS="-L/usr/wince/lib" \ PKG_CONFIG_LIBDIR=/usr/wince/lib/pkgconfig \ ./configure --host=arm-mingw32ce --enable-optimize-memory \ --disable-directx --disable-dvdnav --disable-libgcrypt \ --disable-mad --disable-remoteosd --disable-sdl --disable-skins2
You will probably want to add more options like
--disable-sout --disable-httpd --disable-vlm to remove stuff that you won't need if your device is limited in storage space and memory.
Save the file and make it executable:
% chmod u+x conf-vlc.sh
Compiling source code
Now run your configuration script and build VLC:
% ./conf-vlc.sh % make
Creating self contained packages
Once the compilation is done, you can build self-contained VLC packages with the following command:
This will create a vlc-x.x.x.zip archive. Transfer it on your device, uncompress it and enjoy!
There is not (yet) an option to build a .cab file.
Using and Debugging VLC
Interacting with your device
Use SynCE to synchronize your device with Linux. Or find an Windows machine with ActiveSync installed and download your fresh new VLC build.
CeGCC provides a stub for GDB to permit remote debugging on Windows CE. To use it, go in the vlc folder:
% cd vlc-1.0.0 % arm-mingw32ce-gdb vlc.exe
This GDB will upload vlc.exe to /gdb/ on the device. Make sure you uploaded all the VLC directory on your device.
Then, follow the demo of a debugging session for Windows CE.
- There is no usable GUI for WinCE. There is a WinCE GUI module, however, it is unmaintained and badly broken. In the 1.0 branch, it will compile, load and show up when you launch VLC, but it doesn't work (clicking on buttons doesn't do anything etc). In the 1.1 branch, it simply doesn't compile anymore: use
--disable-winceto skip it. Yes, not having a GUI makes VLC pretty useless, so contributions from developers are badly welcome.
- When launching VLC, if you get an error saying "
vlc.exe is not a valid PocketPC application" (and you use Windows Mobile 6.1), read this and set up your registry accordingly (yes, that's one entry for
libvlc.dll, one for
libvlccore.dll, and one for every DLL in the plugins directory; good luck).
- If an error message appears about missing DLLs, it might be due to mingw32ce dynamically linking against libgcc. The build system of VLC doesn't fetch and include this library when it creates the package, which is why it is missing. Try looking for
/opt/mingw32ceand copying them in the directory where you extracted VLC. For the same reason, some C++ plugins might refuse to load due to a missing libstdc++ DLL, so you'll want to copy
libstdc++-6.0.dllonto your device too.
- Up to Windows CE 5.0, the memory model limits each process to 32 MB of virtual address space. If you compiled VLC with too many plugins, they will quickly fill up those 32 MB, which leads too missing features, or VLC simply freezing. In any case, check the
vlc-log.txtfile in the root directory for
Error 14logs. If you find some, you can try reducing the memory footprint of VLC by disabling some modules during the
./configureand/or removing them from the plugins directory. In my experience, VLC can load a maximum of roughly 16 MB of plugins.
- If the colors are wrong when playing a video (red and blue swapped), try removing the libswscale plugin.