XviD

From Academic Kids

XviD is an open source MPEG-4 video codec. Originally based on OpenDivX, XviD was started by a group of volunteer programmers after the OpenDivX source was closed.

XviD features MPEG-4 Advanced Simple Profile features such as b-frames, quarter pixel motion compensation, global motion compensation, lumi masking, Trellis quantization, and H.263, MPEG and custom quantisation matrices.

XviD's main competitor is DivX. While XviD is open source, DivX is available as either a freeware binary, or the commercial version DivX Pro, which claims significantly better compression and speed.

Contents

Legal

Some of these features are believed to be covered by software patents in a number of countries (notably United States and Japan). Because of this, XviD 0.9.x versions were not licensed in countries where these type of patents are enforceable. With the 1.0.x releases, a plain GNU GPL v2 license is used with no explicit geographical restriction. However the legal usage of XviD may still be restricted by local laws. (See mailing list discussions [1] (http://list.xvid.org/pipermail/xvid-devel/2002-September/000827.html), [2] (http://list.xvid.org/pipermail/xvid-devel/2002-November/001316.html), [3] (http://list.xvid.org/pipermail/xvid-devel/2002-November/001318.html).)

History

In January 2001, DivXNetworks founded OpenDivX as part of Project Mayo, which was intended to be a home for open source multimedia projects. OpenDivX was an open-source MPEG4 video codec based on a stripped down version of the MoMuSys reference MPEG4 encoder, however the code was placed under a restrictive license and only members of the DivX Advanced Research Centre (DARC) had write access to the project CVS. In early 2001, DARC member Sparky wrote an improved version of the encoding core called encore2, which was updated several times before. In April, it was removed from CVS without warning. The explanation given by Sparky was "We (our bosses) decided that we are not ready to have it in public yet".

In July 2001, developers started complaining about a lack of activity in the project: the last CVS commit was several months before, bugfixes were being ignored, and promised documentation had not turned up. Soon after, DARC released a beta version of their closed-source commercial DivX 4 codec, which was based on encore2, saying that "what the community really wants is a Winamp, not a Linux". Some people accused DivXNetworks of starting OpenDivX for the sole purpose of harvesting other people's ideas to use in their DivX 4 codec, some were disappointed that the codec had stagnated and wanted to continue working on it, while others were angry at the way DivXNetworks handled a so-called open source project. It was after this that a fork of OpenDivX was created, using the latest version of encore2 that a few people downloaded before it was removed. Since then all the OpenDivX code has been replaced and XviD is published under the GPL.

The current stable release is 1.0.3 (released December 20, 2004).

The current unstable release is 1.1.0 beta 2 (released April 4, 2005).

Sigma Designs controversy

In July 2002, Sigma Designs released an MPEG-4 video codec called the REALmagic MPEG-4 Video Codec. Before long, people testing this new codec found that it contained lots of XviD code. Sigma Designs were contacted and confirmed that a programmer had based REALmagic on XviD, but assured that all GPL code would be replaced to avoid copyright infringement. When Sigma Designs released the supposedly rewritten REALmagic codec, the XviD developers immediately disassembled it and concluded that it still contained XviD code, only rearranged in an attempt to disguise its presence [4] (http://www.xvid.org/v1_1_comparison.pdf). The XviD developers decided to stop work and go public to force Sigma Designs to respect the terms of the GPL. After articles were published in Slashdot [5] (http://slashdot.org/articles/02/08/22/193237.shtml?tid=117) and The Inquirer [6] (http://www.theinquirer.net/Default.aspx?article=5089), in August 2002 Sigma Designs agreed to publish their source code [7] (http://www.sigmadesigns.com/news/press_releases/020822.htm).

See also

External links

  • XviD.org (http://www.xvid.org/)
  • Koepi's XviD Binary (http://www.koepi.org/xvid.shtml)
  • The Unofficial XviD FAQ (http://ronald.vslcatena.nl/docs/xvidfaq.html)
  • Nilay's World (http://www.nilay.co.in/media/video/vcd2xvid.html) - A complete guide to convert VCD movies to XviD.
  • ffmpegx (http://homepage.mac.com/major4/index.html) - Useful Mac tool for playing Xvid and converting to or from other formatscs:XviD

de:XviD fr:XviD hu:XviD fi:XviD ja:XviD pl:XviD

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