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I have keyboard and screen connected to my raspberry pi. I want to try running a video on a loop on startup (I do not want to install desktop environment to do so). In the past I have successfully used omxplayer. However omxplayer is deprecated. I went to their github trying to compile it, but even that failed, so I guess omxplayer is truly dead.

Thus I tried to switch to vlc... what a nightmare it is proving to be. So I got a brand new installation of raspberry pi.

This is what I run (dump from my history)

1  sudo apt-get update
2  sudo apt-get upgrade
3  sudo apt-get dist-upgrade
4  sudo apt-get install vlc
   VLC tells me it is missing stuff, so I fix it
5  sudo apt-get install vlc --fix-missing
6  sudo mkdir /mnt/usb
7  sudo mount /dev/sda1 /mnt/usb
8  cvlc -L /mnt/usb/demo.mp4

And as soon as I run it I get this

VLC media player 3.0.17.4 Vetinari (revision 3.0.13-8-g41878ff4f2)
[0082c1b0] vlcpulse audio output error: PulseAudio server connection failure: Connection refused
[00841f48] dbus interface error: Failed to connect to the D-Bus session daemon: Unable to autolaunch a dbus-daemon without a $DISPLAY for X11
[00841f48] main interface error: no suitable interface module
[007cbb98] main libvlc error: interface "dbus,none" initialization failed
[0083acd8] main interface error: no suitable interface module
[007cbb98] main libvlc error: interface "globalhotkeys,none" initialization failed
[0083acd8] dummy interface: using the dummy interface module...
error: XDG_RUNTIME_DIR not set in the environment.
error: XDG_RUNTIME_DIR not set in the environment.
[67a01460] gles2 generic error: parent window not available
[67a00ce0] mmal_xsplitter vout display error: Failed to open Xsplitter:opengles2 module
[67a01460] xcb generic error: window not available
[67a00ce0] mmal_xsplitter vout display error: Failed to open Xsplitter:xcb_x11 module
[67a00ce0] mmal_xsplitter vout display error: Failed to open Xsplitter:mmal_vout module
[67a00ce0] mmal_xsplitter vout display: Try drm
[67a01460] drm_vout generic: <<< OpenDrmVout: Fmt=DPS3
[67a01460] drm_vout generic error: Failed to get xlease
[67a13c28] chain filter error: Too high level of recursion (3)
[67a136c0] main filter error: Failed to create video converter
[72b0eb80] avcodec decoder: Using DRM Video Accel for hardware decoding
[hevc @ 0x72b1baf0] Failed setup for format drm_prime: hwaccel initialisation returned error.
[72b0eb80] avcodec decoder error: existing hardware acceleration cannot be reused
[67a01460] gles2 generic error: parent window not available
[67a00ce0] mmal_xsplitter vout display error: Failed to open Xsplitter:opengles2 module
[67a01460] xcb generic error: window not available
[67a00ce0] mmal_xsplitter vout display error: Failed to open Xsplitter:xcb_x11 module
[67a00ce0] mmal_xsplitter vout display error: Failed to open Xsplitter:mmal_vout module
[67a00ce0] mmal_xsplitter vout display: Try drm
[67a01460] drm_vout generic: <<< OpenDrmVout: Fmt=I0AL
[67a01460] drm_vout generic error: Failed to get xlease
^C[67a01460] drm_vout generic error: AddFB2 failed: Invalid argument
[67a01460] drm_vout generic error: Failed to create frme buffer from pic
[67a01460] drm_vout generic error: AddFB2 failed: Invalid argument
[67a01460] drm_vout generic error: Failed to create frme buffer from pic

Then I thought it would be great idea to make vlc runnable as root so I do

9  sudo sed -i 's/geteuid/getppid/' /usr/bin/vlc
10  sudo cvlc -L /mnt/usb/demo.mp4

And it still gives same errors.

All I want to do is to boot up my raspberry pi and have it play a video on boot from the usb stick named demo.mp4

On omxplayer it was so easy. How do I do same with vlc? Do I absolutely have to install desktop environment?

I understand that giving up after only running 10 commands on the command line is lame. But I think I am out of options. I never had anything like this happen to me before, but then I am a young linux person.

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  • Try sudo apt install vlc-plugin-base . Note apt-get is deprecated so use apt in the future.
    – MatsK
    Nov 24, 2022 at 20:24
  • @MatsK I just did that and got vlc-plugin-base is already the newest version (3.0.17.4-0+deb11u1+rpi1+rpt4) Thanks for telling me to use apt next time in the future, will do!
    – Quillion
    Nov 24, 2022 at 21:59
  • "Do I absolutely have to install desktop environment?" -> There are number of layers between "no GUI what-so-ever" and "desktop environment"; the latter has a fairly specific meaning in a linux context: raspberrypi.stackexchange.com/a/26838/5538 Most GUI apps can be used without a DE or WM as long as you are okay with running them full-screen with no other apps and minimal functionality (which is what you want anyway, I think).
    – goldilocks
    Nov 24, 2022 at 22:27
  • @goldilocks I would love to run nothing else other than vlc full screen playing same clip over and over again since this is for demo purposes of something I am making. What would be command to just install vlc UI without any other DE or WM and then launch that UI on startup?
    – Quillion
    Nov 25, 2022 at 2:50
  • More conventionally, I think people do use a lightweight, standalone window manager like openbox here. The most complicated part is I think autologin, which is still simpler than trying to run this as a pure system service simply because there are a lot more examples around. Autologin is normally done through lightdm, the default display manager, I believe it is possible to do that and then start something minimal like you want instead of a DE. Another alternative is nodm; read raspberrypi.stackexchange.com/a/83715/5538 and raspberrypi.stackexchange.com/a/57560/5538.
    – goldilocks
    Nov 25, 2022 at 15:09

1 Answer 1

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I have a terrible solution and hope someone will suggest a better one. I enabled auto-login and added vlc --loop {file_name} to .profile file. You can't even run it in the background.

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