VCS 1.13.3 released

The latest version of VCS is available to download.
It's been a good while since the last release, but there aren't a lot of changes this time around, apart from the usual bugfixes there's better handling of errors and unsupported files.

The most important bug fixed is obviously the one I already previewed some days ago. The header was being cropped with current-day ImageMagick, and that problem should be gone.

See the full changelog for more details.

vcs 1.13.3
vcs-1.13.3.gz (script only)
vcs-1.13.3.tar.gz (script, sample configuration, manpage and profiles)
deb, rpm, PKGBUILD & xz
as usual at

VCS 1.13.2 released

A new update of VCS with a couple bugfixes is available to download. Once again, if you had problems with the previous versions there's nothing new.

It fixes a bug when using MPlayer as capturer that could produce one more capture than expected. Thanks to Miya for reporting it.

See the full changelog for more details.

vcs 1.13.2 (script only)
or (script, sample configuration, manpage and profiles)
deb, rpm, PKGBUILD & bz2
as usual at

VCS 1.13.1 released

A minor update of vcs is available to download. In short, if you don't use Arch and you had no problems running it there's no need to update.

It fixes an uncommon bug and updates the build script for Arch Linux. Thanks to Eris Belew for reporting these.

See the full changelog for more details.

vcs 1.13.1 (script only)
or (script, sample configuration, manpage and profiles)
deb, rpm, PKGBUILD & bz2
as usual at

VCS 1.13 released

An updated version of vcs is available to download. Shame on me for the long wait since this has been pretty much completed for months.

The biggest change this time is the "blank frame avoidance" feature, with which (mostly) blank frames will not be captured, if possible, this is one of the cool features found in mtn and worth stealing 🙂

Also worth noting is the ability to load profiles automatically. E.g. adding "profiles=white,mosaic" to your ~/.vcs.conf file will use both profiles. A new profile ("compact") is added, and a list of installed profiles can be obtained with $ vcs –profile :list.
The manual page is finished too.
Of course you'll have to download and install the full package instead of just the script to get the profiles and man page installed.

Other minor additions are the identification of captures from FRAPS and of course the usual batch of fixes and scheduled changes. FreeBSD users, and hopefully Mac OS X too though I can't check, can again use the script too.

Finally, please read «Features to be removed from VCS» if you have any interest in VCS' future versions.

See the full changelog for more details.

vcs 1.13 (script only)
or (script, sample configuration, manpage and profiles)
deb, rpm, PKGBUILD & bz2
as usual at

VCS 1.12.3 released

I haven't updated VCS in a while and somehow managed to keep this update ready but unreleased for months, so today I decided it was about time to get rid of it and be free to work on 1.13 😛

This is a minor update with a couple bugfixes, but most importantly, it marks the switch to bash 3; this means a lot of small changes to the code so you should update to 1.12.3 to test if it works correctly before I release future versions (eventually 🙂 with much more important changes.

Changes (excerpt):

  • Bugfix: Actually handle –ffmpeg and –mplayer [#169]
  • Bugfix: Correct parsing of -U [#187]
  • Switch to a minimum of bash 3.1 [#173]
  • Avoid re-capturing the same frame twice [#122]
  • Use getent instead of /etc/passwd when available
  • Bugfix/Internal: Don't use mplayer's length as a ceil for timecode removal [#174]

vcs 1.12.3 (script only)

or (script, sample configuration, manpage and profiles)

deb, rpm, PKGBUILD & bz2
as usual at

VCS 1.11 released

In this post:

Release notes

Finally a new version of vcs, and it brings a truckload of changes. So many in fact that it will probably break in new and unexpected ways but so far it has been working quite fine.

The major improvement will probably be the tweaks to video duration detection that should get rid of the dreaded "Failed to capture…" on the last capture.

Other new features worth mentioning:

  • Height can be defined as a percentage (-H 25%) or set configuration files (th_height=160)
  • Output filename can now be set manually (-o file)
  • Lots of small cosmetic tweaks, from default font and heading background, to tighter padding or smaller timestamps. And the ability to tweak or disable padding.
  • Support for DVD has been revamped and should work much better now.
  • FreeBSD users are now (mostly) first class citizens for vcs 😉
  • More concise --help output, added --fullhelp for the whole bore
  • Handling of non-latin filenames makes a lot more sense now
  • And last but not least, the usual lot of bugfixes, better detection of video features, better aspect ratio detection, new codec names, etc.

On a more mundane note, no longer both MPlayer and FFmpeg are required, either one will do (although both will render best results), bc is no longer required.

Also, I'm providing an rpm package too this time around.

And finally this version will work on bash 2.05b, in case you're using some tight system like DSL.

In case you wonder how the hell did I count to make 1.11 follow 1.0.100a, I just remembered I should bump the version when new features are added, and re-counted versions. Lame I know but at least numbering should make more sense now.

Important I forgot to add warnings about this: If you're using a configuration file, there's been some renamings: DEFAULT_NUMCAPS is now numcaps, DEFAULT_INTERVAL is now interval and DEFAULT_COLS is now cols.

Edit: 1.11.1 fixes this: warns about their usage and accepts them for now.

A note for everyone (but specially for porn aficionados)

Please, if at all possible link directly whenever you discuss vcs. I know many communities prefer to use link redirections to keep referrer hidden but knowing how people is using or what they're saying about vcs helps me in improving and fixing it.

I know full well such a script caters to pr0n uploaders and I'm not offended, no need to hide 😉

Conversely, if you know of any discussion about vcs feel free to let me know so that I can jump in or steal get ideas from it.

BTS and Documentation

Finally, in case you didn't notice, the documentation site has received a lot of love and now is much more useful, and I've also opened a bug tracker in case you prefer it to e-mail.


VCS working on FreeBSD

As I wrote on the last update, I've been working on making vcs work on FreeBSD (and hopefully other non-GNU systems), there were quite a few problems that made it unusable outside GNU variants, but it's already working. Sort of:

FreeBSD Preview (small)

There's still some wrong details:
Like FreeBSD Heading Detail instead of Linux Heading Detail

or FreeBSD "Polaroid" mode sample instead of Linux "Polaroid" mode sample

But that's definitely better than not running at all 😛

The other major problem is I've no clue how the size of removable media should be retrieved (in a portable way). That's required when working with a real DVD (i.e. not a DVD ISO). The previous version used a method I disliked (fdisk -s) and that most probably would fail on everything but GNU. SO if you know of a right way of do so, drop me a line 🙂

Anyway, I'll publish this version RSN, even with this ugly bits and will look on how to fix that stuff later on.

VCS Beyond Linux

Before the next release I'd like to make VCS work better in other OSes beyond Linux. Linux is my (current at least) OS
of choice and the one I'm not familiar with so it's also obviously the OS in which I develop and test VCS.
Thanks to virtualisation
gaining a lot of momentum I'm now able to try operating systems I've never worked with (and which I'm pretty sure
will make VCS choke in ways I never expected); e.g. the very last major feature, DVD vidcapping, is written in a way not compatible
with, at least, FreeBSD. I'll focus on making vcs work better (or at all) on ther systems for a while, let's see
how it turns out.

Una web anti UNIX de Microsoft usa UNIX

Microsoft como parte de una de sus campañas de márketing ha creado una web contra el sistema operativo UNIX y su familia.

Lo curioso del tema es que el servidor funciona sobre FreeBSD, una variante gratuíta de UNIX y conocida por su alta seguridad (mayor que la de Linux). Para colmo el servidor usado es Apache, también gratuíto, originario de sistemas UNIX y que durante mucho tiempo ha barrido del mercado a los productos de Microsoft.

Según un entrevistado relacionado con el tema, la campaña va dirigida al segmento alto del mercado y no a pequeños servidores.

La web en cuestión es WE HAVE THE WAY OUT

Noticia original en WinInfo (en inglés).

Enlaces relacionados:
Microsoft (