Installing FFMPEG for Raspberry Pi


FFMPEG is one of those tools I use when I just want to quickly hack together a video and don’t need fancy things like editing, titles, or a user-interface. Compiling on a regular computer isn’t easy, but compiling for the Raspberry Pi takes a little more patience and care. I also wanted to include support for H264 video, which needs to be installed before compiling FFMPEG.

There are lots of examples on the web, but what worked for me was a combination of a few of them, so here’s what I did. Note many of these commands may require  sudo appended before (commands like git , ./configure, and make )

    Run the following commands, one at a time.
    Anything else you would like to install should be done now, before compiling FFMPEG. This includes MP3, AAC, etc.
    Add lines similar to the  --enable-libx264  for anything else installed above. This may take a REALLY long time, so be patient.

    As Malcshour notes, if you have a Model B+ you can use make -j4  instead of just make  to take advantage of all four cores!

    To test your new install, simply run the command ffmpeg . If you don’t get any errors, you’re all good. What did I do with my new tool? I built a bot that generates random guitar chords.


Did you find this post helpful or interesting? A small donation goes a long way towards helping produce this content. If you can't, please share what you've done with others!
Donate via Flattr

64 Replies to “Installing FFMPEG for Raspberry Pi”

  1. I get the below error when i run make for ffmpeg

    libavfilter/libavfilter.a(allfilters.o): In function avfilter_register_all':
    /home/pi/Documents/digital_factory/FFmpeg/libavfilter/allfilters.c:381: undefined reference to
    /home/pi/Documents/digital_factory/FFmpeg/libavfilter/allfilters.c:381: undefined reference to ff_vf_perspective'
    /home/pi/Documents/digital_factory/FFmpeg/libavfilter/allfilters.c:381: undefined reference to
    /home/pi/Documents/digital_factory/FFmpeg/libavfilter/allfilters.c:381: undefined reference to ff_vf_pixdesctest'
    /home/pi/Documents/digital_factory/FFmpeg/libavfilter/allfilters.c:381: undefined reference to
    /home/pi/Documents/digital_factory/FFmpeg/libavfilter/allfilters.c:381: undefined reference to ff_vf_pp7'
    /home/pi/Documents/digital_factory/FFmpeg/libavfilter/allfilters.c:381: undefined reference to
    /home/pi/Documents/digital_factory/FFmpeg/libavfilter/allfilters.c:381: undefined reference to ff_vf_psnr'
    /home/pi/Documents/digital_factory/FFmpeg/libavfilter/allfilters.c:381: undefined reference to
    /home/pi/Documents/digital_factory/FFmpeg/libavfilter/allfilters.c:381: undefined reference to ff_vf_qp'
    /home/pi/Documents/digital_factory/FFmpeg/libavfilter/allfilters.c:381: undefined reference to
    /home/pi/Documents/digital_factory/FFmpeg/libavfilter/allfilters.c:381: undefined reference to ff_vf_readeia608'
    /home/pi/Documents/digital_factory/FFmpeg/libavfilter/allfilters.c:381: undefined reference to
    /home/pi/Documents/digital_factory/FFmpeg/libavfilter/allfilters.c:381: undefined reference to ff_vf_remap'
    /home/pi/Documents/digital_factory/FFmpeg/libavfilter/allfilters.c:381: undefined reference to
    /home/pi/Documents/digital_factory/FFmpeg/libavfilter/allfilters.c:381: undefined reference to ff_vf_removelogo'
    /home/pi/Documents/digital_factory/FFmpeg/libavfilter/allfilters.c:381: undefined reference to
    /home/pi/Documents/digital_factory/FFmpeg/libavfilter/allfilters.c:381: undefined reference to ff_vf_rotate'
    /home/pi/Documents/digital_factory/FFmpeg/libavfilter/allfilters.c:381: undefined reference to
    /home/pi/Documents/digital_factory/FFmpeg/libavfilter/allfilters.c:381: undefined reference to ff_vf_scale'
    /home/pi/Documents/digital_factory/FFmpeg/libavfilter/allfilters.c:381: undefined reference to
    collect2: error: ld returned 1 exit status
    Makefile:131: recipe for target ‘ffmpeg_g’ failed
    make: *** [ffmpeg_g] Error 1

  2. At Point 3 it gives me an error because the ffmepg dir is in capital letters.

    It should be:

    cd /usr/src
    git clone
    cd FFmpeg
    sudo ./configure –arch=armel –target-os=linux –enable-gpl –enable-libx264 –enable-nonfree
    sudo make install

  3. Hi,
    I have used these commands on RPi 3 and it worked fine.
    Now, If I want to “copy” the ffmpeg installation to another RPi3, what files should I copy so that I dont have to build the whole thing again on the new RPi3?

  4. While “sudo make” fpr ffmpeg via SSH I got the following error
    packet_write_wait: Connection to port 22: Broken pipe
    Is there a way to resume the session? Or is the “making” continuing when the session breaks?

    CC libavcodec/vp9block.o
    CC libavcodec/vp9data.o
    CC libavcodec/vp9dsp.o
    CC libavcodec/vp9dsp_10bpp.o

    these were the last lines before it broke?
    Should I just wait a few hours and the continue with sudo make install?

  5. @HansWurst – I don’t think there’s a way to resume an SSH session that breaks like that. I think you’ll have to start over. For this install, probably better to do it locally, if possible, since it can take a really (really) long time.

  6. yeah, I realized that. So you don’t know if it continues when the session breaks? I might just try to sudo make install tomorrow in the morning. If it continued it should be done by then…

  7. My personal experience (yours may be different): I have compiled/installed OpenCV 2.x and 3.x on all versions of RPi expect the first generation A board. In all these cases except for the RPI 0 W, I relied on RDP (xrdp on RPi and Windows RDP client on the desktop). Long running sessions would be disconnected on the desktop but the RPi would chug along merrily and upon RDP re-connection I could see the “make” continuing.

    For the RPi 0 W, the board would trip at the 88% make mark consistently (for Open CV 3.2), so I resorted to SSH for this instance only and the “make” proceeded to completion. I guess it must be memory issue for this platform.

    I’ll try out your steps using RDP first. If it doesn’t work I will have to resort to SSH or even use the direct terminal connection for the first time (I bought the cable but I haven’t had a pressing need to try it out).

    Thanks again for sharing and guiding us. Regards.

  8. Make install stops with an error:
    make: *** No rule to make target ‘є’, needed by ‘ffmpeg.o’. Stop.

    What am I doing wrong? I am following the steps exactly and I have Raspberry Pi 1B.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *