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We would like to distribute some CDs with MP4 videos and have these wishes:

  • play in easy form (best idea in web browser)
  • codecs included on CD
  • video must be able to pause, play. The best way: seek (move in video).
  • not using Flash or specific video software!
  • playlist
  • must be function from Windows XP (slow PC) and higher

Our idea is to ship a portable Firefox with HTML5 support. Is HTML5 video support demanding on computer performance? Would there be any problems with this approach?

(If we go the web browser way, I guess the playlist will be HTML coded myself.)

  • What original format are your videos in? Can you give us the frame sizes, framerate and video/audio codecs? – slhck Feb 12 '14 at 7:12
  • Does it have to be mp4? Why not create a regular video dvd? It will be compilable with everything and no need for codes, firefox, other compatibility issues. It'll even work without a computer. – Mxx Feb 12 '14 at 7:39
  • @Mxx good idea- but if his stuff is in HD it will reduce quality. But I agree that DVD video has the least "compatibility" issues. – Rajib Feb 12 '14 at 11:06
  • We have both video version. One is HD and the second is dropbox.com/s/rd5py5dwi5wq3fg/codecs.png second version (idea) is for slow PC – Jerry1 Feb 12 '14 at 11:24
  • DVD video is not acceptable, because reducing HD quality (as wrote Rajib) and DVD player must exist in cusotmer PC-- or is real have portable DVD player on DVD? DVD burned as data (not video) and autorun run DVD-player-portable...hmmm. Is any way? – Jerry1 Feb 12 '14 at 11:32
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I have no idea if this will work but you could try installing Portable VLC on the CD and then creating a web page with details of all the videos. Each of these videos would be hyperlinked to a different batch file.

This batch file then plays the correct video using Portable VLC.

If you wanted to be really clever, it could be some VBScript that uses the scripts own filename to determine the correct video to play (eg. video1.vbs plays videos\video1.mp4) and only opens the portable version of VLC if the mp4 file type hasn't been associated with another program.

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  • vlc portable solution we choose. thanks for all replys, it was very helpfull! – Jerry1 Feb 14 '14 at 6:51
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  • While opening in a browser might work, it will be pretty clunky, awkward looking and a bit confusing.("why are they giving me a browser to play a video?") Additionally, if that computer has its own browser already open, you can't have 2 copies of Firefox running.

  • While you can include codecs on such a CD, it is probably not a good idea. You did not describe what type of audience will be using these CDs, but installing codecs almost always requires administrator privileges. If this is a business environment chances are pretty high that your users will not be able to install these codecs without involvement of their IT department, which might be really hesitant installing some random codec that somebody sent them. And then if something happens during that install or at some later point and it will screw up your (potential?) customers' computer, they won't be happy. You might lose business or even worse...

  • If your video file is properly encoded, afaik all local video players will give you play/stop/seek ability.

  • You can create a playlists or if your CD will have multiple video parts, why not encode them all in a single file.

  • Unless such a computer has some sort of accelerated hardware decoding and rendering, your video of 1440x1080@60fps AVC1 will be almost a slide-show on older/slower PCs. Hardware acceleration sometimes works only on 'standard' resolutions. It varies by specific hardware and drivers.

I think your best bet is to actually stream your videos. I don't know how good internet connection in Poland is, but you can have video with progressive bitrate and resolutions. Or have a fixed bitrate and resolution and if viewer's bandwidth is not enough, they will see 'buffering' for a bit. There are services that offer such features using Flash, Silverlight or even html5(like vimeo). If you use streaming, if you suddenly spot some mistake in your videos, you can always reupload corrected file..You can't do that shipped media.

If you still want to ship physical media, don't use CDs/DVDs. They can be damaged, scratched, broken. After watching your CD a few times they will simply forget it or throw it away. A better approach would be to ship a branded USB drive. It might(don't know for sure) cost a bit more, but after they finish watching your videos, they can delete the files and reuse usb drive for something else, while your branding will still be on the drive. :)

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