How to play VCD videos in Debian Linux

Totem VCD error occured, could not open location you might not have permissions to open the file

A friend of mine gave me a VCD with some coptic Orthodox Christian exorcism, where there pope was chasing some evil spirits from possessed muslims who came to the Coptic Orthodox Church in egypt. The video was made to be in VCD and as you can expect this did not worked out of the box with Totem and VLC out of the box.
Putting in the VCD video inside my cdrom poped up an error like the one in the header of the post.
In order to make the video play I had to use the old school and now a bit obsolete mplayer.
Hence in order to play the VCD on Debian Linux I had to install mplayer and w32codecs packages first e.g.:

debian:~# apt-get update && apt-get install mplayer w32codecs

Second to play the video from gnome-terminal, I had to switch to the mounted cdrom location /media/cdrom0 and launch the video with mplayer cmd like so:

debian:~$ cd /media/cdrom0/vcd
debian:/media/cdrom0/vcd$ mplayer vcd://2
...

In some cases it might be necessery to play the video with mplayer command like:

debian:/media/cdrom0/vdd$ mplayer vcd://2 vcd://3

Watching it with mplayer from console has some downsides as I couldn’t make the fast rewind work, but still it’s way better than nothing.
Too bad in Debian Squeeze 6 gmplayer is no longer installable. The gmplayer can probably be installed if mplayer is compiled from source, but I’m too lazy to try it out.
I’ve red also in some forums online that gxine is capable of playing the VCD play nice, but I couldn’t install it from my existing Debian repositories so I did not give it a go.

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One Response to “How to play VCD videos in Debian Linux”

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