V4L2 Virtual Device (v4l2vd)

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V4L2 Virtual Device is a video4linux2 driver providing one or multiple video pipes. It is used to route the output of a user space video source application to typical video “consuming” applications (players, encoders, PVRs) that normally get their content from video4linux2 devices. Through v4l2vd, applications such as mplayer, mythTV and many other can now access and render video files or real-time networked media sources. In addition to the v4l2vd driver, the v4l2vd Source application is provided with this project as an example of a raw video feed.

This project was developed based on the Video4Linux Loopback Device project by Jeroen Vreenken and Kenneth Lavrsen which we thank here for their very useful contribution:

We decided to launch this project mainly for three reasons:

  • Simplify our work: we decided to go straight to implementing v4l2 functionality without regards to backward compatibility with v4l1. Maintaining backward compatibility in V4L Loopback would probably have required a much more substantial effort.

  • We have seen recently many discussions in the open source community where the need for a tool such as v4l2vd was expressed. We feel it is better to release our code early than to try to reach backward compatibility with V4L Loopback (we actually don’t have the resources to do it at this point anyway).

  • The Video 4 Linux Loopback Device is no longer actively maintained


Jean-Michel Bouffard (jmbouffard at users dot sourceforge dot net) from the Communications Research Centre (CRC), Canada. V4L2 Virtual Device is developed at the CRC, and is released as Open Source Software under the GNU General Public License. For support requests about v4l2vd, please use the forum.

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