6 of the best video players for Linux

But which is the best of the video-playing bunch?

Before there was Xine, there was Ogle. And Ogle had magical powers, supporting features on DVDs such as multiple angles. Even after the other media players came along, Ogle could play DVDs a lot better than any of them.

Ogle claims to be the first player to fully support DVD menus on Linux. This is probably true, because while the others were general players for all types of audio and video, Ogle dedicated its life to playing DVDs.


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You'll find different versions of Ogle in your distro's repository, from an unoptimised vanilla version to a specially-tuned MMX version. Ogle bundles its GUI in a separate package, and you'll also need to fetch libdvdcss for playing encrypted DVDs.

Ogle has a simple interface that, while playing a DVD, enables you to select chapters, change subtitles, or select which audio stream to play. If you have one of those multi-angle movies, you can change the perspective, which is still touch and go with VLC.

But the oldest DVD player on Linux is showing its age. Its famed angle selection doesn't work during playback. Additionally, this and other DVD-related features – such as chapters and menus – are available with other, more diverse media players as well. Add to this the number of bugs in the last release, and you've got a dud in your hands.

For example, Ogle can play VOB files you've just copied over to your hard drive, but this functionality appears to be broken. Not only are there no configuration controls, but the Edit > UI Properties option in the menu doesn't bring anything up.

Finally, you get no controls in fullscreen mode; you have to restart Ogle to launch a new DVD; and it won't let you skip backwards.

Verdict Ogle
Version: 0.9.2
URL: www.dtek.chalmers.se/groups/dvd
Price: Free under GPL

Once the pinnacle of playing DVDs in Linux, but it hasn't kept up with the rapid development of other players.

Rating 5/10