Archive for February, 2010

Installing Kaltura CE on Fedora 10

Kaltura

Kaltura is an open-source video platform that gives you all the tools you need to publish your own videos: asset management, transcoding, video processing, batch uploading, streaming, widgets …
Kaltura offers a premium solution that includes full service, full support and full customization, but besides that they also released a free community edition (KalturaCE) of their server side application last year which looks very promising.

For a new project I’m working on I wanted to test drive KalturaCE and investigate all the tools and features, and especially their API.
After going through the installation guide I was a bit disappointed that the application was only guaranteed to work on Ubuntu or Debian Linux distributions. No Fedora, no CentOS (although there are some 3rd party instructions to get it working on CentOS). On the other hand, the software has only been released like 7 months ago, so I shouldn’t be too demanding yet I guess.
Our production server runs on CentOS, but obviously I prefer to do the testing on the local server which runs on Fedora 10. So I decided to just give a try. Who knows I was having a lucky day.

The installation guide instructs you to unpack the application in the webroot. However, to prevent messing up my accurately ordered web server (ahum…) I preferred to run Kaltura it in its own virtual host.
This is how my VH looks like:


<VirtualHost *:80>
DocumentRoot /var/www/kalturaCE
ServerName kaltura
RewriteEngine On
<Directory "/var/www/kalturaCE">
Options Indexes FollowSymLinks ExecCGI Includes
AllowOverride All
Order Deny,Allow
Allow from all
</Directory>
</VirtualHost>
 
 

 

 

When using a virtual host, you might want to add a line to your hosts file so you can browse it afterwards.

If you unpack the tar file (tar xvfzp [source] -C [destination]) in another location than your document root and you move all the files afterwards, DON’T FORGET to explicitly move the .htaccess file located in the application root. Just doing for example a “mv ./* ../” will skip hidden files, and without the .htaccess file the application won’t be very amusing to work with I can tell you.

Kaltura also needs a MySql database, so create one, and make sure that the database user has all the required permissions as instructed in the installation guide!

Once the files and the virtual host are in place (don’t forget to restart Apache) and a database is created, it’s time to run the installation script by browsing to the virtual host.
The process is a piece of cake. Fill out some forms and that’s it. However, when arriving at the final page, I got this message:
“Kaltura Community Edition Server installation failed”. Bummer!
I remembered that in the last step, I checked the “Free Registration with Kaltura.com” option, so I decided to repeat the installation process and skip that option. Result: Server up and running!
Don’t know exactly why the registration option messes up the installation. The error did not specifiy any details. But who cares, it’s running :-)

However I could still not preview any videos in the application. I kept receiving errors like “THE FILE DOES  NOT CONTAIN LAYOUTS ELEMENTS …”. Running the script “run_replace_root.sh” (located in the install directory) fixed this issue though.

After adding and editing some content it seems that Kaltura runs smoothly on Fedora.
Next steps are enabling H.264 encoding, and investigating the possibility to run the platform in the Amazon Cloud. To be continued.

Create QR codes in vector format

As I’ve explained in a previous post, I was working on a Zend Framework component to create QR codes with the possibility to save them in a vector format. Vector formats allow the image to be scaled as much as needed, making them more suitable for print work.

Although the component is not 100% finished yet, it’s perfectly capable of generating the matrixcodes in different file formats, with different parameters. The file formats are png, pdf and svg (gif and jpeg are possible as well, but are not very relevant).

To give the component a try I’ve set up a code generator page. So go ahead, generate your codes, and feel free to leave me a comment with feedback.

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