image2 examples missing `-f image2`, can that be right?

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image2 examples missing `-f image2`, can that be right?

Jim DeLaHunt
Hello, all:

I'm reading the documentation for the image2 demuxer[1]. It has three
examples, in section 20.9.1 Examples.

ffmpeg -framerate 10 -i 'img-%03d.jpeg' out.mkv
ffmpeg -framerate 10 -start_number 100 -i 'img-%03d.jpeg' out.mkv
ffmpeg -framerate 10 -pattern_type glob -i "*.png" out.mkv

Those examples lack a `-f image2` option. I would expect that option to
be there; after all, isn't the image2 format exactly what this section
is trying to explain?

Should those examples instead read,

ffmpeg -f image2 -framerate 10 -i 'img-%03d.jpeg' out.mkv
ffmpeg -f image2 -framerate 10 -start_number 100 -i 'img-%03d.jpeg' out.mkv
ffmpeg -f image2 -framerate 10 -pattern_type glob -i "*.png" out.mkv

Or am I missing something?

[1] http://ffmpeg.org/ffmpeg-all.html#image2-1
[2] http://ffmpeg.org/ffmpeg-all.html#Examples-6

Thank you in advance for your help. Best regards,
      —Jim DeLaHunt, Vancouver, Canada

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Re: image2 examples missing `-f image2`, can that be right?

Gyan Doshi

On 1/7/2018 12:38 PM, Jim DeLaHunt wrote:

> Those examples lack a `-f image2` option. I would expect that option to
> be there; after all, isn't the image2 format exactly what this section
> is trying to explain?

FFmpeg probes the input to determine its format. Adding the `-f` option
for an input forces the use of that demuxer e.g.

with a MKV renamed to MP4, running

     ffmpeg -i in.mp4

will still result in FFmpeg recognizing it as a Matroska file.

but

     ffmpeg -f mp4 -i in.mp4

will force the MP4 demuxer, and FFmpeg will throw an error.


Regards,
Gyan
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Re: image2 examples missing `-f image2`, can that be right?

Jim DeLaHunt
On 2018-01-07 00:48, Gyan Doshi wrote:

>
> On 1/7/2018 12:38 PM, Jim DeLaHunt wrote:
>
>> Those examples lack a `-f image2` option. I would expect that option
>> to be there; after all, isn't the image2 format exactly what this
>> section is trying to explain?
>
> FFmpeg probes the input to determine its format. Adding the `-f`
> option for an input forces the use of that demuxer e.g.
>
> with a MKV renamed to MP4, running
>
>     ffmpeg -i in.mp4
>
> will still result in FFmpeg recognizing it as a Matroska file.
>
> but
>
>     ffmpeg -f mp4 -i in.mp4
>
> will force the MP4 demuxer, and FFmpeg will throw an error.

Fair enough for FFmpeg in general.

And the term "demuxer" may be complicating things. The documentation for
`image2` describes it as a "demuxer"[1]. But elsewhere, I think the
FFmpeg documentation describes the operation of extracting multiple
still frames from a video as "demuxing"[2][4], and the complementary
operation of merging multiple still frames files into a video as
"muxing"[3]. I'm not sure what to make of that.

Maybe `image2` should actually be described as a "muxer"?

But my question is about the examples from section 20.9.1 Examples[1],
documenting the `-f image2` option. The input format is not something like:

      ffmpeg -i in.mp4

It is a template for filenames of still images:

    ffmpeg -i 'img-%03d.jpeg' out.mkv

So, for the case when we use ffmpeg to merge still image files into a
video file, should the `-f image2` option be required?  And /in this
section/, which examples illustrating the use of the `-f image2` option,
is it really correct that the examples do not include `-f image2`?

[1] http://ffmpeg.org/ffmpeg-all.html#image2-1
[2] http://ffmpeg.org/ffmpeg-all.html#Detailed-description
[3] http://ffmpeg.org/ffmpeg-all.html#Demuxers
[4] http://ffmpeg.org/ffmpeg-all.html#Muxers
[5] http://ffmpeg.org/ffmpeg-all.html#Examples-6

Thanks,
      —Jim DeLaHunt, Vancouver, Canada

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Re: image2 examples missing `-f image2`, can that be right?

Moritz Barsnick
In reply to this post by Jim DeLaHunt
On Sat, Jan 06, 2018 at 23:08:32 -0800, Jim DeLaHunt wrote:
> ffmpeg -framerate 10 -i 'img-%03d.jpeg' out.mkv
> ffmpeg -framerate 10 -start_number 100 -i 'img-%03d.jpeg' out.mkv
> ffmpeg -framerate 10 -pattern_type glob -i "*.png" out.mkv
>
> Those examples lack a `-f image2` option. I would expect that option to
> be there; after all, isn't the image2 format exactly what this section
> is trying to explain?

Do the examples work for you or do they not?

I *believe* the detail that is missed in the documentation is that the
use of a pattern "implies" the image2 demuxer (or muxer, if used as
output). Apparently with such a high priority that I can't even open a
single image named "%03d.jpg" without the image2 demuxer jumping in and
trying to resolve that pattern. ;-)

In other words: For those three examples, "-f image2" just isn't
required. It's optional, but pointing that out *might* be nice.

Moritz
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Re: image2 examples missing `-f image2`, can that be right?

Moritz Barsnick
In reply to this post by Jim DeLaHunt
On Sun, Jan 07, 2018 at 10:16:55 -0800, Jim DeLaHunt wrote:
> And the term "demuxer" may be complicating things. The documentation for
> `image2` describes it as a "demuxer"[1]. But elsewhere, I think the
> FFmpeg documentation describes the operation of extracting multiple
> still frames from a video as "demuxing"[2][4], and the complementary
> operation of merging multiple still frames files into a video as
> "muxing"[3]. I'm not sure what to make of that.

No. A demuxer decomposes an input (file, stream, container, or in this
case a pile of files) into one or several streams. A muxer does the
opposite.

> Maybe `image2` should actually be described as a "muxer"?

Not in the case you are implying. OTOH, there is also an "image2"
muxer, which creates a pile of images from a stream.

> section/, which examples illustrating the use of the `-f image2` option,
> is it really correct that the examples do not include `-f image2`?

Honestly, when debugging stuff and in doubt, just try it first. ;-)

Moritz
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Re: image2 examples missing `-f image2`, can that be right?

Gyan Doshi
In reply to this post by Moritz Barsnick
On 1/8/2018 12:31 AM, Moritz Barsnick wrote:

> I *believe* the detail that is missed in the documentation is that the
> use of a pattern "implies" the image2 demuxer (or muxer, if used as
> output). Apparently with such a high priority that I can't even open a
> single image named "%03d.jpg" without the image2 demuxer jumping in and
> trying to resolve that pattern. ;-)

Not exactly. FFmpeg iterates through all registered demuxers when
probing. When it gets to image2, it first checks for an image codec,
identified by the file extension. Then it checks if the filename can be
parsed as a sequence. But if an image extension isn't found, that test
doesn't happen. And string%d.ext is treated as a single input by
whichever demuxer gets passed the input, so a%d.mp4 is opened as a
single MP4.


Regards,
Gyan
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Re: image2 examples missing `-f image2`, can that be right?

Jim DeLaHunt
In reply to this post by Moritz Barsnick
On 2018-01-07 11:01, Moritz Barsnick wrote:

> On Sat, Jan 06, 2018 at 23:08:32 -0800, Jim DeLaHunt wrote:
>> ffmpeg -framerate 10 -i 'img-%03d.jpeg' out.mkv
>> ffmpeg -framerate 10 -start_number 100 -i 'img-%03d.jpeg' out.mkv
>> ffmpeg -framerate 10 -pattern_type glob -i "*.png" out.mkv
>>
>> Those examples lack a `-f image2` option. I would expect that option to
>> be there; after all, isn't the image2 format exactly what this section
>> is trying to explain?
> Do the examples work for you or do they not?
I hadn't tried when I asked my question. I used a couple of PNG still
frames with one of the examples, and sure enough, it works without error
[2].
> I *believe* the detail that is missed in the documentation is that the
> use of a pattern "implies" the image2 demuxer (or muxer, if used as
> output). Apparently with such a high priority that I can't even open a
> single image named "%03d.jpg" without the image2 demuxer jumping in and
> trying to resolve that pattern. ;-)
>
> In other words: For those three examples, "-f image2" just isn't
> required. It's optional, but pointing that out *might* be nice.
Oh, wow. I think that is significant information, and it should be
included in the documentation.

On 2018-01-07 11:05, Moritz Barsnick wrote:
> Honestly, when debugging stuff and in doubt, just try it first.

Harrumph. "Just try it first" is practical advice for this project, it
seems. But I am still unsatisfied with the documentation. My philosophy
of documentation is that it should be an explanation and a help, not a
riddle.

I've filed a ticket noting some deficiencies in the documentation,
including that there's no mention that use of a pattern in an input file
name implies `-f image2`, and that the examples which lack `-f image2`
do not point out that this is correct and why it works, and that there
are no examples which include `-f image2`. See [1].

Thank you for the clarification, Moritz!
       —Jim DeLaHunt, Vancouver, Canada

[1] <https://trac.ffmpeg.org/ticket/6950#ticket>
[2]

% ffmpeg -framerate 10 -i 'blue_%d.png' out.mkv

ffmpeg version 3.4.1 Copyright (c) 2000-2017 the FFmpeg developers

   built with Apple LLVM version 8.0.0 (clang-800.0.42.1)

   configuration: --prefix=/opt/local --enable-swscale --enable-avfilter
--enable-avresample --enable-libmp3lame --enable-libvorbis
--enable-libopus --enable-librsvg --enable-libtheora
--enable-libopenjpeg --enable-libmodplug --enable-libvpx
--enable-libsoxr --enable-libspeex --enable-libass --enable-libbluray
--enable-lzma --enable-gnutls --enable-fontconfig --enable-libfreetype
--enable-libfribidi --disable-indev=jack --enable-opencl
--disable-outdev=xv --enable-audiotoolbox --enable-videotoolbox
--enable-sdl2 --mandir=/opt/local/share/man --enable-shared
--enable-pthreads --cc=/usr/bin/clang --arch=x86_64 --enable-x86asm
--enable-libx265 --enable-gpl --enable-postproc --enable-libx264
--enable-libxvid

   libavutil      55. 78.100 / 55. 78.100

   libavcodec     57.107.100 / 57.107.100

   libavformat    57. 83.100 / 57. 83.100

   libavdevice    57. 10.100 / 57. 10.100

   libavfilter     6.107.100 /  6.107.100

   libavresample   3.  7.  0 /  3.  7.  0

   libswscale      4.  8.100 /  4.  8.100

   libswresample   2.  9.100 /  2.  9.100

   libpostproc    54.  7.100 / 54.  7.100

Input #0, image2, from 'blue_%d.png':

   Duration: 00:00:00.20, start: 0.000000, bitrate: N/A

     Stream #0:0: Video: png, pal8(pc), 212x318, 10 tbr, 10 tbn, 10 tbc

Stream mapping:

   Stream #0:0 -> #0:0 (png (native) -> h264 (libx264))

Press [q] to stop, [?] for help

[libx264 @ 0x7fe883013c00] using cpu capabilities: MMX2 SSE2Fast SSSE3
SSE4.2 AVX FMA3 AVX2 LZCNT BMI2

[libx264 @ 0x7fe883013c00] profile High 4:4:4 Predictive, level 1.2,
4:4:4 8-bit

[libx264 @ 0x7fe883013c00] 264 - core 148 - H.264/MPEG-4 AVC codec -
Copyleft 2003-2017 - http://www.videolan.org/x264.html - options:
cabac=1 ref=3 deblock=1:0:0 analyse=0x3:0x113 me=hex subme=7 psy=1
psy_rd=1.00:0.00 mixed_ref=1 me_range=16 chroma_me=1 trellis=1 8x8dct=1
cqm=0 deadzone=21,11 fast_pskip=1 chroma_qp_offset=4 threads=10
lookahead_threads=1 sliced_threads=0 nr=0 decimate=1 interlaced=0
bluray_compat=0 constrained_intra=0 bframes=3 b_pyramid=2 b_adapt=1
b_bias=0 direct=1 weightb=1 open_gop=0 weightp=2 keyint=250
keyint_min=10 scenecut=40 intra_refresh=0 rc_lookahead=40 rc=crf
mbtree=1 crf=23.0 qcomp=0.60 qpmin=0 qpmax=69 qpstep=4 ip_ratio=1.40
aq=1:1.00

Output #0, matroska, to 'out.mkv':

   Metadata:

     encoder         : Lavf57.83.100

     Stream #0:0: Video: h264 (libx264) (H264 / 0x34363248), yuv444p,
212x318, q=-1--1, 10 fps, 1k tbn, 10 tbc

     Metadata:

       encoder         : Lavc57.107.100 libx264

     Side data:

       cpb: bitrate max/min/avg: 0/0/0 buffer size: 0 vbv_delay: -1

frame=    2 fps=0.0 q=-1.0 Lsize=       2kB time=00:00:00.10 bitrate=
143.7kbits/s speed=3.06x

video:1kB audio:0kB subtitle:0kB other streams:0kB global headers:0kB
muxing overhead: 78.543304%

[libx264 @ 0x7fe883013c00] frame I:1     Avg QP:11.06  size:   148

[libx264 @ 0x7fe883013c00] frame P:1     Avg QP:20.45  size:   193

[libx264 @ 0x7fe883013c00] mb I  I16..4:  0.7% 98.2%  1.1%

[libx264 @ 0x7fe883013c00] mb P  I16..4:  0.0%  0.0%  0.7%  P16..4: 
0.7%  0.0%  0.0%  0.0%  0.0%    skip:98.6%

[libx264 @ 0x7fe883013c00] 8x8 transform intra:97.5% inter:0.0%

[libx264 @ 0x7fe883013c00] coded y,u,v intra: 0.7% 0.7% 0.4% inter: 0.3%
0.3% 0.2%

[libx264 @ 0x7fe883013c00] i16 v,h,dc,p:  0% 50% 50%  0%

[libx264 @ 0x7fe883013c00] i8 v,h,dc,ddl,ddr,vr,hd,vl,hu: 46%  0% 54% 
0%  0%  0%  0%  0%  0%

[libx264 @ 0x7fe883013c00] i4 v,h,dc,ddl,ddr,vr,hd,vl,hu: 38%  9% 46% 
4%  0%  1%  1%  1%  0%

[libx264 @ 0x7fe883013c00] Weighted P-Frames: Y:0.0% UV:0.0%

[libx264 @ 0x7fe883013c00] kb/s:13.64

% ls -l out.mkv
-rw-r--r--  1 myuser  staff  1814  7 Jan 11:41 out.mkv


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Re: image2 examples missing `-f image2`, can that be right?

Moritz Barsnick
On Sun, Jan 07, 2018 at 12:55:20 -0800, Jim DeLaHunt wrote:
> Harrumph. "Just try it first" is practical advice for this project, it
> seems.

LOL. I was just referring to doubts regarding the documentation. OTOH,
some details are not or cannot be explained, so when a user poses a
complicated "how can this be achieved" question, I just try my best,
making use of experience.

> But I am still unsatisfied with the documentation. My philosophy
> of documentation is that it should be an explanation and a help, not a
> riddle.

Unfortunately, introductions and explanations are more to be found in
the Wiki than in the formal docs.
>
> I've filed a ticket noting some deficiencies in the documentation,
> including that there's no mention that use of a pattern in an input file
> name implies `-f image2`, and that the examples which lack `-f image2`
> do not point out that this is correct and why it works, and that there
> are no examples which include `-f image2`. See [1].

This needs to be checked - I'm too lazy to analyze the source, and
others know this functionality better by heart - but for any doc
shortcomings you are sure about, patches are truly welcome. I have
submitted some small stuff to ffmpeg-devel, and it was mostly accepted.

Developers are more keen on getting code done than on pimping existing
documentation, so volunteers are also welcome. I pretty much agree with
you that there are shortcomings in some fields.

Cheers from a former Canadian ("resident alien", lol),
Moritz
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Re: image2 examples missing `-f image2`, can that be right?

Carl Eugen Hoyos-2
In reply to this post by Jim DeLaHunt
2018-01-07 8:08 GMT+01:00 Jim DeLaHunt <[hidden email]>:

> I'm reading the documentation for the image2 demuxer[1]. It has three
> examples, in section 20.9.1 Examples.
>
> ffmpeg -framerate 10 -i 'img-%03d.jpeg' out.mkv
> ffmpeg -framerate 10 -start_number 100 -i 'img-%03d.jpeg' out.mkv
> ffmpeg -framerate 10 -pattern_type glob -i "*.png" out.mkv

For input that cannot be auto-detected, the file suffixes "jpeg" and "png"
(and several others) imply the image2 demuxer which in turn is the only
demuxer that understands the "%d" syntax.
Since "img-%03d.jpeg" is not a file that can be auto-detected, the file
suffix will be used to identify the image2 demuxer.

Note in addition that the image2 demuxer is one of the few demuxers
that does not support auto-detection but only works through file suffixes.
There are specific demuxers for jpeg, png and several others that do
support auto-detection (but not the "%d" syntax).

I hope this helps, I will close your ticket (and try to explain there).

Feel free to ask more here, Carl Eugen
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Re: image2 examples missing `-f image2`, can that be right?

Jim DeLaHunt
On 2018-01-07 15:20, Carl Eugen Hoyos wrote:
> ...[snip]...
> I hope this helps, I will close your ticket (and try to explain there).

This response shows one of the reasons why the ffmpeg project has poor
documentation. This ticket[1] points out deficiencies in the
documentation. The developer's response does not refute the
deficiencies. It does not improve the actual documentation. Yet the
developer closes the ticket. Thus the project will lose visibility that
this part of the documentation is deficient.

Not to mention, it's terribly frustrating to a junior contributor put
effort into documenting a deficiency, and have a senior developer
essentially discard that attempt to contribute. After such a rejection,
what is the chance that the junior contributor will make another
contribution?  The world is full of more welcoming and more cooperative
projects.

[1] https://trac.ffmpeg.org/ticket/6950#comment:2

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Re: image2 examples missing `-f image2`, can that be right?

Jim DeLaHunt
In reply to this post by Moritz Barsnick
On 2018-01-07 13:29, Moritz Barsnick wrote:
> On Sun, Jan 07, 2018 at 12:55:20 -0800, Jim DeLaHunt wrote:
>> Harrumph. "Just try it first" is practical advice for this project, it
>> seems.
> LOL. I was just referring to doubts regarding the documentation. OTOH,
> some details are not or cannot be explained, so when a user poses a
> complicated "how can this be achieved" question, I just try my best,
> making use of experience.
Thank you, I appreciate your willingness to help, and I appreciate the
explanation. That doesn't let the project as a whole off the hook, however.
>> But I am still unsatisfied with the documentation. My philosophy
>> of documentation is that it should be an explanation and a help, not a
>> riddle.
> Unfortunately, introductions and explanations are more to be found in
> the Wiki than in the formal docs.
In the Wiki, sometimes. In the oral history of the mailing lists,
sometimes. That they are not in the formal docs is a weakness of the
project.

>> I've filed a ticket noting some deficiencies in the documentation,
>> including that there's no mention that use of a pattern in an input file
>> name implies `-f image2`, and that the examples which lack `-f image2`
>> do not point out that this is correct and why it works, and that there
>> are no examples which include `-f image2`. See [1].
> This needs to be checked - I'm too lazy to analyze the source, and
> others know this functionality better by heart - but for any doc
> shortcomings you are sure about, patches are truly welcome. I have
> submitted some small stuff to ffmpeg-devel, and it was mostly accepted.
>
> Developers are more keen on getting code done than on pimping existing
> documentation, so volunteers are also welcome.
Well, head over to https://trac.ffmpeg.org/ticket/6950#comment:1 and see
how welcome that ticket was.

> … I pretty much agree with
> you that there are shortcomings in some fields.
>
> Cheers from a former Canadian ("resident alien", lol),

Sorry, eh? :-)

Thanks again for your help,
      —Jim DeLaHunt, Vancouver, Canada

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Re: image2 examples missing `-f image2`, can that be right?

Carl Eugen Hoyos-2
In reply to this post by Jim DeLaHunt
2018-01-08 1:12 GMT+01:00 Jim DeLaHunt <[hidden email]>:
> On 2018-01-07 15:20, Carl Eugen Hoyos wrote:
>>
>> ...[snip]...
>> I hope this helps, I will close your ticket

>> (and try to explain there).

Sorry, this was apparently misleading: I am happy to try to explain
the misunderstandings about formats and FFmpeg usage here, the
bug tracker is not the right place to do this.

[...]

> The world is full of more welcoming and more cooperative projects.

Thanks for reminding me, I nearly forgot!

Carl Eugen
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Re: image2 examples missing `-f image2`, can that be right?

Jim DeLaHunt
On 2018-01-07 16:24, Carl Eugen Hoyos wrote:
> 2018-01-08 1:12 GMT+01:00 Jim DeLaHunt <[hidden email]>:
>> On 2018-01-07 15:20, Carl Eugen Hoyos wrote:
>>> ...[snip]...
>>> I hope this helps, I will close your ticket
>>> (and try to explain there).
> Sorry, this was apparently misleading: I am happy to try to explain
> the misunderstandings about formats and FFmpeg usage here, the
> bug tracker is not the right place to do this.
Is the bug tracker the right place to track a deficiency in project
source file doc/demuxers.txi, lines 329:462, while an improvement is
worked on?

Which is to say, https://trac.ffmpeg.org/ticket/6950 is not a request
for support, it is a report of a deficiency in the documentation.  The
deficiency still exists, but the open tickets list no longer contains
this report. That makes it harder to get the improvement to
doc/demuxers.txi, lines 329:462 .

--
     --Jim DeLaHunt, [hidden email]     http://blog.jdlh.com/ (http://jdlh.com/)
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Re: image2 examples missing `-f image2`, can that be right?

Carl Eugen Hoyos-2
2018-01-08 1:33 GMT+01:00 Jim DeLaHunt <[hidden email]>:

> On 2018-01-07 16:24, Carl Eugen Hoyos wrote:
>>
>> 2018-01-08 1:12 GMT+01:00 Jim DeLaHunt <[hidden email]>:
>>>
>>> On 2018-01-07 15:20, Carl Eugen Hoyos wrote:
>>>>
>>>> ...[snip]...
>>>> I hope this helps, I will close your ticket
>>>> (and try to explain there).
>>
>> Sorry, this was apparently misleading: I am happy to try to explain
>> the misunderstandings about formats and FFmpeg usage here, the
>> bug tracker is not the right place to do this.
>
> Is the bug tracker the right place to track a deficiency in project source
> file doc/demuxers.txi, lines 329:462, while an improvement is worked on?

You were unable to convince me that an improvement is possible and
makes sense (would actually improve the documentation as opposed
to just make it longer).

You have now two possibilities:
Either send a patch (made with "git format-patch") that contains your
suggested improvements to the documentation to the development
mailing list or we continue here to discuss that 1) the image2 demuxer
does not support nearly all formats supported by FFmpeg but we
cannot mention them all, 2) it is not true that "'%d' usually implies
image2" (it never does, contrary to what was claimed in this thread)
and 3) you request an additional example but you failed to provide a
usecase that needs it (I know that an infinite number exists but since
you provided only a use-case for not using the image2 demuxer it
appears to me that an additional example - that by definition makes
the documentation longer and therefore less readable - would not
have helped you.

Carl Eugen
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Re: image2 examples missing `-f image2`, can that be right?

Carl Eugen Hoyos-2
2018-01-08 1:40 GMT+01:00 Carl Eugen Hoyos <[hidden email]>:

> 2018-01-08 1:33 GMT+01:00 Jim DeLaHunt <[hidden email]>:
>> On 2018-01-07 16:24, Carl Eugen Hoyos wrote:
>>>
>>> 2018-01-08 1:12 GMT+01:00 Jim DeLaHunt <[hidden email]>:
>>>>
>>>> On 2018-01-07 15:20, Carl Eugen Hoyos wrote:
>>>>>
>>>>> ...[snip]...
>>>>> I hope this helps, I will close your ticket
>>>>> (and try to explain there).
>>>
>>> Sorry, this was apparently misleading: I am happy to try to explain
>>> the misunderstandings about formats and FFmpeg usage here, the
>>> bug tracker is not the right place to do this.
>>
>> Is the bug tracker the right place to track a deficiency in project source
>> file doc/demuxers.txi, lines 329:462, while an improvement is worked on?
>
> You were unable to convince me that an improvement is possible and
> makes sense (would actually improve the documentation as opposed
> to just make it longer).
>
> You have now two possibilities:

I just realized that - as said - I would slightly prefer you not to send
another documentation "improvement"...

Thank you, Carl Eugen
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