One of the cool parts about exploring a new Linux distribution is finding new tools. I stopped by a movie site to see what I’ve got on this Slackware system, and upon clicking a wmv link, I was asked if I wanted to save the file or open it with the default application, Totem. I figured why not, let’s see what it’s got.
Totem, it turns out, is a movie player for the Gnome desktop (though it still played fine in KDE with Gnome installed on the system). It’s based on Xine, and unlike MPlayer it has the video and controls in the same window.
The author is still working on a Mozilla plugin, which is one place Linux could use more consistency. MPlayer with the mplayerplug-in on my Fedora box works, but wmv video from a website opens as binary gibberish rather than playing. And even when it does successfully play a video, even the QuickTime trailers on Apple’s site, there’s no audio. I still consider good, consistent multimedia over the Internet, especially embedded in a browser window, one of the last hurdles to getting Linux on the desktop.