Thursday, July 17, 2008

Installing the Perl Audio Converter Ubuntu

PACPL is a Perl based script for converting audio files. It is extremely powerful and is capable of encoding/decoding a large array of formats (aac, ac3, avi, divx, flac, m4a, mp3, mp4, mpeg, ogg, raw, shn, vcd, vob, wav, wma, wmv and many more). Installing the program itself is fairly easy but it does require a number of dependencies – this is what causes most people problems. This tutorial will show how to install PACPL, the dependencies, and codecs. To start with you need to make sure that you have all the repositories and codecs installed.
There are lots of How To's so if you get stuck on these just search in the forum threads.
  1. Install the Medibuntu repository
  2. Follow these instructions for adding repositories and packages in Ubuntu
  3. Install the Ubuntu Restricted Extras
  4. Install “Build Essential” from Synaptic (or use apt get or aptitude get – whatever method you prefer)

Now you are ready to install PACPL.
  1. Go to the PACPL web site and download the source package to your desktop As of this writing the latest package is pacpl-4.0.1.tar.bz2.
  2. Extract the pacpl-4.0.1.tar.bz2 package to the desktop (right click>extract here).
  3. In the pacpl-4.0.1 folder is a folder called “extras”. This contains the script for installing all the dependencies. To run the script, open a terminal and change directories to the pacpl-4.0.1/extras folder on your desktop.
    cd /home/yourusername/Desktop/pacpl-4.0.1/extra
    (where yourusername is your user name in Ubuntu).
  4. Next run the script that will install all the dependencies. At the terminal prompt type (or cut and paste):
  5. Once that is finished change directories again:
    cd /home/yourusename/Desktop/pacpl-4.0.1
  6. Type or cut and paste the following commands at the prompt (1 line at a time).
    sudo make install

That's it. To run pacpl, open a terminal and type:
pacpl --longhelp
This will give display the list of commands available and instructions for using PACPL. In general, the commands are written in the following structure

Open a terminal and at the prompt type:
~$pacpl --to   directories/files
So for example I have a music file xyz.flac in my Home/music directory and I want to convert it to mp3. At the prompt I type:
cozmicharlie@ubuntu:~$ pacpl --to mp3 Home/music/xyz.flac
Hit enter and the file is converted to xyz.mp3.

There are a number of options including moving the file to a new directory, overwriting the original, tagging (you can tag and convert at the same time). See the pacpl --longhelp for all the commands.

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