FFmpeg vs libav: A distribution maintainer point of view of split
It’s been a while since I wanted to write about this and since there recently has been a sort of hijack without any kind of discussion to let libav be the default implementation for Gentoo, this motivated me.
Exactly two years ago, a group consisting of the majority of FFmpeg developers took over its maintainership. While I didn’t like the methods, I’m not an insider so my opinion stops here, especially since if you pay attention to who was involved: Luca was part of it. Luca has been a Gentoo developer since probably most of us even used Gentoo and I must admit I’ve never seen him heating any discussion, rather the contrary, and it’s always been a pleasure to work with him. What happened next, after a lot of turmoil, is that the developers split in two groups: libav formed by the “secessionists” and FFmpeg.
Good, so what do we chose now?
Now the question at hand: which should be the default? FFmpeg or Libav?
How to decide?
- Libav has a strict review policy every patch goes through a review and has to be polished enough before landing the tree.
- FFmpeg merges daily what had been done in Libav and has a more lax approach on what goes in the tree and how.