Helix Player 1.0 and RealPlayer 10


Helix Player 1.0 and RealPlayer 10

Beta Release Notes

The Helix Player 1.0 is the completely dual licensed, both open source (RPSL) and commercial community source (RCSL), media player and thus contain no non-open source components. It plays open source formats, like Ogg Vorbis and Theora.

The RealPlayer 10 for Linux builds on top of the Helix Player and will include RealAudio, RealVideo, MP3, Flash, MPEG-4 (fee-based) and other non-open source components.

Most up-to-date version of these notes can be found at:


What's New
Known Issues
Installation Instructions
Downloading the player
Using the Installer and RPMs
Preference Locations
FAQ and Support


This is the readme file for the beta release. This file will be modified as we have more information - so please do check our website periodically for new and updated information.

What's New in Beta

This build includes many fixes and incremental improvements over the earlier releases. A lot of the work in this build also has gone towards stabilizing features and fixing many known issues and bugs.

  • Can now run on GTK 2.0.x systems giving better compatibility with older systems (RH8 etc)
  • SMIL2 improvements including multiple player support, indefinite SMIL clip support and SMIL2 SystemComponent support
  • wav, AIFF and au format support (RealPlayer 10 only)
  • Improved stability
  • Dialogs are now more appropriate in their modality - following HIG conventions
  • More polished interface, new artwork
  • Linux PPC builds are now available for testing purposes, but likely have problems.
  • Solaris Sparc builds are also available for testing purposes, but likely have problems.

Known Issues

  • Problems with xasync errors (issue #2221)
  • RealPlayer on Linux PPC fails to run unless swfformat.so is deleted (issue #2568)
  • RealPlayer on Linux PPC RPM requires --ignorearch flag to install (issue #2569)
  • Some content encoded in RealAudio 3 fails to play. Multimedia content that uses RA3 as the audio codec will still play without audio.
  • Player does not play Gnome vfs URLs (smb://). Workaround is to mount the samba share using smbmount etc (issue #2269).
  • RealAudio8 High Bitrate audio does not play properly (issue #2351)
  • Alsa and esound drivers are not included in this build
    • The OSS device used for playback can be set using the AUDIO environment variable.
    • eg export AUDIO=/dev/dsp2
  • See the Helix Player bug tracker for a list of the latest issues that affect the player.

Installation Instructions

Downloading the player

You can download the beta version of the Helix and Real players from http://player.helixcommunity.org/downloads.

Here are the MD5 sums of selected downloads:

| style="vertical-align: top; background-color: rgb(255,255,255)" rowspan="1" colspan="2" | MD5 Sums |-
hxplay- 8660cf62c99ea848b8be6114b2c5796c
realplay- 2c17ed38f25999de2c53f0b6402ca319
HelixPlayer- 0691a7f5c4b141a245dafa1165180ce2
RealPlayer- 8a22f1742d3033de6b2b4d927dead6da
hxplay- d738c4549cc3b2c9548f8ec8542b653f
realplay- 93355e6c1a8443f78c4b4d20527b407d

Using the Installer

  • Ensure that the .bin file you downloaded is executable. You can make the .bin file executable by running the "chmod a+x player-0.3.0.build-platform-arch.bin" command from a terminal window (substitute the correct player/build/architecture/compiler version for your system)
  • Run the .bin file. It will provide you with several prompts, including the target installation directory
  • Confirm that the installer has copied the nphelix.so and nphelix.xpt files to your mozilla plugins directory. If you installed as root, this should be under /usr/lib/mozilla/plugins. If you installed as a user, they will be under ~/.mozilla/plugins.
  • If your distribution uses a different folder for mozilla plugins, or if the install failed to copy the plugins, you may have to copy the plugin manually.
  • After copying the files to the Mozilla plugins directory restart mozilla, and look at "about:plugins" in mozilla to see if it picks them up. It should look something like this: Helix DNA Plugin
    File name: nphelix.so
    Helix DNA Plugin (for Mozilla)
MIME Type Description Suffixes
audio/x-pn-realaudio-plugin RealPlayer Plugin Metafile rpm Yes

Using the RPM (for Linux)

  • download the RealPlayer- file (substitute the correct architecture/compiler version for your system.)
  • login as root
  • run the command "rpm -i RealPlayer-"

Using the bz2 tarball (for Linux)

  • the binary installer is the preferred method of installing the player.
  • note that the binary tarball will extract into the current directory.
  • extract the tarball using:
  • tar -jvxf chmod a+x player-0.3.0.build-platform-arch.bin -C /path/to/RealPlayer10Alpha
  • substitute the correct player/build/architecture/compiler version for your system

Preference Locations

  • The player places it's prefs at ~/.hxplayerrc (Helix Player) or ~/.realplayerrc (RealPlayer).

FAQ and Other means of support

You can check the player help page.

You can also post your questions on either the FAQ forum, via irc on irc.helixcommunity.org channel #player, or via the dev@player.helixcommunity.org mailing list. You can report bugs via the Helix Issue Tracker. Helix Player bugs can be logged under the Player component. Do look up all open bugs against player to help reduce duplicates being entered.