Helix Player 11 Release Notes




                                 Helix Player 11 Release Notes

                                                                                                    March 2008

The Helix Player is a complete, free and open source media player, licensed under your the open source (RPSL), commercial community source (RCSL), and the free software GNU General Public License (GPL). It plays open media formats, like Ogg Vorbis and Theora, H.261, H.263, GIF, JPEG, PNG, RealText and SMIL.


What's New in
System Requirements

Installation Instructions

Downloading the player
Using the InstallerandRPMs
Preferences Location

FAQ and Support

Known Issues


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

New in

  • Playlist support.
  • PerfectPlay (Superbuffer).
  • ALSA Audio Device Support.
  • Surround Sound Playback Support.

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

Minimum System Requirements

  • 350MHz Intel Pentium II processor or equivalent
  • 64B of RAM
  • 30MB available disk space
  • 28.8Kbps modem (High-speed Internet connection recommended)
  • Sound card supported by ALSA or OSS drivers
  • 65,000-color video display card set to display at 800x600 (video)

Installation Instructions

Downloading the player

You can download the latest version of Helix Player from http://player.helixcommunity.org/downloads.

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 HelixPlayer11GOLD.bin.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 install the player as a non-root 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


audio/x-pn-realaudio-plugin RealPlayer Plugin Metafile rpm Yes

Using the RPM

  • download the HelixPlayer11Gold.rpm file (substitute the correct architecture/compiler version for your system.) 
  • login as root
  • run the command "rpm -ivhHelixPlayer11Gold.rpm"

Preferences Location

  • The player places its preferencesin the following file: ~/.config/real/hxplayerrc

FAQ and Other means of support

You can check thePlayer Help Page.

You can also post your questions on either theFAQforum, via irc on irc.helixcommunity.org channel #player, or via thedev@player.helixcommunity.orgmailing list. You can report bugs via theHelix 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.

Known Issues

  • Previous and Next buttons might be disabled and require toggling of Continuous check box to re-enable them.
  • If you are having problems playing back media and are behind a proxy you can try using rtsp transport via http only (go to transports pane in prefs, select "use specified transport" and click "configure rtsp." Then uncheck "attempt multicast," "attempt udp," and "attempt tcp.")
  • 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. RA3 has been deprecated.
  • Player does not play gnome-vfs URI's (smb://). Workaround is to mount the samba share using smbmount etc (issue #2269).
  • See the Helix Playerbug trackerfor a list of the latest issues that affect the player.