Auto login and application start (video player)

Asked by Phil M on 2007-06-19

Hi there.
I'd like to create a simple video machine. What i'd like to do is set up the machine to autologin ( i think that should be straight forward) and then
start a media player and loop a 4 min piece of video at full screen. XVID mp4.


So basically when i push the power button.
Auto login
Load a media player ( any suggestions)
Load a specific avi file ( mp 4/ xvid)
Play it at full screen.

I will load the video file onto the local machine.

I need to install the PC in a remote location ( in a ceiling) and am thinking of running a VNC server so that if i need to connect to the PC and upload new content i can do it via a remote desktop.
Any comments and help appreicatted


Question information

English Edit question
Ubuntu mplayer Edit question
No assignee Edit question
Solved by:
Lars Friedrichs
Last query:
Last reply:
Hanusz leszek (leszek-skynet) said : #1


to autologin, Navigate to System->Administration->Login Window
Go to the "security" tab
There you can specify a user which is automatically connected.

I suggest you to use mplayer as the media player.
you can use this command to play a file fullscreen on a loop:
mplayer -fs -loop 0 yourvideo.avi

To start automatically this command, Navigate to System->Preferences->Sessions
There you can add startup programs.

You will probably need to enable the restricted formats to be able to play all movies:

Phil M (philm-singaporeflyer) said : #2


Thanks for the quick reply.

Sounds good i'll try it.

I'm pretty new to Linux !!! How would i "tell" the system where the file is ?
It's currently in the home/phil directory. As in> home/phil/my.avi

Hanusz leszek (leszek-skynet) said : #3

You can use the full path:
mplayer -fs -loop 0 /home/phil/my.avi

Phil M (philm-singaporeflyer) said : #4

Thanks again for the quick reply.

So i've got that bit now.
and i've found where to add the start up program.
In what format do i save the command ( mplayer -fs -loop 0 yourvideo.avi)
so that i can include it in the start up list ??


Hanusz leszek (leszek-skynet) said : #5

When you are in Session, click on New
in the name textbox, enter something like "Video loop"
in the command textbox ,enter "mplayer -fs -loop 0 /home/phil/my.avi"

Best Lars Friedrichs (l-friedrichs) said : #6

There might be another way.
Using Gnome in this setup seems to be overpowered. It just increases your boot time a lot and you don't need it anyway. I would suggest creating another Xsession which only contains the mplayer. It may even run without any windowmanager so the user cannot move windows or start new programs. This is a usual kiosk-mode (as we call it in Germany).

If this setup is of interest for you I may go into further detail.


Phil M (philm-singaporeflyer) said : #7

Talk about a quick education ...thanks a lot guys.

At the moment i can't get mplayer to play the video ( Kaffine and movie plkayer do tho)
It's a xvid avi version of a demo DVD that i made myself so theres not question of it being copyrighted.
I encoded it with AUto Gordian Knot on a Windows PC and it plays on everything except mplayer
Just me being a newbie on linux i guess.

I like the sound of the "kiosk mode"

Phil M (philm-singaporeflyer) said : #8

Thanks Lars Friedrichs, that solved my question.

Phil M (philm-singaporeflyer) said : #9

Thanks Hanusz. I have the mplayer working fine now !!! and the session manager starts exactly as you described

Really appreciate the help guys