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Video Editing on Linux Machines

Kino, LiVES, and OpenShot


If you are interested in editing videos on a Linux desktop you have quite a few options, including the following software packages.


Kino is a mature open source video editor for GNU/Linux, that offers easy and reliable digital video editing and works well with IEEE-1394 to capture digital video and provide video tape recorder control.

You can use Kino for example to load several video clips, cut and paste pieces of video or audio, and save it as an edit decision list in SMIL XML format. Besides various DV formats, Kino can export to a variety of other formats, such as MP3, Ogg, Vorbis, MPEG-1,2,4, and WAV. It can also export still frames in most common image formats. For more information refer to the Kino web site.


Another advanced free and open source video editor for Linux is LiVES, which can also be used as a VJ tool for creating images and mixing visuals and music. It includes an RFX builder for creating effects and transitions, and can be extended through RFX plugins. LiVES handles most video formats and common audio formats. A long list of features and editing capabilities can be found on the LiVES web site.


A relatively new project is OpenShot. It already comes with an impressive set of features, which includes support for many video, audio, and image formats, multiple tracks, clip resizing, trimming, and cutting, video transitions, real-time previews, image overlay, watermarks, title creation, and frame stepping. Some of the functionality, such as video encoding, is built on FFmpeg, an open source and cross-platform software package for recording, converting, and streaming audio and video content.

The latest version of OpenShot includes 30 video effects, such as converting to black and white, and 3 audio effects, such adding an echo. Ubuntu users can now install OpenShot using the PPA (Personal Package Archive) system. For other distributions, there is a build wizard available that downloads and compiles the source code and dependent libraries.

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