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As a Linux user who absolutely loves the command-line, I find myself usually preferring command-line tools. Instead of System Monitor I use top, instead of Pidgin I use irssi, and instead of 3D games I play Nethack. One application stands out though and this application—is MPlayer.

Most of you know that MPlayer can either be used on the command-line, or with a GUI front-end. As usual, the command-line seems more functional to me. Installing MPlayer without a GUI isn’t hard, but you have to remember to use sudo apt-get install mplayer-nogui. If you run sudo apt-get install mplayer, you might get a GUI.

After you have installed MPlayer, try it out using a video file.  Do this by running mplayer (insert file name here).  A window will pop up and your file will play.  You’re probably thinking right now that, great, it plays videos.  So do hundreds of other applications.  Well, if you check out the man pages for MPlayer, its plethora of options will be revealed.  To do this, issue the command man mplayer.  To leave the documentation, just press q.

MPlayer is stable.  It hasn’t crashed on me yet and I’ve been using for a long time.  So, if you want a versatile video and audio player with no GUI, you’ve found the right application.  If you don’t like using the command-line, then I recommend you pickup SMPlayer.  It is a GUI version of MPlayer.  VLC Media Player is good as well, but after using MPlayer for so long, switching would be pointless.  Besides, MPlayer is best video player on the Linux platform.

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