How to install Gstreamer on Ubuntu

2 min. read

Gstreamer is essential package for Ubuntu, but there could be some missing packages that are required for app development. So with next steps you are going to install Gstreamer on your PC.



Checkout Dockerfile to build Docker Image for Ubuntu 18 and Gstreamer.

docker build -t gstreamer:latest /path/to/Dockerfile

xhost +local:  # To enable UI

sudo docker run --name ubuntu-gstreamer -it -e DISPLAY=$DISPLAY -v /tmp/.X11-unix/:/tmp/.X11-unix gstreamer:latest

Note: For Ubuntu 16.04 checkout Dockerfile

Go to Launch First Pipeline Section to check installation.

Locate Gstreamer

Check if any version of Gstreamer already installed

which gst-launch-1.0

If you see similar response


You already have Gstreamer installed on your PC. But look at next steps to check that all required packages for development are also installed.

Check Gstreamer Version

Additional you can check version of installed package typing

gst-inspect-1.0 --version

You should get similar response in terminal

gst-inspect-1.0 version 1.14.1
GStreamer 1.14.1 (GIT)

Install Gstreamer

Update Packages

sudo apt-get update 
sudo apt-get upgrade
sudo apt-get build-essential
sudo apt-get pkg-config

Install main Gstreamer packages (*source)

sudo apt-get install libgstreamer1.0-0 gstreamer1.0-dev gstreamer1.0-tools gstreamer1.0-doc
sudo apt-get install gstreamer1.0-plugins-base gstreamer1.0-plugins-good 
sudo apt-get install gstreamer1.0-plugins-bad gstreamer1.0-plugins-ugly 
sudo apt-get install gstreamer1.0-libav
sudo apt-get install gstreamer1.0-doc gstreamer1.0-tools gstreamer1.0-x gstreamer1.0-alsa gstreamer1.0-gl gstreamer1.0-gtk3 gstreamer1.0-qt5 gstreamer1.0-pulseaudio 

Have you noticed words β€˜bad, ugly, good’ in libraries names? Don’t worry, those are not based on personal qualities πŸ™‚ Here is an official doocumentation with explanation of each module and it’s name.

  • gst-plugins-good – a set of good-quality plug-ins under our preferred license, LGPL
  • gst-plugins-ugly – a set of good-quality plug-ins that might pose distribution problems
  • gst-plugins-bad – a set of plug-ins that need more quality, testing or documentation

Launch first pipeline

Type in command line simple command to check that everything works as supposed:

gst-launch-1.0 videotestsrc ! autovideosink

Expected result should be something like this:

videotestsrc Gstreamer plugin

In case you installing Gstreamer on remote PC without any display, use fakesink instead of autovideosink.

Hope everything works just great and you are ready to make some awesome applications. If not, – leave a problem description in comments to this post. We are going to find a way to fix it πŸ™‚


How to build Gstreamer from Sources?

  • If there is a need to build gstreamer from sources, use the following guide

How to build Gstreamer for Python?


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