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1.1.6 • Public • Published

ffbinaries downloader

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Downloads precompiled ffmpeg, ffprobe, ffplay and ffserver binaries from ffbinaries.com.

This module is cross-platform and can be used through CLI or as a Node module (i.e. as a build step or a part of app boot routine).

You can download whatever binaries you need during the build if you'd like to bundle the binaries with your distributable files or just download it on user's machine during initial setup process.


You can run it from your code or through CLI.

If output argument is specified the binary will be placed there. It will default to current working directory.

If platform argument is missing then the current platform will be automatically detected and binaries for it will be downloaded.

If components argument is missing then binaries of all available components will be downloaded (see Included components section).


When installed globally with npm i ffbinaries -g this module will register itself on command line interface.


CLI uses the following syntax:

ffbinaries [components] [--platform] [--output] [--quiet] [--version]

Each flag can also be abbreviated in your scripts with -p, -o, -q and -v respectively.


Download all binaries for your platform


Download all binaries for a specified platform

ffbinaries --platform=mac

Download only ffplay for 64-bit Windows, quiet output

ffbinaries ffplay --platform=win-64 --quiet

Download only ffmpeg and ffprobe, version 3.2 for 64-bit Linux, quiet output, save binaries in a specified directory

ffbinaries ffmpeg ffprobe -p=linux-64 -q -v=3.2 -o=/usr/local/bin

Additional commands

There are also ffbinaries help, ffbinaries versions and ffbinaries clearcache.



ffbinaries library exports the following methods:

  • downloadBinaries(platform, opts, callback) downloads and extracts the requested binaries.

    The opts parameter is an object that can contain these optional parameters:

    • destination: the path where the binaries will be downloaded to. If not provided it will default to ..
    • components: an array of string values that describes which components to download. If not provided it will default to all components available for the platform.
    • version: version of ffmpeg to download
    • force: ignore check for existing binaries in the destination and overwrite them if necessary
    • quiet: suppress verbose logs
    • tickerFn: a progress-update function, triggered with percentage as argument at an interval until download is completed
    • tickerInterval: frequency at which the ticker progress updates are issued (in ms; defaults to 1000)
  • getVersionData(version, callback) fetches the full data set without downloading any binaries.

  • listVersions(callback) returns the list of available versions from the API

  • listPlatforms() returns the list of available platforms

  • detectPlatform() returns the platform code of the machine as detected by the module.

  • resolvePlatform(input) resolves input to a platform code (matches aliases).

  • getBinaryFilename(component, platform) resolves a filename of a binary for a given platform (appends ".exe" in Windows).

  • locateBinariesSync(components, opts) looks for binaries already existing in the system. Returns object with located binaries, their paths and versions.

    opts parameter is an object that can specify these additional options:

    • paths to provide locations to check in first
    • ensureExecutable will set executable flag on the file if it's missing
  • clearCache() purges local cache


Download all binaries for your platform

var ffbinaries = require('ffbinaries');

ffbinaries.downloadBinaries(function () {
  console.log('Downloaded all binaries for current platform.');

Note: you don't need to check for existence of the binaries in the destination folder. ffbinaries will check if the binaries exist first and it will not attempt to re-download them unless you specify {force: true}.

Download only ffmpeg and ffprobe, version 3.2 for 64-bit Linux, quiet output, save binaries in a specified location

var ffbinaries = require('ffbinaries');
var dest = __dirname + '/binaries';

ffbinaries.downloadBinaries(['ffmpeg', 'ffprobe'], {platform: 'linux-64', quiet: true, destination: dest}, function () {
  console.log('Downloaded ffplay and ffprobe binaries for linux-64 to ' + dest + '.');

See more examples.


The following platform codes are available:

windows-32 (aliases: win, windows, win-32), windows-64 (alias: win-64)

linux-32 (alias: linux), linux-64, linux-armhf (alias: linux-arm), linux-armel

osx-64 (aliases: mac, osx, mac-64)

You can use aliases as your platform code argument in both CLI and programmatically.

Included components

Mac Linux Windows
ffmpeg v v v
ffprobe v v v
ffserver v v
ffplay v v* v

(* Only linux-32 and linux-64 builds of ffplay 3.2 are currently available)

Source of binaries

The API providing data to the module is located at ffbinaries.com. The code is located in ffbinaries-api repo.

The binaries are hosted on GitHub as releases of ffbinaries-prebuilt repo.


History of changes can be found in changelog.md file.


If you'd like to contribute to this project have a look at contributing.md file for more information.

Reporting issues

If you're experiencing issues please update to the newest version and run ffbinaries clearcache.

If that doesn't resolve it simply raise an issue on GitHub.

Make sure to include the information about which version you're using, platform, the exact commands you're trying to execute and the output.

Dependents (8)

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