In order to build and install V4L2 module, do I have to download it, or it is already part of the kernel (and all I have to do is to choose it, in order to build it, via kernel configuration)?

I 'm running Angstrom distribution [kernel].

Kernel configuration's result:

--- Multimedia support
      *** Multimedia core support ***                                                                       
[*]   Video For Linux                                                                                       
[*]     Enable Video For Linux API 1 (DEPRECATED)                                                          
      *** Multimedia drivers ***                                                                            
[*]   Video capture adapters  --->                                                                          
[*]   Radio Adapters  --->                                                                                  
[ ]   DAB adapters

1 Answer 1


It is part of the vanilla linux source, and that should include 2.6.x. If you run make menuconfig and hit /, you get a search.

For the 3.11 source, the V4L2 core is triggered by VIDEO_DEV which requires Device Drivers->Multimedia Support and either Device Drivers->Multimedia Support->Cameras/video grabbers or some other camera support; most people will probably want to access it via USB, and if you select Device Drivers -> Multimedia Support -> Media USB Adapters -> USB Video Class V4L2 is part of that.

However, the options for 2.6.x may be slightly different.

You probably do not need to build this into the kernel. If you can take your current configuration and add the required options as modules, then you should be able to make modules_install with INSTALL_MOD_PATH set (if not, they'll end up in /lib/modules/x.x.x) and copy them over to the target system's /lib/modules/x.x.x. You then need to run depmod from the target system (or see man depmod).

  • I selected "Y" in Device Drivers->Multimedia Support and result is shown in question above. I run make dep and make clean. Something I can't figure out is: Now, do I have to build the entire kernel (make bzImage) or just modules (make modules) and (make modules_install)?
    – dempap
    Commented Feb 12, 2014 at 23:40
  • If the options can be added as modular, you don't have to re-build the kernel; I've added a paragraph about this.
    – goldilocks
    Commented Feb 13, 2014 at 2:10
  • Thank you for all your help. There is no option for selecting it as <M>, so I left it as [*]. I run make to rebuild kernel and make install to install it. I tried v4l2-ctl --info and v4l -h but no result. What I am missing?
    – dempap
    Commented Feb 13, 2014 at 14:39
  • 2
    Solved it: opkg install v4l-utils.
    – dempap
    Commented Feb 13, 2014 at 16:19

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