That is, after installing (or live boot) I want to be able to access h264-aac videos and mp3 audio that I have saved, WITHOUT INTERNET connection, that is installing after OS-install from a repo on the web is not an option.

related: In case of many distros, it is possible to install freely from repositories configured by default. Is that legally so different from installing as needed later? Why can't they just include those?

related: Ubuntu's live image had a option "install restricted extras". Does that mean that those restricted extras were on the image already, and making them optional made the legal issues go away?


I haven't done an extensive search but one distro I've found that has surprised me with respect to including a fair amount of codecs and tools out of the box is PCLinuxOS. I wrote up a review of PCLinuxOS in this U&L Q&A titled: What live distribution is well-suited for presentations?

With respect to installing codecs from default repositories, Ubuntu & Linux Mint seem to do a reasonably good job at offering this option. Fedora has been getting better but it can be a bit of an effort to do this. CentOS is really not very good as a multimedia distro.

Regarding Ubuntu's live images "install restricted extras", no they aren't included on the CD/DVD. You'll have to do something like described in this AU Q&A titled: How can I install 'restricted-extras' offline? if you want to install them offline.


There was Linux Mint, but it has now done away with multimedia codecs out of the box, starting with version 18.0

There is PCLinuxOS, which includes codecs out of the box. And there is ZorinOS which is Ubuntu based.

As of today, it is also possible to download Linux mint 17.3 and install that instead. Updates will be available till year 2019.

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