I'm looking for a software to do live screen-cast of our local user group meeting. What software can I use to do that? Ideally I'd like to capture the computer screen and speaker's audio and stream it live?

Edit: I'm not looking to just record my desktop and upload the video. I'm trying to live stream the desktop as it is happening.

  • I think I saw this one somewhere recently. Did you ask it elsewhere?
    – tshepang
    Feb 10, 2011 at 23:14
  • No, I haven't asked this anywhere else. In fact, this need came up just a few hours ago.
    – Amjith
    Feb 10, 2011 at 23:21
  • live? asynchronous is the future.
    – hendry
    Apr 2, 2014 at 2:35

9 Answers 9


The Ubuntu Screencast Team uses gtk-recordmydesktop.

  • 2
    This only records the desktop, I don't think I can stream the video live using gtk-recordmysesktop.
    – Amjith
    Feb 11, 2011 at 15:41
  • “This site is no longer active”
    – Frank N
    Oct 20, 2017 at 12:14

Try ffmpeg with something like this:

ffmpeg -vcodec mpeg4 -r 10 -g 300 -vd x11:0,0 -s 1280x1024 http://localhost:8090/feed1.ffm

If it's not working right with the exact settings from the example, see the ffmpeg webpage and documentation for more details: ffmpeg.org

  • 11
    Not work: Unrecognized option 'vd'. (ffmpeg 7:3.2.5-1, Debian 8)
    – Lenik
    Aug 24, 2017 at 6:42

Open-source, works on all platforms, support streaming to popular services out of the box: https://obsproject.com/

  • I just discovered OBS and I have to say it's very impressive. You can use it for screencasting live streams or recording, it has full support for various capture methods (x11, compositing, JACK etc etc) and on my system it "just worked", which is no small feat for this type of app.
    – agittins
    Apr 15, 2018 at 17:05

I've read about using ffmpeg for screengrabbing before. Check out ffmpeg with X11 grabbing + ffserver. There may be some progressive deterioration in A/V syncing though.


VLC has a built-in desktop stream. I don't recall if it does audio too, howerver.
If you need something quick you can try Big Blue Button's VMware image. It sets up a server that can stream desktop, video, audio, and whiteboard.

  • 1
    The VLC solution also worked but it was very slow. Thank you for pointing to the right resources in the VLC docs.
    – Amjith
    Feb 24, 2011 at 17:34

Use WebcamStudio for GNU/Linux. (Reference: Live screencasting to ustream)

As their website says,

WebcamStudio For GNU/Linux creates a virtual webcam that can mix several video sources together and can be used for live broadcasting over Bambuser, UStream or Stickam

  • Thank you for suggesting Webcam Studio. I got it to work. Ustream is not supported anymore since Ustream uses FME 3.0, but I can always use justin.tv or something similar.
    – Amjith
    Feb 24, 2011 at 6:33
  • Good to know that you found this useful :)
    – Barun
    Feb 24, 2011 at 17:57

Without experience with screencasts, this is the way to search the repository for keywords like this:

apt-cache search screencast
byzanz - Small screencast creator
gtk-recordmydesktop - Graphical frontend for recordmydesktop
istanbul - Desktop session recorder producing Ogg Theora video

The result is from xUbuntu 9.10 - your result may vary; give it a try. :)

  • 4
    Are you suggesting the OP must try each of those first before asking for a recommendation?
    – tshepang
    Feb 11, 2011 at 10:03
  • 1
    @Tshepang I see the answer as a guidance. Knowing this one can search for erself first, without asking and waiting.
    – phunehehe
    Feb 11, 2011 at 13:13
  • 1
    I've used gtk-recordmydesktop and istanbul in the past to record my desktop. But what I'm looking for is a way to stream the video live as it is happening so a group from different city can watch the meetup live and ask questions.
    – Amjith
    Feb 11, 2011 at 15:40
  • @jinxed_coder: That reminds me of vnc/vino, allthough I allways used it the other way round - I allways was the observer - and I only used it in a 1:1 connection, and don't know whether it is possible to have multiple viewers. Maybe it is possible with X11 alone. And maybe you need much bandwith. Feb 11, 2011 at 20:38
  • I'm fairly sure vnc has the ability to do multicast... if anybody still routes those packets. a web search for "vnc multicast" does return some hits, though. (Though they seem to be talking about different versions, and I could have sworn I remembered it being built in, as of c. mid-to-late 1990s... but I wasn't really using it myself, merely watching others do so.)
    – lindes
    Feb 22, 2011 at 10:27

Google Hangout supports screen sharing, cross platform and only needs a browser plugin.

  • 1
    Yes these days I do use G+ hangout for this. When I asked this question G+ wasn't available. :)
    – Amjith
    Jan 13, 2013 at 0:19
  • Is it possible to screencast to the smart tv? Aug 18, 2016 at 7:36

Not a very geeky answer, but skype has a "share screen" option.

  • works good for a small number of people.
    – WalterJ89
    Feb 23, 2011 at 17:41
  • That's true, you obviously can't stream it to a huge audience.
    – sk29910
    Feb 23, 2011 at 17:54

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