Opened 6 years ago

Closed 6 years ago

#3449 closed defect (invalid)

av_parser_parse2 fails on H264 elementary stream

Reported by: lordAtticus Owned by:
Priority: important Component: avcodec
Version: git-master Keywords: h264 regression
Cc: Blocked By:
Blocking: Reproduced by developer: no
Analyzed by developer: no


Latest, including 2.x releases of ffmpeg have updated the function h264_find_frame_end in file h264_parser.c. The optimised assembler functions called from above function return incorrect values on x64 and ARM platforms.
Older, c code implementations found in 1.2.6 version of ffmpeg behave correctly. With latest ffmpeg I was unable to parse correctly H264 elementary streams, that contained multiple nalus in the input buffer. I use only avcodec part of ffmpeg programatically, so I don't know how could I trigger ffmpeg to use av_parser to build a test case. I can glady supply a test stream should it be necessary. Also I have tried replacing the asm part with the code from 1.2.6 release and that fixes the problem, so I suspect a bug in the asm.

Attachments (1)

ticket_3449.264 (123.7 KB) - added by cehoyos 6 years ago.

Download all attachments as: .zip

Change History (9)

comment:1 Changed 6 years ago by cehoyos

Please provide a sample.

comment:2 Changed 6 years ago by lordAtticus

  • Component changed from undetermined to avcodec
  • Version changed from unspecified to git-master

Uploaded to as ticket_3449.264 as recommended in 'Submitting a Bug report' page.
Please let me know if I can be of further assistance, with a function that calls av_parser perhaps...

Changed 6 years ago by cehoyos

comment:3 Changed 6 years ago by cehoyos

  • Keywords h264 regression added
  • Priority changed from normal to important

(I don't know much about H.264 but I wonder how one raw frame can allow to see a parser problem.)

Please either explain how the problem can be reproduced or point to the change introducing the regression.

comment:4 Changed 6 years ago by lordAtticus

It's more about parsing here, rather then actual decoding. The stream I added contains 4 nalus(h264 packet), a PPS, SPS a SEI and an I frame. This makes it valid video and can be played back even in vlc. Parser is meant to be used when we have in same buffer multiple frames. The parser identifies the boundaries between multiple nalus so we can split the buffer and feed it step by step to decoder. So the generic approach in streaming video is to first parse the incoming buffer to identify individual nalus, then feed them individually to the decoder, something like this:

parse buffer until complete
while(inLength) {

parsedLength = av_parser_parse2(videoInParserContext, videoInCodecContext,

&outData, &outLength,
inData, inLength,
0, 0, 0);

inData += parsedLength;
inLength -= parsedLength;
if(outLength) {

av_init_packet(&videoInPacket); = outData;
videoInPacket.size = outLength;
avcodec_decode_video2(videoInCodecContext, videoInFrame, &gotData, &videoInPacket);
if (gotData) {

display videoInFrame



The problem since 2.x releases is that the parser sets outData to NULL, outSize to 0 and parsedLength to inLength, forcing code to exit the loop and discard data.
Running a debug build I traced the root of the problem to line 67 to 70 in h264_parser.c, if we are to restore the state "7" with code from ffmpeg v1.2.x the problem is gone. However, reverting to old code may not be the solution, since I reckon the asm was introduced to improve performance...

Version 0, edited 6 years ago by lordAtticus (next)

comment:5 Changed 6 years ago by cehoyos

Do I understand you correctly that the problem is not reproducible if you configure with --disable-asm?

comment:6 Changed 6 years ago by lordAtticus

After extensive testing, the problem seems to be with me misinterpreting how av_parser works, for example for the sample I submitted, either I input more frames or call the parser with inLength 0, to trigger it to output the previous frame. I have validated many releases v1.2.6 to v2.1.4 all working fine on the ARM platform (both with or without asm). Please don't close the ticket yet I'll get some testing on x64 platform tomorrow.

comment:7 Changed 6 years ago by lordAtticus

Ran some tests on x64 platform as well. Ffmpeg works just fine, my bad, sorry. Please close ticket as invalid.

comment:8 Changed 6 years ago by cehoyos

  • Resolution set to invalid
  • Status changed from new to closed

Thank you for testing again!

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