Version 8 (modified by llogan, 4 years ago) (diff)

add unmentored section

Note: Page to be filled for this round of Outreachy. Please help fill this page, see SponsoringPrograms/Outreachy/2015-05, SponsoringPrograms/Outreachy/2015-12 and SponsoringPrograms/GSoC/2015.

Intern application deadline is March 22, 2016, and internship takes place from May 23 to August 23.

This page is currently still in progress, so more projects should be appearing soon.


FFmpeg is the universal multimedia toolkit: a complete, cross-platform solution to record, convert, filter and stream audio and video. It is used by a number of media players (including VLC and MPlayer), video websites (including YouTube and Vimeo), web browsers (including Google Chrome/Chromium and Firefox), social media (including Facebook and Twitter) and countless other software projects in the multimedia field and beyond.

Outreachy is a program that helps underrepresented people to get involved in free and open source software. Through the guidance of mentors, interns gain valuable experience interacting with and coding for open source projects like FFmpeg. Additionally, the project and its users benefit from code created from applicants who often continue contributing as developers.

This is our landing page for the current round of the program, which will formally start in May, 2016. Please also see our Google Summer of Code Page for ideas–most are all also eligible.

Information for Applicants

Getting Started

  1. Get to know FFmpeg. If you are an applicant interested in contributing to FFmpeg, it is recommended to start by subscribing to the ffmpeg-devel mailing-list, visiting our FreeNode IRC channels (#ffmpeg-devel and #ffmpeg although you will find most developers on the first one), and exploring both the codebase and the development workflow. Feel free to contact us if you have any questions.
  1. Find a project. This page will eventually list mentored and un-mentored projects. Mentored projects are well-defined and mentor(s) have already volunteered. Un-mentored projects are additional ideas you may want to consider, but you will have to contact us to find a mentor. You can also propose your own project, if you can think of one that better fits your interest and skill level. If a project description is unclear or you have any questions, please get in touch with its mentor and/or send an email to the program admins at [].
  1. Contact us. If you decide on a project, get in touch with the community and let us know. If you want to work on a qualification task, let the respective mentor know so we can avoid duplicated efforts.
  1. Apply. Intern application deadline is March 22, 2016, and internship takes place from May 23 to August 23. See Outreachy: Apply for additional information.

Note: A friendly reminder that while the application to Outreachy is important for you and Outreachy, FFmpeg mentors will not base their decision solely on the Outreachy application. We will judge the applicant based on their abilities in coding, learning the tools, communication skills etc. So please do not worry about your application being perfect for us. Although it is very important to follow Outreachy's application rules so they can pay you.

Qualification Tasks

In order to get accepted you normally have to complete a small qualification task. FFmpeg development can be quite challenging and the qualification task helps us figure out whether you are motivated enough and have the potential to deliver successfully.

Contact us for assistance on selecting a qualification task. You can also browse the FFmpeg Bug Tracker for qualification task ideas. In general qualification tasks should include submitting a patch to the ffmpeg-devel mailing list which passes review and is accepted into the FFmpeg codebase. It will be common for such patches to need multiple iterations of submissions and reviews, so do not wait too long with the first submission!

Contacting FFmpeg

If you have questions or comments feel free to contact us via our mailing list, IRC channel, or e-mail one of the FFmpeg Outreachy admins:

  • Mailing-list: ffmpeg-devel
  • IRC: #ffmpeg-devel on Freenode
  • FFmpeg Outreachy Admin: Kieran Kunhya (kierank in #ffmpeg-devel on Freenode IRC, kieran at kunhya dot com)
  • FFmpeg Outreachy Backup Admins: Michael Niedermayer (michaelni in #ffmpeg-devel on Freenode IRC, michael at niedermayer dot cc), Lou Logan (llogan in #ffmpeg-devel on Freenode IRC, lou at lrcd dot com)

Mentored Projects

This section lists well-defined projects that have one or more available mentors. If you are new to FFmpeg, and have relatively little experience with multimedia, you should favor a mentored project rather than propose your own. Contact the respective mentor(s) to get more information about the project and the requested qualification task.

Create a fuzzing testsuite for FFmpeg

Description: Fuzzing is the process of using random or specially crafted junk input to make programs crash or exploit security vulnerabilities. Many organisations such as Google have fuzzed FFmpeg and found and fixed many issues. The problem is FFmpeg moves so quickly that often new commits expose other problems. We need a way of automatically assessing whether commits have exposed bugs. At the same time we don't want to fuzz parts of the codebase that we know haven't changed because this just wastes CPU cycles.

Expected results:

  • Add an existing specialised fuzzing test application to main repository
  • Create a corpus of small test files that exercise codepaths likely to crash for a selection of decoders or demuxers
  • Build a web interface able to extract information from each commit and run against an appropriate fuzz corpus.

Prerequisites: Knowledge of the command line and program compilation. Knowledge of a web programming language (python, node.js etc). Useful to have C experience.

Qualification Task: Compile and run fffuzz and report and (possibly fix) a crash using zzuf or afl-fuzz.

Mentor: Kieran Kunhya (kierank in #ffmpeg-devel on Freenode IRC, kieran at kunhya dot com)

Backup Mentor: TBC

FFv1 P frame support

Description: FFv1 is one of the most efficient intra-only lossless video codecs. Your work will be to add support for P frames with motion compensation and motion estimation support (the existing motion estimation code in libavcodec can be reused here). Then fine-tune it until the best compression rate is achieved. This will make FFv1 competitive with existing I+P frame lossless codecs like lossless H.264.

Expected results: State of the art P frame support in the FFv1 encoder and decoder implementation.

Prerequisites: C coding skills, basic familiarity with git, solid understanding of video coding especially with motion compensation.

Qualification Task: Improve the compression of the existing FFV1 Intra frames, you can change any part of the algorithm but it must be practical, the more improvement you can achieve, the better

Mentor: Michael Niedermayer (michaelni in #ffmpeg-devel on Freenode IRC,

Backup mentor: TBC

Improve Selftest coverage

Description: FFmpeg contains many selftests, still more code is not tested than tested thus more such tests are needed to ensure regressions and platform specific bugs are quickly detected. Examples of existing self tests can be seen under #ifdef TEST in various files

Expected results: Significantly improve selftest code coverage

Prerequisites: Good C coding skills, basic familiarity with git

Qualification Task: Improve selftest code coverage by at least 1% of two of the main libs (libavcodec, libavformat, libavdevice, libavfilter, libavutil, libswresample, libswscale) as listed at

Mentor: Michael Niedermayer (michaelni in #ffmpeg-devel on Freenode IRC,

Backup Mentor: TBC

Unmentored Projects

This is a list of additional projects that interns can consider if a mentored project is unavailable or not within their skill or interests. The intern will have to find a mentor for the project, or of course may also propose their own project.

Your Own Project Idea

Interns can propose their own project. Ideas can also be found by browsing bugs and feature requests on our bug tracker. The work should last the majority of the internship duration, the task must be approved by the developers, and a mentor must be assigned.

Students can discuss an idea in the ffmpeg-devel mailing-list, the #ffmpeg-devel IRC channel, or contact the FFmpeg Outreachy admins for more information.