CLI Tools

What CLI tools are you using, why & how?

  • imagemagick has all sorts of image editing / resizing / etc. You can stitch animations from image sequences with it.
  • gifsicle focuses on animated gifs
  • ffmpeg what’s this - it supports HAP now?
  • moviepy not a CLI, but lots of ways to create edit video programmatically (check this tutorial)
  • youtube-dl aptly named

All of these could probably have their own threads, but want to see what others are using. Got any handy scripts you use with these tools?


Those are some great CLI’s there!

Just as a note, here is a link to a section on the HAP site that explains using FFmpeg a bit,

It isn’t particularly applicable to the world of live visuals, but we recently did a bit of work helping fix some bugs / add some features to this command line tool that is used as part of an interesting .mxf to ProRes workflow,

OSX Automator is worth checking out.

I recently created a “gif2mp4” service with it, which allowed me to select a bunch of gif animations and Right click to run the same ffmpeg script over & over. Playback of multiple GIFs take up a lot of CPU so batch conversion to MP4 (& then HAP) helped performance quite a bit.

A good starting point is

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You already covered most of the graphics tools i’m aware of, but here are some system tools I use daily when running VDMX servers:

  • mpv media player.
  • m-cli for various system info/settings.
  • dshb for a small system stats monitor. Really handy to keep an eye on media servers back stage. Takes a bit of SMCKit/HWMonitor tweaking to get your dGPUs reporting tho.
  • glances for process monitoring.
  • lnav for log view/searching

More of a server than a tool, but I use OLA for converting my Video to DMX’s Art-Net outputs to sACN.

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