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Getting MPlayer to cope cleanly with redshift

September 9, 2010

Redshift is a nice tool that adjusts the color temperature of your screen according to your surroundings. As result, your eyes hurt less if you are working in front of the screen at night.

It is easy to set up, it is for instance already packaged for Debian (package redshift). Once installed, you have to determine longitude and latitude of your position – googling around should do. And you can made some test to defines which range of temperature you want redshift to work with – I like it cold, so I go from 6500 to 9300. And you add it in autostart, the way you want.

In my case, I added redshift -l 48.799:2.505 -t 6500:9300 & just before startkde in my ~/.xsession

Easy, isn’t it? Sure. But when I watch TV with MPlayer or any video with SMPlayer, especially around 01 AM, I’d like color temperature back to normal. And, no, I’m not fond of the idea of doing a killall each time I start watching a video and then a call to redshift afterwards when I’m done.

Configure SMPlayer to use this MPlayer wrapper that kills and starts redshift at the right time

So I wrote a wrapper that send SIGTERM to any redshift process when starting, call MPlayer then, when over, restart redshift. It uses basic perl functions so it has no dependencies. You may however edit it to the set latitude/longitude and temperature range to whatever you like.

It should be just as if you were using MPlayer, so you can configure SMPlayer, or any MPlayer frontend, to use this wrapper. Obviously, this wrapper could be modified to work with vlc, xine or any else video rendering engine.

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3 Comments
  1. Hi. You could also send SIGUSR1 instead if SIGTERM if you just want to disable redshift temporarily. When you send SIGUSR1 the second time, redshift will be reenabled.

  2. Hi,

    With the version I have installed (the debian’s one, ie 1.2), I had sometimes weird results with SIGUSR1 so I went for the harsh way.

    I guess that it could help to write an even simpler wrapper, that would just search for redshift pid and send SIGUSR1 on start and on exit. But I’m happy for now with this one :)

  3. tetedechat permalink

    S-cro !

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