VLC screen recording with invisible mouse problem fix :)

Update 28-Nov-2014:
WordPress seem to have allowed someone to destroy my walk-through document, replacing the instructions with a false one-liner saying “The content of this file is dangerous”. Ridiculous I know. So my file has been hacked and edited without permission and had lies inserted into it. Brilliant huh? so until I can try and fix this situation, just use the updated walk through below below

 

VLC can do (computer) screen recording so you can make your own videos of what you’re doing on your computer (useful for educational purposes!!!)

1) Download and install VLC media player:
http://www.videolan.org/vlc/index.html

2) Find out where it’s installed. Mine installs itself here:
C:\Program Files (x86)\VideoLAN\VLC\vlc.exe
– you can find out where this is by clicking START, Programs, VideoLAN then right click on the VLC media player and choose Properties. There it says Target:, click in the field containing the text and copy ALL of the address.

3) Then download a mouse cursor icon.
You can get one from here: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Mouse_pointer_small.png
Save the image (don’t change the png format – png has transparency information which you will need to make use of)
Know where you saved the file. COPY IT TO YOUR VLC FOLDER(or ‘DIRECTORY’ if you like the old terminology).
VLC when it does screen capture doesn’t show the mouse so you need to tell it to use the png image for the mouse. I don’t have a clue why this situation is the way it is, but that’s the reality.

4) Now open VLC.
Click Media from the menu bar
Click Open Capture Device. A screen similar to the one below will appear.

VLC screen mod1
in Capture mode, choose Desktop
in Options change fps setting to 20 (or 25)
Click on Show more options
In the edit options you might see something like this:
:screen-fps=20.000000 :live-caching=300
Click in this field. Go the then of the line and then press SPACE
then paste the line below
:screen-mouse-image=
(make sure you had that space in there or it doesn’t seem to work)
immediately after the equals sign (=) then paste the name of
your file. e.g. Mouse_pointer_small.png
so you will have pasted something like
:screen-mouse-image=Mouse_pointer_small.png

Note: This assumes you put your mouse pointer file in the VLC directory. It is where the “:screen-mouse-image=Mouse_pointer_small.png” Instruction will go to find the file. I guess that when you saved it, you probably saved it somewhere else, perhaps in your ‘downloads’ folder? So move (or copy) the file to the VLC folder. Mine copy of vlc.exe just happens to be installed in the C:\Program Files (x86)\VideoLAN\VLC\ folder, and I’d guess your vlc.exe file is also installed there – or something similar.
And don’t forget to have that space. I left it off once and it caused an error message to appear while recording, and the mouse didn’t show.!!
Then click on the down arrow beside the Play button. Don’t click the button itself!
Then choose Convert
Click Browse and choose where you want to store the recording and give it a name.

When you’re ready, click start
VLC should now start recording. It sometimes autohides and the window prior to VLC may pop up, but it sometimes seems to fail to autohide. So you may need to scramble around, bring up the window you wanted to work with. Do what you want to record and then at the end go back to VLC and click stop.
After clicking stop, VLC will dump the info to file and you can review it.

NOTE: If you CANNOT can’t see your mouse in the playback, you will probably need to drop your screen resolution. I’ve had bad problems with this, tearing my hair out because none of the ‘How to’ internet pages gave any solution to this – they only mentioned using a ‘png’ file for the mouse.

It doesn’t seem to like recording straight off at high resolutions e.g. it didn’t work at a resolution of 1366×768 OR 1280×800 or 1280×768. 1280×720 resolution seemed to work. So I entered the lower resolution, then set up VLC as mentioned above then when recording I went back to my desktop and jumped back into 1366×768 mode. Playback of the recorded session revealed that I could still see the mouse after stepping up to high res. Again I have no idea why this is happening. I’m just sharing how I cracked this problem.

OK so you’ll have to get some video editing software to cut out the bit at the beginning where you’re messing around with your settings rather than get down to recording what you wanted to do. But hey, VLC is IMHO the most powerful FREE software out there to do live screen capture. It would be nice if you sent the VLC team a small donation (even a few dollars).

Here’s a few suggestions of some video editing software:

Free Video Cutter Joiner (http://free_video_cutter_joiner.en.softonic.com/download)
Avidemux
Free Video Cutter
VSDC Free Video Editor
Free AVI MPEG WMV MP4 FLV Video Joiner
Free Video Cutter
YouTube Movie Maker
Windows Live Movie Maker
Windows Movie Maker (Windows Vista)

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7 thoughts on “VLC screen recording with invisible mouse problem fix :)

  1. It was very helpful. But for the mouse pointer your solution does not work for me very well. If I start with a low resolution, let say 1280×720, and start recording and then go to Desktop and change the resolution to a higher one during recording, I can still capture desktop with mouse pointer as you suggested 🙂 BUT the VLC captures now a smaller portion of the screen, i.e. it captures 1280×720 pixels of the whole screen which has now has a higher resolution let say 1366×768. So if I want to have the mouse pointer I loose some portion of the screen :/ If I want all the screen with high resolution I have a line like looking mouse pointer! None of these options are good for me… Please keep posting if you somehow solve this issue! Thanks a lot!

    Like

    • Thanks for your input. It’s been a while sine I played with this. If I do any more ‘tweaking’ and find a fix to your problem I’ll let you know.

      Like

  2. Very useful hint!
    One remark about the location of the mouse pointer file. It can also be located somewhere else on your computer, in that case you have to provide the absolute path:
    :screen-mouse-image=D:\\Mouse_pointer_small.png

    Worked fine for me!

    Like

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