Friday, 22 April 2011

Batch flv to mp4 conversion

If you have been happily downloading and storing flash videos you may end up with a whole pile of flv files. My instructions above included a command to convert each file into an mp4 file which is much easier to work with.

What about converting a whole folder full at once?

Try this:

for file in *.flv ; do ffmpeg -i $file -acodec copy -vcodec copy ${file%.flv}.mp4 ; done

That three stage command does the following (in english):

The first bit before the semi colon means, [for] each [*] file that you find in the current folder with the extension [flv], take the full name of the file forward into the next part of the command as a variable [file]. The next bit says that you [do] the command [ffmpeg] using as an [i]nput the variable [$] called [file]. The options for the ffmpeg command are to [copy] the [a]udio [codec] and the [v]ideo codec, so no recompression. You retain the same data but in a different container. The output of the command is a file with a name made up of the variable [$] called [file] minus [%] the characters [.flv] PLUS the characters [.mp4]. The last bit after the second semi colon closes the command sequence started by the [do]. If you felt brave you could stick a [r]e[m]ove command in here to get rid of your input files in before the [; done].


  1. Thank you for the script, saved me the frustation

  2. Awesome. Been trying to convert my MP4s to MP3 for some older mp3 players, and installed soundconverter (sudo apt-get install soundconverter) which didn't seem to be converting my FLVs. So I used this to convert'em all to MP4, and now soundconverter is converting to MP3.

    Tks a mil... :)