FFmpeg Now Works With VA-API On Windows Thanks To Microsoft

Written by Michael Larabel in Multimedia on 25 April 2023 at 09:14 AM EDT. 10 Comments
VA-API has been around for more than one decade as the most common Linux Video Acceleration API that works across multiple GPU/driver vendors. It's been Linux-focused to this point while thanks to the work of Microsoft has begun seeing support on Windows.

Microsoft contributed Windows WSL D3D12 support to VA-API's libva library and a new libva-win32 display node for use on Windows itself. Meanwhile Microsoft engineers have also been working on supporting Mesa's Gallium3D VA-API video acceleration (VA) state tracker for use with their Direct3D 12 driver. With those pieces, it's possible to make use of VA-API on Windows.

Microsoft engineer Sil Vilerino contributed support for making use of VA-API on Windows with the widely-used FFmpeg library. The FFmpeg Windows VA-API support began via the Intel Media CI staging area while as of yesterday in mainline FFmpeg Git is the hardware context support for making use of VA-API on Windows with libva 2.17+ and the Mesa VA-API driver. There were also some related commits.

But long story short when using the newest FFmpeg code now and having VA-API's libva library and Mesa D3D12 driver present, it's possible to enjoy accelerated VA-API video acceleration that ultimately is piped through to the Direct3D 12 interfaces.
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