3 simple & easy steps to install vlc player on CentOS 8

Tips and Tricks

In this tutorial I will share step by step instruction to install vlc player in CentOS 8 Linux. VLC is one of the most used media player across different platforms. One of the reasons I think it is so popular is because of the supported formats. It supports most of the common video formats at least which I have used. The steps to install vlc is actually also available on the official page of VideoLAN (VLC). But the steps are very brief and may confuse beginners hence I will explain the steps with examples.



Graphical Environment

You must have a graphical environment to be able to use vlc media player. If you have installed CentOS 8 in CLI mode, no worries. You can install GNOME desktop on your Linux server to enable graphical environment for your Linux server


Verify Internet Connectivity

Your CentOS 8 server must have access to internet connection as we will perform download and install using the Linux server. I am using my Oracle VirtualBox to setup a CentOS 8 server which is configured with bridged network to enable internet connection.

If you are planning to install VLC player on physical server then make sure you setup DNS server properly which is required to have internet access. There are various methods to check if you are connected to internet, the most basic way is to ping any web address such as

# ping -c 2 -q google.com
PING google.com ( 56(84) bytes of data.

--- google.com ping statistics ---
2 packets transmitted, 2 received, 0% packet loss, time 3ms
rtt min/avg/max/mdev = 69.481/70.812/72.143/1.331 ms

Here, the packet loss was 0% for 2 packets which we sent so my server has internet access.


Create Normal user

VLC media player cannot be used with root access so you must have a normal user in your environment. You can create a normal user (if you don't have already) by using

# useradd <user>

For example: to create a new user "deepak"

# useradd deepak

To assign a password to user deepak

# passwd deepak

This command will prompt the user to provide the password for user "deepak"


1. Install EPEL Repository

The vlc player itself is actually part of RPM Fusion repository but the vlc player requires. We would need access to certain dependency rpms which are part of EPEL repository. This is an add-on repository which we use on top of RHEL/CentOS release.

To install epel repository

# dnf -y install epel-release

HINT: I hope you are aware that dnf supersedes yum starting RHEL/CentOS 8. So we will use dnf for all the package management activities

This will create epel repository files inside /etc/yum.repos.d/

# ls -l /etc/yum.repos.d/epel*
-rw-r--r--. 1 root root 1167 May 10 12:38 /etc/yum.repos.d/epel-modular.repo
-rw-r--r--. 1 root root 1249 May 10 12:38 /etc/yum.repos.d/epel-playground.repo
-rw-r--r--. 1 root root 1104 Dec 18  2019 /etc/yum.repos.d/epel.repo
-rw-r--r--. 1 root root 1266 Dec 18  2019 /etc/yum.repos.d/epel-testing-modular.repo
-rw-r--r--. 1 root root 1203 May 10 12:37 /etc/yum.repos.d/epel-testing.repo

Out of all these repos, only one of the repo would be enabled by default i.e. epel.repo and all others would be in disabled state


2. Install RPM Fusion repository

Next we must install RPM fusion repository package which will place rpmfusion repository files inside /etc/yum.repos.d/. To install rpm fusion repository for CentOS 8, use:

# dnf -y install https://download1.rpmfusion.org/free/el/rpmfusion-free-release-8.noarch.rpm

This should create below repo files under /etc/yum.repos.d/

# ls -k /etc/yum.repos.d/rpmfusion-free-updates*
-rw-r--r--. 1 root root 1026 Jan 29  2019 /etc/yum.repos.d/rpmfusion-free-updates.repo
-rw-r--r--. 1 root root 1098 Jan 29  2019 /etc/yum.repos.d/rpmfusion-free-updates-testing.repo

Once successfully installed, verify the enabled repos list

# dnf repolist
Last metadata expiration check: 0:00:59 ago on Tue 28 Jul 2020 03:17:29 PM IST.
repo id                               repo name                                                     status
AppStream                             CentOS-8 - AppStream                                          4,933
BaseOS                                CentOS-8 - Base                                               1,673
PowerTools                            CentOS-8 - PowerTools                                         1,442
*epel                                 Extra Packages for Enterprise Linux 8 - x86_64                6,117
extras                                CentOS-8 - Extras                                                21
rpmfusion-free-updates                RPM Fusion for EL 8 - Free - Updates                            191

So both our repos, epel and rpmfusion are enabled


3. Install VLC Player on CentOS 8

Next we will install vlc player using dnf. Since we don't know the proper naming syntax, we will search for this string in our repositories

# dnf search vlc
Last metadata expiration check: 0:00:42 ago on Tue 28 Jul 2020 03:17:29 PM IST.
=================================================================== Name Exactly Matched: vlc ============
vlc.x86_64 : The cross-platform open-source multimedia framework, player and server
================================================================== Summary & Name Matched: vlc ===========
vlc-core.x86_64 : VLC media player core
vlc-devel.x86_64 : Development files for vlc
vlc-extras.x86_64 : VLC media player with extras modules

So the very first rpm matches vlc i.e. vlc.x86_64 so we must use this name to install the vlc player media

Let's try again:

# dnf install vlc.x86_64 -y

And now the install was successful, it installed a bunch of rpm and dependencies.

# rpm -q vlc


Set VLC as default video application

Next you can choose to set VLC as your default video player. I assume you are already connected to the graphical console of your CentOS 8 server

Click on Activities and search for "Default Applications"

set default application
Set VLC as default video player

Next under "Video" you can choose "VLC media player"


Access VLC Player

We are all set to use our VLC media player. Click on ActivitiesShow Applications and select VLC

Access VLC Player in Linux
Access VLC Player in Linux via Applications

Or alternatively you can just search for VLC under Activities

Access VLC Player
Access VLC Player via Search in Linux


Accept the Policy and now you can start using your VLC media Player


4. Install VLC Core Media Player

This is required only if you wish to use VLC media player in command line mode. With vlc core, only minimal headless vlc player will be installed which cannot be used in graphical mode.

To install vlc-core use:

# dnf -y install vlc-core.x86_64

# rpm -q vlc-core

Next to access vlc-core we will execute vlc from the command line. You can use

$ vlc --help

to get the complete list of supported arguments.

I will play a mp3 song using vlc in the command line

$ vlc file:///tmp/my_song.mp3
install vlc player on linux
vlc-core media player



5. Update VLC Media Player

it is possible VideoLAN will release timely updates and patches so to update the VLC media player you can use

# dnf -y update vlc.x86_64

Similarly to update vlc-core package you can use

# dnf -y update vlc-core.x86_64



In this tutorial we learned about installation guide on VLC Media Player in CentOS 8 server for both graphical and command line usage. For most use cases I would prefer vlc media player for graphical purpose but it depends on individual's requirement and choice to choose either option. The setup of vlc player is wuite simple and easy, you just need to follow the instrutctions.
Lastly I hope the steps from the article to install vlc player on Linux was helpful. So, let me know your suggestions and feedback using the comment section.

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Deepak Prasad

Deepak Prasad

He is the founder of GoLinuxCloud and brings over a decade of expertise in Linux, Python, Go, Laravel, DevOps, Kubernetes, Git, Shell scripting, OpenShift, AWS, Networking, and Security. With extensive experience, he excels in various domains, from development to DevOps, Networking, and Security, ensuring robust and efficient solutions for diverse projects. You can connect with him on his LinkedIn profile.

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2 thoughts on “3 simple & easy steps to install vlc player on CentOS 8”

  1. at :

    3. Install VLC Player on CentOS 8

    Next we will install vlc player using dnf. When I first tries to install vlc, I got this error as “No match for argument: vnc”

    # dnf -y install vnc <<—– Typo ? Maybe here should stand "vlc", not "vnc" ?

    Rest works. Thx. Udo.


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