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wf-recorder is a utility program for screen recording of wlroots-based compositors (more specifically, those that support wlr-screencopy-v1 and xdg-output). Its dependencies are ffmpeg, wayland-client and wayland-protocols.


Alpine Linux

wf-recorder is available in the community repositories:

apk add wf-recorder

Arch Linux

Arch users can install wf-recorder from the Community repo.

pacman -S wf-recorder

Artix Linux

Artix users can install wf-recorder from the official repos

pacman -S wf-recorder

Debian GNU/Linux

Debian users can install wf-recorder from official repos

apt install wf-recorder

Fedora Linux

Fedora users can install wf-recorder from the official repos

sudo dnf install wf-recorder

Gentoo Linux

Gentoo users can install wf-recorder from the official (::gentoo) repository.

NixOS / Nix

Users of the Nix package manager can add the wf-recorder package to their system configurations, or use nix-shell / nix shell / nix run:

nix-shell -p wf-recorder
# OR
nix shell nixpkgs#wf-recorder
# OR
nix run nixpkgs#wf-recorder

Void Linux

Void users can install wf-recorder from the official repos

xbps-install -S wf-recorder

From Source

Install Dependencies


sudo apt install g++ meson libavutil-dev libavcodec-dev libavformat-dev libswscale-dev libpulse-dev


$ sudo dnf install gcc-c++ meson wayland-devel wayland-protocols-devel ffmpeg-free-devel pulseaudio-libs-devel

Download & Build

git clone && cd wf-recorder
meson build --prefix=/usr --buildtype=release
ninja -C build

Optionally configure with -Ddefault_codec='codec'. The default is libx264. Now you can just run ./build/wf-recorder or install it with sudo ninja -C build install.

The man page can be read with man ./manpage/wf-recorder.1.


In its simplest form, run wf-recorder to start recording and use Ctrl+C to stop. This will create a file called recording.mp4 in the current working directory using the default codec.

Use -f <filename> to specify the output file. In case of multiple outputs, you'll first be prompted to select the output you want to record. If you know the output name beforehand, you can use the -o <output name> option.

To select a specific part of the screen you can either use -g <geometry>, or use slurp for interactive selection of the screen area that will be recorded:

wf-recorder -g "$(slurp)"

You can record screen and sound simultaneously with

wf-recorder --audio --file=recording_with_audio.mp4

To specify an audio device, use the -a<device> or --audio=<device> options.

To specify a video codec, use the -c <codec> option. To modify codec parameters, use -p <option_name>=<option_value>.

You can also specify an audio codec, using -C <codec>. Alternatively, the long form --audio-codec can be used.

You can use the following command to check all available video codecs

ffmpeg -hide_banner -encoders | grep -E '^ V' | grep -F '(codec' | cut -c 8- | sort

and the following for audio codecs

ffmpeg -hide_banner -encoders | grep -E '^ A' | grep -F '(codec' | cut -c 8- | sort

Use ffmpeg to get details about specific encoder, filter or muxer.

To set a specific output format, use the --muxer option. For example, to output to a video4linux2 loopback you might use:

wf-recorder --muxer=v4l2 --codec=rawvideo --file=/dev/video2

To use GPU encoding, use a VAAPI codec (for ex. h264_vaapi) and specify a GPU device to use with the -d option:

wf-recorder -f test-vaapi.mkv -c h264_vaapi -d /dev/dri/renderD128

Some drivers report support for rgb0 data for vaapi input but really only support yuv planar formats. In this case, use the -x yuv420p or --pixel-format yuv420p option in addition to the vaapi options to convert the data to yuv planar data before sending it to the GPU.