Have you ever wanted to capture screen shots or video of the work that you’re currently doing on your computer? Well so did I. In the past I have used camtasia back when they had a free version: like eight years ago. Now I need one for my site and training clients. Let me help you save time and cut through a lot of the junk out there.
The first program that I wanted to test out was a ah-ha you guessed it Camtasia. After a quick Google search, and finding the Camtasia website and discovering that the software cost $299. I immediatly moved on to a search for a lower costing software. Now if you have never used Camtasia is probably the easiest, highest quality software on the market for screen capture. However, I didn’t want to spend $300 for a video capture software. Particularly because I knew there were a few free alternatives out there.
The next way, I decide to just do a search was using delicious from Yahoo. On a side note, I think delicious is a great service if you have a general idea of what you’re looking for. Delicious can point you in the general direction much better than any Google search by, using the leverage of thousands of others recommendations. One of the options that I was given from delicious was VNC2swf. I don’t know if you have ever heard of this program, I had not. Let me start by saying don’t waste your time, by reading this post your can be way better off in the time wasting department. I spent probably three to four hours trying to figure out how to get this thing to work. Then once I finally did and was happy with the visual results are realized it wasn’t recording my audio. I probably spent another hour trying to get that to work. It uses Python which you have to install and then it uses VNC to record the actual screen capture. Once you have VNC installed and configured properly to ready to start recording. But then I had to go back and get MP3 support and other audio recording options installed. I could never quite figure out how to get all of them to work together. Even if you do get both audio and video recorded you have to use Python program to edit them together. I was looking for a solution that produced/output files for easy upload and distribution to this blog. VNC2swf is not that program, it’s not easy don’t waste your time.
The next program that I used to was ZD recorder. This program looks a little more promising as it was a single file download which was a EXE file. While that was a huge improvement over the last debacle with VNC2swf. However this program only exported to AVI files and a few other non-user-friendly video output files. It also cost around $40 which was too much for the little solution it offered. I do not recommend the ZD recorder.
The next one I tried was the ever popular Camstudio. It works well and captures sound easily. Over all a great free program! easy to install and alot of fuctionality. Sounds to good to be true, does it matey? The files size for a few seconds was horrible. Like 20 megs and in avi format. This may be good enough for a training, but not for posting to a blog. This hunt was getting to be too much. I just wanted something that works.
I am testing BSR right now, take a look below. It’s $40 and it works pretty easily. I had it up and running in about 5 minutes.
[SWF]wp-content/blogscreenrecord.swf, 400 , 400[/SWF]