And when it comes to playing multimedia, the market is dominated by proprietary codecs. Although it used to be worse in the past (not that long ago) but thanks to fast internet connections and wizard type GUIs... now you can easily install any software via easy to use graphical utilities or using terminal commands.
But, what if your Linux (Ubuntu in this example) PC does not have an internet connection?. How can you install those multimedia codecs then?. Well, luckily there are offline installers which can come in really handy in those situations.
So, if you have installed Ubuntu 10.10 and looking for an offline multimedia codec pack which lets play almost any type of audio/video files... then this is how you install it.
1. Get the zipped file from here first.
2. Then double click on it and extract it to a desired location (Gnome desktop for instance).
3. Now, inside the extracted folder look for a file called "install.sh" and double click it.
4. Then from the following prompt, choose "run in Terminal" (or it'll automatically launch depending your Nautilus configurations), the installation is automatic and will require the "sudo" password. Once it's done you'll be notified with a message saying "now you can close the terminal window". Then close your terminal window.
Now you should be able to play almost any type of audio/video files such as AAC, MP3, H.264, H.263, .WMV are just a few to name. This installer also installs other proprietary utilities such as Adobe flash players as well.
Make sure to keep a copy of the downloaded zipped archive and use it whenever you need to install multimedia codecs on a PC than runs Ubuntu 10.10 (only) when you don't have an internet connection!.