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Is there a way that I can compress my videos folder to a very small size that can fit in an 8 GB USB-drive? The folder is about 32 GB and has all our family videos in it.

I tried backing up but the back up file is just way too big.

Any help will be appreciated and thanks in advance and please can you give instruction in a way a newbie can understand as I have just started running Linux

Info: Running ubuntu 12.10 on an Hp pavillion

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converting 32GB to 8GB means comprising on the quality(a lot) and as you are saying that those are your family videos so get a few blank dvd's and burn them as having an extra backup is always a safeside

you can also consider backing them up online if you have a good broadband

but if you insist on reducing the size (don't blame me for quality) get a converter and convert the videos to "rmvb" or 3gp format or some other small size format

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No, you cant.

Depending on your video codec these files are highly compressed already. This will even be to an extent where you experience a loss in details (lossy compression).

Further compression could only be achieved by resampling all videos with another video codec (or codec setting) which will lead to further compression artifacts. You probably do not want this.

Any lossless compression tool will not lead to a significant further decrease in video file size, or in the worst case may even increase it.

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