81

I couldn't find anything about Ubuntu acting as a Miracast receiver or sender.

  • Can it work at all?
  • Are there hardware prerequisites?
  • Is WiFi a requirement or can it work over LAN or another kind of network connection?
  • WiFi direct seems to be a necessary requirement, is it a sufficient one? (i.e. if a system supports WiFi direct does that mean it supports Miracast?)
  • Are there differences in support between receiving/sending?
  • How is the latency? (compared to the competition, i.e. VNC, commercial Miracast devices, etc.)
  • How do I actually use it, if it's difficult?

Specifically, I plan to use it together with an Android phone (4.x Jelly Bean).

1
  • 1
    I've been wondering the same thing about DNLA, currently I just use the chromium plugin as described by user221273, however a few weeks back I stumbled upon an article (can't find it now) mentioning some work on the KDE side for this.
    – virtualxtc
    Jan 16 '14 at 11:36
28

OpenWFD is dead and now superceded by MiracleCast:

MiracleCast is an open-source implementation of the Miracast technology (also: Wifi-Display (WFD)). It is based on the OpenWFD research project and will supercede it. We focus on proper and tight integration into existing Linux-Desktop systems, compared to OpenWFD which was meant as playground for fast-protoyping.

Despite its name and origin, the project itself is not limited to Miracast. We can support any kind of display-streaming with just a minimal amount of additional work. However, Miracast will remain the main development target due to its level of awareness.

It's still early in its development cycle. Currently it seems like it can do the linking, but won't do the actual video streaming.

The OpenWFD demo at FOSDEM 2014 also did the streaming bit, but as I understand MiracleCast is a do it right project, whereas the code he showed at FOSDEM "will probably only work on this machine".

5
  • 1
    On what version of Ubuntu have you compiled MiracleCast on? On my 14.04 I had to install libudev-dev package, but I'm still getting No package 'libsystemd' found and I've installed various "systemd" packages with no change on the configure step.
    – NoBugs
    Dec 1 '14 at 1:37
  • Ditto. Couldn't get MiracleCast installed. Apparently this is what you need, but I couldn't get that to install either.
    – mpen
    Sep 3 '15 at 22:14
  • Tried to install it on 15.10 amd64 from the PPA (ppa:thopiekar/miraclecast), but the miraclecast package is not there, it shows that it was not compiled. Hope it shows, I would like to test it.
    – conualfy
    Apr 10 '16 at 21:36
  • 10
    Miraclecast seems dead too. What is next? ^^
    – Nobody
    Oct 19 '16 at 11:39
  • 2
    Add time of writing, most recent commit was April 2017, so Miraclecast doesn't seem dead yet... github.com/albfan/miraclecast Aug 26 '17 at 21:40
6

Miracast is based on WiFi Direct, which as far as I can tell requires a wireless card with hardware support for the standard.

Sender

I think Intel Wireless Display is the way to send a laptop screen to a Miracast receiver.

However, as far as I can tell Ubuntu currently has no support for Wireless Display cards.

Receiver

For receiving content from a Miracast transmitter (like your phone), you can buy Miracast receiver dongles that will output to any HDMI input: Rocketfish™ - Miracast Video Receiver

There is also Chromecast, but it only receives content sent from a Chrome browser, rather than from an entire display.

I don't know if either device has Ubuntu drivers. If anyone can confirm, or suggest another device with Ubuntu drivers, that would be great.

2
  • Intel WiDi is not the way to send Miracast, it's just Miracast-compatible since version 3.5. Also, the Chromecast runs its own operating system and is just plugged in via HDMI (i.e. to your display). The same is true for Miracast receivers.
    – cmende
    Oct 23 '13 at 20:58
  • 6
    You clearly have deeper knowledge of this stuff than I do. Fancy posting your own answer? Oct 24 '13 at 9:34
5

The Google Cast extension for Chromium works in Ubuntu (to cast Chromium pages/browsing to your TV using a ChromeCast at 720p which looks just fine, though a bit lagged).
It doesn't cast the YUV (video overlay) space well though, even on 802.11n. (Testing in 12.04 LTS and 13.10, with latest Chromium) Having said that, casting YouTube from my Android 4.3 (Galaxy Nexus) phone works beautifully. (The ChromeCast dongle takes over the download+display, so it's not dependent on your phone/laptop once you've hit Play).

I've not found any Miracast sender apps (eg. EZ Air) for Ubuntu yet unfortunately (for eBay HK/China generic HDMI Miracast dongles).
So the 5 metre HDMI cable (also from eBay) is still our solution for ondemand TV at full-screen 1080p.

1
  • This solution works out of the box on my Chromium 62.0.3202.94 (Ubuntu Build), but only for the "cast tab" option. Casting the whole desktop or other applications fails.
    – mak
    Dec 4 '17 at 14:56
1

You can try out the gnome-screencast project. More info in this blogpost. It appears recently and therefore lacks documentation and looks buggy and intended mostly for fedora users (the issue about installing to ubuntu). But at least it's a step in the right direction.

1

On the receiver side (sink) the already mentioned MiracleCast seems to be the best choice. There is also work going on to support sending streams (source).

Gnome-Network-Displays (formerly Gnome-Screencast) is a new (2019) effort to support Miracast streaming (source) in GNU/Linux.

0

I got inspired to hunt a little more, and indeed, there isn't much on miracast, however I did find this post from a few months ago that claims android doesn't even have it yet, thus I suspect it's still being worked on.

Because of this I'm going to take some liberty and discuss DNLA / UPnP as it is almost the same (minus the direct connection and exact screen mirroring)

Apparently, in KDE there is a media KIO-slave for kde called kio-upnp-ms that I saw announced here.

Moreover there seems to be a fair amount of other UPnP and DNLA options, such as XBMC as listed here and here

Also, searching for 'upnp' in synaptic will give you a many gnome options, for example Rygel is well integrated in Gnome and easy to use.

3
  • Newer Android devices do have Miracast support, e.g. the Nexus 4 as of Android 4.2. The big difference to DLNA is that Miracast allows display mirroring, so you can wirelessly share your screen e.g. in a meeting. A really nice promise, but yep, probably too early.
    – Bachi
    Mar 23 '14 at 14:07
  • lol - I have a nexus 4; I'll see if I can get this working and update my answer.
    – virtualxtc
    Mar 24 '14 at 18:11
  • The phone broke, but since this was edited, I'm assuming someone is finding the post has some value? else I believe deleting it might be approprate
    – virtualxtc
    Apr 9 at 21:13

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