[Fixed] Libopenh264.So.5: Cannot Open Shared Object File

libopenh264.so.5: Cannot Open Shared Object File

If you’ve encountered the error message “libopenh264.so.5: cannot open shared object file,” you’re not alone. This common issue can be frustrating, but understanding its causes and solutions can help you resolve it quickly. In this article, we’ll explore what this error means, why it occurs, and how to fix it. We’ll also answer some frequently asked questions to provide a comprehensive guide on this topic.

What is libopenh264.so.5?

libopenh264.so.5 is a shared object file used by the OpenH264 library, which is an open-source implementation of the H.264 video codec. This library is essential for video encoding and decoding, making it a critical component for various multimedia applications.

Why Does the Error Occur?

The error “libopenh264.so.5: cannot open shared object file” typically occurs when the system cannot locate the libopenh264.so.5 file. This can happen due to several reasons:

  1. Missing Library: The OpenH264 library is not installed on your system.
  2. Incorrect Path: The library is installed, but the system cannot find it due to an incorrect path.
  3. Permission Issues: The system does not have the necessary permissions to access the file.

How to Fix the Error

1. Install the OpenH264 Library

The first step to resolving this error is to ensure that the OpenH264 library is installed on your system. You can do this by running the following command:

sudo apt-get install libopenh264-5

2. Update the Library Path

If the library is installed but the system cannot find it, you may need to update the library path. You can do this by adding the library path to the LD_LIBRARY_PATH environment variable:

export LD_LIBRARY_PATH=/usr/local/lib:$LD_LIBRARY_PATH

3. Check Permissions

Ensure that the system has the necessary permissions to access the libopenh264.so.5 file. You can check and modify the permissions using the following commands:

sudo chmod 755 /usr/local/lib/libopenh264.so.5
sudo chown root:root /usr/local/lib/libopenh264.so.5

Common Issues and Solutions

Issue 1: Library Not Found

If the library is not found even after installation, try updating the package list and reinstalling the library:

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install --reinstall libopenh264-5

Issue 2: Incorrect Library Version

Ensure that you have the correct version of the library. You can check the installed version using:

dpkg -l | grep libopenh264

Issue 3: Conflicting Libraries

Sometimes, conflicting libraries can cause this error. Remove any conflicting libraries using:

sudo apt-get remove libopenh264-2


What is a shared object file?

A shared object file (.so) is a compiled library that can be used by multiple programs simultaneously. It helps in reducing the overall memory usage and disk space.

How do I know if libopenh264.so.5 is installed?

You can check if the library is installed by running:

ldconfig -p | grep libopenh264.so.5

Can I manually download and install libopenh264.so.5?

Yes, you can manually download the library from a trusted source and place it in the appropriate directory. However, it’s recommended to use package managers like apt-get for installation to avoid compatibility issues.

What are the alternatives to OpenH264?

Alternatives to OpenH264 include x264 and FFmpeg, which also provide H.264 encoding and decoding capabilities.

  1. OpenH264 GitHub Repository – Official source for the OpenH264 library.
  2. H.264 Video Codec – Wikipedia page explaining the H.264 video codec.
  3. Linux Shared Libraries – Guide on shared libraries in Linux.

By following the steps outlined in this article, you should be able to resolve the “libopenh264.so.5: cannot open shared object file” error and get your multimedia applications running smoothly again.