Plugins and Customizing the Build

Shaka has a plugin system to make it easier to extend and customize the library. The plugin interfaces are here to allow you extend or customize Shaka Player in one of these areas: manifest parsing, subtitle and caption parsing, networking, ABR, and polyfills. Each of these parts of the system has its own plugin interface. Even our "built-in" parsers, such as DASH and WebVTT, are actually just plugins we build by default.

Plugins can be written outside the library (in your application), or they can be built into the library to take advantage of the Closure compiler.


We will only cover plugin concepts at a high level here and will not go into detailed examples of plugin development. If you are interested in customizing or extending Shaka in one of these areas, please see the links below.

A plugin registers itself with a "core" component. These are the various plugin interfaces and the default plugins that Shaka provides:

Manifest parsers

Subtitle/caption parsers

Subtitle/caption displayers

Networking plugins

ABR plugins


Excluding Default Plugins

Core components cannot be removed from the build, but everything else is technically optional. For example, if you don't need WebVTT, you can exclude our VTT parser from the build to save space. Any VTT text streams found in a manifest would then be ignored.

(At the time of this writing, our default plugins account for 54% of the size of our compiled library.)

Because each plugin's source file ends with a call to register itself with the core system, a plugin can simply be excluded from the build without changing any of the source code.

You can start with the complete library (+@complete) and exclude any individual source file with a minus sign and a path:

python build/ +@complete -lib/text/mp4_ttml_parser.js

You can also exclude an entire category of plugins:

# Build without polyfills:
python build/ +@complete -@polyfill
# Build without polyfills or text parsers:
python build/ +@complete -@polyfill -@text

To see the complete list of categories, its in build/types/

Build Configs

Each of these arguments that starts with an '@' sign is a build config file in build/types/ containing a list sources or other configs to include. Each line in these files is treated as an argument to For example, this is what build/types/networking looks like:

# All standard networking scheme plugins.

Adding Your Own Plugins

If you want to take advantage of the Closure compiler, you can add your own sources to the build. Your plugins, like ours, should register themselves at the bottom of the source file.

To add a single source file, prefix it with a plus sign:

python build/ +@complete +my_plugin.js

You can add multiple sources as well:

python build/ +@complete +my_plugin.js +/path/to/my_other_plugin.js

Custom Build Configs

If you have a long list of customizations, you may want to create your own group file. For example:

# Start with a complete library
# Drop subtitle support
# Remove default networking plugins
# Add my custom HTTP implementation
# Add an additional polyfill for some odd platform I'm targeting

Plugins in Your Application

Every plugin interface is exported from the compiled library so that you don't have to customize the build to create a plugin. Just register your plugins with the appropriate interfaces after the library is loaded.

Giving Back

If you have a great plugin that you'd like to contribute back to the community, we'd love to hear from you. You can get in touch via our issue tracker to discuss it, and once it's ready, you can send a pull request on github.