I wrote this for someone who shall remain nameless here. Let's call him mr.D

quote mr.D
Xfire looks very useful but I think I don't know how to use it.
If you have time, please can you describe how to make Xfire to record the game play footage as a video?
Before I can help you, you have to make sure that your Xfire even works properly. The way to do that is this: There are several little icons on the lower right corner of your desktop. The most right one is the clock. You should see an Xfire icon among those. If you don't, then go to Start - Programs - Startup and click on Xfire. If Xfire isn't in the Startup list then something is wrong and you haven't made Xfire "run" correctly.

If everything works right, then this is what you should do (yes you have read all of it):

1: Double click on the little Xfire icon. This should make Xfire open it's program window.

quote mr.D
And does this installed software(Xfire) requires you to stay connected to the Internet in-order to record a game play video?
2: About internet: It's O.K. to log-off from your account on Xfire homepage, but you shouldn't log-off from your downloaded program. It (probably) can record even with out logging on, but I haven't tried it. There really is no reason to ever log-off.

2.1: With out internet, or when you've loged-off.
You might see an error message about the lack of internet. If you've logged off then it will ask you to log-on again. You can choose to ignore those.

2.2: With internet. My Xfire loges itself on automatically, every time I start my computer. If there's a problem with the internet connection, then that can cause Xfire to become loged-off. If you want to log on to your Xfire account on they're homepage, then you'll still have to do that on your own.

3: If everything is right then the Xfire window should have one vertical row of buttons on it's left edge and one horizontal row on the bottom edge.

4.1: Adding friends.
First you have to click on the top button on the vertical row. It should be the "Friends" button. It should make 2 lists appear. "Friends online" and "Friends offline". For you, those lists will be empty.
The left button on the bottom row (shaped like a cross) should be lit up (orange). You can add friends by clicking on it.

4.2: Using the communication feature.
You might want to click the second button from the top on the vertical row, but don't. Just click on a friends name on the "Friens online" list and you should see more buttons becoming active on the bottom (horizontal) row. You can also click on that friends name with the right mouse button to see more options.

5: A possible bug.
Xfire might not let you minimize the game with just the "Esc" button on your keyboard, so you'll have to pause the game and then use "Ctrl" - "Alt" - "Delete" to minimize it.

6.1: Tuning Xfire (last step before the recording feature).
This is the most delicate feature of the program and will need some tuning, before you can start recording. You should see 3 words/buttons on the top edge of the Xfire window: "Xfire", "Tools" and "Help". Click on "Tools" and then click on "Options". This should make a new window open. On this window, you can "tune" everything about Xfire.

You'll notice the "Nicknames" as the first thing on the "General" list. An account name can't have capital letters (upper case letters), so if you want your Xfire name to have them then you'll have to Give yourself a nickname. A nickname can have as many capital letters as you want.

But back on topic.
6.2: "Xfire In-Game" is a list of key combinations that will control Xfire in a game. Make sure that none of those combinations can effect the game. Not even one key in that list should effect the game, so be careful what keys you choose.

6.3: Recording.
Click on the "Video" in the options window. Set the video stuff to 30 frames per second (any faster might slow your game down while recording) and "Half-size" ("full-size" if you want HD, but that might slow your PC down a little, if it's an old one). And make sure that there's a mark in the "record sound" box. You should also use the "Browse" button to set the "Video capture folder" as desktop. That will make Xfire put the videos on your desktop, which is the most convenient place for new videos.

7: One more thing before you can start recording. :(
You have to make sure that Xfire knows that you have some games installed on your computer. Close all Xfire windows that are open from the previous steps and double click on that little icon again. Now look at that window extension (or whatever it's called) on the right right edge of the Xfire window. There's a scrolling bar on the right edge of that part of the Xfire window. Use it to scroll down and see what games Xfire has automatically found on your computer. If you don't see your game on that list of games, then you have to click on "Detect Games". You have to click it again if you reinstall a GTA, or install any new games.

8.1: The recording itself.
The Xfire window does not have to be open while you play. Close it, so it wouldn't confuse you. Start your game. At some point, soon after starting a game, you might see a little Xfire box on the right lower corner of the screen which tells you that Xfire is working. It will disappear soon. For some reason it won't appear in some games.

So now your playing the game. Remember those button combinations for recording? See 6.2 in this tutorial. Take one screen-shot and make one video (use the same button combination to stop the video as you did to start it), just to see how it works.

8.2: What to do with the videos and pictures?
Minimize your game and see what happens. Xfire should now ask you what do with the videos. You should upload them to your Xfire account. This will be useful later and it's a good way to see if everything works the way it should.

Xfire will make 2 files for every video and if you decide to upload, then it might make a third. You can delete the useless ones later.

I'll write you another tutorial for the "Windows movie maker". You'll need that if you want to cut something out of the existing videos, or of you want to use several shorter videos as one bigger one. You'll also notice that you can't just put an Xfire video into your movie maker, or Youtube. You'll have to convert those videos to some other format first. Use a video converter to do that.

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This is about the older Windows movie maker, that comes with Windows XP. The newer movie maker that comes with Windows 7 is different.

O.K. then. So you think your ready to edit your videos and upload them to Youtube?

This is what you do:

1: Download the "Prism video converter":
http://www.nchsoftware.com/prism/index.html
It's a free trial version. When it runs out, just download it again. I've been doing that for over a year. Hundreds of videos... When it asks you to buy it, you can go to the "control panel" (in your PC) and to the "add or remove programs". Find Prism in there and click on "Change / remove". That will let you downgrade it to the free version, which has less functions, but it's free forever. I use it to convert the Xfire videos to wmv all the time.

That site might offer free downloads of picture and sound file converters too. They work the same way.

2: Convert all your videos to wmv's. That way you can edit them in the Windows movie maker.

3: This is what you do next: Open the movie maker (not full-screen, about half is better) and use your mouse to put a video into that white empty space in the middle. Then put it into the blue line below.

You can do this with several videos and MP3's (you may need that music file converter ;) ).

4: If you need to cut something out, use those magnifying glasses in the left lower corner to zoom in and then use the "Cut" button, which is that round button on the right lower corner of the video display / player. If you didn't cut at the right spot, then not to worry, you cut as many times as it takes. You can then delete each cut clip one at a time. Just use the right mouse button and click "delete".

5: You can also add picture files (not all types, so you may need that picture converter ;) ).

6: Use your mouse to drag the beginnings and endings of the different clips, on that bug blue horizontal video bar on the bottom, to adjust how long they'll last, or how long you want your pictures to be displayed.

7: You may notice that there's a "2. Edit Movie" on the left edge of the movie maker. You can use that to add some cheap effects. Learn those by experimenting.

You don't need to pay any attention to the "1. Capture Video", ignore it.

8: When the movie is done, go to the "3. Finish Movie" (on the left edge of the movie maker) and click on "Save to my computer". Make sure that you'll make it save the video to your desktop. That's the most convenient place.

9: Keep experimenting and you'll learn the rest of the stuff that I didn't explain.

10: Youtube. Log in to your account and use that upload button on the right upper corner on the screen.

Youtube might glitch sometimes rarely and tell you that your video could not be uploaded. Try again. And if you upload a video with some famous music, then add (with the movie maker) a picture file to the end of the video. That picture should have a sentence on it, saying the name of the music and that you don't own the music, or claim to have any rights to it. Otherwise they might deactivate the sound for copyright reasons. But note that they don't really watch the video before removing the sound. That's done automatically.

11: After uploading, Youtube will "process" it for a while. You can log-off for a while. Later, go log-on again and look at the video. You'll notice that Youtube has an "Annotations Editor" at the top right corner of the video. You can use that to add some text (and links) to the video. You can remove those later if you want.

12: One more thing. Some versions of windows media player can sometimes glitch while your watching your longer edited videos. The picture will "freeze", but the sound will be fine.

Relax. That's the media players fault. The video file if safe. Youtube can sometimes have similar glitches.

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Keyser Söze

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