This is a very brief summary of some free tools that you can bring together to create screencasts on a Windows computer. We have a YouTube video about this:

Links to the software mentioned in the video are below:

  • Camstudio – record a screencast
  • Xvid – an mpeg4 codec to create smaller video files
  • ZoomIt – screen magnification tool
  • HandBrake – transcode video files, in particular AVI to mpeg4

CamStudio will save videos as AVI files by default. The Xvid codec will be available inside CamStudio so video files can be saved directly with compression. You may want to save the AVI files without compression, or you can use the CamStudio lossless codec for a bit of compression. This will allow you to do video editing without loss of video quality. For uploading to YouTube, you will likely want to create a video that is significantly smaller than an AVI, and HandBrake works well for this.

Here are some helpful resources:

CamStudio doesn’t include video editing tools, but for short single take videos, this set of free software seems to work very well.