using vlc -vv helped me to track down the issue. It was a missing character in one of the configuration files that caused vlc to not connect to the server.
Sorry for the noise.
(If you are interested in the resolution, check the stack-overflow post linked to in the question)
You need to change the format from AVI to h.264. In the top of the export window there's a section where you get to choose formats:
It's a bit confusing, because it mixes container formats like AVI and Quicktime with codecs like h.264. If you chose AVI you are limited to a few older codecs, as you've seen.
Once you've chosen h.264 you can then chose a ...