Using VLC To View Unplayable Video

If you ever come across video files that won't open in QuickTime Player, you can use the free VLC Player app to view them. This popular app has been around for a long time and can also be used to convert videos to a more standard format.


Comments: 6 Responses to “Using VLC To View Unplayable Video”

    Scott Hamilton
    2 years ago

    Hi – Thanks all of your help! Question: I have a .MOV that fails to play in Quicktime or VLC. The file is 6.9GB and the icon is the movie icon symbol not content. Any suggestions? This is an old family movie and it is sentimental. We have 20 of these movies and all play except this one file. Thanks,

    2 years ago

    Remember that .mov is a file type that can contain many different things — there are so many combinations of compression formats, bitrates and other settings. The fact that the icon looks like something and the extension is .mov means very little. It is like a box — anything could be inside.
    So it is possible that this “mov” file just contains some obscure format inside it. It is also possible that the file is simply broken, maybe incomplete or damaged. That could be the case as VLC will open pretty much any format. In fact, if the other 19 movies were created the same way, then it is likely that this one is damaged. Do you have a backup of it? If so, try that one. If not, then your only hope may be to take it to a professional to work with it firsthand.

    L B Baldwin
    2 years ago

    If you are really desperate, I’ve used http://aeroquartet.com. They are expensive, but have saved my bacon a couple of times over the years.

    Robert
    2 years ago

    Hi Gary!
    I tried converting a .mov file (which works very well) to .m4v with VLC.
    It does convert it and plays on a double-click but does not show the extension in the Finder. I can’t seem to locate any options in that matter. Also, the file is described as a “text” file in the finder.
    ????

    2 years ago

    Robert: Sounds like you simply chose to save it with a filename that did not include an extension. Do you have the option to show filename extensions in the Finder turned on? (Finder, Preferences, Advanced). If so, and there is still no extension, that just means you didn’t put one when choosing a filename for the exported file. Some apps do this automatically, but not all. So just add a .m4v to the end of the filename.

    Robert
    2 years ago

    Gary: the program does show that there will be an extension of .m4v so I took it for granted that there would be and yes, I have the extensions all showing in Finder. BTW, I just updated VLC to the latest version.
    In any case, like you say, if I must, I’ll add the extension to the file myself.
    Thanks for the quick answer!

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