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On my Windows 8 Pro system, Windows Media Player is able to play some AVI video files. It means that required codecs to play those files are installed in the system.

Then, why is Xbox Video (Metro app by Microsoft) unable to play the same AVI files?

How to make Xbox Video app play those AVI files?

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2 Answers 2

up vote 3 down vote accepted

According to this discussion, the only codecs that WinRT apps can use either must be supplied by Microsoft or bundled into the app. WinRT apps cannot use any codecs installed from the desktop, and there doesn't appear to be any way to make a 3rd party codec available to all WinRT apps.

This behavior is by design. In order for you to use your FLAC MF codec from within the context of your Windows store app you will need to modify the codec to work in the WinRT environment. You will then need to ship the codec with your application rather than rely on a desktop installation.

Edit: More information from @Bala Sivakumar, Program Manager for the Microsoft MM Platform Team

The reason for this is that Windows 8 is designed to run on low-power devices where software decoding is not desirable. Therefore only codecs that can be hardware accelerated are supported system-wide. Third party codecs can be made available in some cases - where the graphics card manufacturer supports hardware acceleration of the codec and ships support in the driver. Such codecs are signed by Microsoft to allow for system-wide use.

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Means, I am out of luck.. :( –  Sachin Shekhar Feb 1 '13 at 19:14
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The reason for this is that Windows 8 is designed to run on low-power devices where software decoding is not desirable. Therefore only codecs that can be hardware accelerated are supported system-wide. Third party codecs can be made available in some cases - where the graphics card manufacturer supports hardware acceleration of the codec and ships support in the driver. Such codecs are signed by Microsoft to allow for system-wide use. I recommend using AVI files with the H.264 codec for video if at all possible (since hardware-acceleration for this codec is widely available on most systems) –  Bala Sivakumar Jun 19 '13 at 18:00
    
@BalaSivakumar: Thanks for commenting and providing some background and extra information, and welcome to SuperUser! –  afrazier Jun 19 '13 at 18:29
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AVI is simply a container format. Similar to how zip files are containers for other files, avi files contain either/both a video stream encoded with any arbitrary codec, and an audio stream encoded with any arbitrary codec.

These codecs need to be supported before you can play the file. You can install CCCP to get more codecs support.

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I know AVI is a container format, that's why I am talking about specific files. –  Sachin Shekhar Feb 1 '13 at 18:53
    
If WMP is able to play those AVI files, where's the problem? It means that codecs (whatever they are) are installed. –  Sachin Shekhar Feb 1 '13 at 18:56
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