I have a file that VLC does not open. It mentioned 'wmv3' so i tried media player with no luck. I use avicodec to check which failed.

I also seen some results saying it's a Quicktime file but somehow encoded in WMV (which sounds like nonsense and the poster said he was guessing).

Here's some random text I see inside the file. Perhaps it will help. Does anyone have an idea what this is?

Apple Sound Media Handler
Apple Video Media Handler

Anyways I want to know how I can see/play the file. I am on Windows 7.

Heres what gspot said (larger image):

  • 1
    Do you have a file command at hand? Or a hex editor? You should be able to get the FourCC out of that thing. Other than that it seems like there's some QuickTime video stuff, so try to rename it to .mov (although I have to say I'm guessing too)
    – slhck
    May 18, 2011 at 19:52
  • Your guessing @slhck but it is a well educated guess it's possible whoever gave you the file had the wrong extension... particularly if VLC doesn't play it. May 18, 2011 at 20:08
  • @slhck: yes, I see 'qt' but I also see 'asf'. It would be helpful if the OP clarified where the text he/she pasted came from.
    – horatio
    May 18, 2011 at 20:35
  • @horatio Yes, totally agree with that.
    – slhck
    May 18, 2011 at 20:40
  • @acidzombie24 Have you tried checking the file with GSpot ?
    – Darius
    May 18, 2011 at 20:46

3 Answers 3


That is a video in the Windows Media Video 9 (WMV3) format, which is used in Windows Media Player 9.

You will need the Windows Media Player codecs for that, try the WMP 9 codec installation package...

Please note that a QuickTime File Format (MOV) is just a container format, so it can contain WMP media.

  • I couldnt install it. It works on XP and lower. I'm on win with media player 12.
    – user3109
    May 18, 2011 at 22:04
  • @acidzombie24: Then you should already have it. Hmm, try to use video editing software like VirtualDub to convert it to a playable file. Seems VLC is incapable of doing this. Combining an open-source video player with a Quicktime container and Windows Media codecs is asking for trouble... ^^ May 18, 2011 at 22:12

You could try using MediaInfo - it does a good job of showing you everything about media files.


It seems WMV video and WMA audio data are placed in the MOV/MP4 file.
That is, file format (container format) is MOV, video codec (compression method) is WMV, and audio codec is WMA. It's very rare and possible non-standard format, I think.

Have test with SMPlayer, it has better support for MOV/MP4 than VLC.

Try reformat into AVI or WMV with ffmpeg:
ffmpeg.exe -i 'your file' -acodec copy -vcodec copy new_file.avi

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