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  • ajdolby Level 1 (0 points)


    I tried that but it wont open the majority of .avi files that I try. I also downloaded the Perian thing and it does nothing at all to anything. I installed and it disappeared into the ether. I uninstalled it assuming it was spyware.

  • ajdolby Level 1 (0 points)

    so now i am curious. is there software available for purchase, does the technology exist, to play all .avi movies without having to hack every single one of them with shady *** third party software?

    is that just a bad format that we should all avoid and hope it goes away?

  • hiddenmuse Level 3 (970 points)

    I don't think Perian has been updated or supported for years. I'm not sure what else you can try for .avi files if MPlayerX won't work, though.

  • ajdolby Level 1 (0 points)

    I guess all we can do is try to pollute the internet with slander against .avi files and either everyone will become disgusted at the sight of that file extension and blacklist any individual attempting to disseminate it or some genius will figure out how to write a piece of software that can play an .avi file and will become a thousandaire overnight.

  • Jon Walker Level 6 (18,378 points)

    Bottom line: how do you play an .AVI on a Mac?

    AVI is a file format—not a compression format. As such, the file format is and always has be compatible with QT. What mat not be compatible with QT is the specific combination of audio and video codecs used to create the AVI content. For instance, Motion MPEG/PCM AVI files are still playback compatible with both QT 7 and QT X—even under Mavericks—which many other compression format are not natively compatible and require additional codec support and use of the older QT 7 structure ermbedded in the Mac OS. Therefore, if you wish to play many currently popular AVI files in a QT player, download, in stall, and use the Perian codec component package and the free QT 7 player. If the player does not have to be a QT media player, then download an alternative player like VLC which is based on the FFmpeg open codec support package instead of your built-in QT configurate or user added codec components.



    Being able to watch videos in common formats is one. It is the moral obligation of anyone selling a computer to package it with software so you can view any file of a common format. Put Adobe out of business and increase your market share by loading these Macs up with free software like you used to!!!!

    Apple is in the process of rewriting its QT video suport to handle more modern codecs like H.264 (MPEG-4 AVC) which are the current basis for everything from cellular confrencing to Blu-ray optical discs and the latest 4K video formats. Along with these changes, Apple is changing the archetecture of its video apps which previously allowed "open" support of third-party proprietary and legacy formats, as well as, providing unsecured access to you system from outide sources. As to any "moral obligation" to support video content, you seem to be overlooking the legal ramifications of unilaterally abrogating the rights of copyright holders for the proprietary compression formats of various software manufacturers. In short, following your recommendations could quickly put Apple "out of business."



  • Jon Walker Level 6 (18,378 points)

    I don't think Perian has been updated or supported for years. I'm not sure what else you can try for .avi files if MPlayerX won't work, though.

    While the Perian project is no longer being actively supported, the latest version does still support the QT 7 player app and QT 7 32-bit embedded support structure—even under Mavericks. Further, the conversion of some compression formats commonly used in AVI files still requires either the Perian codec package or other, similar codec components for use by the QT X and/or Mavericks "service" conversion routines embedded in the Mavericks OS.


    As to alternative multimedia players, as has been mentioned by numerous other users previously, the VLC player is one of the most popular choices and it supports most compression formats commonly used in AVI files. However, be advised that it has been about 11 years since Microsoft terminated active support of the AVI file and many of the oldest leagacy formats used in this file type have never been converted for Mac use or did not survide the switch to Mac OS X or the switch to Intel based platforms. In short, some of the oldest AVI files simply cannot now be played on a Mac or have never been Mac compatible.



  • ajdolby Level 1 (0 points)


  • Jon Walker Level 6 (18,378 points)

    I guess all we can do is try to pollute the internet with slander against .avi files and either everyone will become disgusted at the sight of that file extension and blacklist any individual attempting to disseminate it or some genius will figure out how to write a piece of software that can play an .avi file and will become a thousandaire overnight.

    People who continue to create media content using the AVI file container more than a decade after it was abandoned by Microsoft for their WMV media software modernization are unlikely to be disuaded from further use by verbal "pollution" or "slander against AVI files."



  • ajdolby Level 1 (0 points)

    well you might be right about that. haha.

    i am not aware of the history of the .avi, so i rant about that which i do not know.

    i appologize for the verbal pollution, sir.


    on another note, i downloaded the VLC. I like the interface. It would not open several of my files still but I see promise in it.

  • Jon Walker Level 6 (18,378 points)

    Computers have been around long enough that file types should be established public property.

    File types are not normally the problem. AVI is a generic file type that can be used with almost any compression format combination—even if the format is not compatible with some of the more modern features supported by other containers. The file container is/can be used freely. Unfortunately, the codecs used ito create the AVI content may or may not be "open source" ("free for use") and you will likely to find it difficult to talk proprietary codec developers (the "copyright holders") into giving up their copyrights and terminating a valuable source of cash income. My point here, is that the MKV or M4V file container, like AVI, can be used freely by anyone but is a more modern file type having features more compatible with more modern, highly scaleable compression formats like MPEG-4 AVC which are available as non-proprietary codecs rather than urging Apple to violate DivX or Microsoft copyrights.



    That means that the primary objective of all software companies shoud be making the existing software more accessable, cheaper and more stable. Until all existing software packages are 100% stable and cost under $10 it is criminal to come out with new ones and force people to buy new defective crap software and constantly seek ways to get around peoples copyrights because no one is wealthy enough to pay for all the software you would need to do simple basic things and we have all been burned more times than we have been satisfied by software.

    Unfortunately, like an living organism, commercial businesses (companies and coporations) only seek to grow and prosper (i.e., perpetuate their own existence) and only do so at the expense of other organisms (businesses or individuals). As to alternatives, I advodate a non-reliance on such "money pits" by simply not using their software where possible and not continuously "being burned" further.



  • ajdolby Level 1 (0 points)

    it sounds like we agree on that. however, i might be tempted to argue that the behavior of software companies and almost all large modern corporations is not serving to perpetuate their own existence but is instead is jigsawing with government policies and long-term cultural trends to exacerbate the coming economic and cultural collapse that will plunge the earth into a dark age that could last until the end of our species.

  • Jon Walker Level 6 (18,378 points)

    on another note, i downloaded the VLC. I like the interface. It would not open several of my files still but I see promise in it.

    VLC is one such alternatives mentioned previousy above. It is a free, open source project manned mostly by a volunteer cadre of developers. While the app is free, they will accept donations if you are in a generous mood. As to formats that still do not play in the app, there are a few. I have a problem with 1080i VC-1 (an older format used for Blu-ray content) even though 1080p VC-1 works fine. In any case, you need to determine which codecs are giving you a problem. If you post them here, someone may be able to provide an answer as to how to play the associated files if a solution exists. If the files open but don't play in VLC, then use the VLC "Window > Get Information > Codec Details" window to determine the problem codec(s). If the file will not open in VLC, then you can either try the Mac Finder "File > Get Info" window or a free dedicated media information utility (like MediaInfo) to see what you can learn about the AVI codec(s).



  • Deborah Terreson Level 4 (1,000 points)

    ajdolby, don't give up on Perian.. it's not spyware, it is a System Prefences control panel and will end up there, in the bottom row (the 'Other' category)and loads into your Home/Library/PreferencePanes folder. It's a Godsend, though it does NOT work with QuickTimeX - that's as Apple has completely rewritten the 'Core A/V' and it's all 64 bit now, whereas Perian is 32. Don't be run off by that, though. With the correct setup and the right programs, you can have almost any video format running.


    If you're still having issues, and need QuickTime (I use it almost exclusively since it can step frame-by-frame and I make screen grabs for my graphics projects) your best bet is to install QuickTime 7 and add all the codec packs.. Here's my cut-and-paste tutorial with all the links to get the files you need so every thing works.




    You need to install some other stuff to get the full file functionality back.


    Here's the list.


    Start with QT 7.6.6. - (This will install into the Applications/Utilities folder)


    Get Perian, and install it. -


    then VLC, -


    and the Flip4Mac package from Telestream -


    A52/AC3 downloader: - In this installer package there is an audio A52Codec.component. DO NOT USE IT! Throw it out and use the one that is linked below.


    This is what I've put into my system and so far I've gotten every file to run fine, even my oldest videos.


    These are codecs you should see.


    In System/Library/QuickTime


         AppleMPEG2Codec.component* (*optional if you've bought it)

         Flip4Mac WMV Advanced.component

         Flip4Mac WMV Export.component

         Flip4Mac WMV Import.component


    In your Home/Library/QuickTime/

         AC3MovieImport.component (you may or may not want this component, in some instances it causes conflicts. In my system, it doesn't. Who knows why? I don't.)



    For AC3 sound that is in most .mkv files, you need the A52Codec.component, this is the one you want, here: - unzip the file and put the component into the System/Library/Audio/Plug-ins/Components


    Go back to your Perian settings (It should be in the System Preferences, at the bottom) and in the Audio Output button, set it to 'Multi Channel Sound' - Ignore the message Perian puts up and select it.


    By doing a 'Get Info' on your files and where it says 'Open With' - default them to the QuickTime 7 program. Perian no longer will work with QuickTime Player so you must have QT 7.6.6 and set it so it is the default for all the filetypes you use.


    If you DO decide to do this, just do NOT delete the QuickTimeX. For some reason, the OS get's a bit peevish that it is not there anymore and it's a real pain to have to re-install. Just leave it.


    Everything works perfectly with QT7 - and you CAN buy a Pro Key from Apple if you want to unlock it and access it's full editing/transcoding capabilities.


    So far I've gotten ALL my old videos to play.


    .avi, .mov (with the AC3 sound), .wmv, .flv, .mp4 and .m4v. all run fine as do all the older formats.



    Good luck!



  • ajdolby Level 1 (0 points)


    Very thorough. But apparently too complicated for me to implement. Thank you for trying. I will just delete all these old videos. Maybe someone should offer a service to convert video files to a format that can be opened by normal computer users. Id probably pay $0.5 to convert a couple hundred movies at a time through some site to a real format that I can watch.

  • MsSilk Level 1 (0 points)

    Dont delete your old files, look up iSkysoft iMedia Converter Deluxe.

    I have had it for about a year now and it's always in use, it's worth at least having a look at.

    I believe you can get it from itunes store now $36.99 well worth it.

    I got mine from their site though because as far as I can recall itunes didn't have it then. Try the free trail before buying it if you like.


    You can convert all your avi files to mov, mp4, wmv, m4v. mpeg-2 and the list goes on, I convert mine to mp4.