What Is an XVID File?

How to play, edit, and convert XVID files

An XVID file uses the Xvid codec. It's not a video format like MP4, but instead, it's a program that's used to compress and decompress video to MPEG-4 ASP, a compression standard, to save on disk space and file transfer speeds.

Because of the compression supported in Xvid content, a full-length movie can usually be compressed sufficiently to retain DVD quality while still fitting on a CD.

Although you may be using a file that has the .XVID file extension, many different file containers store Xvid video content. Depending on who made it, the file might be named something like video.xvid.avi for an AVI file, for example.

Xvid is distributed under the GPL free software license. It can be compiled on any compatible operating system and device without limitation.

How to Play XVID Files

XVID Files
XVID Files.

Many modern DVD and Blu-ray players can play XVID files. Although the DivX codec is different from the Xvid codec, video players that display the DivX logo usually support XVID files. Sometimes, the logo is on the device manufacturer's website rather than on the video player, so check there if you're not sure whether your player supports this format.

However, XVID videos that have been encoded with advanced MPEG-4 features, such as MPEG quantization or multiple B-frames, aren't compatible with most DivX players.

On a PC, any software program that can decode MPEG-4 ASP encoded video can play XVID files. Some popular programs that play XVID files include VLC media player, MPlayer, Windows Media Player, BS.Player, DivX Plus Player, and MPC-HC.

Elmedia Player is a Mac XVID player. Although it isn't free to use, it does support lots of other video and audio file formats.

While some media players, such as VLC, can decode Xvid without any additional software, some of the players may require that the Xvid codec is installed to compress and decompress the XVID content properly. Windows Media Player needs it, for example. The Xvid codec software is supported on both Windows and Linux operating systems.

You can also play XVID files on an iOS device with the OPlayer app, or on Android with RockPlayer.

How to Convert an XVID File

Several free video converter tools and services can convert XVID encoded files to other formats, such as MP4, AVI, WMV, MOV, DIVX, and OGG.

The video converter function of Office Converter can convert XVID files to other video formats, too. This tool functions online, so the XVID file has to be uploaded to the website, converted, and then downloaded again before you can use it, meaning it'll take much longer than using one of the downloadable converters.

Miro Video Converter, iWisoft Free Video ConverterAvidemux, and HandBrake are some other free XVID converters.

Still Can't Open the File?

If your file doesn't open with the programs described above, it's possible you're misreading the file extension. Some files might use a very similar suffix at the end of the file name, but it doesn't necessarily indicate format similarities.

For example, the XVD file extension that looks a lot like XVID, is entirely unrelated and is instead an Xbox Virtual Disk file that can be used with xvdtool.

XVA is another one that belongs to XenServer Virtual Application files. This file format isn't related to XVID even though it shares some of the same file extension letters. You need Citrix's XenServer to use XVA files.

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