What Is an XVID File?

How to play, edit, and convert XVID files

What to Know

  • An XVID file is an Xvid-encoded video file.
  • Open one with VLC, MPlayer, or DivX Plus Player.
  • Convert to MP4, MKV, AVI, etc., online with Convertio, or offline with MiniTool Video Converter or EncodeHD.

This article describes the Xvid-encoded video file format, including how to open an XVID file and how to convert one to a different video format like MP4 or MKV.

What Is an XVID File?

An XVID file uses the Xvid video codec library. It's not a video format like MP4, but instead a program that's used to compress and decompress video to the MPEG-4 Part 2 Advanced Simple Profile (ASP) coding 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 might be using a file that has the .XVID file extension, many file containers store Xvid video content. Having a video that uses this codec doesn't determine the file extension. 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.

XVID Files
XVID Files.

How to Play 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 examples include VLC, MPlayer, BS.Player, and DivX Plus Player.

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

While some media players, like VLC, can decode Xvid without any additional software, some players may require you to download Xvid (it runs on Windows and Linux) to compress and decompress the content properly. Windows Media Player needs it, for example.

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

How to Convert an XVID File

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

The video converter function at Convertio can convert XVID to other video formats, too. This tool functions online, so the 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.

However, that website isn't useful if your video is smaller than 100 MB. Some good offline converters include MiniTool Video Converter, EncodeHD, Miro Video Converter, Avidemux, and HandBrake.

Still Can't Open It?

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, such as XV, but it doesn't necessarily indicate format similarities.

VID and XVD look a lot like XVID, but they are unrelated. The first is a Bethesda video file and the second an Xbox virtual disk that can be used with xvdtool.

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

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