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Codecs, Players, Resources, and Links

4 ways to find the codec of a AVI clip Codec Instalation problems in Win9x, Nt, Win2000
Fix for Divx 4 and 5 encoding
Sound Codecs
Tools - Resources Window Xp Problems

A word or two about ALL IN ONE CODEC patxhes:
As well meaning as the creators of these regestriy hacks are, their computer is not your computer, and you really have no idea what you might be messing up your own system by you having, or not having, something on your computer that they did or didn't on theirs. If you don't feel free to hack into your regestriy once a week, why would you let some one who doesn't know what's on your computer do it? More than that, for windows systems it's quite easy to mess media play up by having more than one codec set up to play a single type of file

Locating Codec info
Method #1
Still can't locate the codec used? Two Tools for on AVI video codec identification for Windoz:

A. GSpot (brought to our attention by O'Man) is a free a powerful tool for Avi's. It features:
    1. Determines which video codec an AVI file uses.
    2. Determines what audio encoding method the file uses.
    3. Determines what codecs you have installed, and whether you have the one needed.
    4. And has an up-to-date database of over 200 codecs, including the latest DivX 5 and XVID systems.
    5. Identifies MPG, MPEG, MOV, WMA, WMV, or ASF if an unknown non-AVI file is examined.
which allows you to:
    6. View and optionally edit or create RIFF INFO tags for your AVI file.
    7. Plus gives you an aspect ratio display, VBR recognition and other enhancements.
We're using this tool daily to clear out misidentified files from our hard drives.

B. A nice little freeware program brought up by mlippert that you might find very useful called "qavinfo.exe". It's Windoze Dos based, so if this frightens you, go back to "A" above or skip on down.
    1. Download the program from the CodecCorner or the Author's site.
    2. Unzip to a new dir, or to the dir where you store your movie clips (mine is C:\oh-damn). There will only be two files there - qaviinfo.exe and .ccp.
    3. Move any movie that won't play to this new directory.
    4. Click on Start / Programs / MS Dos Prompt. This will open up a dos window on your desktop.
    5. Change to the dir holding qavi and your clip ( for the example above type cd c:\oh-damn ).
    6. Then type qaviinfo movie.avi - where movie.avi is the name of the clip you want to find the codec for. This will produce a nice little info sheet with the codec and data rates displayed.
Method #2

1. Open the AVI file using WORDPAD
2. Near the end of the first or second line you will see the codec's ID. Look for the characters "vids" followed by the FourCC code. It looks like "vidsmp43" for MPEG4v3clips or I263 = "vidsI263".
3. Look in the Links section or try "Codec Central"
Method #3:
1. In Windows Explorer Right Click on the file and choose Properties from the drop down menu.
2. Choose the Details tab.
3. If Details shows an unknown codec -- and it should if it won't play --
4. Click the Preview tab. The preview pane will have diagonal lines thru it, but at the top it will display the codec used.  It's sometimes hard to read as the diagonal lines overwrite the text.
ASF, WMV and MPG's display only a single tab with little useful information.

Method #4

use HexEdit 1.0 - ( Freeware found at most download sites).
1. check hex location "6C" for the value "vids" followed with the FourCC code at hex location "70".

Sound Codecs
There is nothing we like better than to NOT reinvent the wheel. For those needing a Mp3 codec, we store one here. But for all other info on sound and sound codecs, check out a great site for audio info -
go there and have your needs met.

Fix for Divx 4 and 5 encoding
For Windows ME & 98
01. Install Divx4.12
02. goto to windows\system folder and rename divx.dll to divx4.dll
03. Open system.ini in windows folder and find under drivers32 vidc.DIVX=DivX.dll
04. and change it to vidc.DVX4=DivX4.dll
05. Open regedit:
Editing register
Under [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\WindowsNT\CurrentVersion\Drivers32]
06. create new value vidc.dvx4=DivX4.dll
07. create new keywith name vidc.DVX4
Under that key enter new strings
08. "Description"="DivX Codec 4.12"
09. "Driver"="DivX4.dll"
10. "FriendlyName"="DivX Codec 4.12"
Now you can start VirtualDub and under Compression you'll see Divx 4.12 and when you click on it will show "Divx4.dll" . Now you can install Divx5 without it removing Divx4.

For Windows XP
01. Install Divx4.12 ,rename divx.dll under windows\system32 in to divx4.dll
02. Open regedit:


create new Key vidc.DVX4
and under that key new strings
Description=Divx 4.12

create new Key vidc.DVX4
and under that key new strings
Description=Divx 4.12

create new Key
and under that key new strings
Description=Divx 4.12

With this you should be able to encode in Div4 & 5 !

Tools - Resources
Acme Labs - a great "quick start" intro and how to do UseNet
Apple Quicktime  The developer of Quicktime
AVI Overview page  Information database concerning everything there is to know about AVI architecture
Codec Central Now called Codec Study  Terran Interactive's own information database about multimedia architectures, codecs, and more
Intel  The developer of the Indeo version of the avi codec
Judy & Robert's Quicktime Page  A Quicktime news and information website
Microsoft  Microsoft Media Player and ASF
VCD Helper  One of the better sites to start your vcd (dat,bin) ripping career.
Video Guys  Retailer of Video Capture cards and the like.  Best used for their comparison charts of capture cards.

Windows Xp Problems
Ah, the wonders of Xp, M$'s latest attempt to create a nightmare while blocking all 3rd party developers from creating programs without paying Caesar. All things considered, I think from now on I'll just send them a check, and leave the software in the box.
All the below come with no promise that it will work for you.

 1. A WMP6.4 for Windows Xp: Sick and tired of us old guys going on about the value of Windows Media Player 6.4 - it's lack of spyware / reportware / function? Well, it would appear that those smarter than us took pity on us all and built a new player - Windows Media Classic - that works better than 6.4, without any of the rest of the junk that comes with wmp7, 8, and most directly, wmp9. Run, do not walk, to get it here. And our thanks to Tazman for the tip off.

 2. When there is no listed Xp version of the program / codec, consider using the Win Nt / 2000 version rather than the Win9x version. This is due to the fact that Xp is at root a Nt type OS.

 3. Use the Program Compatibility Wizard and set it so that the program is in win98 compatibility mode.  For some of the programs this will fix it. BUT, since the release of XP service Pack 1 and CD's with this service pack built in (which you really need to plug major holes), fewer and fewer will work.
    A. Right click on the start menu under the program name.
    B. Click Properties
    C. Change the compatability mode to Win98/Me.
    D.  Works like a charm under XP with that setting.
MAJOR UPDATE: After installing SP1 to XP - a much needed sercurity and update patch - all have reported that Camel's MPG joiner and Peck's Power Post will no longer work. If you too have this problem, look here to find a new tool to use - there's quite a selection.

 4. Issues involving Direct Show filters. An increasing number of codecs are using or requiring the use of direct show drivers, including mpg, to play correctly in Win systems. This is particularly true for Xp. Without any proof, I am beginning to believe that M$ has been doing some major changes to this set of devices, yet not advancing the version number. Keep your direct show (DirectX) updated.

 5. Along with an increased ability to repair damaged files, Xp contains a much reinforced ability to remove dlls and drivers it (meaning M$) does not recognize or approve of. If you're having these kinds of problems,
    a) confirm the driver/dll version that has been installed by the installer program prior to reboot or shutting down.
    b) after restart, confirm that all driver / dll's BY VERSION are still in place.
    c) If not, you'll need to manually force Xp to retain those drivers.

 6. As of the introduction of Xp, M$ carries it's fight with Sun to new heights by removing Sun java from the installation pack. If you're having problems (like the buttons on this site not working very well) you'll need to go to this M$ site. Please read the faq there, and decide for yourself if you want to install M$'s VM.  For myself, I strongly recommend loading the Sun Java for your system, found at the Sun Java Page.

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