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How to Fix a Corrupted/Unplayable Video on Windows/Mac PC

Video is not playing well? Here we have few easy steps to fix unplayable or corrupted video file on your Windows/Mac PC

We have always been there, where we plan to watch a movie or just relook at our old videos, but when opening the video file, it is not playing. Sometimes, instead of playing the video, the media player just stays blank. In some cases, the video might be flickering. In the worst-case scenario, you might even be prompted with an error message saying that the video file is corrupted or damaged. 

There are various reasons why a video file is not playing. Such as given below:

  • Unsupported Media player
  • Incompatible codecs
  • Corrupted or damaged Video file
  • In case of online streaming service network issues

All these issues can be easily resolved with a few simple tips. Scroll through the further sections of this article.

Outdated Media Players

If you are unable to play a video mostly it might be due to media player. If you switch to a media player that supports most video formats might help you fix the error. The VLC media player is one of the most popular media players which supports almost all video file formats. If you are already using VLC media player it might be due to the outdated media player or incompatible codecs. 

Incompatible Codecs

Generally speaking, it is quite unfamiliar to have an incompatible video codec issue because almost all the media players are regularly updated. If the media players are not updated, manually updating them will help.

If you are using a VLC media player just go to help > Check for updates > click on Yes to manually update the VLC media player. The process stays similar to most of the media player. 

 Even after updating if you are unable to play the video then you have two options.

  • Install open source codecs
  • Change the video formats

Since it is unstable to install codecs from the open-source, it is suggested to change the video format. Many users feel that converting a video might reduce the clarity but, recent video converters are quite efficient and can convert the videos without any loss in clarity.

MP4 is one of the most preferred video formats that can retain clarity while being compatible with all the media player without any trouble. However, make sure that you keep a back up of the original video file before conversion as a failsafe.

Even after conversion, if you are unable to play the video, it might be due to damaged video file. Fortunately, you can even fix a damaged video file with the help of VLC media player. Which we are going to discuss in detail in the next section.

How to Fix an Unplayable Video File?

As mentioned earlier you can fix a damaged video file, however, the functionality of a VLC media player is very limited. If you are trying to fix any complicated error such as a damaged header or corrupted video frames, the VLC media player is of no use. Hence, to be sure that all the errors are fixed, it recommended using a video repair software to fix the error. 

Developed to fix any kind of error SFWare video repair software is one of the most recommended tools to fix damaged or corrupted video files. SFWare video repair is also really easy to use. Following are the steps on how to use it.

  • Download and install the SFWare and select the desired format
  • Browse the location of the damaged video file and select the video file
  •  Click on the repair to fix the damaged video file

Using SFWare you can fix any critical error related to a video file. If you feel that the error is minor, you can fix them with the help of VLC media player.

Here are steps for you to fix the unplayable video file using VLC. Open the damaged video file using VLC media player. Generally, VLC will prompt a message saying repair the video file. Clicking the repair will fix the unplayable video file.

If the VLC is not prompting any message, you need to manually repair it. Here is how you do it.

  • Open the VLC media player
  • Go to Tools > Preferences
  • In the preferences, window go to inputs and codecs
  • Change the status of damaged or Incomplete AVI status to always fix

These two methods should take care of the damaged Video file.

How to Fix Unplayable Online Video Files

In most cases of an online video unplayable video is due to unstable internet connection. It can be mostly fixed with the help of troubleshooting the internet connection. If the connection is stable, it might be due to browser issues. Check whether the browser is updated or not. If there is any issue with the browser, just update the browser. Additionally, check for flash plugins, if the flash plugins are not updated please update them.

Summing up all the topics, most of the unplayable videos can be fixed just with the help of a few little tweaks. If those little tweaks are not cutting it might be due to damaged or corrupted video files. Even corrupted files can be fixed with the help of SFWare. Also, there are Recovery tool by SFWare, which work exceptionally if you ever lost any files, don’t forget to check them out.


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