How to Troubleshoot a VLC Media Player

By Andrew Schrader

VLC Media Player, free for download at, is a powerful video player and transcoder (converter), capable of capturing and exporting streaming video, as well as converting to and from a number of audio and video formats. There are several ways to troubleshoot your VLC Player, depending on the problem. It may be a simple problem--as easy as quitting and restarting VLC--or a more advanced problem involving your video card. Other common playback problems with VLC may be due to your Preference settings or from trying to play a codec that is not currently installed in your player. If you have a problem you cannot fix by using any of the means here or at, you can report it to VideoLan.

Fixing VLC 'Bugs'

Step 1

Reset your Preference settings under the \"General\" tab, quit VLC and restart.

Step 2

Try deleting VLC's configuration file, which is located in your user directory.For Windows XP users, VLC can be found in your C-Drive:C:\\Documents and Settings\\%username%\\Application Data\\vlc\\vlcrcFor Mac OSX Users: HOME/Library/Preferences/VLCDownload and re-launch VLC.

Step 3

Upgrade your video card from its manufacturer; for many, this is a free upgrade. Or, try disabling your video's overlay by clicking \"Preferences/General/Video\" and de-selecting \"Overlay Video Output.\"

Step 4

Change your video \"output module\" by clicking \"Preferences\" and selecting \"Video.\" Click \"Output Modules\" and try choosing a different option (VideoLan suggests trying the \"DirectX video output,\" which claims to have helped many people who experience \"purple video\").

Tips & Warnings

  • According to VideoLan, VLC does not support \"WMV3, the most recent Real Player and the most recent Indeo Video (\"IV50\")\" files.