WMV File Extension

Have a problem opening a .WMV file? We collect information about file formats and can explain what WMV files are. Additionally we recommend software suitable for opening or converting such files.

What is the .WMV file type?

A file with the .wmv extension is a compressed video file encoded with the help of a Microsoft's proprietary codec. It enables storing and sharing of movies and clips without hurting their quality. The WMV format has a long and successful history - the first codec was developed in 1999.

The majority of .wmv files are packed into an .asf container. The resulting package can be labeled with either .wmv or .asf extension. The ASF container can optionally implement digital rights management system to prevent piracy and unauthorized distribution.

Besides Windows platform, WMV files can be supported by other video streaming clients and portable devices - for example, they can be opened on the Xbox gaming console or cell phones using Windows Mobile OS.

Since the WMV format refers to Microsoft's codecs, it may not be read by Mac and Linux applications. For example, Apple iPhone users can't watch WMV video files on their devices. In this case it is necessary to use a video convertor to be able to access and play the content of a .wmv file.

Software to open or convert WMV files

You can open WMV files with the following programs:
VLC media player
VLC media player by VideoLAN
Winamp by Nullsoft, Inc
GOM Player
GOM Player by Gretech Corporation

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