The VLC Media Player has long been one of my favorite media players for videos, in part because of its ease of use and its wide support for popular video formats out of the box, without the need to download codecs.
By default, VLC Media player is set up to play most videos you find on the Internet, as well as DVDs and music files. Many other media players, such as Windows Media Player, require you to download codecs for each type of video file that you want to play. Some examples include Xvid Files and DivX files, which are two popular formats used to display videos on the computer. Unfortunately, one of the most common ways of getting viruses is to download codecs, so the fact that VLC will play so many different types of videos by default is not only a matter of convenience, but also helps reduce the risk of infecting the computer with a virus.
The other main advantage of the VLC Media Player, is that it is very easy to use, even for those who are not very technical. It has a simple design that is easy to understand, yet it is incredibly powerful, much more so than most other Commercial Media Players. VLC, which is developed by the VideoLan Project, is also cross platform, meaning it will work just as well on Linux as it does on Windows or Mac.
VLC is also open source, which means that the programming code used to create it can be downloaded, read, edited, and updated by anyone who cares to, which is an important learning tool and can also help with security.
A Brief Background
VLC was first developed 14 years ago, in 1996, and was intended to work as a client to play video files on a remote server. As such, originally there was a VideoLan Server and a VideoLan Client, with the goal being for the student creators to be able to stream videos from a server to their television. Today, the functions of the VideoLan Server have been assimulated into the VideoLan Client, which is where it gets its name, VLC.
By 2001, the creators of VLC were, after much debate, convinced that releasing the source code of VLC under a GPL License, which is stands for General Public License, and within months people from all over the world began contributing to the project. After only 6 months, VLC had been ported to Windows, so people using the Microsoft Operating System could take advantage of the powerful, yet lightweight media player.
So Why VLC
Aside from the massive out of the box support that is offered by VLC, it really comes down to ease of use. A video player should not need to be a complicated beast to master, nor should it need to be a resource hog, but so many of the common commercial media players are not designed with this in mind. VLC, on the other hand, is intended to be easy to use and be great at what it does.
Jamie is a big fan of open source software, like VLC, which is the Media Player of choice for Knightdale Computer Repair. At Knightdale Computer Repair, which offers onsite computer services for the Raleigh and surrounding Triangle Area, using secure software that is easy to use is very important. There are many services offered by Knightdale Computer Repair, including virus removal, web design, and hardware upgrades.