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no suitable decompressor could be found

Posted on 1998-07-05
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Last Modified: 2013-12-16
I have looked at previous questions regarding avi decompressors.  I have gone to intel and gottten both the iv5play.exe and the I.232 ?? codec instal.exe<-- whatever. I have some .avi's that were taken with a video camera.  They play fine on the PC i made them on, but i cant play them on any other PC.  I get the message "no suitable decompressor could be found"  what can i do?  how do i make these files viewable on other PC's
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Question by:rumint101
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Expert Comment

by:bjt3
ID: 1756815
You're pretty much on the right track.  The error message is telling you what the problem is,
but like most messages, it isn't very specific nor helpful.  I see three steps to getting you to
where you want to be:

1) determine what codec you need (what the error message is complaining about)
2) find it and load it onto your machine
3) let anyone you give your video to know how to get and install the same codec.

I've found that using right-click->Properties->Details in Windows Explorer will give
some information about the file, including some codec information under "Video Format".
Knowing that, you need to find the codec.  I started looking on the web for codec libraries
but didn't find anything right away - there were simply too many matches to the queries
that I was posting.   Knowing what specific type of codec you're looking
for would help narrow the search immensely.  (Out-of-band thought: does the video camera
documentation say what the codec was ?  Is this a DV camera ?)

So, I'd use Explorer to figure out what the codec is, then go look around for that specific
codec.  For more general information on AVIs, you might be interested in
http://zeus.arc.nasa.gov/avi.html.

Good luck.
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Author Comment

by:rumint101
ID: 1756816
I appreciate the answer, however I was looking for a an all-around codec, or a way around having to use a specific codec.  These avi's need to be viewable to anyone with just plain win95.

is it possible to convert the avi to a quictime or some other format on the PC with the correct codec and then change it back to avi on a machine that just has standard win95 avi capabilities.
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Expert Comment

by:bjt3
ID: 1756817
Well, I'm a bit confused.  So far as I know, there is no such thing as an "all-around" codec.
You need to find the codec that matches the compression scheme used by the producer
of the video that you have.  There are some codec shipped with the standard AVI viewers,
but they aren't "all-around", they just happen to be common, popular codecs that get shipped
with the viewers.

In this case, your source material was compressed with some other compressor and you'll
need to find the codec that handles it.  I wish it weren't so, it's really rather a bit of a pain.
However, that's the best I can tell you.

You can make the conversion to another format, but guess what ?  You'll need to find the
codec to do that.  Or, you'll need to go back to the original producer and get it to compress
it via another method.  That is, does this camera allow you to chose your compression
method ? Can you change it ?  Alternatively, you could possiblyt

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Author Comment

by:rumint101
ID: 1756818
I have the correct codec on another PC.  If i convert it to an mov on that PC with the correct codec, and then convert it back to avi on another PC will that work??  will another format like mov  be more standard so i can change it back to an avi on another computer??  if you have the answer to this, submit it as an answer and i will score the answer.  thanks
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Expert Comment

by:bjt3
ID: 1756819
You're essentially back into the same problem if you use MOV (QuickTime).  It also allows
for multiple types of compressions (CinePak, JPEG, raw RGB, raw YUV, Kodak Photo CD,
MPEG, Motion JPEG-A, Motion JPEG-B, etc).  But, yes, another approach is to convert
to a MOV file and distribute that.  But, you see the catch - MOVs also allow different
compression types.

You're back to the same point.  Or, another way of looking at it, is that it doesn't matter
a lot if you use AVI or MOV.  You need to a) make sure that whomever wants to see your
video can find/install the correct codec or b) convert to a format that everyone has.

I'm going to refer back to http://zeus.arc.nasa.gov/avi.html which has a lot more information
that I know.  That article lists a number of compressors, and it appears that CinePak is a
common one between AVI and MOV files.  Rather than speculate on how to get where
you want to be, I'll recommend that you take a look at that (long) paper.  It's quite good and
seems to cover many of the issues that you'll be concerned with.

Nothing's ever easy, is it ?

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Author Comment

by:rumint101
ID: 1756820
thats about the best answer anyone can really give.  Someone needs to come up with an all around avi CODEC.  Thanks for all the help!
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LVL 7

Accepted Solution

by:
bjt3 earned 50 total points
ID: 1756821
I'm glad that I was able to help you out.  Though, I wouldn't hold my breath on an "all-around
codec".
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