K-Lite Codec Pack

K-Lite Codec Pack 5.9.9

Free
Once the codecs are installed, you will probably be able to play everything
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4.0  (2,287 votes)
13.6.5 (See all)

I am sure that many of you, just like me, hate when we try to play a recently downloaded video, or the recording of your friend's wedding, and it just doesn't work.
Well, I’m not going to give a technical talk here. But I will just mention that most of the times, the reason is a missing codec.
Codecs are small computer programs designed to “decode/encode” digital data.
Nowadays there are a lot of new codecs that surpass their predecessors by far in their ability to decode/encode faster, better, and more kinds of videos.

Of course you can use special programs that will check your specific video and tell you which codec the author used to encode it. Then you would have to go and try a couple, or many different websites until you find that specific codec.
And this is not all. These codecs downloaded from the web might contain adware, spyware and even real virus and trojans.
And the worst part is that they will not even allow you to view your files.

So, what should we do?
First of all, try to locate the real developer page and download it from there.
Then, start looking for over 100 web pages to locate each individual developer, and then download over 100 different files and install them all.

Or... you could download one of the famous “codec packs” that includes most of the codecs.
I would definitely go for the second option.
There are several packages available on the web. I have tried most of them, and, unfortunately, there is no “perfect codec pack” There is always a “stubborn” video that won’t play on any player you have.

This is a very easy-to-install package. The program guides you through the process and you can choose the default option and let the program install the most usually required sets of codecs, or include more of the codecs offered to be installed.
This software is a complete tool set that includes DirectShow filters, VFW/ACM Codecs and other useful tools.
It checks for updates continuously, so you will always have the latest additions.

A great thing included in the package is the good old Media Player Classic Home Cinema.

Once the codecs are installed, you will probably be able to play everything, and maybe you will even be able to use your favorite player, which will use the codecs installed.

I will not write the big list of codecs included, you can check it on the website.
I will just tell you that my list of “viewable” files, increased significantly, and now I can use several of my players.

I didn’t have any problems installing or configuring the software. Ah... I forgot something important. It’s freeware!

Fernando Soni
Editor rating:

Review summary

Pros

  • A very complete package
  • Easy installation and configuration
  • Decodes almost everything

Cons

  • Sometimes it has conflicts with existing decoders/codecs
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