Open In VLC Open media links in VideoLan player
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The "Open In VLC" extension aims provide easy access to the well-known VLC media player from browser context. It adds two elements to your browser interface. The first one is the page action button. This button is only visible when the page has a media source on it. By clicking on the page action button, the media stream is being sent to the VLC player. The second UI element is the context menu item that appears when right-clicking over media elements. You can send media links directly to VLC player this way. Note that you will need to install a minimal native client for this extension to work. The instruction on how to install this native client will be displayed on the first usage.



  1. What is the "Open in VLC" add-on and how can I use it?

    This extension adds a page action button to your browser. When a media is available on the page that you are visiting, the page action button appears in the address bar area (in Chrome page action button is always visible but it is disabled; when a media is available, the page action gets enabled (become colorful)). By pressing this button you can send the currently playing media stream to the VLC media player. This extension also adds a context menu item to the video and audio elements which have media source. This way you can send media links to VLC just by using the context menu items.

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  3. What's new in this version?

    Please check the Logs section.

  4. VLC media player supports rendering some well-known hostnames and detect media links internally. Is it possible for this extension to send the actual page URL for these hostnames to the VLC media player?

    If VLC supports media extraction from HTML web pages, this extension can send the actual page URL instead of the links that it detects. It already does this for some hostnames. If there is one that is missed, please report the domain name in the review section and I'll add the support

  5. Why do I need to install a native client for this extension to work?

    By default browsers do not allow extension from communicating with native applications for security reasons. If an extension has the nativeMessaging permission it can communicate with the native side, however, most applications do not support the protocol that is known by browsers, so this native application is actually a bridge between the extension side (Open in VLC) and native side (VLC player). The native client that is used in this extension is a small JS script with the official NodeJS executable. All the native code is written in the extension side. To install the native client follow the steps that are displayed on the first usage of the extension. You can also watch these small video tutorials for Windows and for Mac and Linux By installing the native client, in Windows, two registries are added to the Windows registry to let the browser know where to find the actual native application and a local folder is created which contains the actual NodeJS executable. You can completely remove the native client any time by using the uninstall.bat script. It will delete both registries as well as the directory that is created during the installation process. In Linux and Mac, the native client inserts a file called manifest.json to the designated folders for the browsers to find the actual native application. Also, a local directory is created in the local .config directory. Linke Windows version, you can completely remove the native client by using the script. It will remove both the folder that is created in the .config directory and the manifest files. Note that the installer script prints all the paths that it locales files into. By running the installer script multiple times, it only overwrites the old files. No new file will be created.

  6. Why native client size is around 20MB for the Linux operating system?

    In the Linux package, there are two official NodeJS executables for 32-bit and 64-bit operating systems as the 64-bit Linux cannot run the 32-bit NodeJS version. Only one of these two will be actually used though.

  7. How can I test this extension?

    To test the extension, head to and right-click on the video element. There is a context menu item to send the media stream to the VLC media player. If you have the native client installed, the VLC player should start playing the video stream

  8. It seems like the extension cannot locate my VLC media player. Is it possible to set the path manually?

    Yes, open the options page and set the path manually.

  9. Why the toolbar button is not clickable in the Chrome browser?

    This extension uses page action toolbar button. This button is only enabled when the page supports media playing. Otherwise, it is disabled. In the Chrome browser, the button is always visible but it is not accessible when it is not colorful.

  10. When I close my Firefox browser, the VLC media player that is opened by this extension also get closed. Can I prevent this from happening?

    This is due to how Firefox handles native applications. Please see FAQ #22 of my External Application Button extension for a workaround.

  11. If I want to use the "Open in VLC" extension with an extra command-line argument, how could I do that? I tried to add the argument in the path-field on the options page, but it does not work. Where can I add my custom "--qt-minimal-view" argument to the VLC's execution command?

    Either use my External Application Button add-on instead of this one or create a custom bat file that calls VLC with the received link from this add-on. Now go to the options page of the add-on and change the executable path to this bat file.

  12. What is the meaning of the "M3U8 Container" option?

    When there is more than one media link, send them all in an M3U8 container at once. This way, the extension only points the VLC player to a single local file, and the player parses the M3U8 container to find all the tracks.

  13. What is the meaning of the "Filter URLs or Media Types" option?

    This option is used to filter out URLs or Media Types from the list of URLs or Media Types to be opened in VLC. Removes all URLs or Media Types that match the provided filter.

  14. What is the "Path to the VLC executable" option?

    This option guides the extension to find the VLC player. On Windows, in case there is no user input, the %ProgramFiles%\VideoLAN\VLC\vlc.exe directory is used. On Linux, the PATH environment variable is used. On Mac, this option is ignored, instead the global open -a VLC command opens the player.

  15. What is the meaning of the "Use Page Title for M3U8 Tracks" option?

    By having this option, the extension prepends a "#EXTINF:-1, title" metadata line for each track in the generated M3U8 file.

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What's new in this version

Change Logs:
    Last 10 commits on GitHub
    Hover over a node to see more details

    Need help?

    If you have questions about the extension, or ideas on how to improve it, please post them on the  support site. Don't forget to search through the bug reports first as most likely your question/bug report has already been reported or there is a workaround posted for it.

    Open IssuesIssuesForks

    Permissions are explained

    storageto store user preferences such as VLC path and VLC command
    tabsto add page action button
    contextMenusto add context menu items to video and audio elements
    nativeMessagingto initiate connection to the native side
    downloadsto download the native client to the default download directory
    webRequestto monitor network activity to find media sources
    <all_urls>to monitor network activities from all hostnames

    Recent Blog Posts on