How to Watch a Movie From a USB Flash Drive

Updated February 21, 2017

One of the benefits of putting files on a USB flash drive is that you can make any type of file portable. This includes not only documents, spreadsheets and photos, but also media like video clips and movies. If you have movies saved on your flash drive that you want to view, watching the movies directly from the USB drive is a simple process and can be achieved on almost any computer.

Connect your USB drive to the device on which you want to watch your movies. This includes all USB-compatible computers, as well as some select television-compatible devices (like the PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 or Sony Media Extender).

Launch the file explorer application on your device. In Windows, access this utility by accessing the "Computer" application and then double-clicking the USB drive to display the files. If you are trying to watch the movie files on a compatible television device, look for a "media," "device" or "USB input" application or button to bring up the file explorer.

Select the movie file you want to play. In Windows, do this by double-clicking on the file. The appropriate media-handling program should automatically launch and begin playing the movie automatically. If you are using a television device, select the file from the list of compatible files in the device's internal explorer system.


If you are having trouble playing back a certain file, make sure you have the correct software. Some file types, like AVI and WMV, require certain drivers/software to be played back. If you are playing the file using a television device, check your owner's manual for specifics about file compatibility.

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