How to Change the XBMC Default Player to VLC

VLC Media Player and XBMC are free, open-source media players available for PC and Mac users. Both programs support dozens of file formats, including DVDs, CDs, common and uncommon audio and video formats; however, VLC Media Player can convert to and from formats, while XBMC cannot. Changing your default player from XBMC to VLC on Windows or Mac OS X platforms requires locating the type(s) of file(s) currently defaulting to XBMC and switching them to play with VLC.

Click the Start button in the lower-left corner of the main screen and select "Computer." Navigate to a file that automatically opens in XBMC.

Right-click the file's icon, hold your cursor over "Open With" and click "Choose Default Program" to enter the Open With screen.

Highlight VLC Media Player in the Recommended Programs portion of the screen. Click "Other Programs" to locate VLC in your computer's list of programs.

Click the "Always Use the Selected Program to Open This Kind of File" button and press "OK." Repeat these steps for all media files you want opened automatically in VLC.

Open a new Finder window and browse your computer for a file that opens automatically with XBMC.

Click the File tab at the top of the screen and click "Get Info."

Click the triangle icon next to the "Open With" section in the Get Info panel and select VLC Media Player, if available. Click "Other" if VLC does not appear, locate VLC in the pop-up Applications window and click "OK" to return to the Get Info screen.

Click the "Change All" button to use VLC Media Player to open all files of the same format. Repeat for all formats currently defaulting to XBMC.


Open files in different applications without changing the default application by right-clicking your file and selecting "Open With."

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About the Author

Andrew Schrader has been a professional writer and filmmaker since 2004. He works as a writer and director, holding a Bachelor of Arts in film and media studies from UC Santa Barbara. Schrader specializes in writing about technology and computer software.