3 Easy Ways To Preview a Partially Downloaded Video Files

Damien Oh 08-05-2009

If you are one of those who download videos from BitTorrents site on a regular basis, you will know that the quality of the downloaded video is sometime not what you have expected it to be. After spending plenty of hours downloading only to find that it is a poor cam quality video can indeed be a frustrating experience. I know how that feels cause it happened to me all the time.


Now, while you are downloading the movies, wouldn’t it be great if you can preview it, check out its quality and then decide if you want to continue the download?


We all know that VLC is a versatile media player that can play almost any media format you throw to it. Well, another thing that you can get it to do is to repair and playback the partially downloaded video.

Open your VLC and load the video file. It will automatically detect that this is broken file and will prompt you to repair it. For instance, it can open broken avi files.


Click the Repair button to start the repair process. It could take quite some time depending on the file size of your video.


Once the repair is finished, it will automatically playback in the player.

To avoid damaging the integrity of the partially downloaded torrent file, it is best to first duplicate a copy of the video file, then use VLC to repair and playback the duplicated copy. When you are done previewing, simply delete the duplicated copy.


DivFix++ is complete rewrite of the “DivFix” application simply because the developer feels that the original DivFix program is too slow and take up plenty of CPU power. What DivFix++ is capable of doing is to fix broken AVI file, rebuild the index of the video and allows you to playback in a media player.



Indeed, after using DivFix++, I do find that it is much faster (than DivFix and VLC), not CPU-intensive and able to reproduce the AVI file in good shape. The best thing is, it doesn’t require any installation. Karl has written a well explained article How to Repair Broken AVI Files That Won't Play The movie you meant to watch won't play? If it's in AVI format, we can help! Let us show you how to repair the broken video file with two simple tools. Read More about DivFix++, so I will not  go into great detail here.

One thing that I like about is the ability to fix a file to a temporary location so you won’t hurt the original file. Similarly, you can preview the fixed video with a media player and then delete it once you are done.

Like VLC, DivFix++ works in Linux, Windows and Mac and it is a great software worth trying out.

GOM Player

On the frontend, GOM player looks just like any of the media player in the market. It allows you to play videos (of various format) and have great subtitles support. However, what really distinguishes GOM player from the rest is its patented technology that allows you to play broken AVI files on the fly.



Don’t ask me how the patented technology works, I know nuts about it. The only thing that I know is that when I playback the partially downloaded file, it doesn’t show any error message, nor a prompt to ask me to repair the file. What it does is to repair the file quietly on the backend and playback when it is done. It is just like streaming video on the Web, the initial process might be slow, but if you pause the video and wait for the streaming (backend repairing) to complete, you will get smooth playback in no time.

GOM Player is currently available only for Windows platform.

The above three software have helped me a lot when I was downloading bitTorrent videos. What about you? What software do you use to preview partially downloaded video?


Related topics: BitTorrent, Media Player, Video Editor.

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  1. min
    May 19, 2016 at 9:14 am

    GOM is available on Mac now

  2. Death Knight
    December 15, 2009 at 4:26 pm

    But all of them cannot repair / preview MKV/Matroska Movies.
    AVI video format get old and new movies are encoding in MKV format.
    Nearly %80 HD content are encoded with Matroska format too.
    From Developer of DivFix++,
    Here the program for Repair Matroska files.:)
    It's first and only MKV repair program. So there some bugs, but will work at most MKV files.

  3. Shaolin_sKunk
    December 10, 2009 at 8:26 am

    When using GOM player also make sure that the first piece of the file is completed, otherwise it will simply tell you that it is a corrupted file. This could go for those other methods as well.

  4. etim
    May 9, 2009 at 10:53 am

    I use the GOM for pretty much everything, including previewing occasionally, but using the preview option on my "free download manager" is a lot easier and quicker.

  5. Chris
    May 9, 2009 at 7:55 am

    Same Pablo, If you just click, dont repair it will play it. If your your video is from a torrent, dont try to play it with VLC unless its more then ~40% done.

    • Damien Oh
      May 10, 2009 at 4:08 am

      Thanks for the tip.

  6. webfo
    May 9, 2009 at 7:57 am

    bitlet has a new experimental feature to stream torrent videos. Looks promising

    • Damien Oh
      May 10, 2009 at 4:05 am

      Bitlet looks promising. I will check it out.

  7. Pablo
    May 8, 2009 at 7:20 pm

    In my experience VLC play 99.99% of the broken files even when I Choose the option "DON´T REPAIR"

  8. VirginTech
    May 8, 2009 at 4:18 pm

    That's a nice found! Worth Trying!