File Extension FLV
File extension FLV is most commonly associated with Flash compatible video files, which are often used to display streaming media on sites such as YouTube. Though the format refers to Adobe, formerly Macromedia - Flash, the FLV container is an open format and so videos can be exported by other multimedia applications using Adobe's FLV codec.
FLV files were originally developed and supported by Macromedia, though details of the format are available for other developers to use, hence its widespread use on video streaming websites. FLV files contain video and audio streams as well as metadata. This is used to store properties of the file, such as its intended dimensions, frame rate, duration and data rates, which are often used by applications to ensure the video is displayed correctly. FLV files can also be used to embed video within Shockwave Flash (SWF) files with the use of Adobe's ActionScript language.
Multiple video codecs are supported for use with FLV files, including Sorenson, On2 TrueMotion VP6 and, most recently, MPEG-4 Part 10, otherwise known as H.264. FLV files also support several audio formats, including File extension MP3, File extension AAC, PCM and Nellymoser ASAO.
A number of applications can be used to open FLV files, including Adobe Flash Player, a freely available FLV video player, MPlayer, VLC Media Player and Quicktime. Other applications such as Windows Media Player can also be used if the ffdshow codec is installed. FLV files can also be opened by web browsers which have the Adobe Flash plug-in installed. It should be noted that Adobe has created four new more specific file formats designed to overcome problems with the existing FLV format when streaming MPEG-4 media. These are File extension F4V (Adobe Flash Player Video), File extension F4P (Protected Adobe Flash Player Media), File extension F4A (Adobe Flash Player Audio) and File extension F4B (Adobe Flash Player Audio Book).
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