Skip to content
Go to file


Failed to load latest commit information.
Latest commit message
Commit time
ffmpeg @ 4154f89

QuickLook Video

This package allows macOS Finder to display thumbnails, static previews, cover art and metadata for most types of video files.

QuickLook and Spotlight on macOS 10.9 and later understand a limited number of media files - mostly only MPEG audio and video codecs within MPEG container files. This package adds support for wide range of other codecs and "non-native" media file types, including .asf, .avi, .flv, .mkv, .rm, .webm, .wmf etc.


  • Download the .pkg file of the latest release.
  • Double-click on it.
  • The Installer app will walk you through the installation process.
  • To see thumbnails of video files you may need to relaunch Finder (ctrl-⌥-click on the Finder icon in the Dock and choose Relaunch) or log out and back in again.
  • You may experience high CPU and disk usage for a few minutes after installation while Spotlight re-indexes all of your "non-native" audio and video files.

Alternatively, if you have Homebrew installed, you can install using Homebrew Cask:

brew cask install qlvideo


Finder screenshot Get Info Preview


  • QuickLook under Catalina can't preview most .avi files and some .dv, .mov, .mp4, .m4v and .ts files, but won't let this plugin preview them either.
  • QuickLook under Mavericks, Yosemite and El Capitan struggles with .mp4 files. In particular, it won't let this plugin preview .mp4 files that it can't handle itself (e.g. containing H.265 video) or you that you have asked it not to handle via the SnapshotAlways setting. Rename your .mp4 files as .m4v, or use another container for H.265 content - e.g. Matroska.
  • The QuickLook "Preview" function displays one or more static snapshots of "non-native" video files. You'll need a media player app (e.g. VLC or MPlayerX) to play these files.
  • Interlaced content is sometimes not de-interlaced in QuickLook thumbnails and previews.
  • Requires macOS 10.9 or later. Use Perian for equivalent functionality under 10.8 and earlier.


You can customise this plugin's behaviour by entering the following in the Terminal app:

  • defaults write SnapshotAlways -bool XX : Controls whether QuickLook "Preview" shows static snapshot(s) even if a playable preview is available. Default is NO.
  • defaults write SnapshotCount -int XX : Maximum number of snapshots to show in a QuickLook "Preview". Default is 10.
  • defaults write SnapshotTime -int XX : Time offset in seconds for thumbnails and for single snapshots. Unless the video clip is shorter than twice this value, in which case the snapshot is taken at the mid-point. Default is 60. This setting doesn't affect thumbnails that have already been generated - use qlmanage -r cache and re-start Finder to force regeneration of existing thumbnails.


  • Run the Terminal app (found in ApplicationsUtilities).
  • Copy the following and paste into the Terminal app:
sudo rm -rf "/Library/Application Support/QLVideo" "/Library/QuickLook/Video.qlgenerator" "/Library/Spotlight/Video.mdimporter"
  • Press Enter.
  • Type your password and press Enter.

Reporting bugs

  • First, please check that you're running the latest version, log out of macOS and back in again and see if the problem remains.
  • Open a New issue and describe the problem.
  • To help diagnose the problem please run the Terminal app (found in Applications → Utilities) and type:
        qlmanage -m
        qlmanage -p -d1 /path/of/some/video/file
    qlmanage -p -d1 /path/of/some/video/file

but substitute the path of some video file by dragging a video file from the Finder and dropping it on the Terminal window.

  • In the Terminal app choose EditSelect All then EditCopy and Paste the results in the "New issue".


Uses the FFmpeg libraries.

Packaged using Packages.


Copyright © 2014-2019 Jonathan Harris.

Licensed under the GNU Public License (GPL) version 2 or later.

You can’t perform that action at this time.