How to Get Portable Version of VLC Media Player for Windows

Screenshot from VLC Download PageIf you are looking to download the portable version of VLC Media Player, you can get it from the official source or from trusted third party websites providing portable apps and software. Just download a compressed 7zip or zip version of VLC from the official download page for Windows, extract it in a folder and run the program directly. It requires no installation.

If you prefer to download from a trusted third party website, then visit the VLC page of Click the “Download down” button and you’ll be redirected to a page and the file download begins within a few seconds.

The portable release of VLC Media Player runs in any version of Windows without installation. Extract the portable version from its compressed form to a folder and you are done. You can place the folder anywhere or move it between different PCs. You can also copy the folder to a USB flash drive or any other external storage and run it from there as well. This means that you can freely utilize the full power of VLC Media player without installing it in a PC.

Portable programs are especially useful for PC users. In Windows, you normally have to go through the process of downloading an installer, authorizing it and then install the program inside your program files folder. Portable programs, on the other hand, can simply be run from a folder in your PC or from an external storage device. Just know how to copy paste and run a program from the folder. This comes handy when you have no installation privileges in computers and you want to play some video files unsupported by the available media player in that PC.

Usually the portable version of programs is compressed. You just have to extract the compressed program and its supporting files in a folder. Then that folder will hold all the files necessary for running the program. You won’t have to install the program into Windows. No installation means that the program is portable and it can be freely moved. Uninstallation is also not required.

9 thoughts to “How to Get Portable Version of VLC Media Player for Windows”

  1. i find that it still makes some files (including an INI) in user AppData folder, so how to make really portable, using local folder settings?

    1. I too had this problem. The portableapps version of VLC didn’t do me any good because I needed to be able to access standard input and standard output. The portableapps version does not intercept and redirect standard input and output. I took it upon myself to look through the VLC source code to see if I could tailor it to my needs and create a truly portable version of VLC by specifying my own data directory. Embedded in the code I found this in file win32\dirs.c:

      /* if portable directory exists, use it */
      TCHAR path[MAX_PATH];
      if (GetModuleFileName (NULL, path, MAX_PATH))
      TCHAR *lastDir = _tcsrchr (path, ‘\\’);
      if (lastDir)
      _tcscpy (lastDir + 1, TEXT(“portable”));
      DWORD attrib = GetFileAttributes (path);
      if (attrib != INVALID_FILE_ATTRIBUTES &&
      return FromT (path);

      Apparently if you create a directory named “portable” in the VLC directory, it will use it as its data directory. This makes VLC completely portable. I truly wish that the authors of VLC would document this. It works perfectly.

      1. I don’t understand this. Is that long thing (I cannot tell whether it is a file name, a path, or whatever) necessary?

        You say that I can “,create a directory named “portable” in the VLC directory” to make VLC portable. Is that correct? Can you give full details?

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.