Have you ever downloaded a video from the Internet, transferred it over a network, or copied it from another device only to find out that it would not play at all, or play, but without audio or with a black screen? We have reviewed a program to repair corrupt divx movies back in 2007 and then another one for fixing avi files in 2008.
But MKV files? Project Meteorite tries to change that by offering to repair corrupted MKV files. The program is cross-platform and open source, and you may run it on any device that uses Windows, Mac or GNU/Linux as the operating system.
Using the program is actually very simply. Windows users only need to download, unpack and start it to repair broken MKV files they have on their system. The program displays a basic interface that you use to drag and drop MKV files to.
Once you do that it will display a progress bar right below the interface indicating the status of the repair attempt. Once done, it will return to the standard interface. How do you know if the repair was successful or not? By playing the MKV file on your system afterward; there is no way of telling whether the video file was repaired successfully or not otherwise.
An option to echo the final repair status would be useful, as would an option to run the MKV file afterward to check whether the repair fixed the playback issues you experienced earlier.
Note that it will process the MKV video file you drop on the target area directly. I'd highly suggest to use a backup of the video to see if issues can be resolved by the application to avoid further damage to the original file.
It is not really clear which kind of problems Meteorite can fix and which it can't repair. The author mentions options to make half-downloaded or transferred videos playable on the system - up to the point where the download stopped. That is however the only hint on the project website that we get for now. Then again, it is definitely better trying than doing nothing at all as you may not be able to play the video at all otherwise.
As long as you use backup copies that you drag and drop into the Meteorite GUI there is nothing that can go wrong in this regard. Worst thing that can happen is that it won't be able to fix the issue.
Meteorite is a cross-platform application available for Windows, Mac and Linux. The latest program version and its source code can be downloaded from the developer website.
Update: The application has not been updated since 2011. The project appears abandoned and while the program may still work for some broken or corrupt mkv files, it is likely that it won't for all.
I'm not aware of an alternative though; if you know one, leave a comment below or use the report option to let me know.
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.