Interface Settings

In general, the interface of a program is the interface through which the user communicates with the program. With most programs, including VLC Media Player, the user can adapt this interface to a limited extent to his ideas and wishes.

The most important or frequently used setting options for the interface have been summarized in a separate view of the settings dialog.

The interface settings division into the following five subgroups:

  • language
  • Look and feel
  • Instances
  • Privacy / network interaction
  • Playlist


The only setting option in this subgroup is the menu language.
The term “menu language” is not entirely correct, however. What is meant is the language for the entire interface, which is also shown in the quick info.

In the selection list for this option, you can either choose one of the languages ​​offered or the “Automatic” option. In the latter case, VLC uses the system language as the menu language.


This subgroup distinguishes between the two fundamentally different settings

  • Use native style
  • Use custom skin

If the user decides to use the native style option, the following options are available:

  • Show control in full-screen mode

    This defines whether a control (play, pause and stop buttons) should be displayed in full-screen mode.
    The transparency of the full-screen control can be set under Settings – All – Interface – Main Interfaces – Qt .

  • Start with a minimal view (without menus)

    With this option, you can start VLC without menus, i.e. without the main menu and controls.
    If you need the hidden menus after such a start, you can show them again using the shortcut key Ctrl + H or via the context menu (accessible by clicking with the right mouse button outside the area of ​​the playlist), option View – Minimal view.
    With the shortcut key H you can switch back to the minimal view.

  • Pause playback when minimized

    If this option is activated, playback (video or audio) is paused when the window with the interface is minimized. Playback will pause even if the video is shown in its own window However, it will not be interrupted if only the window containing the video is minimized.

  • Integrate video into the interface

    If this option is activated, videos are played in the window with the interface. The size of a video depends on the size of the interface window. This is shown in the size last used when starting VLC. The size of the video and thus that of the interface window cannot be changed using the shortcut keys Alt + 1, 2, 3, or 4.
    Any definition of the video size made via the options Settings – All – Video – Video width / Video height is ignored.
    If this option is not activated, videos are played in a separate window.

  • Adapt interface to video size

    This option is only available if the “Integrate video into interface” option described above is activated and causes the size of the interface window to be adapted to the video size.
    If a size is specified via the options Settings – All – Video – Video width / Video height, the video will also be displayed in this size, otherwise as large as the respective monitor allows. In any case, the interface window is adapted to the size of the video.
    The size of the video and thus that of the interface window can be changed using the shortcut keys Alt + 1, 2, 3, or 4.

  • Show systray icon

    If this option is activated, VLC places an icon (traffic cone) in the notification area of ​​the taskbar under Windows, which is the area between the list of open programs and the clock, via which simple actions can be controlled allowed. This applies accordingly to other operating systems.
    By simply clicking on this icon, the interface window can be minimized without it being additionally displayed in the taskbar. Another click on this icon shows the interface window again.
    Clicking this icon with the right mouse button opens a context menu with a number of simple control options (minimize, play, stop, previous, next, speed, volume, open media, and exit).

  • Systray popup if minimized

    This option is only available if the above-described option “Show systray icon” is also activated. If VLC is minimized or hidden and the object being played back changes, it causes a notification popup with the artist and the track name to be displayed if the relevant information is available.

If the user chooses the Use custom skin option, he can select a skin file. In addition, he can visit the VLC skin page via a direct link in order to download skins from there.

Since the menu selection is considerably restricted in almost all skin views, you should make a backup copy of the “vlcrc” configuration file before using a skin, otherwise, it may be difficult to return to the standard view returns.


Only the following two options are available in this subgroup:

  • Allow only one instance

    If this option is not activated, the VLC media player can be called up multiple times. Each time it is called, a new instance is started, which can act in its own window independently of other instances.
    However, if this option is activated and the VLC Media Player has already been started in one instance, no further instance will be called up.
    What this means in the practical application will be shown using two examples.
    Example 1If only one instance is allowed, each time a media file is double-clicked, it is added to the playlist of the current instance. The playlist can then be saved with the compilation made.
    Example 2: With two instances, one instance can take a stream and save it to a file. A second instance can playback the file “fed” by the first instance. This enables time-shifted playback of a stream while it is being recorded.

  • Add files to the playlist in 1-instance mode

    The name of this option is not well chosen, because in 1-instance mode, media files are saved regardless of how you proceed (double-click on such a file or Loading the file via the menu option) is always appended to the playlist.
    The only difference is that if this option is activated, playback will not be interrupted. If this option is not activated, the current playback is aborted and the newly loaded file is played back when another media file is loaded.

Privacy / network interaction

Details on this subgroup are also described in Chapter 4.6.1 of the German user manual. The following five options are available here:

  • Album cover download

    Here, a selection list can be used to define how the VLC player can connect to the Internet for downloading album covers. You can choose from the three options Download manually only When playing the title and As soon as a new title is added.
    The setting made here does not only affect the download of album covers, as the wording might suggest. Only if this option is set to When the track is played or As soon as a new track is added and a file “cover.jpg “with the cover image, this image is displayed as the cover, for example.
    From version Weatherwax (2.2.x) something has changed here. Instead of selecting from the above three options, there is only the option Allow network access to metadata, which is activated by default. In contrast to the previous versions, the setting for the Allow network access to metadata option does not affect access to metadata on the playback device.

  • Activate update notification

    This option determines whether the VLC player can check for program updates via Internet access.

  • Update check

    Here the interval, how often should be checked, can be set.

  • Save last playback

    This option determines whether the VLC Player should save the last played objects (images, videos, or audios) in an internal list. These can be reloaded from this list via the menu selection Media – Open recently opened media.

  • Filters for entries last played in the player

    This option allows you to create one or more exclusive filters for the entries last played. Such a filter consists of the respective file type. Several such filters are separated by the vertical line. For example, “mp3 | ogg | wav” would prevent the most popular audio files from being included in the list.


The following three options can be found in this last subgroup:

  • Show playlist tree

    This option can be used to determine whether objects that are not in the same location should be displayed in a structured manner, similar to the Windows Explorer, or unstructured.
    In a structured display, the content of sub-folders can be hidden.

  • Pause at the last frame of a video

    If this option is selected, playback is paused at the end of each object to be played back, including audio, i.e. the next object is not played back. The playback of the next object can be achieved, for example, by clicking on the “Next track …” button to the right of the stop button.

  • File extension assignment

    When you click on the associated button for this option, labeled “Set up assignments”, a dialog window in the control panel opens (at least under Windows) in which all file types are listed that are from the VLC player can be played.
    The types already assigned to the VLC player during installation are selected. Types that have not yet been assigned can be assigned here.
    The opposite way does not work. So you cannot withdraw assigned types from assignments.

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