Sustainability of Digital Formats: Planning for Library of Congress Collections

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AVI (Audio Video Interleaved) with DivX Codec

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Format Description Properties Explanation of format description terms

Identification and description Explanation of format description terms

Full name AVI (Audio Video Interleaved) with DivX Video Codec
Description File format that wraps a DivX video bitstream with other data chunks, e.g., audio and an AVI wrapper.
Production phase Used as a middle-state and/or final-state format for enduser delivery.
Relationship to other formats
    Subtype of AVI, AVI (Audio Video Interleaved) File Format
    May contain DivX_4 video codec, not documented at this time.
    May contain DivX_5, DivX Video Codec, Version 5
    May contain WAVE, WAVE Audio File Format
    May contain MP3_CBR, MP3, Constant Bit Rate

Local use Explanation of format description terms

LC experience or existing holdings  
LC preference See AVI

Sustainability factors Explanation of format description terms

Disclosure See AVI and DivX
    Documentation See AVI and DivX
Adoption AVI is widely adopted for video production and filemaking; the Ligos Corporation FAQ (link available through Internet Archive) (FAQ dated 2007) for the competing Indeo codec includes this statement: "Many video files being distributed over the Internet use the DivX AVI format . . . ." In early 2006, Google began to offer downloadable videos, including gvi files in the AVI_DivX format (said to be DivX4 with MP3 audio). This service rolled into YouTube in 2011-12, and the video formatting preferences changed.
    Licensing and patents See AVI and DivX
Transparency See DivX
Self-documentation See AVI
External dependencies See AVI
Technical protection considerations See AVI

Quality and functionality factors Explanation of format description terms

Moving Image
Normal rendering Good support.
Clarity (high image resolution) Moderate to good, given that this is a format typically used for compression and does not support interlaced video. Outcome will depend on the type and extent of compression, and the encoder used.
Functionality beyond normal rendering See AVI

File type signifiers and format identifiers Explanation of format description terms

Tag Value Note
Filename extension avi
Filename extension gvi
Extension for files downloaded from Google Video.
Internet Media Type See related format. 


Magic numbers See related format. 


Only the first of these FOURCC codes (DIVX) was registered to DivX at the Microsoft registry of FOURCC and WAVE codes before Microsoft stopped maintaining the registry. In March 2012, the others are listed at, with various annotations discouraging use of DIV3, DIV4, and DIV5 as obsolete. DIVX was used in versions 4 and later of the DivX codec. Version 5 of the DivX codec is reported to also use DX50.
Microsoft FOURCC goog
See Notes for more information about the Google video implementation of this format.

Notes Explanation of format description terms

General The Wikipedia entries for Google Video and its replacement page Google Videos have evolved in step with the evolution of Google's activities. Initially, long before Google's acquisition of YouTube, the Wikipedia page documented facts about Google's video upload service and the use of a DivX-related format. In April 2006, the page was titled "Google Video" and it described Google's .gvi files as "standard RIFF AVI files, with an extra list with the FOURCC 'goog' immediately following the header." When consulted in May 2010, the Wikipedia entry provided a more complex description of "save as" outcomes for those downloading Google videos, although the description of gvi files as "modified AVI files" with the goog fourcc code remained.  When consulted in March 2016, the page carried the new plural title Google Videos, and mostly concerned the video search engine and aspects of YouTube. However, some discussion of the old uploading system and format details remained.

Format specifications Explanation of format description terms

Useful references


Last Updated: 12/27/2022