How to Check VLC Log Files

Troubleshooting a video playback issue in VLC? Here's how you can check the VLC log files.
Warp Terminal

While watching your favorite videos on VLC, you might encounter issues related to codecs, timestamps, video playback, and a lot more.

But the good news is like you check the logs of your firewall, you can do the same with VLC to trace the root cause of the error.

Unlike Linux, VLC does not save logs automatically, and once closed, all the logs are removed automatically, so you have to save them manually.

So make sure you save or read the log file before closing the VLC player.

Check and save VLC log files

While it sounds complex, this is the easiest method that not only allows you to save logs but also lets you read them without saving them to a file.

First, go to the Tools menu from the top menubar and select choose Messages, alternatively, you can also press Ctrl + M to save the same effect:

Go to messages to read logs in VLC

And it will show logs related to the currently playing video file.

Here, you have two choices: You can either read logs only or you can save them as well.

Once you click on the Messages, you will notice a tab for the Verbosity so let's take a look at the effect of multiple verbosity options you have.

  • Errors: This will only record the error messages only
  • Warnings: It will conclude error and warning messages
  • Debug: This level will include errors, warnings, and debug messages

After choosing the appropriate verbosity option, soon you will see logs related to the chosen option.

As you can see when I choose the debug option, it also included the warning logs.

To save logs, hit the Save as... button and it will open the file manager, from there, choose where you can to save the file and give it the appropriate name:

And now, you can open the log file using any text editor:

read saved VLC logs

From here, you can identify the culprit causing errors.

More on VLC

Did you know that you can download YouTube videos using VLC or use YouTube links to stream videos without ads?

Well, VLC can do a lot more than that. And if you're interested, check out our detailed guide on tips to make VLC awesome:

Make VLC More Awesome With These Simple Tips
VLC is one of the best open source video players, if not the best. What most people don’t know about it is that it is a lot more than just a video player. You can do a lot of complex tasks like broadcasting live videos, capturing devices etc. Just

Want to download VLC subtitles automatically? Here's how you do it:

Download Subtitles Automatically With VLC Media Player
VLC is a versatile media player. One of the lesser known features is the automatic subtitle download. Here’s how to use it.

I hope you will find this guide helpful.

About the author
Sagar Sharma

Sagar Sharma

A software engineer who loves to write about his experience with Linux. While reviving my crashed system, you can find me reading literature, manga, or watering my plants.

Become a Better Linux User

With the FOSS Weekly Newsletter, you learn useful Linux tips, discover applications, explore new distros and stay updated with the latest from Linux world


Great! You’ve successfully signed up.

Welcome back! You've successfully signed in.

You've successfully subscribed to It's FOSS.

Success! Check your email for magic link to sign-in.

Success! Your billing info has been updated.

Your billing was not updated.