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This page is about the (Matroska Multimedia Container) container format that is frequently associated with H.264 video. For MKV the video codec, see Matroska Codec Simply put; the Matroska, or Матрёшка, container format is nothing more than a wrapper. Whilst recently it has been used on the internet for single audio and video files; it was initially intended to allow an existing container such as AVI or MPG formats to be placed in a single container along with an extra track; most notably the apple MOV container of certain classic movies (Alice In Wonderland, Wizard of Oz...) along with Pink Floyd's "The Wall". There are no standards to the format and absolutely anything can be placed inside.


Playing MKV files is as easy as downloading a fully featured codec/encoder/decoder package such as K-Lite Codec. To edit or otherwise manipulate the files you will need to first extract, or demux the contents. If, as is common, there is another container inside such as AVI or MP4 files, you may also need to demux them as well. In other cases you may have multiple audio and/or video files inside.


Do not download or use MKV files from unknown sources. MKVs have the ability to quickly spread viruses and worms; most notably over torrent protocol, ever without playing the file. Matroska itself is not to blame; but the openness of the format and it's lack of any standard leave it open to exploitation.