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Recovering AVI file when CamStudio crashed before saving?

edited April 2008 in Support
First, many thanks to Nick for maintaining this site and the CamStudio code, and to whomever originally wrote CamStudio. It's great stuff!

I'm using CamStudio v2.0. Here's my situation:

I recorded a large file - full screen (1400x1050x16b), ~15fps, for about 2 hours, with audio. I was using the MSU Screen Capture Lossless Codec v1.2.

Sadly, my computer's power was disconnected abruptly, so the recording was stopped before any closing or saving of the file happened.

Now, I have two files (from my temp dirs): the ~temp.avi (595mb...that's an impressive codec!), and the mciF02.tmp (1.27gb).

I want to recover the avi. It has no header (first 2048 bytes are 00). I tried pasting in the header from another avi I also made with the same codec and parameters, then trying various things like letting VirtualDubMod fix the index/header, trying DivFix to rebuild the index...I tried playing the result with Media Player Classic, with Windows Media Player, with VLC, with the CamStudio Player, with Winamp...and the thing will only play for 8 seconds (teasing me with the screencap I am trying to recover!), but then always quickly crashes.

When I try to manipulate the file in VirtualDubMod, I always get a crash at frame 128, in module SCLS (scls.dll), which is the MSU codec I used. "Out of bounds memory access" at frame 128.

From reading the CamStudio source code, I see that the AVI closing process is entirely handled by MFC, but I figured I'd ask for advice here anyway. I hope using the MSU codec didn't complicate my recovery situation!

The only idea I haven't tried yet is making another full capture of the exact same length (2 hours 11 minutes), then copying the AVI header from that and seeing if it results in a file that doesn't crash after frame 128.

Any other ideas? I really want to get at the two hours of video capture that I know are in here! The 8 seconds I can watch just doesn't fully satisfy me.

(I haven't mentioned attempts to recover the WAV file...that'd be nice too, but far less important, since I have an audio recording separately already.)

Thanks to anyone for recovery suggestions.


  • I had a similar problem with a Windows Update rebooting my machine during the writing of the final avi. I still have the two temp files and am wondering if there is a way to get CamStudio to read those temp files and generate the final avi. Is there a command line parameter we can pass in or any undocumented features? :)

    Since there was no response from the original 4/18/08 thread, I thought I'd see if anything has changed in the last year.


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