MP4Extract.exe

Frustrating!

Self Executing File on Disk

Self Executing File on Disk

The disk actually came with a large amount of these files. All named in the same structure with CamNumber and the time Start-End.

A double click of one of these .exe’s reveal video inside a player.

player

It starts off in a small window with a text overlay revealing date / time index information and the all important recorded video size (704 x 576). There is not a lot else!

player2xmenu

The small button with a drop down menu icon gives access to the menu along the top of the player window. The 1x, 2x and 3x buttons give you playback size.

There is no method to get at the video, export the video, extract stills etc etc…….

OK, I have stopped banging my head against the brick wall, so its time to try and figure this out!

File Properties

File Properties

Not a lot is given away within the File properties but its interesting to note that although the .exe files are named with the Camera number and date/time info, the original filename was MP4Extract.EXE. A Google of this reveals a number of forum entries where people are asking similar questions – how to deal with the raw video?

The following method is worth remembering when dealing with files like these where the video and player are wrapped together. A similar method may work with other types…

With the player running, open Task Manager, you will see the player application running, along with its name.

taskmanager

When you right click the Application, you will have an option to Go To Process…

process

The Processes Tab opens, with the running process associated with the application highlighted. As you can see, the Process in use is called AviView.exe! Where is this, as its not the exe that I clicked on?? By right clicking this I have the option to go to Process location… It’s in a hidden folder

C:\Users\Username\AppData\Local\Temp\AVI_Extract\AviView.exe

You can view hidden folders in Windows by unchecking the box in folder options that says hide hidden folders.

It’s in this folder where everything comes together…

tempData

I have the Player, the Video in .mp4 format, the associated dll’s and some mp4 info in a txt file.

It was at this point that I thought I had cracked it, especially after right clicking the .mp4 and seeing the MediaInfo result:

General
Count : 278
Count of stream of this kind : 1
Kind of stream : General
Kind of stream : General
Stream identifier : 0
Inform : MPEG-4 Visual: 299 MiB
Count of video streams : 1
Video_Format_List : MPEG-4 Visual
Folder name : H:\Temp\Work\mp4_exe
File extension : mp4
Format : MPEG-4 Visual
Format/Extensions usually used : m4v mp4v
Video
Count : 205
Count of stream of this kind : 1
Kind of stream : Video
Stream identifier : 0
Inform : 704*576 (1.222), at 10.000 fps, MPEG-4 Visual (PAL)
Format : MPEG-4 Visual
Commercial name : MPEG-4 Visual
Format settings, Matrix : Default (H.263)
Internet media type : video/MP4V-ES
Codec : MPEG-4V
Color space : YUV
Chroma subsampling : 4:2:0
Bit depth : 8
Bit depth : 8 bits
Scan type : Progressive
Scan type : Progressive
Interlacement : PPF
Interlacement : Progressive
Compression mode : Lossy

However…. It won’t play well at all! Although its shown here in VLC, its corrupted in everything I have thrown it at!

vlc-distorted

Time to take a closer look at the files that have been hidden way in that temp folder! By looking at the properties of each file, the MP4Codec dll is copyrighted to Chance-i. This is a DVR Board integrator. I doubt they actually make them, they just resell them and there is nothing on the site regarding any guidance or software links.

Some of the DVR’s using this board are branded Eagle Eye – Link to PDF

But their support site is not a lot of help!!

eagleeye

By searching AviView.exe, a handy page was revealed with a selection of download links. MPT Digital Surveillance. I like it when installers do this for their clients, it helps everybody out! From this page, a number of programs were downloaded and tested. Some played the mp4 files in a similar way to that previously, some didn’t.

Unfortunately that’s where the trail has ended. I am of the opinion that the mp4 standard has been tweaked and as such can only be played within that specific player and using the associated .dll file.

I have attempted a Defraser export and this did successfully detect all the mp4 packets. Playback though produced the same distorted view.

Even though, in this example, the video file has been unplayable, other implementations of wrapping everything together are regularly used by companies and may result in a more favourable outcome.

If anyone manages to get another player to use the .dll and can succesfully export these as standard files, please let me know so I can link to your solution.

August 2015 Update:

In Flavio’s comment below, he mentions the use of the K-Lite Codec pack to enable playback out of the enclosing executable.

I have installed the full pack, inside a Virtual machine – after taking a snapshot…

Image 17

The codec pack has the same icon as this proprietary exe, with the 3,2,1 numbers accross a video clapper board.

Unfortunately, I still was not able to get a rendering out of the exe.

Hopefully, Flavio can update with further details in order to solve this little challenge….

March 2016 Update:

Nothing was heard back from Flavio but another user has commented below suggesting an FFmpeg GUI could rewrap and play the files correctly if using the .MKV container.

I have tested this and still get the same result.

So again, I put this out to the community…. any assistance in decoding these files is appreciated!

 

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By Spreadys Posted in EEPIP

8 comments on “MP4Extract.exe

  1. Hmm is anyone else encountering problems with the images on this blog loading?
    I’m trying to figure out if its a problem on my end or if
    it’s the blog. Any feedback would be greatly appreciated.

  2. Hello … the topic is old, but maybe I can help. With codecs K-lite installed, you can already visualize the video but not edit. Take the file extension mp4 you saved and use video converter A-Tube Catcher to convert it to another format. It worked for me.

    • Thank you Flavio,
      could you update further with the exact filter chain being used to render the video outside of the player. As you can see from my post update. I have attempted the Codec pack method but still have not found it successful.

    • Thank you Ralf, that is a rather nice GUI for FFmpeg – Thank you for sharing.
      Unfortunately the two files I have for this type still do not remux correctly.
      They are mpeg4 part 2.

      If you are able to share an example that you have been able to remux, I would appreciate it – in order to assess the original format type.
      Thanks again, and if you are able to share – please email me at david (at) spreadys.com

  3. It looks like these videos are using the Advanced Video Codec (AVC). You can convert them with ffmpeg. It may/may not require you to rename them from .MP4 to .AVC first. Then just execute “ffmpeg -i filename.AVC filename.MP4”. You will wind up with a playable MPEG-4 video file.

    • Thanks for posting. You may have been lucky enough to find a new version. All the examples that a few colleagues and I have worked on have been already in the mp4 container. It’s just that the stream is non standard.
      Perhaps if you could share an example, I could review and maybe post an update. Use the email link over at Forensicvideo.training
      Thanks

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