How to Run Multiple Instances of VLC on OS X

VLC is one of the very best media players out there, but on OS X it’s got one minor frustration: unlike other players (Quicktime Player, for example), VLC on the Mac only allows a single player instance at a time. Unless you get tricky. Here’s how.

We’re going to create an Applescript “droplet” which will create a new instance of VLC any time you drop a playable media file onto it. Start by opening up the Script Editor app — it’s in the Applications/Utilities folder by default — and create a new script with the following contents:

on run
    do shell script "open -n /Applications/VLC.app"
    tell application "VLC" to activate
end run

on open theFiles
    repeat with theFile in theFiles
        do shell script "open -na /Applications/VLC.app " & quote & (POSIX path of theFile) & quote
    end repeat
    tell application "VLC" to activate
end open

Next, select the save command, but before you save it out, change the file format to “Application” using the pop-up selector in the Save… dialog:

Script EditorScreenSnapz002

If you save this to your Desktop, you can simply drag and drop any media file that VLC can play back onto it, and it’ll open up the movie in a brand-new instance of VLC.

3 thoughts on “How to Run Multiple Instances of VLC on OS X”

  1. Hi, I also read your post about compiling ffepmg with amr support. I’m trying to get vlc to convert a movie for a cellphone, with h263 and amr_nb, so far I haven’t been succesfull.Could you post a recipe to compile VLC and ffepmg with AMR support?Thank’sMarc.

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