Extracting IDX From VOB

Reclaim subtitle files from VOBs using a VOB editing tool.
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An IDX file is an index file for subtitles. You may be able to extract the IDX file from a Video Object file, or “VOB,” with a VOB editing application. However, not all subtitles are in the IDX file format. Further, when you extract the IDX file, you need the corresponding SUB files from the VOB to reproduce the subtitles for another video project.

1 The IDX File

The IDX is a subtitle index file for a video project and indexes information in one or more corresponding SUB files. SUB files can contain text or graphic subtitles, but the SUB files must have the IDX file to define the data, or the SUB files are useless to the project. When you extract the IDX file, extract all SUB files during the process.

2 Subtitling Formats

Not all subtitles are saved with IDX files. Subtitles may be saved in another file format, such as SRT, or they may be embedded directly into the video. If the subtitles are embedded in the video, you cannot extract them from a VOB file. You can extract subtitles from a VOB only if they are in the IDX or SRT file formats.

3 VOB Editors

Use a VOB editor, such as VOB Edit, the ArcSoft Showbiz or the AVS Video Editor to open the VOB file system and extract the IDX file (see Resources). VOB Edit offers a simple file explorer with a Copy to Clipboard button under the explorer window. Both ArcSoft Showbiz and AVS Video Editor are full scale video editing suites of tools. Both suites contain a VOB editing tool. To reuse the subtitles for another video project, you will need to extract all of the corresponding SUB files, too.

4 Extract Subtitles

Download and install one of the VOB editing applications, then launch the application. To extract the subtitle files from a VOB file, open the file in the VOB editor. Click the IDX file and all SUB files, then copy the files to your clipboard. Some applications include the “Copy to Clipboard” or similar button. You can click the “Copy to Clipboard” button, or press “Ctrl-C” to copy the file. Paste the IDX and all SUB files to your desktop by clicking on the desktop, then pressing “Ctrl-V.”

Based in the live music capital of the world, Tammy Columbo continues to work in the information technology industry as she has done for more than 10 years. While living in Austin, Columbo has contributed to high profile projects for the State of Texas, Fortune 500 technology companies and various non-profit organizations. Columbo began writing professionally in 2009.