Bugs in QuickTime 7.7.2+ for Windows

UPDATE: As of 7/25/2013 and QuickTime 7.7.4, Apple has still not resolved the issue.  Please continue to use QuickTime 7.7.1.  BL.


A word of warning to InqScribe users: we’ve identified a couple of bugs that impact Windows users’ ability to use InqScribe to generate subtitled movies.

We’ve identified two bugs:

1. If you use custom positioning and set the width of the subtitles to 1000 pixels or more, the last digit will get ignored. So if you try to create subtitles with a width of 1000 pixels, you’ll get subtitles with a width of only 100 pixels.

2. In some cases, the exported subtitles simply aren’t visible at all.

These bugs are directly tied to QuickTime 7.7.2 for Windows, which was released on May 15, 2012. If you revert to QuickTime 7.7.1, the bugs go away.

To revert to QuickTime 7.7.1, first uninstall QuickTime 7.7.2. You can do this via Start > All Programs > QuickTime > Uninstall QuickTime.

Then download and run the QuickTime 7.7.1 installer (Apple doesn’t make 7.7.1 available any more, so thanks to oldversion.com for hosting the installer.) That’s it.

Bug Replication Details

What follows is a little more detail about the underlying bugs and how to replicate them. It is not InqScribe-specific.

Both of these bugs can be replicated by editing simple text files and opening them within QuickTime Player on Windows (or, to see the proper, non-buggy behavior, within QuickTime Player 7 on OS X).

For the 1000+ pixel bug, create a text file (qt_test.txt) containing the following:

[00:00:00.00] This movie should be 1000x600.

Open the file using QuickTime Player. (QuickTime Player will open text files. It may be easiest to just drop the file on the app icon.)

Ideally, you should get a movie that is 1000×600 pixels that displays one white subtitle on a black background. With QT 7.7.2, the movie is 100×600. (Similarly, width:2000 will result in a 200-pixel wide movie.)

Let’s isolate the 1000 pixel issue by cutting the width to 999.

[00:00:00.00] This movie should be 999x600.

This works properly.

The second bug appears to be tied to how the textBox directive is parsed, which InqScribe uses for subtitle positioning. Take the following file:

{textBox:175,175,425,825}This movie should be 999x600.

With QT 7.7.2, this results in a movie with a subtitle that reads “5,825}This movie should be 999×600.” This suggests that the QTText parser in QT 7.7.2 is having trouble with the directive.

Add the shrinkTextBox directive, which InqScribe uses with the textBox directive to position individual subtitles, and you get the following file:

{textBox:175,175,425,825}This movie should be 999x600.

And in this case, the subtitle is no longer visible at all. My guess is that the screwed up parsing of the textBox directive led to funky coordinates which, once shrinkTextBox is turned on, led to the subtitles being placed offscreen.

It’s pretty easy to confirm that these bugs are tied to QT 7.7.2 on Windows. Open any of these files with QuickTime Player 7 on OS X and they look fine. Similarly, downgrade to QT 7.7.1 on Windows and open either of these files, and they look fine.

We hope Apple will address these bugs in the near future.

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