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Walkthrough Wednesdays

Converting a WebEx recording (.wrf) to Windows Media (.wmv) or Flash (.swf)

Hello Community,

I've gotten several questions on how you can convert a WebEx recording into a .wmv or .swf format.  It's fairly easy once you know.  I've documented all the steps in the attached document.


Jan Sysmans

TME, Enterprise Marketing

Cisco WebEx

Message was edited on June 5, 2013: Kelli Glass, Cisco Collaboration Community moderator, added community categories and tags for greater ease in filtering posts (no change to content).


Cisco/WebEx really needs to step up and get away from the proprietary format. We have dumped .wrf format and exclusively use Techsmith's Camtasia to record and replay events.


Thank you for your comments and feedback.  We do not have any plans right now to move away from wrf.


Well that's a very poor business decision and a mark squarely against WebEx when it comes time to renew contracts a consider the options. WebEx is showing age and inflexibility by clinging to the proprietary and the cludgy conversion to standards-based recording formats.

Gregory, Jeffrey,

If not wrf, what other alternatives would you like to see?  Camtasia may not be the right recording solution based on our architecture.

If you could write the requirements for a WebEx recording alternative, what would be the top 3 product features you would integrate?  What would be the top 3 things you would change in our current solution?

Thank you for your candid comments.  That's what this community is for.  Candid feedback and looking at ways to incorporate your feedback to improve our products.

Jan Sysmans

Technical Marketing Engineer

Cisco WebEx

Hi Jan,

Since you asked, I'd like to see:

  • WebEx drop the wrf/arf format altogether and give me the option to record directly to avi.
  • Include the ability to insert markers in NBR at the time of recording.
  • Beef up the editor with the ability to configure which codec to use, discrete control over input/output rates and the ability to select and adjust CBR/VBR for the recording and select target platforms for output.

The recording tools itself is no so much the problem as is the inability to control the most basic aspects of the recording and the output to a proprietary format. At the very least, I'd like to see better conversion tools built-in to the existing solution. The current editor does a very shoddy job of converting to WMV or SWF, usually dropping frames, getting audio out of synch and taking an extremely long time to do it.

For me it's a no brainer to use a scraper like Camtasia. I get an AVI I can output to any venue I want, at any resolution I want, at any bit rate I want, compressed by whatever codec I choose. Using Camtasia I can have the recording available on my website (silverlight or flash) or on mobile devices within an hour or so of the session end. Using ARF/WRF it takes several days as I have to wait overnight for the conversion, and then watch the entire presentation for dropped frames & out-of-synch audio, then rinse & repeat until I get an acceptable conversion, which could take days. Only then I can start setting up outputs.



this is great, thank you.  I will pass on to product management and ask for their feedback and comments.



I discussed your thoughts and requirements to product management.  The good news is that they wholeheartedly agree with you.  The not so good news is that the changes they proposed to make to our recording format did not make it onto the roadmap for our the WBS28 release.

The planning for WBS29 has not started yet so I don't know what changes to our recording format are being discussed for that release.


Jan Sysmans

Hi Jan,

We make thousands of WRF recordings each year and really appreciate the compact size of those recordings. So we hope that whatever changes Cisco/Webex makes in the future will not destroy what we have found to be a particularly attractive feature of the Webex local recorder and the WRF format.  At the same time, we would like to be able to offer edited recordings in both WRF and FLV format.  Adding a new FLV conversion option to the Webex Recording Editor would be a great.


I'm having the same issue!

The conversion take ages to finish...(I'm using a Intel Nehalem 8x cores, 16GB Window vista64 EXCLUSIVELY FOR THIS CONVERSION) and I really don't get a good conversion... misplaced images, artifacts, and sometimes just a freezing screen until the end...

This is a real waste of time, I need to wait around 7 or 8 hours of conversion to get something that is not that I wanted.

Cisco/Webex need to release a better coverter if we will be going to wait till is released built-in.

I need to make editions to the recording (cut some sections) and I can't do anything until the conversion ends... and not only that I need to review the whole conversion (3 hours) to see if was ok or at least acceptable.


You people need to help to your clients. Having a nice propetary file type without any really good editing tool to work with is just waste of time.

Next time I will use camtasia.

In fact, I will do this... Just play the video from the WEBEX player and then use camtasia to capture the video... then extract the audio and put it together... then sync audio and video... then do the cuttings... and finally create a WMV...

DON'T you think you can save us time?????????????????????


This process works very well for me.  Not only for the audio but video too.

Click the following link to download the WebEx Editor 3.17 utility:

A message window opens prompting you to run or save the file.

2. Click Save.

a. Save the files to a location of your choice on your machine.

b. Double-click the .msi file and click Run.

c. Complete the steps in the installation wizard.

3. Click the following link to download the codec package:

4. Click Download next to the Codec 3.02:

A message window opens prompting you to run or save the file.


The codec is a speech codec for Windows Media Player. It provides enhanced audio quality, including less static and greater dynamic range. The codec typically creates a larger file size than the Windows Media Audio 9 Voice codec.

5. Click Save.

a. Save the files to a location of your choice on your machine.

b. Double-click the .exe file and click Run to install the files.

6. When you are ready to export your recording to WMV, use the dropdown to select the following settings used to retain comparable video and audio quality, as well as a reasonable file size:


Codec: Windows Media Vieo 9 Screen

Bitrate: 1000 Kb/s

Secs/Key: 4



Format: (This is grayed) 5 Kbits/s, 80000Hz, Mono

Click OK

I got my WRF file converted to both Flash and Quicktime formats at

I recommend those guys.


Moving to a  non- proprietary recording has been being promised for over 3 YEARS now?  this was guaranteed to be in T.28, so it's more than disappointing that WebEx sees customers asking for this but chooses to ignore our requests/needs/requirements year after year.


Am I missing something here? The document posted shows how to convert an ARF file to WMV, but I don't see any information on how to convert the WRF file that I already have recorded.

The subject of this topic and the document are both supposed to be about converting the WRF file, but neither actually has that information. I can't even open the WRF file in Network Recording Player. The players that support the WRF don't have any conversion options.

I agree with the other posts here. Why make it so difficult for customers to save a recording of their event in a format they can actually use?

That said, does anybody have information on how to convert the WRF file?

Hi Drewhorine,

Converting the WRF is actually pretty simple. The problem is it doesn't work so well. Be prepared for extreme file bloat, dropped frames and out of synch audio. Watch the entire file after you convert. And BTW it will take longer than real time for the conversion, so set this up when you got plenty of time.

1. Download and install the WebEx recording editor from your WebEx site.

2. Open the WebEx recording editor

3. Open your WRF

4. Select File > Export To...

5. Pick a location and give your WMV a name

6. Click Save

Then wait, and wait, and wait, and wait, and wait, then wait some more, then wait, and wait—well you get the idea.

When it's all done, watch the video. If the number of dropped frames is acceptable, and the audio hasn't gotten too out of synch your done. Otherwise goto step 1. 

Good luck!

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