What Is an FBR File?

How to Open, Edit, and Convert FBR Files

FBR Files
FBR Files.

A file with the FBR file extension is a FlashBack Screen Recording file, sometimes called a FlashBack Movie file, used to store video recordings of a computer screen. Videos are often combined with images, sound, and text for use in software demos or training videos.

Similar to a FlashBack Screen Recording file, an FBR may instead be a Mercury Screen Recording file used by the HP Quality Center software for sending video evidence of problem software during testing.

Note: FBR is also an acronym for some other technology terms like front-to-back ratio in regards to antenna signal strength, and the fabric-based replication technique for storing data.

How to Play FBR Video Files

FBR files that are FlashBack files are made and opened with the free FlashBack Express software suite (previously called BB FlashBack). The actual recording process is done with the Recorder program but you can play the FBR video with the Player software.

Note: Both the recorder and player are included in one download through that link above. Also, you have to enter your email address in order to get the free license code that lets you use the program.

If you want to play the FBR video in other programs like VLC, or on an Android or iOS device, you should first convert it to a format supported by those programs and devices, like MP4. See the How to Convert an FBR File section below to learn how.

Some versions of BB TestAssistant, another program from Blueberry Software (the same makers of FlashBack Express), use the FBR file extension too, but only for versions 1.5 and newer. Older versions use the FBZ file extension.

Tip: See this FlashBack Support article if your FBR file is corrupt and it's causing problems when you try to open it.

HP's Mercury Screen Recorder produces FBR files only when connected to HP Quality Center (which is software purchased from Mercury Interactive Corporation by Hewlett-Packard in 2006). A tool called HP Mercury Screen Player might be able to open the FBR file but I don't have a download link to that software.

How to Convert an FBR File

An FBR file opened with the free version of FlashBack Express Player can only be converted to the WMV video file format (the professional version supports several other formats).

However, once the video is in that format, you can run the WMV file through a free video converter to save it to a different format like MP4, AVI, or FLV, or even to just an audio file format like MP3.

Tip: The FlashBack Express Player application can also convert a regular video file into the FBR file format, through the Tools > Convert Video File to FlashBack Express Movie... menu.

I'm not aware of any converter tools that support Mercury Screen Recorder files. However, if you happen to get your hands on a copy of HP Mercury Screen Player, you might be able to export the video to a different file format, much like you can with the FlashBack software.

Is Your File Still Not Opening?

The first thing to check if you can't get your file to open with the programs mentioned above, is its file extension.

Make sure it reads "FBR" and not something similar like BRL, BR5, and FOB. Just because the file extensions look similar (share some of the same letters) doesn't mean that they can open with the same programs.

The same is true for other file formats like FB2, which is for eBook files; FBC files that are Family Tree Compressed Backup files; ABR files used with Adobe Photoshop as brush files; and FlashGet Incomplete Download files that have the FB! file extension and are created by FlashGet.

Also keep in mind that older versions of BB TestAssistant (prior to 1.5) use the FBZ file extension but that the file still might open with FlashBack Express Player.

If you're sure that you're dealing with an FBR file that was created by the FlashBack screen recording software, and double-clicking the file doesn't let you play it, consider changing the default program that opens FBR files; it should be FlashBack Express Player.

An alternative method to playing the FBR video is to open the player software first and then use the File > Open... menu to select the video manually.