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XM (file format)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Filename extension
Internet media type
Magic number0x1A at offset 37[1]
Developed byFredrik Huss (Mr.H of Triton)
Initial release1994[1]
Type of formatModule file format
Extended fromMOD

XM, standing for "extended module", is an audio file type introduced by Triton's FastTracker 2.[2] XM introduced multisampling-capable[3] instruments with volume and panning envelopes,[4] sample looping[5] and basic pattern compression. It also expanded the available effect commands and channels, added 16-bit sample support, and offered an alternative frequency table for portamentos.

XM is a common format for many module files.

The file format has been initially documented by its creator in the file XM.TXT, which accompanied the 2.08 release of FastTracker 2, as well as its latest known beta version: 2.09b. The file, written in 1994 and attributed to Mr.H of Triton (Fredrik Huss), bears the header "The XM module format description for XM files version $0104." The contents of the file have been posted on this article's Talk subpage for reference.

This documentation is however said to be incomplete and insufficient to properly recreate the behaviour of the original program. The MilkyTracker project has expanded the documentation of the XM file format, in an attempt to replicate not only the behaviour of the original software but also its quirks. Their documentation of the XM file format is available on the project's GitHub repository.

OXM (oggmod) is a subformat, which compresses the XM samples using Vorbis.[6]

Supporting media players[edit]

  • Windows Media Player – supports .XM files as long as the player version is x86 (32-bit)
  • Cowon jetAudio – A freeware audio player for Windows which supports .XM files
  • Xmplay – A freeware audio player for Windows which supports .XM files
  • Foobar2000 – A freeware audio player for Windows that supports .XM files through a plugin.
  • VLC Media Player – An open-source media player for Windows, Linux, & macOS which supports .XM files
  • MusicBee – A freeware audio player for Windows which supports .XM files
  • OpenMPT - An open-source audio module tracker for Windows which supports .XM files and others, such as .MOD and .S3M.


  1. ^ a b Kameñar, Vladimir (2007). The Unofficial XM File Format Specification. Colombia: CelerSMS. ISBN 978-958-53602-0-4. OCLC 1262695345.
  2. ^ Varga, Martin (2014). Learning AndEngine. Packt Publishing Ltd. ISBN 978-1-78398-596-8. music composing (using the famous FastTracker 2)
  3. ^ Sawyer, Ben; Dunne, Alex; Berg, Tor (1998). Game Developer's Marketplace. Coriolis Group Books. p. 295. ISBN 978-1576101773.
  4. ^ Perekh, Ranjan (2006). "Audio File Formats and CODECs". Principles of Multimedia. McGraw Hill. p. 247. ISBN 0-07-058833-3.
  5. ^ Alves de Abreu, Valter Miguel (2018-07-17). "Analysing trackers and their formats". Recreating tracker music sequencers in modern videogames: an integrated model approach for adaptive music (MSc). University of Porto. p. 17. S2CID 192364225. Retrieved 2021-06-03.
  6. ^ Sweet, Michael (2014). "MOD File Sequencing". Writing Interactive Music for Video Games. Addison-Wesley. p. 272. ISBN 978-0-321-96158-7.

See also[edit]