A computer file format for a multimedia playlist.

PLS is a computer file format for a multimedia playlist. It is typically used by media players for streaming media over the Internet, but may also be used for playing local media.

For online streaming, typically the .PLS file would be downloaded just once from the media source, —such as from an online radio station— for immediate or future use. While most computers and players automatically recognize.PLS format, the first time a PLS file is used on a computer, the media player's settings may need to be changed to recognize ("associated" with) .PLS files.

PLS was originally developed for use with the museArc audio player software by codeArts, and was later used by SHOUTcast and Icecast for streaming media over the Internet. PLS is a more expressive playlist format than the basic M3U playlist, as it can store (cache) information on the song title and length (this is supported in extended M3U only).

File format

The format is case-sensitive and essentially that of an INI file structured as follows


  • [playlist]: This tag indicates that it is a Playlist File

Track Entry
Assuming track entry #X

FileX : Variable defining location of media file/stream (like .m3u/.m3u8 playlists).

  • TitleX : Defines track title. (optional)
  • LengthX : Length in seconds of track. Value of -1 indicates indefinite (streaming). (optional)


  • NumberOfEntries : This variable indicates the number of tracks and therefore equals the number used for the last track
  • Version : Playlist version. Currently only a value of 2 is valid.

Key Terms

computer file format
local media
media players
multimedia playlist

Additional Resources

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Sources & Credits

Last modified on April 14 2020
Content adapted from Wikipedia
No credits found. is service provided by Codecide, a company located in Chicago, IL USA.
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