You can use Windows Media Player to play digital media files that are in your Player Library, on your computer or a network folder, or on a website.

For information about using the Player to play a CD or DVD, see Play a CD or DVD in Windows Media Player. For more information about the Player Library, see Getting started with Windows Media Player.

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To play a file in the Player Library

  1. Click the Start button Picture of the Start button, click All Programs, and then click Windows Media Player.
    If the Player is currently open and you’re in Now Playing mode, click the Switch to Library button Picture of the Switch to Library button in the upper-right corner of the Player.
  2. In the Player Library, browse or search for the item that you want to play.

  3. To play a file in the Player Library, do one of the following:

    • In the details pane, double-click the item to begin playing it.

    • Click the Play tab, and then drag an item from the details pane to the list pane.

      You can drag individual items (such as one or more songs) or collections of items (such as one or more albums, artists, genres, years, or ratings) to the list pane. If you drag a collection of items to the list pane, the first item in the list will begin playing.

      If the list pane already contains other items, you can clear the contents by clicking the Clear list button.

    For more information about finding items in the Player Library, see Find items in the Windows Media Player Library.

To move to a specific point in a file

  • To move to a specific point in a file, play the file in the Player Library, and then move the Seek slider Picture of the Seek slider to the point that you want the file to play. The slider is unavailable for some files.

To play a file that isn't in the Player Library

  1. Click the Start button Picture of the Start button, click All Programs, and then click Windows Media Player.
    If the Player is currently open and you’re in Now Playing mode, click the Switch to Library button Picture of the Switch to Library button in the upper-right corner of the Player.
  2. To play a file that isn't included in the Player Library, do one of the following:

    • In the Player Library, click the Play tab, and then drag the file from any location into the list pane.

    • Drag the file into a folder monitored by the Player.

      For example, drag a song file from the Internet into a folder included in the Music library. For more information about adding items to your Player Library, see Add items to the Windows Media Player Library.

If you’re still having trouble playing an audio file, you can try using the Playing Audio troubleshooter to automatically find and fix some common problems.

Open the Playing Audio troubleshooter by clicking the Start button Picture of the Start button, and then clicking Control Panel. In the search box, type troubleshooter, and then click Troubleshooting. Under Hardware and Sound, click Troubleshoot audio playback.