Getting started with Windows Media Player

You can use Windows Media Player to play digital media files, organise your digital media collection, burn (create) CDs of your favourite music, rip (copy) music from CDs and sync media files to a portable device.

Open Windows Media Player

  1. Swipe in from the right edge of the screen, then tap Search.
    (If you're using a mouse, point to the bottom-right corner of the screen, move the mouse pointer up, then click Search.)

  2. Enter Windows Media Player in the search box, then tap or click Windows Media Player.

Three ways to play

  • Player Library. You can see and organise your digital media collection using the Player Library. On the left, you can choose a category, such as Music, Pictures or Videos, to view in the details pane. For example, to see all of your music organised by genre, double-tap or double-click Music, then tap or click Genre. You can drag items from the details pane to the list pane on the right to create playlists, burn CDs or DVDs, or sync to devices, such as portable music players. As you move between views in the Player Library, you can use the Back and Forwards buttons in the top-left corner of the Player to retrace your steps.

  • Now Playing mode. In Now Playing mode, you can view DVDs and videos or see what music is currently playing. You can decide to view only the currently playing item, or you can swipe or right-click the Player, then click Show list to view available items.

  • From the taskbar. You can also use the Player when it's minimised. You can play or pause the current item, advance to the next item and go back to the previous item using the controls in the thumbnail preview. The thumbnail preview appears when you press and hold or point to the Windows Media Player icon on the taskbar.

You can switch between the Player Library and Now Playing mode by tapping or clicking the Switch to Now Playing button in the bottom-right corner of the Player. To return to the Player Library, tap or click the Switch to Library button in the top-right corner of the Player.

Rip CDs to create digital music files

You can add music to the Player Library by using your PC's CD drive to copy CDs and store them on your PC as digital files. This is known as ripping. For more information, see Rip and burn CDs.

Use tabs to complete key tasks

The tabs at the top right of the Player open the list pane in the Player Library so you can create playlists of your favourite songs, burn custom song lists to a CD or sync playlists to a portable media player.

To get started, tap or click a tab:

  • Play. This list shows the item currently playing and the items that you've selected to play in the Player Library. For example, if you've selected a specific album to play, the entire album will appear in the Play tab. You can use the Play tab to create and save custom playlists.

  • Burn. You can drag items from the Details pane to this list and burn audio CDs and data CDs and DVDs. For more information, see Rip and burn CDs

  • Sync. You can use the Player to sync music, videos and pictures to a wide range of portable devices, including portable media players, storage cards and some phones. Connect a supported device to your PC and the Player will select the sync method (automatic or manual) that's best for your device. For more information, see Setting up a device to sync in Windows Media Player.