Dinner’s in the oven and your first guest is at your front door. You’ve thought of all the details except for one: the music. Don’t panic. There’s a cool feature in Windows Media Player that'll help you create a great playlist in just about a minute.
Hi, I’m John Shaw, a writer on the Windows team here at Microsoft. Today I’m going to show you how to create an auto playlist that’ll be perfect for your next party.
My home computer is connected to some great sounding speakers. When I want background music for when friends pop by, I usually fire up Windows Media Player and start playing one of my auto playlists.
An auto playlist is a way to create a list of songs that have one or more things in common. For example, I’m going to create an auto playlist that includes items that are in the “rock” genre that I’ve previously rated 4 stars or higher.
To get started, I'll open Windows Media Player. I'll click Library, and then I'll click Create Auto Playlist. I’m going to call mine “Party Mix - Rock.”
Now, I need to start selecting my search criteria. In this case, I need to make my playlist search for all songs in the rock genre.
I’ll do this by clicking the green plus sign below the “Music in my library” section, and then I’ll choose Genre from the list of search criteria. Next, I’ll choose Rock from the list of available genres in my library.
If I stopped here, Windows Media Player would search for all rock songs in my library—that’s about 2,000 songs. Because I want my playlist to only include my favorite songs, I need to narrow down my search a little bit more.
I’ll do this by clicking the plus sign below my genre criteria. Then I’ll choose My Rating from the list. It’s already set to 4 stars or higher, so I don’t need to make any further changes here.
I could add other search criteria to my playlist if I wanted to include or exclude other items, but this is all I need for now. So, I’ll click OK to save my playlist.
When I do this, Windows Media Player searches for items in my library that match my search criteria and then displays the list of songs. You can see that my list now includes about 500 rock songs because I chose to exclude items that weren't rated 4 stars or higher.
When my guests arrive, I'll need to find my playlist. To view all of my playlists, I'll click the Playlists category in the Navigation pane. Then I'll choose the particular item that I want to play.
If I make changes to my library later, such as changing some ratings or downloading new rock songs, my playlist will automatically update to include any items that match my criteria. This can be a tremendous time saver.
That’s how you create an auto playlist in Windows Media Player. When you get the hang of it, try experimenting with different search criteria.
For example, use the “Date last played” criteria to build a playlist of music that you haven’t listened to in a while. Or, create a playlist of music from a particular decade using the “Release year” search criteria.
Creating an auto playlist is easy and your options are virtually limitless.