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File types supported by Windows Media Player


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This article lists the multimedia file types that are supported by Windows Media Player 12. (How to determine your version of Windows Media Player).

Note:  Additional file formats might be supported if you install new codecs in Windows. For more information, see Codecs: frequently asked questions.

  • Windows Media formats (.asf, .wma, .wmv, .wm)
  • Windows Media Metafiles (.asx, .wax, .wvx, .wmx, wpl)
  • Microsoft Digital Video Recording (.dvr-ms)
  • Windows Media Download Package (.wmd)
  • Audio Visual Interleave (.avi)
  • Moving Pictures Experts Group (.mpg, .mpeg, .m1v, .mp2, .mp3, .mpa, .mpe, .m3u)
  • Musical Instrument Digital Interface (.mid, .midi, .rmi)
  • Audio Interchange File Format (.aif, .aifc, .aiff)
  • Sun Microsystems and NeXT (.au, .snd)
  • Audio for Windows (.wav)
  • CD Audio Track (.cda)
  • Indeo Video Technology (.ivf)
  • Windows Media Player Skins (.wmz, .wms)
  • QuickTime Movie file (.mov)
  • MP4 Audio file (.m4a)
  • MP4 Video file (.mp4, .m4v, .mp4v, .3g2, .3gp2, .3gp, .3gpp)
  • Windows audio file (.aac, .adt, .adts)
  • MPEG-2 TS Video file (.m2ts)
  • Free Lossless Audio Codec (.flac)

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Detailed information about supported file types

Windows Media formats (.asf, .wma, .wmv, .wm)

 

Advanced Systems Format (.asf)
The Advanced Systems Format (ASF) is the preferred Windows Media file format. With Windows Media Player, if the appropriate codecs are installed on your computer, you can play audio content, video content, or both, that is compressed with a wide variety of codecs and that is stored in an .asf file. Additionally, you can stream audio and video content with Windows Media Services, or you can package that content with Windows Media Rights Manager.

ASF is an extensible file format that stores synchronized multimedia data. It supports data delivery over a wide variety of networks and protocols. It is also suitable for local playback. ASF supports advanced multimedia capabilities including extensible media types, component download, scalable media types, author-specified stream prioritization, multiple language support, and extensive bibliographic capabilities that include document and content management.

Typically, ASF files that contain audio content that is compressed with the Windows Media Audio (WMA) codec use the .wma extension. Similarly, ASF files that contain audio content, video content, or both, that is compressed with Windows Media Audio (WMA) and Windows Media Video (WMV) codecs use the .wmv extension. Finally, content that is compressed with any other codec use the generic .asf extension. For more information about ASF, visit the following Microsoft Web site:
Windows Media Audio (.wma)
Windows Media Audio (.wma) files are Advanced Systems Format (.asf) files that include audio that is compressed with the Windows Media Audio (WMA) codec. By using a separate extension, users can install multiple players on their computer and associate certain players with the .wma extension for playback of audio-only sources.
Windows Media Video (.wmv, .wm)
Windows Media Video (.wmv) files are Advanced Systems Format (.asf) files that include audio, video, or both compressed with Windows Media Audio (WMA) and Windows Media Video (WMV) codecs. By using a separate extension, you can install multiple players on your computer and associate certain players with the .wmv extension for playback of audio and video sources.
Windows Media Metafiles (.asx, .wax, .wvx, .wmx, .wpl)

 

Advanced Stream Redirector (.asx)
Advanced Stream Redirector (.asx) files, also known as Windows Media Metafiles, are text files that provide information about a file stream and its presentation. ASX files go beyond the simple task of defining playlists to provide Windows Media Player with information about how to present particular media items of the playlist.

Windows Media Metafiles are based on XML syntax and can be encoded in either ANSI or UNICODE (UTF-8) format. They are made up of various elements with their associated tags and attributes. Each element in a Windows Media metafile defines a particular setting or action in Windows Media Player.

ASX files can point to any media file type that Windows Media Player recognizes and supports.


For more information about Windows Media Metafiles, visit the following Microsoft Web site:
Windows Media Audio Redirector (.wax)
Windows Media Audio Redirector (.wax) files are Windows Media Metafiles that reference Windows Media Audio (.wma) files.
Windows Media Video Redirector (.wvx)
Windows Media Video Redirector (.wvx) files are Windows Media Metafiles that reference Windows Media Video (.wmv) files
Windows Media Redirector (.wmx)
Versions of Windows Media Player that support this file type: Windows Media Redirector (.wmx) files are Windows Media Metafiles that reference Windows Media Audio (.wma), Windows Media Video (.wmv) files, or both.
Windows Media Player Playlist (.wpl)
Windows Media Player Playlist (.wpl) files are client-side playlists that are written in a proprietary format. Microsoft introduced this file format in Windows Media Player 9 Series. The .wpl format can create dynamic playlists, whereas .asx and .m3u formats cannot. In Windows Media Player 9 Series, the auto playlist feature uses the .wpl format. The .wpl format is the default file format used for playlists that you save in Windows Media Player 9 Series.
MP4 Audio file (.m4a)

 

.m4a (audio only) is often compressed using AAC encoding (lossy), but can also be in Apple Lossless format.
Windows audio file (.aac, .adt, .adts)

 

Advanced Audio Coding (.aac) is a standardized, loss compression and encoding scheme for digital audio. Designed to be the successor of the MP3 format, AAC generally achieves better sound quality than MP3 at similar bit rates.

Audio Data Transport Stream (.adts) is used if the data is to be streamed within a MPEG-2 transport stream, consisting of a series of frames, each frame having a header followed by the AAC audio data.
MPEG-2 TS Video file (.m2ts)

 

.m2ts is a filename extension used for the Blu-ray Disc Audio-Video (BDAV) MPEG-2 Transport Stream (M2TS) container file format. It is used for multiplexing audio, video and other streams. It is based on the MPEG-2 transport stream container. This container format is commonly used for high definition video on Blu-ray Disc and AVCHD.

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More Information

Third-party information disclaimer
The third-party products that this article discusses are manufactured by companies that are independent of Microsoft. Microsoft makes no warranty, implied or otherwise, about the performance or reliability of these products.

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Keywords: kb, kbcip, kbinfo, kbcsgcr, kbpubtypepublic, kbcsapac

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Article Info
Article ID : 316992
Revision : 8
Created on : 12/17/2019
Published on : 12/17/2019
Exists online : False
Views : 309