Get a Windows DVD player for free with Windows Media Player or VLC
Configuring a Windows DVD player is not as difficult or expensive as many people think. Wouldn’t it be nice to use your PC for watching DVDs? Won’t it be great to have an extra player tucked away in the office or utility room that you can use whenever you need to? With the help of our handy guides, you can do just that.
For many Windows users, playing a DVD is as simple as inserting the disc and letting Windows Media Player open. If the DVD does not automatically start playing when inserted, simply open Windows Media Player and find the DVD in the library view, right click on it and choose “Play”, as shown in the picture below:-
For more information on Windows Media Player, see our tutorials here.
DVD Playback on Windows XP (and basic editions of Windows Vista and Windows 7 and most editions of Windows 8)
If you have tried to play DVD movies on your Windows XP PC before, you may well have seen this message:-
What does all that mean? Well, basically, some versions of Windows only come with some of the software you need to play DVD movies. In order to successfully play a DVD movie on these editions of Windows, you will also need some DVD decoding software. That can mean purchasing a third party Windows DVD player such as Sonic Cineplayer or Power DVD, however there is a free alternative available too.
VLC Media player is a powerful free media player for Windows and other operating systems. One feature that has helped to make it extra popular is its ability to play DVDs, for free!
If neither Windows Media Player or VLC meet your needs, you will probably have to purchase one of the commercial DVD players listed below.
As is usually the case with Windows software, there are plenty of alternatives when it comes to choosing DVD playback software. There are plenty of sites on the internet where you can learn all about the alternatives, but we thought we would share with you some of our favourites.
A great all round Windows DVD player that is easy to use and to configure. Supports playback of high-def disks (with a compatible drive) as well as surround sound and power saving modes for laptops.
Another hugely powerful DVD, Blu-ray and media playback program that also supports 2D to 3D conversion.
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