With TVU Player gone, what are some working PC TV alternatives?

Martin Brinkmann
Mar 11, 2013
Updated • Jun 19, 2019
Music and Video, tv

TVU Player was one of the first TV on PC programs that I reviewed here on Ghacks, and while I have not used the program in years, it is still sad that the parent company, TVU Networks, decided to pull the program and its capabilities from the Internet.

The download pages are already removed from the website, and the start page lists a notice that TVU Networks shut down the TVU Player service on February 25, 2013. What this means is that clients do not work anymore even if you do run them on your system.

One of the main reasons for pulling the plug on TVU Player is likely the move towards streaming websites instead of applications. While you still have an arsenal of software players at your disposal, with Sopcast probably leading the field in any way imaginable, you will find the majority of streams, especially when it comes to live events like the football world cup, European football leagues, American sports like baseball or football (the one that you play with the hand most of the time), on Internet sites.

The core reason for this is likely money that can be made with streaming those events on the Internet. Most of the time, you are bombarded with ads, something that you can't really do in software players. While you can still use Sopcast to watch live TV, the bulk of what is being offered right now is found on websites.

tvu player shutdown

Here is a short list of programs that you can use to watch live TV streams:

  • Sopcast uses an English interface. It makes available a couple of live and recorded channels, mostly Chinese and Russian but also some English channels that you can watch with the click of the button.
  • PPLive is Chinese only. The website is in Chinese and you will have a hard time figuring out how to download the application from it.
  • Veetle makes available all of its channels right on the homepage of the service. It does not seem that you need a client anymore to watch those.

As I said earlier, the majority of streaming services are now streaming directly on the web so that you do not need to install programs on your system to watch live sports or television. What you do need though is Adobe's Flash Player as it is usually used for the streaming.

You can check out the excellent Wiziwig for a start for instance, or Live TV which is a Russian site with different language interfaces. Check out our MyP2P.eu alternative listing for additional services that you can use in this regard, and our TV on PC list for additional software programs that you may want to check out.

Some streaming services display messages during buffering that you are missing a plugin. That's not the case though and you can simply ignore those messages. I would not recommend installing those plugins on your system. Just wait and the stream should load just fine.

Have another recommendation in this regard? Feel free to share it in the comments.

With TVU Player gone, what are some working PC TV alternatives?
Article Name
With TVU Player gone, what are some working PC TV alternatives?
Here is a list of popular and still working alternatives to the TV streaming application service and program TVU Player.
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  1. Anonymous said on August 1, 2010 at 12:43 pm

    Why not make use of the mplayer.conf?

  2. Mike J said on August 1, 2010 at 2:58 pm

    Huh, I have never even seen this “font cache” pane; videos play at once for me, using VLC & XP SP3.

    1. Martin said on August 1, 2010 at 3:39 pm

      Mike, in theory this should have only been displayed once to you, at the very first video that you played with VLC. The time this window is displayed depends largely on the number of fonts in your font directory.

      1. Mike J said on August 2, 2010 at 2:30 pm

        huh, I lucked out for a change?? Amazing!!
        Apparently VLC keeps this info through version updates, but I didn’t see this message after a fresh OS install about 8 weeks ago, & a new VLC.

  3. myo said on August 1, 2010 at 5:52 pm

    yes, yes, i have the same problem. sometimes, VLC crashes when it is playing .mov file.

  4. Kishore said on August 13, 2010 at 2:55 pm

    Buidling font Cache pop-up


    Open VLC player.

    On Menu Bar:


    (at bottom – left side)
    Show settings — ALL

    Open: Video
    Click: Subtitles/OSD (This is now highlited, not opened)
    Text rendering module – change this to “Dummy font renderer function”


    Re-open – done.
    Progam will no longer look outside self for fonts

    Source – WorthyTricks.co.cc

    1. Martin said on August 13, 2010 at 3:10 pm

      Great tip, thanks a lot Kishore.

  5. javier said on August 14, 2010 at 1:50 pm

    @Kishore, I’ll try your tips, but does this mean it will no longer show subtitles either?
    I do use subtitles, but the fontcache dialog box pops up (almost) everytime I play a file.

    Could this be related to the fonts I have installed? Or if I add/remove fonts to my system?

    I’ll try to do a fresh install also, if your tips does no work. I’ll post back here later…


  6. Kishore said on August 15, 2010 at 12:38 pm

    @ Javier, The trick i posted will show up subtitles too. If not,

  7. Kishore said on August 15, 2010 at 12:39 pm

    @ Javier, The trick i posted will show up subtitles too. If not,Dont worry, VLC is currently sorting out this issue and the next version will be out soon.

    No probs @ Martin !! Its my pleasure

  8. Ted said on October 22, 2010 at 3:57 am

    Try running LC with administrator privileges. That seemed to fix it for me

  9. Evan said on December 8, 2013 at 1:48 am

    I am using SMplayer 0.8.6 (64-bit) (Portable Edition) on Windows 7 x64. Even with the -nofontconfig parameter in place SMplayer still scans the fonts. Also, I have enabled normal subtitles and it is still scanning fonts before playing a video. Also, it does this every time the player opens a video after a system restart (only the fist video played).

  10. Mike Williams said on September 6, 2023 at 1:26 pm

    Does that mean that only instrumental versions of songs will be available for non-paying users?

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