Windows Media Center for Windows 10

Martin Brinkmann
Oct 8, 2018
Updated • Apr 8, 2019

Microsoft removed Windows Media Center from the company's Windows 10 operating system. While there are some alternatives for Windows Media Center out there that users can switch to and use, some would probably prefer to use Windows Media Center on Windows 10 as well.

Windows Media Center can best be described as the big brother of Windows Media Player. It features playback functionality for media but also additional functionality such as TV tuner and recording support, and better media management options.

Windows 10 users have two main options when it comes to Windows Media Center on Windows 10. They may install one of the suggested alternatives, e.g. Kodi or Plex, or install a custom version of Windows Media Center that is compatible with Windows 10.

Windows Media Center on Windows 10

windows media center

WMC is a custom version of Windows Media Player that is compatible with all versions of the Windows 10 operating system.

Note: It is recommended that you create a backup of the system prior to installation. I did not run into any issues installing and removing the custom Windows Media Center version from a Windows 10 version 1809 system but it is always good to be on the safe side when it comes to software installations.

WMC installs Windows Media Center on Windows 10 machines. The functionality is more or less identical to the official version of Windows Media Center for previous versions of Windows.


install wmp

Installation is powered by batch files. First thing you need to do is downloaded the most recent version of WMC from the developer website. The site is in French; use a translation service if you don't speak French.

Check the Installation category on the site for updates. The most recent version is WMC 8.8.2 at the time of writing.

Download the latest version of WMC and extract the archive to the local system once you are done.

Run the following batch files afterward. Note that you can right-click on batch files and select Edit from the context menu to see exactly what they do.

  1. Right-click on _TestRights.cmd and select "run as administrator" to test privileges and permissions.
  2. Right-click on InstallerBlue.cmd or InstallerGreen.cmd and select "run as administrator" to install Windows Media Center on the device if the test batch file did not return any errors. The batch files install the Blue or Green interface versions of Windows Media Center on the device.

WMC lists all installation steps in a command prompt window after execution. Windows Media Center is installed afterward if things went well.

Tip: WMC comes with an uninstaller script that you may run to remove the program again from the system and undo the changes made to it during installation. Just right-click on uninstaller.cmd and select "run as administrator" to remove the program again from the system.

Feature upgrades remove essential files from the system so that Windows Media Center won't work until you run the installer again.


windows media center setup

You can start Windows Media Center from the Start menu just by typing its name. Options to set up Windows Media Center using express and custom options are listed on first run.

It is recommended that you select custom as you get full control over setup.

The program displays its main screen afterward.

windows media center use

Windows Media Center picks up some folders on the device automatically but you can add more folders to the libraries so that media that is stored in those folders is listed by the media player as well.

Closing Words

WMC installs Windows Media Center on Windows 10 devices so that users who are accustomed to the program and don't want to switch can continue using it.

While continued use requires frequent re-installations as Windows 10 removes files whenever a new feature update is installed, it is not too much of a hassle. (via Deskmodder)

Now You: Do you use a media center program?

Windows Media Center for Windows 10
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Windows Media Center for Windows 10
WMC is a custom version of Windows Media Player that is compatible with all versions of the Windows 10 operating system.
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  1. Meyer said on October 13, 2019 at 9:59 pm

    I’m on Windows 10 and keeping getting Error: 0x800f081e when installing this. Has anyone else had this problem? I’ve tried disabling Windows Media Player and manually installing the Media Feature Pack List (which wouldn’t install for some reason) and nothing worked.

  2. John L. Galt said on August 12, 2019 at 5:43 pm

    The newest WMC 8.8.4 has a lot of fixes for both Windows 10 build 1903 (aka 19H1) and the inability to see recorded live tv.


    The fix is nifty, really:

    The package now embeds a local copy of CPFilters.dll (Extracted from Windows in October 1809) and a custom assembly manifest to workaround breaking forex Introduced in Windows 10, 1903.
    Existing Application manifests all-have-been updated to reference the new Microsoft.Windows.CPFilters assembly manifest.
    The uninstaller was updated to automatically delete Windows Media Center file from Systray.lnk ProgramData \ Microsoft \ Windows \ Start Menu \ Programs \ StartUp

  3. Bill said on May 21, 2019 at 8:24 pm

    What about media center extenders? Is there any hope for them? I cannot get Kodi to work with ServerWMC to I am stuck with Media Center Extenders.

  4. bitemydust said on April 30, 2019 at 10:22 pm

    I upgraded a Win 8.1 license to Win 8 w/media center for $10 back in the day and I ain’t ever leaving!!!

  5. Dave T said on February 4, 2019 at 6:48 pm

    I installed this after win10 updated and killed WMC (again). It works great except how do I get the guide data back? will not download guide data. any suggestions or links on how to get the tv guide data back? I know I did this last year or earlier when they switched guide providers, but I cant find the info on how to fix it now. being used to record USA OTA tv only.

  6. Sandra C. said on January 19, 2019 at 8:58 am

    I have tried Media Portal with iffy results, and the software that came with my TV Capture card, and neither of them are as good as WMC. Yesterdays Windows 10 Update not only borked WMC, even uninstalling and reinstalling it doesn’t work. All the files are there, but something is stopping it from running.

    1. Scott Downey said on January 19, 2019 at 11:07 pm

      Working fine for me on winver 1809.
      I had recently done a wipe and reinstall of windows 10, so it is a virgin OS, no prior configurations of anything.
      It installed really fast.
      My hardest part was finding the exe file to run WMC! In search box, start typing its name ‘windows media center’ and you will see it.

      1. SandraC said on August 18, 2020 at 12:15 pm

        Happy for you that everything worked out ok. I ended up finding a newer version of WMC compilation to install. It had a list of instructions to follow if an update wrecks WMC. Every update since the one I mentioned above, with the exception of Windows Defender/Security, has borked WMC, and I use this package to reinstall it.

  7. Tito said on October 10, 2018 at 12:14 pm


    The actual work of separating the WMC related packages and patching them were done on My Digital Life forums:

    While there are countless other blogs and sites, distributing older and/or modified packages from the actual MDL thread without any consent, it would be better to cite the original source.

  8. stefann said on October 8, 2018 at 11:18 pm

    I have a version somewhere on my external drives that works on Windows 8.x to. Does this work on 8.x to or only 10 ?

  9. Pete12 said on October 8, 2018 at 7:12 pm

    Using version 8.8.1 in latest Win10 ( 1809) , works fine .
    I wonder ; can I install this 8.8.2 over previous , or do I have to uninstall it first……??

  10. Paul(us) said on October 8, 2018 at 6:17 pm

    Martin (or anybody else who knows this) I have already the Windows media player 12 installed on Windows 10 64 bit pro. system.
    Do I have to uninstall the Windows media player 12 first before I can install the Windows media center 8.8.2?
    This so there will be no conflicts between them or can I leave Media player 12 and they will work both independent of each other?

    1. Yuliya said on October 8, 2018 at 6:53 pm

      They should work independently. Windows 7 has both WMP and WMC.
      Afaik M$ft intends to remove the Win32 WMP from Windows 10 in future as well and replace it with some inferior UWP solution.

  11. ilev said on October 8, 2018 at 4:59 pm

    “Microsoft removed Windows Media Player from the company’s Windows 10 operating system.”

    Shouldn’t it be ‘Windows Media Center’ ?

    My copy of Windows 10 Pro 1803 has Windows Media Player 12 installed.

  12. ilev said on October 8, 2018 at 4:56 pm

    “Microsoft removed Windows Media Player from the company’s Windows 10 operating system.”

    My copy of Windows 10 Pro 1803 has Windows Media Player 12 installed.

    Is this post intended for users with versions N/KN of Windows 10 ?

  13. dmacleo said on October 8, 2018 at 4:00 pm

    can’t read site french and see no way to swap to english. chrome/waterfox all fail translate.
    anyway I have media server setup using mediaportal (I use 1.x version) and does dvr stuff. client pc can also watch live tv served by it.

    1. dmacleo said on October 8, 2018 at 4:00 pm

      forgot to mention server is win7 and clients are win10. mediaportal seems to work ok on win10.

  14. Roger said on October 8, 2018 at 3:45 pm


    Great information unavailable from anywhere else. Most tech sites are horrible today, reduced to walled-garden product advertisements.

    I used to use WMC 8.0 for years but then MS sold the Program Guide responsibilities then proceeded to data-mine what you watch. This trend has only worsened with Win10.

    This WMC from France leaves the critical programming guide questions ‘dangling’. In the USA broadcasters transmit the program guide OTA. However WMC ignores this data, forcing the user into a paid subscription with terms-of-service data-mining. Obviously useful for Win10 targeted advertising…

    After WMC switched to Ubuntu 16.04 with a customized Linux OS to handle the Quad Hauppauge pci-e 1x tuner. But then Canonical forced users (by removing the release letter) to ‘upgrade’ then proceeded to also increase data-mining. Another dead-end!

    The total, lasting and most rewarding solution is LinHES, a complete dedicated Mythtv frontend AND backend. It ONLY works properly with a small Sata III boot SSD and a 3-8TB recording HDD. Combine with Nvidia (I use a 1050) graphics card and micro/ATX board. Note: m-ITX boards will not work pci slot-wise!

    The key privacy concept here is the GUIDE is already transmitted within the OTA broadcast signal called EIT. No Internet connection is required unless you, the owner allow.

    The icing is Kodi 17.6 is included in the release to play back network movies, songs, photos and games. These two powerful programs interface seamlessly!
    In my two systems have no errors with framerates, dumb, degrading Pulse resampling, audio formats or speaker channel assignments.
    Both LinHES and Kodi pass-thru all native Hirez formats including Dolby Atmos.

    Free. One stop shopping. Plays almost everything. Total privacy!
    Stable, reliable and high performance: Record three HD shows while live watching a fourth
    Can use older PC
    Fast basic installation from a USB drive
    Plays multi-channel SACD at 192KHz
    System backups
    Owner chooses when to upgrade
    MythTV and Kodi blow-away WMC

    Elaborate Mythtv learning curve
    Takes basic Linux expertise with chown chmod .bashrc etc..
    Limited support for beginners (great project to regain-control and learn Linux!)
    Even with a powerful system native 4K frame-rate is too slow (Kodi 18?).
    Unlike Linux, cannot make clone copies on same network as the Mythtv SQL database impedes critical hostname changes
    H/W changes are messy. For example paths use UUID
    No 3D Blu-ray support (use Zidoo streamer here)

    Notes: LiveTV works only with obsolete HDRingBuffer set to lowest value
    LinHES and Kodi work perfectly because they omit the traditional Linux desktop

    I use the gnome-disks (really dd) to make an .img backup of the 120GB boot SDD

  15. luca said on October 8, 2018 at 1:50 pm

    Interesting, but I wonder if there are another updated (and more compatible) alternatives to WMC, to be run under Windows 10?

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