# Recommendation: MPlayer to play thy media (1 Viewer)

• #### Martin

Are you fed up with the slow, ugly Windows Media Player that takes ages to start, has a really ugly selection of skins and is very annoying to use? Are you sick of how often it crashes and forces you to reboot? Are you sick of all the times it refuses to play a video and makes you look elsewhere? I was struggling with Media Player Classic myself today, trying to set it up on a Windows computer as it was crashing on me all the time, when I suddenly thought, what if there's a Windows version of mplayer?

(Note: in saying media player, for most purposes I mean movie player. For audio, winamp is where the action is.)

Listen up, cause this is a recommendation of Mozilla proportions! :strong::extatic: From the producer of "Mozilla for your browsing needs", here comes the sequel. We've tried to find other software for you that improves your life and sadly we failed. Nothing would please me more than to annihilate the asinine msn messenger junk but there just isn't a good enough alternative to destroy it. Trillian is heaps better but it's pretty heavy and slow on older systems. MsOffice, yet another we'd like to replace, but OpenOffice just isn't good enough to walk all over MsOffice. There are very few cases when one program is that much better than another, as in the case of Mozilla/Firefox vs IE. BUT we have found another instance. Despair not, salvation is near. You will not be stuck with the bulky, annoying, crap Windows Media Player for much longer (or the starts-on-windows-startup, steals-my-mime-extensions, annoys-the-hell-out-of-me Real One if that's what you have).

Like much of the best software known to man, mplayer is an open source (GPL'ed) project that started out in linux. It's *the* media player in linux and once I discovered how good mplayer is, I could not believe all the issues I had had in the past with various lameass media players in windows. Mplayer is avaliable for linux primarily, but it's also been ported to BSD and Windows. The Windows port is a BETA release so don't blame your momma when it blows up in your face. However, I have tested it and haven't had ONE issue with it myself.

You may already know there is an alternative movie player called Media Player Classic. I've drawn up a comparison matrix to compare the players. What you should know is that each player works more or less the same way, it uses the codecs you already have installed to play back the video. The difference is many players just crash playing streams they have trouble handling, while mplayer USING THE SAME CODECS doesn't have a problem. Not only is it a lot more reliable, it's also uses a lot less resources. If you have an old[er] computer, you should definitely try it and see if there's a difference!

WMP - Windows Media Player
RO - Real One
MPC - Media Player Classic
MP - MPlayer

Code:
WMP	RO	MPC	MP
?	N	Y	Y	plays avi, mpeg, quicktime,
real media, wmv, asf, asx
?	?	?	Y	plays mpeg2, dvd, vcd
5	4	5	10	stability
3	3	6	10	reliability
2	3	4	8	speed
Y	Y	Y	N	resource hungry
Y	Y	Y	N	gui controls
Like I said, the mplayer windows port is still a beta release, so there's no gui controls. Apparently, the gui is what f. up all movie players cause the linux gui controls for mplayer crash all the time. But if you try mplayer there is a good chance you'll agree there's no need for a gui anyway, it only slows you down.

How to try?
3. Unzip
4. Move mplayer directory to where you want it (no installation necessary)
5. On the video file you want to open, right click > Open with... > Browse > select mplayer.exe in the dialog depending on where you placed the mplayer directory.
6. If you want this video format to always open with mplayer, check the box that say "Always use this program to open this type of file".
7. Click OK.

If all goes well, you'll get a console window opening first, which is the console output from mplayer and tells you some details about the video file and playback procedure, then immediately after that you'll get another window open with the video. Like I said, there is no gui so you have to use the keyboard/mouse to control playback.

If you know how to use the command line, you can also use that to open files with mplayers but opening them from Windows Explorer is quicker.

How to associate with media
Since mplayer has no installer, if you want all movie files to open with mplayer when you click on them, you'll have to set this up yourself. For every video file with a different suffix (avi, mpg, wmv, asf etc) you have to right click on the file, and use the method described above. Sadly, there's no other way.

MPlayer controls
mousewheel up, down : 1s back forward
left, right : 10s back, forward
up, down : 1m back, forward
page up, page down : 10m back, forward
space : pause
o : odometer (clock)
f : full screen
9, 0 : volume up, down

In the mplayer directory there is a readme file that contains more detailed controls.

>> MPlayer homepage

• #### Lawnchair Bes

we appreciate things like this Martin. keep'em coming. i ll give it a try

• #### Ramin

..

The Windows version aint working for me.

OP

• #### Martin

What seems to be the problem?

• #### Ramin

++ [ originally posted by Martin ] ++

3. Unzip
4. Move mplayer directory to where you want it (no installation necessary)
5. On the video file you want to open, right click > Open with... > Browse > select mplayer.exe in the dialog depending on where you placed the mplayer directory.
6. If you want this video format to always open with mplayer, check the box that say "Always use this program to open this type of file".
7. Click OK.
It works only up to No.4. When i try to open the program, a windows opens and closes by itself in less than half a second.

i second that

OP

• #### Martin

Do you know how to use the command prompt in Windows? Open it, go to the directory where mplayer.exe is and open a movie from there, like so:

c:\path\to\mplayer> mplayer.exe c:\path\to\movie\movie.avi

Then paste the output or just the error message from mplayer..

c:\path\to\mplayer> mplayer.exe c:\path\to\movie\movie.avi > file.txt

and then paste the contents of file.txt here.

OP

• #### Martin

erm... graham? over here, buddy

• #### Emma

Better than Zoom Player?

OP

What's that?

• #### Majed

I heard Bull Shit player is really good too. Actually, it's really called BSPlayer.

OP

• #### Martin

Looks pretty good (and ugly ), haven't seen it before..

• #### Emma

Its super fast though. Speed is great

I only really use it for movies though.

• #### nosubstitute959

I can't get this to work.

In the "Open with..." dialog box, mplayer doesn't exist. When I try that command, It says the location doesn't exist.

OP

• #### Martin

In the Open With dialog, did you browse to the location of mplayer.exe? You won't find it in the menu, you have to use the browse function?

Did you try the menu from the command line? You have to change c:\path\to\movie\movie.avi to the path of the movie you want to open obviously..

• #### Gandalf

it worked for me.. it was there when I brouse the files, I selected it and it worked..

however, the codecs, fonts and skin files didn't work.. when I open them, the system doesn't recognize it as an archive file..!!!

• #### nosubstitute959

++ [ originally posted by Martin ] ++
In the Open With dialog, did you browse to the location of mplayer.exe? You won't find it in the menu, you have to use the browse function?
It worked......I was being a dumbass.

I don't like it though..........there's that annoying little window and it doesn't go to full-screen, unless there's someway to change that.