Yes,you CAN uninstall Windows Media Player and replace it with a player of your choice.

Discussion in 'Windows 7 Help and Support' started by Andrea Borman, Jan 22, 2011.

  1. Andrea Borman

    Andrea Borman Honorable Member

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    I have broken many rules in terms of computing and will probably continue to do so. For example on Windows computers you are not supposed to remove Internet Explorer web browser.Because if you do,Windows could stop working,but I have removed Internet Explorer and this has not effected my computer at all.

    A few months ago I wrote of how I successfully managed to uninstall Internet Explorer 8 from both my Windows 7 laptops. Now I have removed Windows Media player also from my laptops both Windows 7. Windows Media player like IE cannot be uninstalled in updates or programs menu as it is not listed there. And there is no way to change this,so that it shows in the uninstall a program menu. So,the only way to remove Windows Media player is like removing Internet Explorer browser,and that is to delete the file in programs on,C/drive.

    But there is one problem,because the Windows Media player program file is owned by Trusted Installer,it won't let you delete it. Unless you take ownership of the file and change it to your computer user name. Or use a tool called UNLOCKER,which unlocks and removes any kind of file.

    I have got nothing against Windows Media player but I already have VLC Media Player,Gom Media player and Miro video player,which I use to download my own videos from the web and put onto my other sites. So I don't need what would be 4 video players on my Netbook. And what is the point in keeping Windows Media player when I am not using it. Windows Media player is a good player and it is very user friendly.And there are some media players that I have tried,KM player and Songbird and Quick Time,which are terrible. But Windows Media player has never given me any trouble,but it is just that I have got VLC player. Which does everything that Windows Media does but has some additional features and plays videos in wide screen and high definition.

    So this is how I uninstalled Windows Media player and replaced it with VLC player as my default program. For Windows XP and Windows Vista it is Windows Media player 11 and for Windows 7 it is Windows Media player 12.

    First of all you have to edit the Windows Media player file in programs which is on C/Drive so that you can delete it. If you delete the file this is another way to remove the program from you computer.So you can either take ownership of the file and change the ownership from trusted Installer to your name.Or,like I did use a tool called Unlocker which I downloaded from the Internet,to unlock the file and it will then delete the file when you restart your computer. After you have restarted your computer,the Windows Media program file will be in the recycle bin,which you just empty. And that is all there is to it. Now go to turn off Windows features and un tick Windows Media player from the box. This will turn off the program and true, although now Windows Media player is off your computer. Windows update may try to install it back on during the updates,so turning it off prevents this. Then you have to restart your computer again and some times Windows puts the Windows Media file back on your computer after you have turned it off as it updates what you have done. But if this happens,just delete the file again and now that it has been turned off Windows update will not try to install it again.

    Now the good thing about Windows Media player is, that it is based on what I have read,not so tied up with Windows as Internet Explorer is. So you can now go one step further like I did and delete the Windows Media player registry keys. But do not do this if you do not know what you are doing in case you delete the wrong key as there are several programs,listed as Windows Media in the registry. But they are not the player some are network files and Windows photo viewer which you don't want to touch.

    I deleted both the Internet Explorer and Windows Media player registry keys because I did not want Windows to install updates for both IE or Windows Media player back on my computer. As installing the update some times puts the program file back on and then I have had to delete it again. Which I don't want to do.

    But having said that, now that I have removed both the Internet Explorer files and Windows Media player files from my computer,these programs will never work again on my computer. Not even if I download them,I just get blank files. So be warned,this method will permanently remove the program and you will not be able to install it again as Windows will not let you do it.

    Now Windows media player is off of my computer and VLC player has taken over as my default player. I have a webcam so VLC plays those videos I make and save with it, and it plays all of the audo files and voice messages from Google Talk, and of course,video files. In short VLC player does all that Windows Media player used to do, when I had it, only better. VLC player is also listed and set in the default programs menu.

    I chose VLC player as the replacement for Windows Media because it is most compatible with Windows. But if you do not want VLC player you can choose another media placer to replace Windows Media player instead.

    I have 2 laptops both Netbooks and I have uninstalled Windows Media player from both of them. On one laptop I have got VLC player only as my replacement for Windows Media. And on the other one I have Gom Media player only instead of VLC player as Windows Media players replacement.

    So if you do not want to replace Windows Media player with VLC player,you can use Gom Media player instead.Gom player like VLC is another media player that plays well with Windows and will list and set as the deault program and do all that Windows Media player did,just like VLC player does.

    But if you are going to remove Windows Media player from your computer,you MUST have another player,such as VLC player or Gom player or other installed or you will not be able to play video or audio files.

    So it IS possible to completely uninstall Windows Media player and replace it with anther player of your choice. And both my computers now have better media players than what they had before. It can be done. Andrea Borman.
     
  2. MikeHawthorne

    MikeHawthorne Essential Member
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    I do use Windows media player now, but over the years I have used a variety of Media Players, most notably Real Player.

    I still use Winamp for playing music, mostly because I have for as long as I can remember.

    I'm pretty sure that Winamp goes clear back to Widows 95.
    I like the graphics that it will display while the music plays, real 1970s feel. LOL

    But I haven't used Internet Explorer for so long I can't remember when I last had it as my default browser.

    Mike
     
  3. Andrea Borman

    Andrea Borman Honorable Member

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    Thank you for showing an interest in my post. As I said Windows Media player is good but VLC player is better. Actually Windows Media player and VLC player are both alike in many ways. First they both play well with all versions of Windows and are recognized as the default programs and both user friendly. Except that what Windows Media player does,VLC player does it better.

    VLC plays videos in high quality and wide screen and you can watch a video from the web in the player.By pasting the video clip url in the clipboard and VLC will play it. You can also take snap shot photos of the video with VLC player and save them in a file on your computer and upload them to your blog. VLC will also save videos from the web but you cannot upload them to other sites as it does not save them in the correct format,wmv,flv or mpg3. So you can save the video from the web on a file on your computer and watch it but cannot upload it onto sites.

    Then there is Gom Media player,which you can use instead of VLC player if you want to. Gom player plays videos in wide screen and high quality like VLC player does but is in some way more customizable. As it has lots of different color skins and it takes video snap shots like VLC does. Also if you have a video it cannot play it will take you to the website and download the code for you and play it. It did this with one of my flv video files,it found the code,downloaded it and played it for me without any problems.

    I don't think that Windows Media player has all of the features of VLC or Gom player yet. I too used to use Real Player but only because that was the only program that would download videos from the web and convert them into flv files. But it always crashed or stopped working, and although you don't have to go onto a web browser to download videos from the web. As Real Player has it's own built in web browser,it was slow. And it has a lot of adverts and public media that is not your own stuff. And Real Alternative will not install on Windows 7 as it is not compatible.

    Although most software made for Windows XP and Windows Vista,installs and works on Windows 7. Real Alternative was the odd one that did not. So I and other Windows users put up with the problems of Real Player because we had to. Then two weeks ago I found out about Miro video player and downloader.

    Miro is open source and free and for all versions of Windows. It does all that Real Player does only without all of the problems. And it's built in web browser is based on Firefox not Internet Explorer like Real Players is. On Miro you can search for any video on the web and Miro finds it and downloads,converts and saves it and plays it in it's own player. The video player is like VLC players too.

    I have uninstalled Real Player and I am using Miro instead,which is much better than Real Player. And as for uninstalling Internet Explorer,well,I do not miss IE one little bit. It is a very backward browser in terms of software. And I have read about computers and laptops being made and sold with out Internet Explorer browser.

    Which suggests that it is possible to run Windows without Internet Explorer. Although the computers being made without Internet Explorer were Windows 7 only,not Windows XP or vista.

    I remember you took an interest in my post about Linux and the problems I was having with it. Well,I have uninstalled and left Linux for now. As all I was able to do on it was browser the web,not much else. And on Windows you can do so much more to customize your computer and make it run the way you want it to. It is great to be back on Windows. Andrea Borman.
     
  4. Captain Jack

    Captain Jack Extraordinary Member

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    Hello and Welcome to W7F !

    We appreciate you sharing the information with us. But it's not recommend to remove Windows based Programs. You could disable it if you don't want. But force removing would cause issues in future. You could use Windows Media Player with Shark007 codec pack is more than enough. I used to use VLC, K-lite codec pack, KM Player etc. with XP. But now with Windows 7 i never had a purpose to use other Media player because with codec pack it plays almost all the formats we need. As for music I prefer Media Monkey because of the intergration with i-Pod. Anywho what I was saying is Please don't try to force remove Windows based programs like Windows Media Player or Internet Explorer which will eventual cause more problems. We have seen in past people trying to downgrade Windows Media Player and Internet Explorer. Just Google it you'll find lot of people would had problems end up in reinstalling Windows. Why we want to take risk with our OS when Microsoft has offered a way to disable them. :)
     
  5. cybercore

    cybercore New Member

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    VLC is my player by default, and I also use many other players including WMP and Media Center. I would agree with Captain that disabling a feature rather than completely erasing it is a better route.



    Some programs and features included with Windows, such as Internet Information Services, must be turned on before you can use them. Certain other features are turned on by default, but you can turn them off if you don’t use them.

    Turn Windows features on or off

    [​IMG]
     
  6. kemical

    kemical Windows Forum Admin
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    Agreed. This is a far, far safer route than messing around with the registry.

    Running more than one media player will usually lead to issues depending on which players used. It's always best to disable or un-install before going ahead with a different player.
     
  7. Andrea Borman

    Andrea Borman Honorable Member

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    Thank you for your reply. You are right,if you remove Internet Explorer and you don't know what you are doing,you do risk damaging Windows. But when I removed IE on my Windows 7 laptop a few months ago I only deleted the file in programs on my hard drive. I did the same thing with Windows Media player I just deleted the file on my hard drive. All right I admit I did also deleted some of the registry keys of IE in the registry,those that I could delete that is. But was able to delete the registry keys in Windows Media player.

    Deleting the file on C /drive is one thing but deleting the registry keys IS risky even if you were to do it for say Firefox because you no longer want it any more. The reason is that you could remove the wrong key by mistake. I only did this to stop Windows update trying to install Internet Explorer and Windows media player back on my computer again.As it tries to do in the updates. Also I have turned windows update off so it only installs updates when I download them manually not when it wants to do it. And as I use the computer every day I just click check for updates and it checks and installs them. With my say so of course.

    But I have read in Europe they are shipping Windows 7 computers and laptops without IE so it seems Windows can run without IE. Well,I do not know about windows XP or Windows Vista as it did not mention that.

    But most Windows users and me hate Internet Explorer. After all if you don't like Firefox or Opera you just uninstall it and delete the program file. so why can't we do that with Internet Explorer if we don't like it? Is there really any proof that if we remove Internet Explorer windows will stop working? I have uninstalled IE and both my laptops are still working. Turning off Internet explorer does nothing as then it is still there, so I would rather uninstall it which I did.

    And Windows Media player,from what I read about it it seems is not as tied up with Windows as IE is or in my case was. Windows is perfect in every way.Except for one thing,Internet Explorer. Which I have now got rid of. Andrea Borman.
     
  8. Mike

    Mike Windows Forum Admin
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    I like your ambitious attitude, Andrea, but why the necessity? For instance, isn't it easier just to disable Internet Explorer by using the uninstall option? And Windows Media Player? Why not just disable it as well? The reason I suggest this is because when it comes time to patch your system with updates, you run the risk of hitting some inescapable problems. I could see if you were doing this on a low storage netbook to save hard drive, but other than that, I don't see the reason. Its an interesting, if not novel concept, and its true that Windows should be more modular. No doubt, many of the files are able to be disabled but are ready to re-activate so that you do not have to jump through hoops or find the Windows installation media. I notice the push for Windows features moving to online tools and cloud computing. For instance, programs like Windows Movie Maker have become Windows Live Movie Maker and turned into an optional download. This is not a bad concept, for so long as it remains free for use. There are some theories that, in the future, operating systems will be paid for with regular license fees and updated by modules on an as-needed basis. I'm not so sure if I like this idea.

    Here is an example from me in regards to IE. I have to have the most common browsers on my phone and computers to keep testing the website for problems. So I have IE, Firefox, Chrome, the Android browser, and two different monitors to test how the website looks for all sorts of different people. I find value in having all of these products on my system. Right now, I probably use IE the least, but I will be very likely to install Internet Explorer 9 once it is released. When I worked in an enterprise server environment, which I helped bring up to Active Directory standards, I worked with management to upgrade every computer to Internet Explorer 8. While they were skeptical of this upgrade, I understood that IE8 was less prone to taking down Windows XP and many of its features could be controlled through Windows Server using group policy. For reference see: How to set advanced settings in Internet Explorer by using Group Policy Objects

    The new options in IE8 allowed for a lot of customization and care taking, even the ability to remove tabs, so that some of the employees where I worked couldn't destroy their systems inadvertently. It was important that I protect these computers from misuse. So in a sense, do you believe there is a limit in how far someone should take this? Don't you worry about what it will do to your ability to error correct or update the operating system? Your work in this area seems very proficient and the result of many hours of testing, but I have to question the reasoning. Isn't disabling it simply the same? Without possibly damaging your system.
     
  9. Andrea Borman

    Andrea Borman Honorable Member

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    I don't think that once you install a web browser or a program from the Internet on your computer. That you can just get rid of it completely as even though you may have uninstalled it or done so by deleting the files. Some of these are still left behind both in the registry and else where on your computer hard drive. Andrea Borman.
     
  10. fjgold

    fjgold New Member

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    Huh!! This doesn't make sense. Please explain.

    BTW, I think Mike is right. Just disable IE and WMP in "Turn Windows Features on and off".
    Actually if a user has installed IE9 beta the option to turn off IE is not available.

    You have mentioned in several previous posts that you don't have a lot of computing experience yet you are advocating drastic and potentially
    harmful methods to remove tightly integrated programs like IE and WMP.
    I hope you aren't setting yourself up for future headaches.
     
  11. Andrea Borman

    Andrea Borman Honorable Member

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    Well,it is too late now for me to turn off and disable Internet Explorer and Windows Media player as I uninstalled those programs from my computer by deleting the file in programs on c,drive,the IE file and Windows Media player file. So they are no longer on my computer for me to disable.

    Still,I never really got on with Linux but there is one thing that Linux and Windows users are right about. Internet Explorer is a rotten browser and on Windows we have got at least over 500 web browsers to choose from. So why have Internet Explorer,when you can have Firefox or Google Chrome and others which work better?

    Also what about the security risk of IE? Every one knows it is not secure for browsing,not even IE8. There is a risk of computer virus and I have read that Active X which is in IEs Adobe Flash Player is a security risk. But Firefox and Google Chrome and other browsers like this do not use Active X. They just use Adobe Flash player plug in,which is not the same thing.

    Also until recently I was using Green browser and Advanced browser before I realized from some thing I read that those and Trident engine browsers are just clones of Internet Explorer and so have Active X and the same add ons as IE. Also when I used to browse with Green browser,browser sniffer websites. That tell you what browser you are using said I was using IE7 but when I was browsing on Pink browser,it said I was using IE5.5! I had to laugh. Why did it say that?

    That made me think,so now I just use Safefox,Pale Moon both Firefox open sources and Chromium,Arora which is Webkit engine.Safefox is Gecko engine like Flock and Firefox,so they do not need IE to run them at all. Much safer to use. And because I do not have any IE based browsers,I got rid of Green browser as like IE it was slow.I have uninstalled Adobe Flash player Active X as Firefox and Chromium does not use it. It users just the Adobe Flash Player plug in.

    In Europe they have made Windows 7 computers without IE installed. So that is proof that Windows can run without Internet Explorer browser. And Windows Media player is just a video and audio player and VLC player or Gom player can do the job of playing all files both audio and video without Windows Media being on a computer.

    And I have found many times that I have uninstalled a program,usually a web browser like Opera in uninstall a program menu only to find it's file on c drive some where. And Opera is still listed in my registry.Which you are not supposed to touch in case you upset your computer, it says online in some websites. But I did delete the Internet Explorer registry keys that would delete and windows Media player keys.I don't suppose I should have done that. Andrea Borman.
     
  12. fjgold

    fjgold New Member

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    Not true. In Europe IE is still on Win 7 install media as an option. The user chooses during install between several browsers including IE 8.
    It is disabled unless the user chooses IE.
    It is still there.
    Let me ask, can you still do Windows updates without IE, that is with IE crippled by your method?
    You shouldn't mess with the registry unless you know what you are doing.

    See this article from last weeks Ask Leo's newsletter about IE.

    Am I at risk for Internet Explorer vulnerabilities even though I use a different browser?

    No offense but Leo Nottenbom has a lot more credibility than you do in this regard.

    The bottom line is do what you want but be prepared to maybe have to reinstall Windows.

    Oops thats right you said in other threads that you have no recovery media for these Win 7 netbooks.
     
  13. cybercore

    cybercore New Member

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    We sure see your point, yes indeed, disabled features stay on one's PC. The advantage of that is fewer running services and as a result slightly increased logon speed and overall performance. Besides, they can be re-enabled back when needed.

    What is the advantage of completely erasing a feature? Save some 50 Mb of disk space? And what if it comes to a web page that best works with Internet Explorer?
     
  14. stueycaster

    stueycaster Millennium Celebration Award Winner
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    I've found a bunch of sites that won't work with Firefox. I need the Verizon Wireless site but it won't work at all without IE. I can still use it going through the IE Tab extension in Firefox. When I'm using it it's obvious that I'm in IE even though I'm using Firefox.

    My computer experience has taught me one very important lesson. This forum was the final teacher that really drove this knowledge home. No matter how much I thought I knew I've found out that I don't know squat. There are people in this forum who know so much about computers they totally freak me out. But their knowledge is nothing compared to the people who actually write operating systems. I think you should put your system back to original configuration and give up on the notion that you know enough to second guess MS's developers.
     
  15. stueycaster

    stueycaster Millennium Celebration Award Winner
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    Are there really that many alternative browsers?
     
  16. Trouble

    Trouble Noob Whisperer

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    Been reading this thread and it reminded me of a software product dating back to Windows 98 (there was also a Windows 2000 / XP version) I think they gave up with Vista. Rip the guts out of the OS so you could have "Windows your way". Wonder how many they actually sold. LitePC Technologies
     
  17. stueycaster

    stueycaster Millennium Celebration Award Winner
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    It reminds me of my newby days. I found that I could move files to different places in my computer. I thought" that should be here instead of there". The next thing I knew my computer was running terrible. :confused: :(
     
  18. fjgold

    fjgold New Member

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    I think it's too late for that unless Andrea backed up the registry keys and program files she deleted, plus she stated in other threads that she has no
    recovery media. The term S.O.L. applies here I think. LOL.

    I do a lot of "experimenting" with different stuff but I have backups in the form of system images.
     
  19. Andrea Borman

    Andrea Borman Honorable Member

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    In Europe or so I read online they did ship some Windows computers with out Internet Explorer and it seems it was not on the computer.So users got the browser choice ballot screen and they could click on a download link to download Firefox or Google Chrome.

    And yes, I always get Windows updates when I want to download them. I have turned automatic updating off so I only update when I feel like it and I do not get nagged by Windows to turn of my computer to finish an update install. When I am in the middle of doing some thing on my computer. But I check for updates about every 3 to 4 days a week so it is not that I never update,hardly.

    But turning off automatic updating just mean you can install updates when you want to in your own time,not when Windows wants to. And I noticed that when I was on Linux,there was no auto updating it is up to you to check for updates manually and then install them yourself. It does not do it for you automatically like windows does. Or it did not for me anyway.

    But yes,I still get all the updates and windows search and access to my files through Windows Explorer the program file holder.By the way when people say you cannot remove all of Internet Explorer,do they mean WINDOWS EXPLORER?

    Windows Explorer is some times on the files called Internet Explorer or IE explorer ext or extension. Well,this contains all of your programs and your copy of Windows.So if you delete or remove this your computer is finished if you remove Windows Explorer.

    I think that is really what they online in those help sites are trying to warn Windows users about. You find a file in your computer folder,it says Internet Explorer,you delete it,thinking it is IE web browser but you forgot to look inside the file and the file is really Windows Explorer. Although if you open the file you can see what is in it so you will know if it is just the IE web browser or not. But as for the registry keys you cannot see inside of those. Or if a key that says Internet explorer is only the web browser or Windows Explorer.

    But then on Linux you will also loose your operating system if you delete the folder where the files are,the Home folder which is their equivalent of Windows Explorer.

    It is not internet Explorer that does the updates or Windows search because I do not have it. It is Windows that updates itself and on Windows search when it takes me to the web. It open in Chromium or Safefox or what ever browser I happen to have set as the default browser at the time.

    The only difference I have noticed since I deleted some of IEs registry keys is that Aim Messenger will not install. But that is the only thing. But surprise, Windows Live Messenger does install,when I downloaded it and run although I don't use that I use ICQ and that installed and runs without a problem.

    Which suggests that it may just be a policy that Aim have that they do not let you install it without Internet Explorer. But I don't know.

    Also I mentioned in a previous post that when I used Pink browser on a browser sniffer website,that detects your web browser.It said I was using Internet Explorer 5.5 and in Green browser it said I was using Internet Explorer 7. Why is that? Can anybody solve that mystery?Andrea Borman.
     
  20. Andrea Borman

    Andrea Borman Honorable Member

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    Before I removed Internet Explorer I used to just turn it off. But even then and now that I don't have it any more I have never come across a website that say I have to view it in Internet Explorer.

    True,I use You Tube,My Space and Facebook which is not the fastest of sites but in Internet Explorer they would be very slow indeed. Even when I run software or Windows search it just takes me to the web in one of my other web browsers.

    So what websites exactly are they that do not work in Firefox or Google Chrome? I bet that when I try them in my Flock or chromium browser they will work and I will be able to browser twice as fast,as what I would have been able to in Internet Explorer. Which is slow on every site.

    When I used to use Internet cafes before I got my laptop some of them only had IE6 or IE7. Others had IE8 but I could not tell the difference from one version of Internet Explorer from another. They all are very slow and crash on every computer I have been on. Even this one,when I has Internet Explorer 8 that is. Andrea Borman.
     

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