How To Uninstall Windows Media Player from Windows XP? [Quick-Start]

Microsoft pre-installs its Windows Media Player (WMP) software with all its Windows operating systems and because of this a lot of people believe that its their best option, their only option or simply their easiest option for playing music and videos. This sentiment is actually far from the truth because there are many other options out there.

Now I want to be clear, I’m by no means saying WMP is bad. In fact, I know a lot of people who use it without complaints, usually to play their music library. All I’m pointing out is that there are alternative options, some of which might work better for your needs.  On Friday, my post will talk more about these different options.

How To Uninstall Windows Media Player from Windows XP?

The purpose of this post is to explain how to remove WMP from your XP system, so you can move on to the next step, which is researching all of the available media players out there (or reading my post on Friday), to find the one you want to install.

A lot of people worry that removing WMP, or any media player for that matter, will delete their music. DON’T WORRY, this isn’t how this type of software works. All your music is on your computer under the “Music” folder (or where ever you keep it) and the software simply taps into that folder for easy playing.

Enough rambling, here’s how to remove Window Media Player:

  • Click Start on the taskbar, click Run.
  • Type %windir%\$ntUninstallwmp11$\spuninst\spuninst.exe and then click OK.
  • Click Next, and then click Finish.
  • Restart your computer.

This method removes the core of WMP from your system. Other methods (using Add/Remove Programs) will not fully remove the program.

Just to make sure Windows trickery doesn’t re-install the program, follow the steps below to turn off Automatic Updates.

XP System Properties

  • Click Start again, go to Control Panel
  • Then go to Performance and Maintenance and then System
  • Select the Automatic Updates Tab
  • From here, you need to choose either the third option, so that Windows Notifies you before downloading and installing updates OR the fourth option, so everything is turned off.

Unfortunately for you Vista users, WMP is built right into the OS, so there’s no way to do the above. Your best bet is to simply ignore that it’s there and go ahead with installing a different Audio/Media Player. After installation, the new player will ask if you want to import all your media. Select OK and enjoy!

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