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Solve "Compatible DVD Decoder is Not Installed" Windows Media Player Error: Three Easy Methods

Author by Oswald

Update on June 24, 2020

On this post, you can find three validated solutions on how to fix error message "Windows Media Player cannot play the DVD because a compatible DVD decoder is not installed on your computer" and properly enjoy any DVD on your Windows PC.

What is "Compatible DVD Decoder is Not Installed" Error

Compatible DVD Decoder is Not InstalledCompatible DVD Decoder is Not Installed

On most Windows operating systems, the pre-installed Windows Media Player performs barely acceptable compatibility for playing back videos, music, and DVDs. Unsupported videos will not be recognized by Windows Media Player, and instead of proper playback, there’ll be some error messages generated upon loading.

And that’s what’s going on with our "Compatible DVD Decoder is Not Installed" issue here. When you inserted some DVD you fancy enjoying with your Windows computer, you opened up your Windows Media Player and tried to load the DVD into it, yet a frustrating message pops up saying "Windows Media Player cannot play the DVD because a compatible DVD decoder is not installed on your computer".

That issue puts down to your Windows Media Player lacking of an essential video decoder to decode DVD videos, while decoding is a necessary process for a media player program to read and play specifically compressed video files.

(Try updating or reinstalling the DVD decoder on your PC, if you already have one.)

To make WMP play any DVD you want without a hitch, it takes either additional codec installation to make Windows Media Player better compatible or we can do something with your unfriendly DVDs. There’re three solutions with a detailed tutorial apiece provided in the following to solve your problem. Now, let’s get to more details.

Method 1. Install Plug-ins for Windows Media Player

Windows Media Player plug-ins are a series of compact additional software that can be added to WMP for extending functionalities. To solve our problem here, we can download a compatible DVD decoder plug-in and install it on your WMP.

You can go to Microsoft Support to browse for an adequate DVD decoder plug-in from three Microsoft approved choices: Cine Player DVD Decoder, Advanced Corel DVD Decoders, Cyberlink PowerDVD SE.

These products provide full-featured DVD playback capability in Windows Media Player and cost about $60~80 - which I’d admit does seem a bit costly for simple DVD viewing requirements.

Install Windows Media Player plug-ins

Method 2. Add Third-party Codec Packs to Your Windows Operating System

A media codec pack is a collection of rounded video and audio codecs for encoding or decoding video and audio. Our recommended codec pack is K-Lite Codec Pack, the top choice from our best codec packs list, it’s free, lightweight and easy to use. After installing it on your Windows PC, you’ll be off the hook of media incompatibility issues for good.

Please note that there could be malware or foisting programs from third-party codec packs. Sorry you have to conduct this method at your own risk.

• Navigate to and click Download Basic.

• Select the version of software to download according to your system version.

• After software downloaded, run the installation package.

• Follow the installation wizard to install K-Lite Codec Pack on you PC.

Install K-Lite Codec Pack

Method 3. Rip DVD to Video Formats with Good Compatibility

Since not everyone is techie, you have every reason to deem that the above two methods are too hard to get on. The simplest solution is here: WonderFox DVD Ripper Pro, a dedicated Windows DVD ripping program that can not only backup your DVD collection to portable digital files, but also remove their copyright protections and convert DVD Video to video formats with good compatibility so you can watch it anywhere you want.

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• Insert the WMP unsupported DVD into the DVD drive and launch WonderFox DVD Ripper Pro.

• Define the destination folder at Output Folder box underneath, and then click the blue DVD Disc button. Then our program will decrypt DVD copy protections automatically and recognize and select the DVD main title.

• Click on the Output Format section on the right side to define the output video format. 300+ choices were provided, and we recommend you to rip DVD to MP4 for better compatibility.

• if needed, click on the small Settings button to customize video encoder, resolution, bitrate, frame rate, sample rate, volume, norm, etc.

• Click Run button to start the DVD ripping process. After that, you’ll get a perfectly WMP-friendly video files in a lovable size.

Load the unsupported DVD into the program

Rip DVD to compatible video formats


Sure that Windows Media Player can serve as a competent media player program, but only after further configurations and necessary additional add-ons installations, making itself doesn’t quite easy to use. Compared with its major counterparts like VLC media player, WMP does seem slightly inferior.

Beyond these methods, opting to use another media player program is also a good solution, if you like this idea better, you can check out our reviews on: 5 Best Free DVD Players for Windows 10.

Introducing: DVD Ripper Pro - Best DVD Ripper Program

Introducing: DVD Ripper Pro - Best DVD Ripper Program

WonderFox DVD Ripper Pro

• Decrypt/bypass most DVD copy protections these days

• Fast and losslessly rip your DVD collection to digital files

• Fast compress DVD video at an impressive 80% ratio

• Convert your DVDs to 300+ format and for any-device playback

• Recode DVD video to acquire better quality and smaller size

• Adjust bitrate, resolution and add subtitles with ease

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