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Blu-ray playback on Windows 8 Pro/Windows Media Center

    Question

  • Hello,

    I have Windows 8 Pro with Windows Media Center installed. It appears that Windows Media Center will not play back blu-ray DVDs.

    Is it that Windows Media Center in Windows 8 Pro will not play blu-ray DVDs at all or is it simply a question of missing codecs?

    Thanks.

    Saturday, November 03, 2012 4:36 AM

Answers

  • Just as it was with Windows 7, you need a separate program to play Blu Ray.
     
    On Sat, 3 Nov 2012 04:36:11 +0000, Satrajit Das wrote:
     
    >
    >
    >Hello,
    >
    >I have Windows 8 Pro with Windows Media Center installed. It appears that Windows Media Center will not play back blu-ray DVDs.
    >
    >Is it that Windows Media Center in Windows 8 Pro will not play blu-ray DVDs at all or is it simply a question of missing codecs?
    >
    >Thanks.
    >
     

    Barb Bowman

    http://www.digitalmediaphile.com

    Saturday, November 03, 2012 11:13 AM

All replies

  • Just as it was with Windows 7, you need a separate program to play Blu Ray.
     
    On Sat, 3 Nov 2012 04:36:11 +0000, Satrajit Das wrote:
     
    >
    >
    >Hello,
    >
    >I have Windows 8 Pro with Windows Media Center installed. It appears that Windows Media Center will not play back blu-ray DVDs.
    >
    >Is it that Windows Media Center in Windows 8 Pro will not play blu-ray DVDs at all or is it simply a question of missing codecs?
    >
    >Thanks.
    >
     

    Barb Bowman

    http://www.digitalmediaphile.com

    Saturday, November 03, 2012 11:13 AM
  • Is it that Windows Media Center in Windows 8 Pro will not play blu-ray DVDs at all or is it simply a question of missing codecs?

    It's a codec licensing problem - and then a decision to leave it out because of cost. Thus in effect missing codecs.

    BTW You can see the same stuff going on with i.e. the Expression Video Encoder. If you wan't real HD quality the licensing cost grows. Anyway the world is going streaming so simply stop buying blurays. That should force them (Movie Pictures Expert Group/MPEG?) to lower the licensing cost for the codecs so Microsoft and others can throw those codecs inside the package more easily. Guess that's why Google is more and more into it's own streamning tech - and Microsoft kept wmv around. Let's see what happens ...

    But as a consumer - say no to blurays untill the price and total cost goes down - not simply for fetching the disc in the store - but also for actually playing it.

    In my opion - if still into blurays use a standalone computer (i.e. bluray player). Cheaper than buying i.e. PowerDVD ... allthough you would need some decent processing unit in that player. But into blurays and Picture quality - you would want that pemium player.

    You only buy blurays if you got the equipment to replay them and render out the full picture quality onto a top notch screen - not just because they're cheap - because they are not ... as in total cost.

    • Proposed as answer by Computermensch Monday, November 05, 2012 4:25 AM
    Monday, November 05, 2012 4:25 AM
  • On some Windows 8 reviews, like many other publications that got their information from Microsoft, originally reported that the Media Center and Pro Pack contain codecs for both DVD and Blu-ray movie playback. This is false. They only facilitate DVD playback, not Blu-ray. The quote most sites are referencing comes from Microsoft’s blog. And, like most of the official Windows 8 pre-release literature, it contains ambiguous language regarding what’s actually included in Windows 8:

    “Windows Media Player will continue to be available in all editions, but without DVD playback support. For optical discs playback on new Windows 8 devices, we are going to rely on the many quality solutions on the market, which provide great experiences for both DVD and Blu-ray.”

    Further down, in the same blog post, are the actual contents of the Media Center and Pro Pack:

    “…Media Center, including DVD playback (in Media Center, not in Media Player), broadcast TV recording and playback (DBV-T/S, ISDB-S/T, DMBH, and ATSC), and VOB file playback.”

    Again, the Media Center Pack does not include codecs for Blu-ray playback.

    If you want to play Blu-ray on windows 8 for free, you can use VLC, if you don't mind to pay for a good blu-ray player, UFUSoft Blu-ray Player (Only $39) could be an ideal choice.

    Monday, November 05, 2012 1:13 PM
  • You can use VLC to play Blu-Ray on Windows 8, but you will need to download and place the AACS and BD+ DRM libraries and keys in order to play Blu Ray on Windows 8.

    Techisky gives a step-by-step guide on how to Play Blu-Ray with VLC in Windows 8 64-bit/32-bit that may help you to play Blu-Ray for free here:

    http://www.techisky.com/how-to/play-blu-ray-with-vlc-media-player-in-windows8.html

    Tuesday, November 06, 2012 6:07 AM
  • Yes after some hacking around I got that to work, sort of. The BD opens but the video is choppy and not usable. My Toshiba machine was playing blu-ray fine before the upgrade.
    Sunday, December 02, 2012 12:31 PM
  • I am having success now. There are a few things that were not obvious along the way:

    1) If you run %appdata% on my machine it takes you to a folder called "Roaming" within the folder "AppData." That is where I put the "key." If you follow the directions to navigate at some of the posts, you may not end up in roaming."

    2) At VLC, if you hit "DOWNLOAD" you get the 32 bit version. That can lead to confusion if you thought it was checking your machine. This should be obvious if you see the program in the 32 but directory, but nevertheless the first time I put the 64 bit bluray dll in the VLC folder and of course that did not work. Looking more carefully, there is a 64 bit experimental version that you choose from the ftp site if you hit the link, after thinking about which of the files is the actual installer.

    3) The blu-ray support is manual. If you "auto-play" the disk you get the "MLR" error. If you start the program and use "Media->Open Disc" and select the Blu-ray option, then the movie opens.

    4) As I said the 32 bit was choppy, and so I uninstalled it and tried the 64 bit version. It was a little but better but still not usable.

    5) So I did not give up. After "Tools->Preferences" from the menu there is a tab for "Input & Codecs." On my installation, "Use GPU accelerated decoding" was not enabled. I enabled it.

    Now the test BD, "3:10 to Yuma," is playing. The playback controls are supposed to be limited. You can move along in the timeline and skip scenes. The menu button just restarts the movie. The hardware button pause/play above the keyboard actually works.

    Sunday, December 02, 2012 1:11 PM
  • While I love VLC and use it for many things, I still splurge for PowerDVD on my Windows Media Center pc.  It integrates into WMC so I can use my WMC remote to control playback, very convenient!
    Sunday, December 02, 2012 1:35 PM
  • Finally after a lot of searching the correct solution that worked for me!!!! Thank you so very much. Listen to this guy everyone.
    Monday, December 31, 2012 9:19 PM
  • If you want to play Blu-ray on windows 8 for free, you can use VLC

    http://www.ufusoft.com/free-way-to-play-blu-ray-disc-movie-with-vlc-in-windows-8-64-bit32-bit/

    Tuesday, January 14, 2014 1:41 PM