Thursday, March 30, 2017

VLC Player: Windows 10 Lacks a Native DVD Video Player

I don't watch videos on my Windows-based laptop very often, but recently wanted to be able to play DVD videos on a long road trip. Without realizing that Windows 10 had dropped support for playing back video on a DVD, I placed the DVD with a movie in the DVD player and was disappointed when Windows 10 did not know what action to perform on that DVD. When I next had a Wifi connection, I saw that Microsoft had a Windows DVD Player app offered for $15, but I decided to look for third-party alternatives first because the app's average rating is pretty low and I wasn't used to paying extra for an app to play DVD videos.

I found the useful articles How to play DVDs in Windows 10 for free and Windows 10 won't play DVDs unless you pay Microsoft $15. The first article succinctly states, "Windows 10 won't play DVDs natively, and Windows Media Center is gone." The second article reiterates this, "Microsoft chose to omit the Windows Media Center app from Windows 10, and it wants $15 for the new Windows DVD Player."

Both of the articles referenced above referenced the same freely available alternative to Microsoft's Windows DVD Player. The VLC Player is available at and the VLC media player was exactly what I was looking for. The VLC media player page describes it as "a free and open source cross-platform multimedia player and framework that plays most multimedia files as well as DVDs, Audio CDs, VCDs, and various streaming protocols." The page also highlights that VLC media player plays numerous formats and codecs, is completely free, and "runs on all platforms" including Windows.

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