Alternate format multimedia players on XP?



Hi Guys. I’ve just gotten XP Home Ed. up & running on a dual boot system,(alongside trusty old Win98). I’m still finding my way a bit with XP, & gradually installing applications onto it after getting all my hardware devices running on the new OS,(burner programs,MS Word etc.).

However, after getting adjusted to all the Eye-candy of the new Windows Media Player, I’m now looking to get the alternate format multimedia players running on XP.

However, as some of the older version media players,(eg: Realplayer 7 etc.), I had running on Win98 may not work under XP, I’m wondering what the feedback is on more recent versions of some of these media players under XP Home Ed is like.

  1. RealplayeroneV.2-Is there any spyware or things to be aware of with the later XP compatible version? Does anyone know if older versions work okay/are easier to stop it trying to overtake things?

I have the old RealplayerV7 update 1/Jukebox installed on Win 98, & know what a pain it was stopping it trying to steal associations of other app’s., along with having to uninstall a program it added quietly to the Add/remove programs called Comet software(I think?) which I assume was some sort of adware.
I didn’t actually use Realplayer 7 itself on Win 98, but I had it installed to allow me to use a plugin in Winamp 2.8 that allowed me to play any of the realplayer files.

  1. Winamp. After reading some mixed reports of Winamp 3, I’m looking to stick to the classic pre-bloatware versions like Winamp V2.8 that I have on 98, any problems running V2.80 on XP? Will the plug-ins still work okay?
    As mentioned earlier,amongst the various plugins is a great one that allows me to play any realaudio/video format files-the only shame being that I need to have Realplayer installed to allow the plugin to work,otherwise I wouldn’t install Realplayer at all!

  2. Quicktime. Although I have the latest V6.1 from a PC magazine coverdisc, I was just curious if the older V5.02 would work under XP okay too?

Sorry for the stupid sounding questions, but I’d rather know what the feedback is on either installing these older versions of the alternate media players,or what to be aware of with the latest versions.

I’d appreciate your thoughts,thank you!:confused: :slight_smile:


older versions should work ok of all that you’ve asked generally if it works on 98 it will more than likely work on xp but some programs are just stubborn and wont work even with the compatability wizard which can get most stubborn programs to work. But basically try install it, if it installs run it and see if there are any problems. If you do run into problems try using the compatability options in the files properties. Sometimes you may need to use the compat. wizard even before an older program will install but thats mainly for very old programs like for win 95.
As for adware just delete it if it had adware in 98 then it’s probably gonna have it in xp too


Realplayer sucks (IMO). The player is annoying and Real files are always low quality. My philosophy is that if a site chooses to put up content in Realplayer format, it doesn’t deserve to be watched.
That said, I think they removed the little message thing that used to pop up every time I played a game so it crashed me to the desktop. I guess that could be an advantage…

Winamp 2 is still king. Using 2.9 on XP right now, though I was running 2.8 without problems.

I’m almost positive Quicktime 5 will work on XP. Not sure about release dates, but there was likely a version of QT5 released after Windows XP. QT6 is better though, mpeg4 support and Pro version has the AAC encoder.

Foobar2000 is also a great player, not much for looks though:bigsmile:


I really like Zoom Player as it gives you a lot of control over settings, it can be a little daunting at first but you’ll get hooked quickly. Plus it’s very fast to load and can pretty much play anything and best of all it’s free!!
Zoom Player Homepage

Speaking of players I never figured out how to… maybe its under my nose, but how on earth do you save the brightness settings under WMP9 ??

Every time I load a video it’s always dark and when I adjust the brightness settings it stays at the value I set for as long as the player is open. As soon as I close it and load WMP9 again it goes back to the default value which is quite dark with certain media.

(Thats one of the reasons I switched to Zoom player)

Also get the Kazza Lite codec pack basic so your good to go for playing back most types of files that are out their.
Download Link


About the concern for spyware get ad-aware

You can use older or newer versions of software in XP, just see if you need them. Read the revision history for this . For example, I think winamp3 is a lot and loads slow and don’t like it because of this. However, I use it because its 1 program that handles my music files and any video file I need. It saves me the trouble of installing extra software. You must contemplate if you really need it and what it can do for you. Like I said, reading the revision history is important in making this decision.


Thank you very much for the prompt replies everyone! It’s exactly the sort of feedback I was looking for.:slight_smile:
Keep the views coming though!

As I said before, I’m no fan of using Realplayer/Jukebox. But as per my Win 98 partition, I had it installed basically for its codecs etc. which allowed the use of Winamp plugin to play anything of its formats instead & keep Realplayer totally inactive.

@Xtacydemia. I wasn’t that familiar with all the features of Winamp 3, but you can play a few video file formats via the old 2.x versions of Winamp-look for a plugin called “Tara’s video plugin” which allows the aformentioned Realplayer formats,(with Realplayer installed,just switch off it’s file associations), along with mpeg1 & I think AVI files to be played via Winamp too.

Granted I assume Winamp 3 probably plays mpeg 2, or DivX type stuff, no that worried about the extra bloatware.

Speaking of “Classic Winamp” plugins, I wonder whatever happened to the old Mr Goochieman plugin, the only version I found was a later 3D setting version which I didn’t enjoy anywhere near as much as the original,(A friend had the original Mr Goochieman installed, but didn’t have the plugin anymore sadly)

Nice to hear the classic version is still going, V2.91? Gee, it didn’t seem like 2.8 didn’t need much improving! Some of my older plugins were still fine for even that later version.

Thanks for the Quicktime 5/6 info too everyone,much appreciated!:slight_smile:


Btw-what’s Adaware like to use. Although I’ve read of the general concept & it sounds great,I’ve always been wary of using it for fear it might cause instability,(either system or programs), after removing any spyware.

Now I remember the old Realplayer 7 quietly installed something called Comet Cursor,although I did remove it via Win 98’s Add/remove programs.
I use Zone Alarm, so it’s not like I let it access the 'net even if it ever did try to reactivate itself & “call home” anyway.


Originally posted by H.K. Phooey

I’ve always been wary of using it for fear it might cause instability,
(either system or programs), after removing any spyware.

Nothing to worry about , it doesn’t cause any kind of instability.
You can first put the “suspects” in the quarantine-list and see how all works without having them in the system.

Here’s another great prog > Spybot S&D

To read > Spyware—It’s lurking on your machine




realplayer is bloated. stay away.

radlight is spyed out. also stay away.

winamp 2.9 played all of my video files, provided that the codecs were installed (eek). starts quickly - can be painful to get running the way you want it. recommends

winamp 3.0 plays video just as well as 2.9. the best arguement for it is the skinning. you can do some crazy skins that change the entire shape of the player, as opposed to the winamp 2.x style skin. however, because of this ability, it can hog resources - especially if you use a graphics heavy skin. if skins matter - pick this one.

quicktime - a really tight package. must have :smiley: