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How can I play Blu-Ray movies via Windows Media Centre on Windows 8? If I choose the "play dvd" option, I get an error:

Cannot Play Disc

To play this DVD, you must first install a playback application that supports Blu-ray Disc.

[ OK ]

However, I have got the HP MediaSmart application installed, which does work (although it's "less than awesome"), so I'm confused why I get this warning?

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I think it is extremely strange that Microsoft doesn't prioritise Windows Media Centre (my personal favourite application, which I use daily to watch movies from DVB-T and DVD) as a platform for home cinema. The WMC interface is superior to any third-party application. I don't want to use any other application to watch movies. – Andreas Rejbrand Nov 25 '12 at 23:08
up vote 2 down vote accepted

From an article on Tom's Hardware:

[...] the Media Center Pack does not include codecs for Blu-ray playback.

You need to obtain (read: buy, as Blu-Ray codecs cost money) a separate application to be able to play Blu-Ray discs. In your case, you should use HP MediaSmart to play your videos.

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I have HP MediaSmart (as mentioned in the question). Why doesn't that count? – Rowland Shaw Nov 4 '12 at 20:55
You have to use this application to play the movie. Media Center obviously won't "borrow" codecs from it. – DzinX Nov 4 '12 at 21:00
Are you saying it's just a badly worded message, and that it should tell me to use that application (that it implies is not yet installed) – Rowland Shaw Nov 4 '12 at 21:41
But what if the user really wants to use WMC to play blue-ray movies? – Andreas Rejbrand Nov 25 '12 at 23:15
@AndreasRejbrand : "But what if the user really wants to use WMC to play blue-ray movies?" - Well, then the user is out of luck. :) – Lumi Dec 1 '12 at 16:41

You get this warning because:

  • a Blu-ray isn't a DVD and
  • Windows Media Center might not have the correct codecs installed for Blu-ray

The warning states that you don't have a correct application to view it, not the correct drive, which is is why your Blu-ray does work with HP MediaSmart.

If you're unhappy with it try VLC. I don't have a Blu-ray myself but a quick Google of the keywords "VLC Blu-ray" tells me that it is possible.

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protected by Arjan Mar 22 '14 at 16:02

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