None of the MPEG-2 codecs recommended on the WMP help page are available free.
Without installing a codec pack, or (at this stage) installing another media player, are there any recommended free MPEG-2 codecs out there that will give me DVD playback in WMP 11?

I'm looking for just the specific codecs that will do the job rather than an all encompassing codec pack which may have unforseen detrimental effects.

closed as off-topic by Kevin Panko, kobaltz, Moses, LawrenceC, Journeyman Geek May 1 '14 at 1:09

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  • My answer has been deleted since it did not answer your question. – alex Oct 9 '09 at 6:22

Most MPEG-2 codecs are hard to find by themselves, as nowadays most people just download codec packs and don't bother with individual codecs. You can download such a codec pack and then extract the ones that interest you.

The latest K-Lite pack contains two MPEG-2 codecs:

  • MPEG-2 (Cyberlink) [version]
  • MPEG-2 (Gabest) [version]

If you want a very complete codec pack, use the K-Lite Mega Codec Pack. It is the K-Lite variant with the most codecs. However, as far as MPEG-2 codecs are concerned, only these two codecs are included in all K-Lite versions.

To find a codec's filename, you can use InstalledCodec :

InstalledCodec is a small utility displays the list of all Codec drivers and DirectShow filters currently installed on your system. For each component the following information is displayed: Display Name, Type, Disabled Status, Installed/Modified Time, Description, Company Name, Filename, and more...

Installing a codec is normally only a matter of copying it to its place (normally system32) and issuing regsvr32 on it. See this guide:
How to install/uninstall DLL and AX codec/filter files

  • He just said in a comment he doesn't want a codec pack. – alex Oct 8 '09 at 18:20
  • He edited that AFTER I gave my answer. So I edited my answer as well. – harrymc Oct 9 '09 at 6:07
  • 1
    "Without installing a codec pack" was in the original question :¬) – pelms Oct 9 '09 at 8:15
  • Installed and uninstalled, just to get the codecs. Also, the installation is fully parametrized, so one can just install the minimum. – harrymc Oct 9 '09 at 13:16

I came accross the GPL MPEG-1/2 DirectShow Decoder Filter which gives DVD playback in WMP.

The only possible problem was a warning from the Windows XP Video Decoder Checkup Utility that it does not support synchronization - not a problem for me.

  • You should consider marking your answer as accepted if it actually solved your problem. – alex Oct 9 '09 at 11:01
  • @alex: Just leaving it for a while in case anyone knows of anything better. – pelms Oct 9 '09 at 11:59
  • That's a good idea. I wanted to suggest that as well. – alex Oct 10 '09 at 6:08
  • I installed this codec, but I still do not have sound with DVD's in windows media player. – systemovich Jan 3 '10 at 0:25

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