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Windows Media Player in Linux 340

mr lee writes "Today CodeWeavers released CrossOver plugin 1.1 which now supports Windows Media Player 6.4 under Linux. As much I would not like to see or support sites that use Windows Media shite, its still really nice to have this option. Not too mention kick ass QuickTime playing." Update: 02/27 18:30 GMT by H : I've actually been using this - it's done really really well. I'm planning on doing a fuller review soon, but it's very well done.
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Windows Media Player in Linux

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  • what about Mplayer (Score:4, Informative)

    by steve.m ( 80410 ) on Wednesday February 27, 2002 @02:10PM (#3078713) Journal
    which supports Win32 Codecs including Quicktime MOV, etc. see Here [].
  • by HMC CS Major ( 540987 ) on Wednesday February 27, 2002 @02:11PM (#3078725) Homepage
    It's modded (+3, funny) as I type, but it really is true ...

    See [] and 0021 [] for details.
  • Too late (Score:4, Informative)

    by jandrese ( 485 ) <> on Wednesday February 27, 2002 @02:11PM (#3078730) Homepage Journal
    Mplayer [] already does pretty much everything Windows Media Player can do, and it's native to Linux. The Quicktime support mentioned in the writeup is a red herring, Windows Media Player (IIRC) still does not support Sorenson Quicktimes, making it no better than xanim at playing modern .mov files.
  • by Mike Hicks ( 244 ) <> on Wednesday February 27, 2002 @02:13PM (#3078745) Homepage Journal
    Yeah, back when it was known as the NetShow player (this was back in 1997 or 1998). It was released shortly after Microsoft acquired another company that had made a cross-platform player. MS had said that they would release another version, but it never happened.

    I used it a few times, mostly to play the .asf video of Win98 crashing for Bill Gates at a computer conference..
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 27, 2002 @02:19PM (#3078792)
    Ok, you might want to read this:

    The crossover plugin will let you play Windows media player files, but emedding inside the browser is very problematic. Why? simple - The Windows Media player when works with Netscape - uses Netscape's Java (1.1.x) to communicate with the player and to embedd the window.

    What does this means to you? it means that you can watch WMP embedded in your browser - if you're using the old Netscape - Version 4.x - not Konqureror, not Mozilla (any build).

    It's not CodeWeaver's fault - it's the way MS did it - the exact thing will happend on Windows. The guys from CodeWeavers will look into it and probably try to hack something..

    Other features that are not mentioned - you can now use Trillian, Real Player 8 (the much better Windows version, not the crappy Linux version), you can install fonts directly from MS web site, and the speed seems to be imrpvoed.

    Lots of other plugins has been added to the crossover, and IMHO it's worth the $19.95 price (there is a free upgrade to previous owners), and of course - all the hacks that was done to wine - are rolling back to the main tree - so your money helps open source...

    I'm sure that people here will write that "don't buy it since it support non standard audio/video format" - to them I'm saying that when 90% of the people have those players - webmasters won't give a crap about others...

    Mesh Mesh
  • by Doktor Memory ( 237313 ) on Wednesday February 27, 2002 @02:25PM (#3078834) Journal
    [...] but Quicktime under windows is [...]

    That's all well and good, but Mr. Lee wasn't talking about Quicktime under Windows. He said, and I quote:
    As much I would not like to see or support sites that use Windows Media shite, its still really nice to have this option. Not too mention kick ass QuickTime playing."
    He is clearly referring to using the Crossover Plugin to play Quicktime under Linux, which it indeed does a "kick-ass" job of doing.

    You might want to have that jerking knee attended to by a physician.
  • by kraf ( 450958 ) on Wednesday February 27, 2002 @02:26PM (#3078845)
    From the website:
    ( ml# )

    "Codecs: any codecs allowed, both CBR and VBR. Note: most new mov files use Sorenson video and QDesign Music audio. These formats are completely secret, and only Apple's quicktime player is able to play these files (on win/mac only)."

    So it basically doesn't support MOV except some old stuff.

  • by Edgewize ( 262271 ) on Wednesday February 27, 2002 @02:47PM (#3078997)
    Um, no, it wasn't fake. The 'slide in' effect came from the video source. If you've ever changed resolutions on an older video projector, you'd see that the horizontal alignment starts way off and then slides to the center.
  • Re:Codecs (Score:4, Informative)

    by HeUnique ( 187 ) <hetz-home@cobolS ... com minus distro> on Wednesday February 27, 2002 @02:47PM (#3079004) Homepage
    So far - from my tests - it played every movie that Windows Media player can play in standard windows - and yes, the player downloads the codec from microsoft site and installs it..
  • Re:Likely Not Legal (Score:3, Informative)

    by EllF ( 205050 ) on Wednesday February 27, 2002 @02:50PM (#3079035) Homepage
    Actually, if you re-read the snippet you quoted, it indicates that legal use is granted if you "have a validly licensed copy" of at least Win98 or better. In my case, the last operating system I purchased from Microsoft was Windows 98SE; thus, I meet the EULA requirements for using Windows Media Player on another operating system.

    Posession of the license is key, not having an installed copy of Windows.
  • Re:Ever tried to (Score:2, Informative)

    by aosgood ( 318737 ) on Wednesday February 27, 2002 @02:55PM (#3079077) Homepage
    start > run > mplayer2 > hit enter....

    then view > options > formats > hit select all then ok. close mplayer2 and run some windows media formats. you'll notice that you get the old one back without using the wmp8 hog.
  • by EllF ( 205050 ) on Wednesday February 27, 2002 @03:00PM (#3079101) Homepage
    A nice alternative to using Windows Media Player under linux for viewing movies (even windows media formats!) is "MPlayer", located at: []. It's a bit tricky for a novice to install, but the effort is well worth it.

    Supported formats current include "MPEG, VOB, AVI, VIVO, ASF/WMV, QT/MOV, FLI, NuppelVideo, yuv4mpeg, FILM, RoQ, and some RealMedia files", as well as "MPEG, VOB, AVI, VIVO, ASF/WMV, QT/MOV, FLI, NuppelVideo, yuv4mpeg, FILM, RoQ, and some RealMedia files", to quote from the information on mplayer's site.
  • Re:Likely Not Legal (Score:5, Informative)

    by fobbman ( 131816 ) on Wednesday February 27, 2002 @03:03PM (#3079133) Homepage
    The EULA snippet from above appears in WMPlayer versions 7 onward. This is why they went with 6.4, as this requirement does not show up in 6.4's EULA.

    CodeWeaver's is, however, looking for a way around this for those of us who have Windows installed on another partition.

  • by Junta ( 36770 ) on Wednesday February 27, 2002 @03:07PM (#3079162)
    Of course, to play realmedia files maybe you should try realplayer? Just a thought... Thought the site is horrible to navigate, you can find it. Basically, you have to request the older version, then select unix, then poke around enough and you can even find a RealOne beta for linux, which supports the XVideo extension for hardware scaling and colorspace conversion.

    For Windows Media, try avifile, PythonTheater, xine, or mplayer. Though it is good they are working towards this stuff, Windows Media Player through wine is inelegant, since the overhead imposed by wine and the lack of XVideo support makes media playback bad. Only reason to tolerate QuickTime through wine is because there is no other option for Sorenson encoded media...
  • More Windows Media (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 27, 2002 @03:08PM (#3079168)
    There's lots of windows media options in Linux now, it seems. Xine [] has a windows media streaming plugin [] that doesn't work so hot for me, but it works, and it's native linux. I've never been able to get the codeweaver stuff to install on my machine without crashing halfway, and it makes me nervous as hell when those microsoft installs take over my machine. Onward, majorMMS!
  • Re:Likely Not Legal (Score:1, Informative)

    by quake74 ( 466627 ) on Wednesday February 27, 2002 @03:54PM (#3079521)
    As far as I understand, the EULA just says that you need to own a copy of a Microsoft operating system to use WMP. It doesn't forbid you to use it under any operationg systems. Since the vast majority of people who wants to use WMP already own a version of Windows, I don't see why the EULA is a problem... Quake74
  • Re:Likely Not Legal (Score:3, Informative)

    by InodoroPereyra ( 514794 ) on Wednesday February 27, 2002 @04:11PM (#3079662)
    Yes, they are aware of that. There is a post [] in one of their mailing lists about this, from October 2001. Jeremy White mainly says

    As to Windows Media Player, we've really deemphasized
    our focus on it, entirely because the license
    agreement for WMP is fairly draconian.

    However, Wine is continually improving, and I'm hoping
    that Wine will support WMP in the future for those
    that have a valid WMP license.



    I really wonder what happened after that, did they find a way around the license?. Anyway, long life to the great wine community ...

    Don Inodoro
  • Browser embedding (Score:3, Informative)

    by dmaxwell ( 43234 ) on Wednesday February 27, 2002 @05:16PM (#3080218)
    Plugger 4.0 worked well for me with an MPlayer/Galeon combo. I'll give out a Plugger hint you won't find on the Plugger site. At on my Debian machine it needed a little help to register it's MIME types with Mozilla. Put a copy of the pluggerrc file in the .mozilla directory in your $HOME. Any time you edit the pluggerrc (the one in your $HOME/.mozilla) to add another MIME type, delete the appreg file in the same directory. This forces Mozilla/Galeon to reparse the pluggerc file.

    Plugger recently updated to 4.0, be sure you're using that version. Plugger can be had from:

    BTW. I was able to compile it under Debian PowerPC and it worked fine there.
  • by Nailer ( 69468 ) on Wednesday February 27, 2002 @05:33PM (#3080389)
    which supports Win32 Codecs including Quicktime MOV, etc. see Here [].

    Comparing the two:
    • MPlayer doesn't work within browsers.
    • Neither does it, to my knowledge, using 6.0, play Sorenson Quicktime, which constitutes 99% of Quicktime on the web
    • MPlayer does not, and according to its developers, will not ever play audio files
    • Crossover has a nicer plugin config app and documentation that's more pleasant to its users.
    • Crossovr does many other things MPlayer doesn't - eg, QuicktimeVR, Ipix, Shockwave, etc.
    • Neither product is Open Source, as neither satisfies condition 2 of the Open Source Definition, despite the mplayer folk telling people it is. I get the same level of freedom with both apps, and the license fee for Crossover is small. At least with Codeweavers, licensing cash goes towards Alexandre Julliard and the other founders of the Wine project who give a lot back to the Open Source community.
  • by cannonball_D ( 562305 ) on Wednesday February 27, 2002 @06:06PM (#3080681)
    Hmmm... According to the email from CodeWeavers (received after paid download), WMP is known to not work in Mozilla, and following up on that shows that patches are in the works for a potential 0.9.9 fix. Of course, this is just for embedded media, and it works perfectly for anything that launches the player. I'm impressed and very pleased with the release. I am happy to pay for this.
  • by MrP- ( 45616 ) <> on Wednesday February 27, 2002 @06:31PM (#3080857)
    "But what am I to do about Microsoft Word, Excel, and Publisher??"

    Well, for now you can get StarOffice 5.2 at []

    Just hurry, once 6.0 comes (in May I think), it wont be free anymore.

    And once 6.0 does come, and you still want an up-to-date free office suite, try OpenOffice at []

    Good Luck!
  • by autechre ( 121980 ) on Wednesday February 27, 2002 @06:35PM (#3080885) Homepage

    Word and Excel run using Wine (not sure about Publisher...never really heard of it). OpenOffice is also a suitable replacement for those programs in almost every case (hasn't failed on me for any Word or Excel documents, and sometimes opens documents better than the "real" Office!)

  • Re:Likely Not Legal (Score:2, Informative)

    by bmo ( 77928 ) on Wednesday February 27, 2002 @06:41PM (#3080922)
    And if you ACTUALLY DO have a copy of said OS, it is perfectly legal, even if it's not installed.

    Just because Windows isn't installed doesn't mean you can't run WMP8 legally.


  • by sbombay ( 214692 ) on Wednesday February 27, 2002 @07:44PM (#3081311)
    When it comes to the Windows Media market, Microsoft is more willing to support other operating systems. Real Networks is the monoploy player in the streaming market and Microsoft will do anything to make Windows Media win this market, including supporting Linux.

    Last year a company called Starbak [] released a streaming server on Linux that supports Window Media Technology (WMT). They built the server from scratch without using any Microsoft code. They initiated OEM discussions with several companies. These large companies got nervous about a reverse engineered server and wanted Starbak to get a license from Microsoft. Suprisingly, Microsoft didn't object and licensed the technology to Starbak. Starbak lists Microsoft as a partner and they talk about Microsoft licensing WMT to Starbak.

    From the Starbak []

    "STARBAK has a Windows Media Technology (WMT) server license to support the delivery of WMT to the desktop over the company's proprietary embedded operating system (OS) platform. This WMT licensing event represented a first for the streaming media industry"

    The proprietary embedded OS is actually Linux.

    Microsoft was even willing to license the source code to other companies to port WMT to other OSes. I don't think anyone has taken them up on their offer.

  • by Junta ( 36770 ) on Thursday February 28, 2002 @12:19AM (#3082383)
    To get an idea of the convoluted navigation:
    First near bottom of screen clcik on "Previous Player Versions"
    Then the tiny "Realplayer 8 Basi is our free player" link. Then select UNIX to get new form, then you must select a Linux 2.x version to get the right screen next (rpm or tar, doesn't matter). Then ignore the download links and scroll down below item number 5.. There you are....
    To shortcut to the Unix form, here is url: ix.htm l

May all your PUSHes be POPped.