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Windows 7: Windows Media Player 12 Sucks Eggs

09 May 2010   #111
CircuitBreaker

Windows 7
 
 

All technical issues aside, my only question is this - Who at Microsoft is making these decisions? Why is it that after firing up my new laptop with Win 7 and wmp 12 that it only took me about three minutes to see that wmp 12 is incredibly inferior to wmp 11? I mean Microsoft is the largest software company on the planet, right? And they employ some of the most intelligent, brilliant minds on the planet, right? So how could they possibly make such a huge marketing/technical blunder? I here by throw down the gauntlet - I dare a Microsoft representative to tell me why they felt it necessary to dumb down wmp 12?

I'll be the first to admit that yes, like 90% of the rest of the computing world, I too have allowed myself to be sucked into the Microsoft Matrix. Willingly placed into a zombie-like trance so that my programs will work with everyone else I deal with. But after seeing MS going down this incredibly stupid path yet again, I have to ask myself "is it time to take the red (Hat) pill and unplug myself from dream world?".

I will gladly pay my annual upgrade fees, believe what they say in those stupid commercials and yes, continue clicking "Okay" when I get that "Microsoft has encountered ..." message hoping that some MS troll is actually reading my response and trying to figure out why my Bicycle Casino Games software has crashed for the millionth time. All I ask is that they please, please, PLEASE, stop making the dumb decisions. Stop taking perfectly good features and finding new and innovative ways of destroying them. Is that too much to ask for the many loyal years of politely bending over and taking it?


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09 May 2010   #112
husky

 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Chimel View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by baarod View Post
There is nothing wrong with 64-bit WMP. Ask your plugin manufacturers to support it. It's their fault. If MS were to make 64-bit default there'd be still more folks like you complaining. There already is a developers kit that shows how to target 32/64. You simply retarget and recompile and then add both plugins to your installer.
Already did, but Microsoft does not encourage them to spend extra time doing so: Right now, when they test their product on Win7 x64, it works and passes the criteria for the "Certified for Windows 7" program, because the default player is x32. Why would I complain if MS makes x64 WMP the default on x64 Windows? I'm complaining about the exact opposite.

Thanks for the info on the dev kit, it's good to see it exists. Now let's point MS Live Messenger devs to it! ^-^

I get it that you don't watch Flash offline, but that's barely an argument for those who genuinely need Flash and MKV (or BD) playback. It just appears as a bug to most users who just expect "video playback" regardless of formats, extensions, codecs, how many bits, open source, and what nots. I am just saying it's bad marketing for MS to push its own users to competitor products. Every time MS fixes such a usability bug, they save a million frustrated users from wasting a million hours every day.
First of all, if microsoft were to make windows media player 64 bit immediately, then many existing software will fail to function. You can easily switch to 64 bit if necessary but that is not the point. The point is that for majority of computer users who aren't tech enthusiasts, to make sure they have a greatest experience ever without compatibility issues, they have the 32 bit software.

@circuitbraker
How could you compare windows media player 12 to 11? First of all, wmp 12 has additional codecs for avi, H.264, mp4, divx. wmp11 would have had to rely on installing something crazy like ffdshow which is crazy, bloated, and messes up your computer completely. Second of all, these new codecs are all based on the windows media foundation which lets you play these videos with the lowest hardware requirements. Did you know, that their H.264 codec plays on a netbook? Try doing that with a directshow codec. Third of all, have you seen the way windows media player integrates with windows explorer? For an average home user, it is completely simplistic, not convoluted like some other media players. The now playing mode gives the ui a nice refreshing look, hiding all the advanced features that will confuse average users.

What you should be complaining about is that third parties are not making more media foundation codecs and making more stupid directshow codecs which are showing the age.

It is true, that we are all tech enthusiasts who prefer to customize our programs. I completely agree with the notion that a spacebar should be used pause and play.

Microsoft cannot arbitrarily include many features into their operating system even if they wished they could. For example, they cannot add a pdf reader because adobe would complain. They cannot add a native antivirus because symantec and mcafee would complain. Perhaps there are reasons why microsoft didn't include many more new features then they would have.

In addition, more features means more to support. If you have a smaller software company, fixing a bug is no big deal. It didn't affect many people anyways. However, for microsoft, do you have any idea how much the press will talk about it? Companies will curse microsoft. Apple fanboys mock us (who use windows). Average people start to distrust microsoft. That's just the reality of such a big ecosystem.


We are not the "average users". The average users want a fixed consistent method for their daily tasks. We obviously want to push software to the breaking point and see what we can squeeze out of our machines. Regular people want simplicity. If you were my grandpa, you would definitely want the video to play just by clicking it. You don't want to first adjust some advanced options, maybe enable hardware acceleration here, maybe put things brighter, configure aspect ratio, etc. You just want it to work. That is why wmp is so simple and effective.

By the way, if you describe Microsoft like "like 90% of the rest of the computing world, I too have allowed myself to be sucked into the Microsoft Matrix. Willingly placed into a zombie-like trance so that my programs will work with everyone else I deal with." wait until I introduce you to a company known as apple.
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09 May 2010   #113
CircuitBreaker

Windows 7
 
 

If you look back, my main question was and still is - why did they do away with some really good features like the mini player for the task bar? The one they replaced it with looks like something a fourth grader put together. Literally, the first thing I said after running it was "what!? You mean I have to hover over the task bar item and wait before I can pause or go forward or backward? And then don't have the ability to manipulate other controls? Oh, and then after even more time goes by, the song title finally comes up. Pathetic! I'm an average user and it took me seconds to see that. They're supposed to be experts and they let that decision get passed?

I say again - present me with a Microsoft Representative who can tell me why they felt it necessary to take away some of the features? I double dog dare them.
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09 May 2010   #114
noobvious

Win 7 Ultimate 64-bit SP1 (desktop)
 
 

Just join the rest of us that don't use WMP....problem solved!
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10 May 2010   #115
husky

 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by CircuitBreaker View Post
If you look back, my main question was and still is - why did they do away with some really good features like the mini player for the task bar? The one they replaced it with looks like something a fourth grader put together. Literally, the first thing I said after running it was "what!? You mean I have to hover over the task bar item and wait before I can pause or go forward or backward? And then don't have the ability to manipulate other controls? Oh, and then after even more time goes by, the song title finally comes up. Pathetic! I'm an average user and it took me seconds to see that. They're supposed to be experts and they let that decision get passed?

I say again - present me with a Microsoft Representative who can tell me why they felt it necessary to take away some of the features? I double dog dare them.
Obviously, they wanted to take advantage of some new features of windows 7, particularly the thumbnail previews. Itunes does the same thing now with the taskbar. I guess it is simply the way the world is moving. It makes a cleaner desktop to have the mini player be a preview. However, I agree that there are advantages to the alternative.

Thing is, there is inconsistency. If you make a small toolbar, what happens to the main program? In vista and xp, the main program just minimizes though it doesn't minimize to the taskbar. It completely disappears from the taskbar and appears as just that toolbar. For windows 7, the wmp shortcut is by default pinned to the taskbar. That means that by incorporating that toolbar, whenever you minimize the program, does it mean that the taskbar will show the program as no longer running? Won't that confuse homeusers? Or they could just have it flashing white but if you click on it nothing happens? If you look at it this way, the best senario was incorporating it into the taskbar preview.
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10 May 2010   #116
Chimel

Windows 7 x64 Ultimate English + language kits
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by husky View Post
First of all, if microsoft were to make windows media player 64 bit immediately, then many existing software will fail to function.
They had the opportunity to do that with Windows 7, or Vista for that matter, this is what the Beta and RC versions are for, help devs upgrade their software or have MS create compatibility shims so that all existing software compatibility issues are detected and fixed during beta testing.
You say the "majority of computer users who aren't tech enthusiasts ... have the 32 bit software", I say they should use x32 Windows if they are so concerned about compatibility. Never mind, this will most likely be fixed in Windows 8 x64, it was exactly the same problem with 16 vs 32 bits, it took a while to get rid of the legacy 16-bit pieces.

I don't think anybody here complains about the new features added to WMP12, I was the first to praise Windows 7 on amazon.com for its support of H.264. My personal complaints are about WMP11 regression bugs, mostly usability features that worked fine in WMP11 and don't exist anymore in WMP12. It's not just one little feature like the miniplayer, it's all of them together. MS sold us the miniplayer in Vista as a cool new feature and then decides 2 years later that it's not cool anymore? Couldn't they realize that earlier? People get used to things that work well, and get to like them and rely on them. The current preview does not have volume control, for instance. It's actually faster to click on the icon and do what you have to do in WMP rather than wait for the hovering mouse to trigger the preview and do only 3 possible operations. It's the same thing as the QuickLaunch bar, we lost several 1-click operations with Windows 7 but that's another thread.[/rant]
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19 Jul 2010   #117
Xisuma

MS Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
 
 

WMP is great if it works. Unfortunately I've had nothing but troubles with it.
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21 Jul 2010   #118
FJRoberts

Windows 7
 
 

KMPlayer is one of the best out there, i recommend it. and yes Windows media player does suck
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21 Jul 2010   #119
Chimel

Windows 7 x64 Ultimate English + language kits
 
 

Yep, and KMPlayer is pure genious for TV series, it will automatically chain episodes in the right order if they are in the same folder using the same naming convention. I also found it was sometimes able to playback slightly corrupted videos that VLC failed to repair.
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23 Jul 2010   #120
Pusspa

 
 

initially i may have agreed in kind with the sentiment that wm12 was not an upgrade, but then when i stopped treating it as wmp11, i discovered it does most of the same things, just differently, and have happily been using since. I would like to keep my windows installation free of as much 3rd party software as possible (or i may as well use a different OS). and i am very curious why the floating equaliser is such a problem? I only adjust the equalizer settings every now and then (like if i plug in external speakers, or just use the laptop speakers), and find the floating window just different not worse (or better).
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