How to Install Windows Media Player on a Mac

by Daniel Barrows

There are a variety of video formats in use by different operating systems, one of the most popular of which is Windows Media Video (.wmv). However, if you are using an Apple Mac computer, you may need to download a special version of Microsoft's Windows Media Player before you will be able to view this type of movie file. Microsoft provides this download free-of-charge and the installation procedure is very straightforward. To install Windows Media Player on your Mac, simply follow the instructions below.


Open your web browser and navigate to Microsoft's download page for Windows Media Player for Mac (see Resources below).


Review the available options and click on the link best suited to your needs. If you have a G4, G5 or Intel-based Mac and wish to view Windows Media files directly in your QuickTime Player application, select "Windows Media Components for QuickTime." If you have a Mac running OS X and wish to install a standalone Windows Media player, select "Windows Media Player 9 for Mac OS X." If you have a Mac running the Classic OS, version 8.1 or later, select "Windows Media player 7.1 for Mac."


Click on the download link and save the installation program to your desktop.


Locate the installer icon and double-click on it.


Follow any onscreen instructions and wait for the application to finish installation. If you have chosen to install a standalone application, you will now find it in your "Applications" folder. If you have chosen to integrate Windows Media capabilities into your QuickTime player, restart your web browser and any open QuickTime applications. Installation is now complete.


  • check The minimum system requirements for Windows Media Player for the Mac are a computer with a PowerPC 603e 180 MHz processor, 32 MB of RAM and 10 MB of free hard drive space.
  • check Microsoft has ceased development on any future version of their "Windows Media player for the Mac;" however, they have pledged to keep the download page open for future users.
  • check If you wish to view .wmv files on your Mac and are seeking an alternative to Windows Media Player, consider the open-source application VLC; see Resources below for a download link.
  • check Some .wmv files feature built-in protection to prevent unauthorized playback. If you wish to view one of these files, you will need to acquire a license key from the content provider. Windows Media Player will attempt to do so automatically, but in some cases you may be asked to pay a fee or enter your email address.

About the Author

Daniel Barrows has been working as a freelance writer for businesses in the Southern California area for over two years. He has also published articles online for websites like and He has received a Bachelors of Arts in English from the University of California, Berkeley.

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