No Screen Caps with Windows Media Player

By Deane Barker on July 13, 2004

Did you know that Windows Media Player won’t let you screen cap? I tried it today — with a high-definition AVI playing, I screen-capped the window. However, when I pasted it into Irfanview there was nothing but black where the image was supposed to be. I tried screen-capping the entire desktop — same problem.



  1. Ditto with Apple’s DVD Player in OS X. But leave it to the third-party developers to come up with a free solution to the problem; Capture Me does the job. Not quite as elegant as an Apple app would be, but hey, it’s free and it works.

    No doubt there’s something similar out there for PC’s.

    Go home and go to bed, Deane.

  2. Have you tried disabling hardware acceleration in Windows Media Player? Do that then restart the player. You can then take screenshots.

    Not a problem with Windows Media Player. This will happen with any player taking advantage of Hardware Acceleration.

  3. Did you hold down the shift key while pressing the print screen button? This method works for me.

  4. in Windows Media Player (8 and above I believe), if you press CTR+I it will save the current frame in video for you in either JPG or BMP formats.

  5. I used to have WinDVD and when I’d play DVD’s I could press the ‘P’ key and it would make a screen capture of the image on the screen and save it in a Screen Capture file. I could do this while the DVD was playing or when it was paused. Can I not do this with Windows Media Player for XP?

  6. Have tried all of these suggestions, and it still isn’t working for me…

    Anyone know any third-party software for Windows XP?

  7. I think Microsoft does not allow the making of screen captures anymore, because it fits in their Digital Rights Management plans.

    An example:

    Nowadays a lot of rock concerts are broadcasted live on the internet. Nice of them, to let us watch it for free. (But in most cases, we only hear/see a couple of numbers (in the beginning or so).

    Why is this only a couple of numbers: Because:

    • U watch for free…
    • U can still moviecapture the livestreams
    • U can then sell this ‘bootleg’ for money, or watch it later (without having paid for it (which u do if u buy a DVD of the artist(s)))

    And I think that Microsoft is planning to make it impossible to do this. So that u cannot moviecapture images(photos) and/or video (streams, Pay Per View-movies,…) anymore.

    Offcourse, u can still tape it by filming your PC screen, but then there is loss of quality…

    And thats also wy we cannot make a printscreen anymore of our videos in Media Player…

  8. dont know if this helps, but i use the newest WMP for XP and the CTRL+I thing worked fine for me. thanks.

  9. it’s ctrl + I as pronounced as “EYE”.

    I and l look the same, cept the first one is an i and the second is an L

  10. I know this is gonna sound really stupid but i tried all of those ..but uh…where do the caps go once uve done that?

  11. You know how when you enlarge the movie you’re watching in windows media player, there’s the border at the top and bottom that goes away after a minute if you push the mouse cursor to the side? Well I’ve figured out, if you take the screen cap, with the borders showing, it will work. The only time you go to paste it into paint and all you see is black, is when you’re making the copy from a fullscreen picture with NO borders. basically you have to live with the borders but then can still copy the picture, and of course later cut them off with paint. ..which is a pain. Stupid Microsoft.

  12. I’ve tried all of those way to save screen caps, but none of them seem to work for me. I have a dell computer.

  13. Just an FYI: None of these keyboard suggestions work for me, using Window Media Player 10, WinXP SP2.

    I am going off to follow the links now…

  14. Addendum: As others have stated, if you don’t want to buy a program you don’t need, disable acceleration ( Tools->Options->Performance->Video Acceleration) and print-scrn/paste to image application.

    Annoying, but it works.

  15. Ctrl+I works for certain videos only. Most of the time I use Ctrl+Shift+P, and I make screencaps using ACDSee 6.0. I’m using WMP ver.10 for Windows XP.

  16. Turning off Video Acceleration does not work with Windows Media Player 10, on XP with SP2. Neither does CTRL+ I, or CTRL+Shift+P.

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