How to add Windows Media Center to Windows 10

UPDATE Windows Media Center will not be part of Windows 10 and if you upgrade a Windows 7 or 8 machine with Windows Media Center the upgrade process will remove Media Center.

You can read more about Windows 10 Entertainment apps and media servers in my new book.

Official word from Microsoft:

If you have Windows 7 Home Premium, Windows 7 Professional, Windows 7 Ultimate, Windows 8 Pro with Media Centre or Windows 8.1 Pro with Media Centre and you install Windows 10, Windows Media Centre will be removed

You can read about other streaming and media features on our Windows 10 section of TDL

Checkout our alternatives for Windows Media Center in Windows 10

This is the original post but it no longer works:


Windows 10 Technical Preview doesn’t ship with Windows Media Center and we still don’t know if Media Center will ship with the new OS but it is possible to add Windows Media Center to Windows 10. You need to have your Windows 8 Pro with Windows Media Center key that you used for your Windows 8 install and there are a couple of steps needed to get it working.

To get Media Center in Windows 10 go to the search box on the start menu and type Add Features to Windows and then the Add Features to Windows Technical Preview will be show, click on it.

You are then asked for whether you have a product key or if you want to purchase one. You currently can’t purchase one so this is where your Windows 8 Media Center key comes in. Click on I already have a product key and enter your key.

I should say at this point I am not sure of the whether Microsoft want you to use the key to test it so do it at your own risk but my key worked and when you click next it does validate the key. You are then ready to add Media Center. Click Add features to finish it off.

A couple of reboots later and Windows Media Center is up and running.

Hopefully this will work in future builds of the OS and in the final version. So Media Center lives!

About the author Ian Dixon:
Ian Dixon is a Microsoft MVP (Most Valuable Professional), founder of tech site and producer of the weekly The Digital Lifestyle Show podcast. Ian has been writing and talking about Windows for over 10 years and has over 20 years in IT as an IT Manager. Ian has thousands of followers on Twitter and Facebook and over 4 million views on his YouTube channel.
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  • John Zajdler
    I got this going also. however my guide data is not updating even though I saw the small windows icon in the taskbar go online. I’m in Canada.
  • hechacker1
    It works and even plays back content if previously recorded. But I read that it won’t work with cablecards. So i’m not sure if it has any function for recording. Has any body verified that?
  • Tim
    This wont work anymore!
  • anyone tried it on the RTM of Windows 10? Is it still working this method? I’m a Win8.1 with Media Center user…and I’m scared to update to Win10 and loose this important functionality. Shame on Microsoft!
    • I don’t think it will work but I haven’t tried it. If you do upgrade you will loose Media Center to doubt about it so don’t upgrade your system if you want to keep it
    • Ken Heximer
      I am in the same boat. I will DEFINITELY NOT switch to the likes of Windows 10 if it means sacrificing the one feature of Windows I truly like — Windows Media Center! No way. I will use WMC until the very day it stops running and I pray that day NEVER COMES.
      • V Soto
        I totally agree. I used to have a super dvd player, but that was replaced and I got used to Windows Media Player. Now, besides homework, I use the computer primarily for watching DVDs. If #10 does not have the media player, why should I upgrade from my #7 that still works fine. When the hardware fails, I will take what I get, but I hope I get a media player!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I want it! I need it! Do I have to go to Linux for more options??????
        • Windows Media Player is still in Windows 10
          • brian3i
            Yes, it is in there, but once you use Groove, Media Player stops working.
          • Jayson Cardwell
            not necessarary, I’m a windows 10 user and wmp works fine after using groove. unfortunately I am forced to use VLC for better audio
  • Marc De Smet
    If you do this, can you still get updates for windows 10? Or does Microsoft think your PC is Windows 8.1 Pro with Media center?
  • dwg42
    I ask MS Chat and they said it is being discontinued and replaced with Xbox Music and Video, a dvd player. It will not record over the air tv when coupled with a tv tuner as WMC does.
  • BeamerSmith
    There are 2 flaws I see with this..
    1) I use Windows 7 so I don’t have a Win8Pro “key” and
    2) They have already started screwing with WMC so that the guide won’t update with useful information eg New or rerun, proper episode information, etc..
    • If you read the start of the post you will see that it no longer works
    • TheLastEagle
      Around the end of July, they switched EPG providers from Zap2It to Rovi. It is said that if you change your DNS server settings to (Google) and THEN try updating the guide, it works correctly again…
  • Stephen McQuarrie
    Windows 10 doesn’t come with WMC (Gutted) and I can’t see anyway of adding it through “Add Features”. I am very disappointed with Microsoft for taking this out, and up to now I haven’t found anything even close to the functionality of WMC to replace it with. Maybe we should get a petition going to get Microsoft to give it back to us as a free update, I even paid for it on Windows 8, I wonder how much they made from a piece of software that has hardly changed since Vista (because it didn’t need to be messed with) by selling it as an addon for Windows 8. If the lack of WMC is going o be a deal breaker for most users, Microsoft aren’t going to get Windows 10 on as many Desktops as they’d like. I’m even thinking of throwing together another Desktop and putting Windows 7 on it just so I can have the WMC back in my life to use everyday again!
    • If you read the start of the post you will see it no longer works
    • How_delightful
      I remember when they apparantly thieved MS Chess off us when we Paid good Money to UPGRADE from Windows 7 to Windows 8.
      Not sure why they apparently like thieving so much.
      • TheLastEagle
        They are who they are. Making us pay for them to foul up our systems is what they do best…
    • TheLastEagle
      My money says WMC will return to 10 once they figure out how to sell subscriptions for it…
  • Ernas LTU
    Can I copy WMC files from one Windows 10 machine to other without it. Will it work?
  • Japheth Martin
    What if you don’t know your key? Is there a way to get it again?
    • It does not work any more, see the beginning of the post
  • TheLastEagle
    One’s best bet is to stay where you are (7/8/8.1), if you need WMC.
    Looked at and played with MediaPortal for a while. Getting free EPG listings integrated into it was a REAL chore that took some time to finally figure out. Joe/Jan User DEFINITELY couldn’t figure out how to pull it off…
  • Bryan Downer
    This crap doesn’t work… another Microsoft lie!!!!
    • Samale Matina
      Its not crap, you just don’t have enough brain cells to understand.
      There’s no lie, Microsoft clearly said they will not ship WMC with new windows, but if diehards fans want to make it work then its up to them. stop complaining about things you don’t understand.
      • Bryan Downer
        I wasn’t talking to you left coast. But since you chimed in, perhaps you would be so kind as to provide everyone with all the answers.
        • Samale Matina
          What answers… you are the one who made a one liner… blatant statement.

          What’s answers are you looking for ?

          You want to make an old piece of software work with a new operating system (which the vendor has said won’t work). And then complain its a lie doesn’t work. What are you on ?

          • Bryan Downer
            Thanks for the ad hominem, comrade, stick to plagiarizing propaganda websites. Don’t need answers from you, rhetorical statement. Apparently, I’m on your mind now.
  • Debra StAmour
    I had no choice about 10. My 11 yr. old computer died and the only ones I could afford all came with 10 installed. I dislike 10 for numerous reasons. First being the WMC and then the no google toolbar… I’d love to go back to 7.
  • Eric Wi
    I wish they would just off sell the product to someone like Ceton who pretty much ONLY works with WMC.
  • 1010todorojo
    Don’t know if it will help but perhaps if everyone took the time to send in feedback to Microsoft about bringing back support for WMC using the Windows Feedback app in Windows 10 (click start then type “feedback”, then click on “Windows Feedback”) perhaps they’ll eventually see how important it is to all of us.
    Once the Windows Feedback app is open search for media center and click “Upvote” on each media center result you see.
    Spread the word and hopefully crowd sourcing this petition will get it supported again.
  • Tony Vaccaro
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