Using Windows Media player with NVDA

 Keys you will use with NVDA with Windows Media player

In most cases you will use the Shift/Tab key and the Enter key or Spacebar. You can also use the Ctrl key + Tab key to take you between different sections of the player. There may be some times where you need to use object navigation to get to some parts of Windows Media player.  Please see the section in the user manual called object navigation for more information.

When Windows Media player opens, you will notice NVDA will land on a tree view and you will hear NVDA say library navigation tree view.  It may land on one of the branches such as music. You can arrow down and up this tree view. You will hear playlist, music, videos, and pictures.

If you hear the branch is collapsed you can use the right arrow key to expand it.  In a case where the music branch is expanded you will hear there are 3 options. If you arrow down you will hear artist, album and Genre.  If you arrow back up to the artist (and have music already loaded), when you press the Enter key then Tab, you will hear details pane list the name of the artist, how many songs there are,  the length of the album and even a rating. To get back to the tree view, use the Shift Tab key which will put you onto the artist branch. You can now arrow down to the album section then press the Enter key, then Tab once and you will hear the name of the album. Shift Tab back again and you will land on the album branch. You can now arrow down to the Genre section. Press the Enter key, then Tab once and you will hear what section it is under (for example rock).

You can repeat the same process as you go down the tree view. What is said will depend on what other types of media you have loaded.

Remember, to open a branch it is the right arrow key; to collapse it is the left arrow key; and the down and up arrow keys are to go between them.

If you want to get to a playlist you have loaded, arrow back up the branch until you get to music,  then press the Enter key, then Tab once. You will hear NVDA say details pane list. Here you will hear the name of the songs, how many songs there are, and the length of them etcetera. You can arrow down or up this section to pick a song, and then press the Enter key on it to play it.

To get back to the music branch use the Shift Tab key to do this.

Adding music to your playlist

To put together a play list, press the Ctrl key + the letter O to bring up the open dialogue box. You will need to Shift/Tab a couple of times until you hear NVDA say tree view. Here you can use the arrow keys to navigate to where your music is stored. If you press the Enter key on the album you want, it will take you inside of it (where all of the songs are for that album). If you want all of the songs, press the Ctrl key + the letter A to select all of the songs there.  If you only want certain songs you can press the Ctrl key + Space bar to select and deselect the songs you want, then you will need to Tab to the Open button to add them to the list.

Repeat the process to add more music to your play list.

You can also do it with the Applications key. Press the Ctrl key + letter O to bring up the open dialogue box. Shift/Tab a couple of times until you get to the tree view. Use the arrow key to navigate to your folder/directory where your music albums are stored. You can then arrow down the list of albums there and use the applications key (if you have one) or the Shift key and F 10 key to bring up the context menu. Arrow down until you hear NVDA say Add to Windows Media Player list, then press the Enter key. That album is now added to your playlist. Repeat the process to add more albums to listen to. You would have noticed just below this menu, to add it to your play list, there is a menu to Play with Windows Media Player. If you had have pressed the Enter key on it, the music you selected would’ve started playing.

You can also do this through the File Explorer/File Manager in Windows. Press the Windows key + letter E so it comes up. Locate where your music is stored then use the applications key (or if you do not have it the Shift key + F 10 key) to bring up the context menu;  then either add it to your playlist or simply just play the music you selected.

Make sure Windows Media Player is open when you do this.

Back to the tree view interface main page

Now we are back on the main page. If you now arrow up or down the list (and stop on the music branch,  then press the Enter key,  then the Tab key) you will notice all of the albums/music you have added there. You can arrow down or up this list or you can press the Enter key on any of the songs to play them.

You will also notice there are check boxes for each song. These can be checked or unchecked . This may be in the case of you wanting to rip your music manually.

Saving your play list

Where your list of songs are (under the music library section) if you Tab once, it will put you on the save list option. Press the Enter key on it and give it a name, then press the Enter key. Now your playlist will have a title of whatever you gave it.

You will now need to Shift/Tab a few times until you get back to your library navigation tree view and you will hear music collapsed. You can now arrow up to the play list and it should have the name of your new play list.

If you made a mistake and you do not want that play list any more, locate it, then press the Delete key. You will now get a message that says Delete from library and my computer. Just tab to the Ok button then press the Enter key and it will be gone.

Some useful shortcuts for Windows Media Player

Some player controls and their keyboard shortcuts

Play or pause a file Ctrl + P

Stop playback Ctrl + S

Mute volume F7

Increase volume F9

Decrease volume F8

Play previous item Ctrl +B

Play next item Ctrl + F

Rewind Ctrl + Shift + B

Fast forward Ctrl + Shift + F

Play faster than normal speed (time compression) Ctrl + Shift + G

Play at normal speed Ctrl + Shift + N

Play slower than normal speed (time expansion) Ctrl + Shift + S

To play a CD or DVD

1. Insert the disc you want to play into the drive;  or if you want to play a disc that is already inserted, open Windows Media Player, and then, in the Player Library, select the disc name in the navigation pane.

2. If you inserted a DVD, select a DVD title or chapter name.


If you start to play a DVD or VCD in the Player Library, the Player automatically switches to Now Playing mode.

Using the applications key

There will be cases when you want to use the Applications key when looking for music. Some people find it a lot easier to browse their music folders then add them to the play list. If you do it this way, locate your folder where your music is stored (for example music folder) then press the Applications key. A context menu will come up and give you the following options for Windows Media player (for example Add to Windows Media Player list and Play with Windows Media Player).

Backing up a CD also known as ripping a CD

Press the Alt key until the file menu comes up, then arrow down to the tools sub menu. You will need to look for the Options menu then press the Enter key. You will be given quite a few options under different tabs. You can tab through the different sections given and use the left or right arrow keys to navigate the tabs there. Locate the rip music tab. Under this tab you will be given options for when you are about to rip the CD. This may be the type of format of music such as WMA or MP3 etcetera and where you want the ripped music to go.

Please note

If you previously selected Rip CD automatically on the Rip Music tab in the Options dialog box (in Windows Media player), a CD will immediately begin ripping after you insert it into the drive. Usually Windows Media Player will be open to do this so you can see what the name of the artist, album or songs are.

If you do decide when you insert a music CD to rip every time you put one in, this could be a pain if you want to listen to it. You could always use another media player such as Winamp to listen to your music.

If you do decide not to use this option when you insert the music CD, you can also do it from the main screen. You will need to use object navigation to get to this option which is under the command tool bar. You will need to then go to the Organize part of it, then move to the option you want (for example rip cd).

Please listen to the audio tutorial if you use this option.

Burning a CD or DVD

Under the tools menu, locate the options menu, then press the Enter key. Under the next section you will need to locate the Burn tab. When you locate it you can tab down this section and choose the options you want to do.

Make sure you apply your settings, then tab to the Ok button, then press the Enter key. This will now use Windows Media player to burn your music discs.

Here's how to burn an audio CD: 

1. Open Windows Media Player.

2. In the Player Library, select the Burn tab, select the Burn Options button, and then select Audio CD or Data CD or DVD.

3. Insert a blank disc into your CD or DVD burner.

You will need to use object navigation to get to these tabs in the player. Please see the section on object navigation in the user manual for more information.

Please note

Another alternative to burn your CD’S or DVD’S is to go to the autoplay settings in Control Panel.

You can specify under the auto play settings in the control panel what to do when you insert a blank CD or DVD into the drive. This will then give you the option to burn the disk when it is inserted into the DVD or Blu ray burner.

This will give you the option to burn your CD or DVD to disk using File Explorer.  This can be all types of data.

If you get a message that says that your computer is missing a codec or that you require a DVD decoder, you're probably trying to play, burn, or sync a file that was compressed by using a codec that Windows or the Player doesn't include by default. For more information about codecs, see Codecs: frequently asked questions. If you would like to and want more codecs etcetera download the K –lite mega codec pack from