Windows 7 wind-down: Microsoft guts the info you see in Windows Media Player

Microsoft drops metadata service from Windows Media Player and Windows Media Center for Windows 7.
Written by Liam Tung, Contributing Writer on

As Microsoft prepares to switch off support for Windows 7 in January 2020, the company has decided to carve out a key part of its default media player apps. 

Microsoft notes in a support document spotted by Windows Latest that users soon won't be able to view the title, genre, and artist for songs in the apps, and the apps will stop showing actors, cover art, and TV guide for movies. 

The change affects Windows Media Center and Windows Media Player and is occurring because Microsoft is killing a metadata service the two apps rely on to present content information. 

Microsoft offers no further explanation for dropping the service beyond saying its decision is based on how users have been using the software. 

"After looking at customer feedback and usage data, Microsoft decided to discontinue this service," Microsoft says

"This means that new metadata won't be updated on media players that are installed on your Windows device. However, any information that's already been downloaded will still be available."

SEE: 20 pro tips to make Windows 10 work the way you want (free PDF)

The change affects Windows Media Center on Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows 8.1, as well as Windows Media Player on Windows 7. It does not affect Windows Media Player on Windows 10, Windows 8.1, and Windows 8. 

Windows Media Center debuted with Windows XP in 2002 and, after discontinuing development in 2009, Microsoft opted not to bundle it with Windows 10 in 2015

The end of the metadata service for both apps doesn't affect any other functionality, such as playback, navigation collections, and media streaming.   

"Only secondary features that require downloading of new metadata are potentially affected," Microsoft notes. 

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