Albums not being added to Windows Media Player

On my home desktop PC, I’m running Windows Media Player 11 under Windows XP. Last night, when attempting to sync some music with my phone, I realised that a couple of recent albums were missing from WMP. However, they were in the My Music folder, along with everything else. Clearing down the library and getting WMP to rebuild it didn’t work.

However, after a bit of searching I found that rebuilding the media library is the usual solution. Here’s what you do…

  1. Close Windows Media Player
  2. Ensure that service “Window Media Player Network Sharing Service” isn’t runnong
  3. Find the directory %USERPROFILE%\Local Settings\Application Data\Microsoft\Media Player\ and rename or delete it.

At this point, WMP usually then works. But not in my case. Instead I found a lesser known solution – basically, the system flags have been set for these files. Unfortunately, Windows file dialogue doesn’t tell you this so you have to resort to the Command Window.

Navigate (in a command window) to your music folder and then run…

dir /ads /s

This will list any folders that have the system flag set. In my case my missing albums were listed. To reset the system flag run the following…
attrib -s *.* /d /s

Some errors will occur – these are related to the system files that are in each album folder. However, this command doesn’t affect them due to them being hidden.

When I then re-added my music folder to WMP the missing music appeared!

David Artiss

David is the owner and main author of this website. Working as an IT Professional for 25 years and programming for far longer, he is a self-confessed geek and gadget fan. Overweight, glasses wearing and having a deep interest in science fiction and comic book heroes, he doesn't avoid the stereotype.

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