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Why Windows Media Player 12 Cannot Display Non-English Characters Properly?

The Windows 7 English edition default system locale is set to Chinese (Simplified, PRC) but yet Windows Media Player 12 cannot properly display some of the Chinese songs title. What is wrong?

You probably knows the trick (which I have posted here before) on how to tweak Windows Media Player to display Chinese characters properly, or the trick on how to get Windows English edition run and display non-Unicode / Chinese version programs.

Change Windows 7 default system locale to run non-Unicode programs, e.g. the Chinese version program.

Yes, you apply the trick but then find out that some of the songs title with non-Unicode characters do not rendered properly.

Tweak Windows Media Player 12 to display non-Unicoded Chinese character properly.

In my case, I realize the glitch is caused by Windows 7 Music Library feature – if a folder containing those non-Unicode songs are added to Music Library before the system locale is changed to support the said language, then those songs titles will not be shown properly and thus appear as weird characters in Windows Media Player 12.

My fix for this problem is simple, as what I have tested:

1) Remove that folder from Music Library – open Windows Explorer, click Music Library, click the location link (circled in the following screenshot), select the folder and click Remove button.

Add or remove folder to Windows 7 Music Library.

2) Change the system locale to the proper language, if it is NOT currently set to the right one – go to Control Panel, open “Region and Language”, click Administrative tab, and click “Change System Locale” button.

Open Region and Language control panel item to change Windows 7 default system locale.

3) Optionally, add the folder back to Windows 7 music library

Hope that is helpful to you. Good luck.

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  1. Edd 01-06-11@03:49

    OMG Thank you soooo much!!! I never even considered removing it from the Library. I guess MS screwed something else up again.

    Thanks again

  2. Goulart 12-07-11@06:28

    I would never have thought that! I mean, i always believed that removing that folder from the library would delete all my songs..
    This morning i figured out how to make Windows display the characters correctly in the song’s information inside a folder but the Media Player was still showing weird symbols until now.
    You made my life a lot easier. Thanks a bunch!

  3. Yeow 01-11-11@18:56

    Thank you so much, it works for most song files. fixed most of the previously shown in weird symbols song. but still, there are quite a number of songs displayed in ???. in windows explorer, the characters are shown nicely, but not in windows media player. wonder why

  4. Jim J 14-04-12@14:15

    Omg thanks a million!! I’ve been looking all over the internet for this solution (I’m using a Cyrillic font in WMP). It worked like a charm!

  5. Alec 06-07-13@11:44

    Thank you so much! It really works for me and save my life. Wonderful step.

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