Windows XP has been the most popular operating system in the history of Microsoft Corporation. But unfortunately, its support is ending in a few months after which you will no longer get any updates and hotfixes for Windows XP and the programs installed in it, like Windows Media Player and Internet Explorer. If you are stuck with Windows XP but want to enjoy music and videos in it, then you can choose to install third party media players. Here is a list of top five media players that would work in Windows XP:
1. VLC Videolan Media Player
It is an open source media player application that works in not only Windows but also in other popular operating systems like Mac and Linux. There are apps for mobile devices based on Android too. It can play any type of video and audio files under the Sun without installing any codecs. It has options to play Audio CDs, DVD, VCD and Blueray disks. It can also listen to podcasts and media being broadcasted over protocols like UDP, MMS, RTP etc. It is the best replacement for your old Windows Media Player in XP. You can download it from http://www.videolan.org/vlc/.
2. Media Player Classic – Home Cinema
Media Player Classic project was started by open source developers in the last decade when Microsoft ditched the classic Media Player for a more modern Windows Media Player. It works even on slow computers which were built in 1999-ish era. It is very lightweight, consumes very little memory and supports all common video and audio file formats available for playback. We did not find any video file format that it could not play, without having to install any codecs. But you may have to install few codecs for some obscure file formats. You can download it from http://mpc-hc.org/.
3. KMP Media Player
It is another open source media player application that works in 32-bit Windows XP as well as the 64-bit versions of XP. It comes packed with its own codecs so you do not have to worry about installing any of the video codecs in order to play your video files. It can play a variety of audio and video files as well as the audio CD, DVD, VCD, Blueray disks and more. It can fetch media over HTTP, MMSP, RTSP/RTMP, DVB (Satellite or Cable TV) etc. You can download it from http://www.kmpmedia.net/.
UMPlayer is the media player that fills all your needs. It comes with a very promising tagline – UMPlayer plays everything. With dozens of advanced features and built-in codecs it can handle any media format, and can play Audio CDs, DVDs, (S)VCDs, TV / radio cards, YouTube and Shoutcast streams and even incomplete or damaged media files. It has more than 270 built in codecs, so you do not have to worry about installing anymore codecs. You can download it from http://www.umplayer.com/.
5. GOM Media Player
GOM Media Player a completely free video player with its built-in support for most common video and audio formats, many advanced features, highly customizable, and the Codec Finder service. Just like the VLC Media Player, it does not require any external codecs. It can replace Windows Media Player easily, but it does not play so well on slower computers. You can download it from http://player.gomlab.com/eng/.