Windows Media Player cannot access the file. The file might be in use, you might not have access to the computer where the file is stored, or your proxy settings might not be correct.


Audio/Video Error in Windows Media Player or VLC

Sometimes, this error also leads in Playing failure in VLC Media Player. Now follow these steps to Troubleshoot this problem:

  1. Open properties of File/Folder
  2. Under “Security” tab, click Advanced
  3. Click on “Owner” tab and select Edit… to take the ownership of object. Click on your Username and check/mark “Replace owner on subcontainers and objects”
  4. Click OK where it asks “If you have just taken…”. Click OK and close all boxes to re-launch the Properties dialog
  5. Now under “Sharing” tab, in “Choose people to share with” except owner, Remove all other contacts. Click Share and box will go off
  6. Now goto “Security” tab again and click Advanced and Change Permissions. Check/Mark the checkbox saying “Replace all child object…”. Click on YES and close all the boxes again to see if it works
  7. It will work!
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34 thoughts on “Windows Media Player cannot access the file. The file might be in use, you might not have access to the computer where the file is stored, or your proxy settings might not be correct.

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  2. I mark some folders as encrypted and hidden and then copied them in a external hard drive. After formatting the computer, I am trying to access the files in these folders but the pictures and videos are inaccessible and I get the same error as above. Is there any hope to recover those files or should I forget about them.
    Thanks a lot for any advice..!!

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  4. Wow you saved my compters life… Honestly have been messing around with the security options for hours and it was so close to exiting the house via. a window..!

    THANK YOU!!

  5. I followed your steps but I am still unable to play the files in WMP or VLC. My friend gave me some files on an ext. hard drive and they wont play. Any suggestions?

  6. My pc also says windows media player cannot access the file,but when I right click the folder I dnt fint the tab for security its only sharing and security and it only ask me if I wanna share the folder nothing else

  7. I was having this same message come up when I was trying to transfer an audio cd to an MP3 player. I tried this fix on just the cd file I was having problems and indeed it did work!

  8. If I could get a 5 minute talk on the phone help, I’d appreciate it. Something, don’t know what, I am missing.

  9. Basically, I have a external Hard Drive, I always loaded stuff on on my PC then sent it to my External HD. I have documents, Pics, and videos. It’s the videos I am having troubles with. About 2/3 of them I can not play, saying I don’t have the permission or something. I get the above message “Windows Media Player cannot access the file. The file might be in use, you might not have access to the computer where the file is stored, or your proxy settings might not be correct.” when I try. My default is Windows Media player. I tried Real Player and got nothing. Tried VLC media player and get “File reading failed:
    VLC could not open the file “G:\videos 10-14-11 001.3gp”. (%m)
    Your input can’t be opened:
    VLC is unable to open the MRL ‘file:///G:/videos%2010-14-11%20001.3gp’. Check the log for details.” I would like help. Any suggestions ? Like I said, maybe a 5 minute phone call from someone who really knows what they’re doing would help. I’d greatly appreciate it.

    • Paul, I’m sorry for the late reply. But your problems seems something good! I will try to take a TeamViewer session maybe sometime. Keep in touch. Tell me whenever we can have a session for this

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