Windows Vista / Getting Started

Can't Copy Ripped CDs

You won't find the word "iPod" mentioned in Vista's menus, help screens, or even in the Help areas of Microsoft's Web site. Microsoft's competitor, Apple, makes the tremendously popular iPod, and Microsoft's ignoring it in the hopes it will go away.

What won't go away, though, are the problems you will face if you ever try to copy Media Player's songs into an iPod. You face two hurdles:

  • Songs purchased from Media Player's music store, URGE, only come in a copy-protected WMA (Windows Media Audio) format, and iPods can't play them.
  • Songs copied from CDs with Media Player won't play on your iPod, either. They are also stored in a WMA format.

The second hurdle has a solution: Tell Media Player to convert your CD's music to MP3 files, which any portable music player can play - even an iPod. Follow these steps to make the switch:

  1. Open Media Player by clicking the Start menu, choosing All Programs, and choosing Windows Media Player.
  2. Press Alt, choose Tools from the drop-down menu, and select Options.
  3. Click the Rip Music tab and choose MP3 instead of Windows Media Audio in the Format drop-down menu.
  4. Click OK to save your changes.

By ripping your music to the MP3 format, you will ensure that your library of ripped music will be compatible with any music player you buy now or in the future.

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