WMA File Extension

WMA file icon
Windows Media Audio Format
  • Developer
    Microsoft
  • Popularity
    3.5 (9 votes)

What is WMA file?

WMA stands for Windows Media Audio and this file is used to store audio data. This file is both an audio codec and audio format. This file format was created by Windows for competition purposes against MP3 and RealAudio format files.

Generally there are four different codecs of WMA file. Each WMA file created has a single audio track stored in it using four of these codecs. Each of these codecs are different from each other and are incompatible with each other. Each codec has its specific use. In order to access or open this file type you need a Media Player.

Programs which support WMA file extension

Below you will find an index of software programs that can be used to open WMA files divided into 6 categories according to system platform supported. Files with WMA extension, just like any other file formats, can be found on any operating system. The files in question may be transferred to other devices, be it mobile or stationary, yet not all systems may be capable of properly handling such files.

How to open file with WMA extension?

Problems with accessing WMA may be due to various reasons. On the bright side, the most encountered issues pertaining to Windows Media Audio Format files aren’t complex. In most cases they can be addressed swiftly and effectively without assistance from a specialist. The list below will guide you through the process of addressing the encountered problem.

Step 1. Install Windows Media Player software

Problems with opening and working with WMA files are most probably having to do with no proper software compatible with WMA files being present on your machine. This one is an easy one. Select Windows Media Player or one of the recommended programs (for example, Winamp, Mobile Media Converter, OverDrive Media Console Phone) and download it from appropriate source and install on your system. Above you will find a complete listing of programs that support WMA files, classified according to system platforms for which they are available. The safest method of downloading Windows Media Player installed is by going to developer’s website (Microsoft Corporation) and downloading the software using provided links.

Step 2. Check the version of Windows Media Player and update if needed

You still cannot access WMA files although Windows Media Player is installed on your system? Make sure that the software is up to date. It may also happen that software creators by updating their applications add compatibility with other, newer file formats. If you have an older version of Windows Media Player installed, it may not support WMA format. The latest version of Windows Media Player should support all file formats that where compatible with older versions of the software.

Step 3. Set the default application to open WMA files to Windows Media Player

After installing Windows Media Player (the most recent version) make sure that it is set as the default application to open WMA files. The process of associating file formats with default application may differ in details depending on platform, but the basic procedure is very similar.

Selecting the first-choice application in Windows

  • Right-click the WMA file and choose Open with option
  • Select Choose another app → More apps
  • The last step is to select Look for another app on this PC option supply the directory path to the folder where Windows Media Player is installed. Now all that is left is to confirm your choice by selecting Always use this app to open WMA files and clicking OK.

Selecting the first-choice application in Mac OS

  • By clicking right mouse button on the selected WMA file open the file menu and choose Information
  • Find the Open with option – click the title if its hidden
  • Select the appropriate software and save your settings by clicking Change all
  • Finally, a This change will be applied to all files with WMA extension message should pop-up. Click Continue button in order to confirm your choice.

Step 4. Verify that the WMA is not faulty

Should the problem still occur after following steps 1-3, check if the WMA file is valid. Being unable to access the file can be related to various issues.

1. The WMA may be infected with malware – make sure to scan it with an antivirus tool.

If the file is infected, the malware that resides in the WMA file hinders attempts to open it. Immediately scan the file using an antivirus tool or scan the whole system to ensure the whole system is safe. WMA file is infected with malware? Follow the steps suggested by your antivirus software.

2. Ensure the file with WMA extension is complete and error-free

If you obtained the problematic WMA file from a third party, ask them to supply you with another copy. The file might have been copied erroneously and the data lost integrity, which precludes from accessing the file. It could happen the the download process of file with WMA extension was interrupted and the file data is defective. Download the file again from the same source.

3. Ensure that you have appropriate access rights

Sometimes in order to access files user need to have administrative privileges. Switch to an account that has required privileges and try opening the Windows Media Audio Format file again.

4. Make sure that the system has sufficient resources to run Windows Media Player

The operating systems may note enough free resources to run the application that support WMA files. Close all running programs and try opening the WMA file.

5. Check if you have the latest updates to the operating system and drivers

Up-to-date system and drivers not only makes your computer more secure, but also may solve problems with Windows Media Audio Format file. Outdated drivers or software may have caused the inability to use a peripheral device needed to handle WMA files.

Do you want to help?

If you have additional information about the WMA file, we will be grateful if you share it with our users. To do this, use the form here and send us your information on WMA file.

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