Windows Media Player encountered a problem while playing ASF/WMV file with multiple audio tracks

This is not really obvious: Windows Media Player refuses to open a Windows Media (ASF) file with an undescriptive error message: “Windows Media Player encountered a problem while playing the file”.

Broken WMV file in Windows Media Player

The problem, however, is that the file is actually good, more or less. The file plays well in DirectShow and Media Foundation APIs. There is a unusual thing, of course, that the file contains two audio tracks. The tracks are mutually exclusive as they should be (exclusion of language type – MFASFMutexType_Language).



It appears that Windows Media Player does a strict checking of language strings, and expects them to be RFC 1766 compatible. They are free style tags in this file:


Not a valid language string? OK, no playback then.

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