How to Get Windows Media Player (WMP) 12 Taskbar Toolbar (Taskband) Back in Windows 7 and Later?

NOTE: This tutorial will also work in Windows 8 and later.

We know "Windows 7" comes with Windows Media Player 12 version which contains lots of new features and also the interface is a bit different from previous versions. But it doesn't provide taskbar toolbar aka mini toolbar which was one of the best thing in previous versions of Windows Media Player. Taskbar toolbar in WMP allows you to access the media player right from the Taskbar. You can minimize WMP window and can access it using the mini-toolbar which is displayed in Taskbar.

If you are also using Windows 7 and missing the good old Taskbar Toolbar aka Taskband in Windows Media Player 12 (WMP 12), here is something very interesting for you.

Today in this article, we are going to share a small and easy to use trick which will help you in bringing back the taskbar toolbar in WMP 12 as shown in following screenshot:

WMP12_Mini_Taskbar_Toolbar_Taskband.png

Here are the step-by-step instructions to enable WMP 12 Taskbar Toolbar in Windows 7:

1. Actually Taskbar Toolbar or Taskband is stored in a DLL file called "wmpband.dll" which is found in "Windows Media Player" directory present in "Program Files" folder. Microsoft removed this DLL file from WMP 12 folder, that's why the toolbar no longer exists in Windows 7.

You can copy this DLL file from WMP 11 folder present in Windows Vista to Windows 7. If you don't have access to a Vista system, you can directly download it from following link:

Download Link

2. Once you download the above ZIP file, extract it and you'll get the required DLL file for both 32-bit and 64-bit Windows versions.

For 32-bit (x86) users:

Copy the wmpband.dll file present in "32-bit or x86" folder and paste it to "Windows Media Player" directory present in "Program Files" folder. Just type %programfiles%\Windows Media Player in Explorer addressbar and press enter and it'll open the "Windows Media Player" directory.

Copy_WMPBand_dll_File.png

For 64-bit (x64) users:

Copy the wmpband.dll file present in "64-bit or x64" folder and paste it to "Windows Media Player" directory present in "Program Files" folder. Just type %programfiles%\Windows Media Player in Explorer addressbar and press enter and it'll open the "Windows Media Player" directory. You'll also need to copy the same DLL file to %programfiles(x86)%\Windows Media Player folder.

3. Now right-click on Computer icon on desktop and select Manage, it'll open a new window. Now go to Services & Applications -> Services. You can also open the same from Administrative Tools -> Computer Management. Or you can directly open "Services" list by providing services.msc command in RUN or Start Menu search box.

Now right-click on "Windows Media Player Network Sharing" service and select "Stop". It'll stop the service.

WMP_Network_Sharing_Service.png

4. Now you'll need to register "WMPBand.dll" file.

First open Command Prompt as Administrator using the steps given here. Now type following commands one by one and press Enter:

regsvr32 "%programfiles%\Windows Media Player\wmpband.dll"
regsvr32 "%programfiles(x86)%\Windows Media Player\wmpband.dll"

5. Start "Windows Media Player Network Sharing" service again using Services Manager.

6. That's it. Now run Windows Media Player and minimize it. Now right-click on Taskbar and select "Toolbars -> Windows Media Player" option and ready to enjoy the Taskbar Toolbar aka Taskband in Windows 7.

Thanks to "Justin Buser" @ WinMatrix for sharing it...





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Posted in: Troubleshooting, Windows 10, Windows 7, Windows 8 / 8.1


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Comments

  • Thanks very much for sharing this tip ! It works perfectly.
    May be good to add that some might need to run the command prompt with Administrator privileges. : )

  • Thank you worked like a charm..

  • Ahhhh! Thank you!!! easy-peasy!

  • Thanks! It helped me out a lot ^___^

    I can now easily play my jams w/o having to manually click on too much excessive buttons :3

    Kudos!

  • Thanks a lot, really helpful.

  • Thank you so much. Works perfectly!

  • Thank you so much. Works greatt

  • This also works in Windows 8/Windows 8.1 Pro Preview! :)

  • my win 8 say thank you

  • Amazing!
    Tkx! now i can minimize WMP and dont need to have the big square!
    tkx again
    Shelly

  • Thank you!!! it took me 2 trys to get it right but it works great ty again

  • Thank you ever so much for posting this article. This is honestly the most beneficial information I have found in the last 2 months.

    The media player toolbar option helps me to stay on task by allowing me to switch tracks or adjust volume without having to change windows or wait. As a software and web developer, this is very important to me when I am listening to music while working. Whom-ever at Microsoft made the decision to remove this feature failed to understand what a useful feature it is. Maybe we've been "spoiled", but what's wrong so wrong with users having the option to make something quick and accessible? As far as I can see, their decision goes against common logic, and was a major disappointment to me. I'm glad I'm not the only one, as some friends of mine think I'm nuts for liking the toolbar. We all have our own ways of customizing our interface, and losing a feature that we use every day can make an upgrade feel more like a tragedy.

  • don't forget that the command must run in admin mode. to do this, open task manager, click show all users (to elevate task manager), then click on file, then click on 'new task (run...)', and check 'create this task with administrative privileges'. then follow the rest of the 'run' related instructions.

  • if it is not running the code with admin privileges, it will get an error code, where if it is, it will succeed.

  • don't forget: WMP has to be MINIMIZED when you check the toolbar, otherwise it won't show. it HAS to be minimized (not restored, not maximized, etc). then, once you have the toolbar, you can do whatever you want with the window and the toolbar will never close. you can even open the window while the toolbar is there, and have both, and watch as they sync to eachother! but when you FIRST put the toolbar, it needs to be minimized, or a blank space will show (that actually takes up space on the taskbar). hope this clears up any confusion. :) BTW I just went ahead and registered both dlls. :)

  • Works fine for me on Windows 8 64bit, thanks!

  • Thank you!

  • Worked. awesome! Simple and easy instructions, very nice. Thanks bud

  • That's greate.....worked without any issue.......

  • Thanks, it works perfectly

  • Nice. Works perfectly - Windows 7 32-bit WMP12

  • Worked great, thanks for the detailed instructions.

  • great!!! thanks a lot...

  • amazingly simple
    thanks :)

  • Thank you for this!

    I was so bummed when i couldn't do this on my laptop. Never thought of it though as I don't really listen to music on my computer (even though it's loaded with it [majority is bought thank you very much]) But I tried to do this on my work computer with Windows 8 (ugh) and found I couldn't. I went looking for a way to do so, especially after adding a taskbar to it instead of that horrid window dashboard thing, and found this for my W7 Vaio.

    Thank you again for the info!

  • Thank you. this is awesome 1 min instructions

  • It doesnt work perfectly. Only problem with this is, minimizing Windows Media Player wont actually remove the program from task bar; you'll have to close it, which stops the music which wont start until you press Play button from the taskband.

  • Took a bit in windows 8 But works nice!! Thanks

  • The 64-bit DLL is from Vista RTM, not Vista SP2. Can you please include the SP2 DLL?

  • VG

    ^^ It should work without any problem.

  • It worked... THANKS!!

  • Thanks. it works fine :)

  • Doesn't work on Windows 8.1, at least not properly.
    It does minimize to the taskbar but the mini video player doesn't work, it just shows a black screen, and even if I restore it the video still doesn't play in the player itself, and I can't close it once it's minimized, I have to remove the toolbar first so I can close it.

    Anyone aware of a 3rd party video player that allows me to play videos in the taskbar like WMP used to?

  • tnks!!!!! works in my w7

  • excellent!!!

  • It works great to the wma toolbar back but how do you get rid of the icon on the toolbar as well? if you close the icon, the toolbar still is there and works, but the icon reappears everytime you load something new...

  • Thanks for taking the time to post this, it works great!

  • I tried it, everything worked as it should. I minimized WMP so I could right click the taskbar and select WMP, but the thing is, WMP is NOT there.

    I swear I executed everything perfectly, but Windows Media Player doesn't show up in the taskbar options..
    and again, YES, I minimized windows media player, else it doesn't work. I know. :(

  • thanks a lot, still working.

  • thanks!!! worked like a charm on 64 bit win 7

  • Doesn't work on Windows 8.1, at least not properly.
    It does minimize to the taskbar but the mini video player doesn't work, it just shows a black screen, and even if I restore it the video still doesn't play in the player itself, and I can't close it once it's minimized, I have to remove the toolbar first so I can close it.

  • I need help. I have completed all the steps above, however, when I complete the final task of:regsvr32 "%programfiles%\Windows Media Player\wmpband.dll". I receive this message:
    "RegSer32 error... "The module "c:\program files\windows media player\wmpband.dll was loaded but the call to DllRegisterserver failed with error code 0x80020009."

    Any help resolving this would be greatly appreciated. Thank you
    djw1500

  • VG

    ^^ Did you open Command Prompt as Administrator?

  • Thank you VERY MUCH!

  • Thanks from Turkey.

  • Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!! Thank You!!!

  • I receive this message 'regsvr32' is not recognized as an internal or external command,
    operable program or batch file.

  • Thanks man that helped me a lot.

    Keep up the neat trixx :D

  • While this DID work, I was hoping that it would work as it originally did... which it does not.

    Is there any way to have it minimize to the task bar, but appear just as the regular icon on the task bar when the window is maximized, or open? It's great that I can now access my music without having to open the window, but when the window is opened I now have an overly-cluttered task bar because it keeps both icons appearing. Something I previously did not have, on my old Vista.

  • Thank you very much! It's working great! (windows ultimate 7, x64)

  • Thank you for sharing this. I missed having the WMP deskband on the Taskbar. I can confirm that this is working on both Windows 8 and Windows 8.1.

    Also, unless I missed it somewhere, you forgot to mention to Start the WMP service again at the end before opening Windows Media Player. It does not automatically start for me so I had to go back and Start it myself. Other than that, great work and thanks :-)

  • did everything as described, but when i minimize the player still not got mini-toolbar.. I now have the option on taskbar for the media player toolbar which is checked, but no toolbar! any sugestions?

  • Thanks a lot!!

  • i need a little help please. i followed all the steps and did use Admin in command prompt. what could have happened?
    windows 8 64bit x64 processor
    hint: not too informed about these things

  • not quite... I still can not minimize the program from the program itself. Plus there is no quit possible. You have to right click the bar, deselect "windows media player" and than quit the program. Its "a" solution, but not "the" solution...

  • it says error code 0x8002009, please help. thank you!

  • hi..
    followed everything. but during cmd prompt it says ' is not recognised as internal or external operable program on batch file' what do i do now

  • VG

    ^^ Did you open Command Prompt as Administrator as mentioned?

  • Thank you so much, it worked perfectly, was looking for this tool bar
    Aniket

  • hi there,
    regarding to this method, i got some problem after i follow all the step above until the CMD part,
    and i receive
    " the module "C:\program file\window media player\wmpband.dll" failed to load.
    Make sure the binary is stored at the specified path or debug it to check for problems with
    the binary or dependent .DLL files.
    the specified module could not be found. "
    could u help me ?

    thanks for reading.

  • Thank you so much for the detailed instructions! I usually don't know how to operate the background processes of a computer well but this made it simple and I was surprisingly able to do this. Thanks again :)

  • Another thank you for these very useful instructions.

  • well, followed all these instructions for my Windows 7 Pro install and it didn't work. well. it did work, gave me the option for the WMP toolbar to minimize it to the tray, but when I minimize, it still goes to the task bar.

    any thoughts?

  • Superb Bro!!!
    worked like a charm... :)

  • Thanks Man !!!! fantastic....

  • it doesn't work for me
    i use windows 7
    wmp show black screen when i use it on taskbar Y.Y
    anyone can help? pleaseeeeeee

  • thnx its helpful

  • THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU THANK YOU !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • thankoooo

  • Thanks took 5 minutes worked great.

  • hello, I opened cmd with admin privileges and I am getting the error:
    The system cannot execute the specified program
    when entering:
    %programfiles%\Window Media Player\wmpband.dll
    Please help?

  • I figured it out I forgot regsvr32.

  • Thaaaaaaanks Much.

  • worked great thanks but would you know how to set it so mini player opens automatically when playing mp3s? my laptop opens both full and mini would like just mini to open... please

  • Thanks a lot, it works perfectly with Windows 8.1 (64-bit).

  • Perfect, works nice.

  • worked before restart, missing after restart.

  • Windows 8.1 64bit has issue when minimized to the taskbar it only shows black box when playing videos. Any thoughts or suggestions?

  • Thanks Dude!!!!.. It Worked.

  • Hi ,

    I use Windows 7 64 Bits program file (86x).

    I don't know why i keep getting the error message:
    The Filename, directory name, or volume label syntax is incorrect. .

    I followed the direct instruction of logging to the command prompt as Administrator and also entering the same command :i.e.
    regsvr32"%programfiles%\Windows Media Player\wmpband.dll"

  • Can Somebody please Help me ?

  • VG

    ^^ There is a space between regsvr32 and rest of the command.

  • How do I remove this toolbar from the menu? I've found it rather glitchy and not much of an advantage over the generic minimized WMP.

  • VG

    ^^ Run following command in Command Prompt:

    regsvr32 /u "%programfiles%\Windows Media Player\wmpband.dll"

  • Alternative method to stopping and restarting wmp service. Run following commands in Command Prompt(Admin):
    1. net stop WMPNetworkSvc
    2. regsvr32 "%ProgramFiles%\Windows Media Player\wmpband.dll"
    3. net start WMPNetworkSvc

    cmd 1 stops service; cmd 2 adds dll; and cmd 3 starts wmp service

  • Nice man! worked here! (Windows 7 x64)

    Thanks!

  • Worked Perfectlyy . Thankss bro :)

  • I used
    regsvr32 "%ProgramFiles(x86)%\Windows Media Player\wmpband.dll"
    instead. But it doesn't work. I ended up not getting the toolbar.
    This is Windows 8.1

  • Worked great.

    Thanks for the tip.

    I'll definitely spend some time here and see how many more new things I can learn.
    Sharing knowledge is a wonderful thing.

  • Thks very helpfull ;D
    Works great, very easy to understand !

    gz

  • It worked perfectly and it was very easy, too!
    Thank you so much *____*

  • Many thanks from brazil buddy... it helped a lot

  • You're awesome, thanks! That was my favorite part of WMP.

  • Thank you so much!!!

  • Hi there,
    regarding to this method, i got some problem after i follow all the step above until the CMD part,
    and i receive
    " the module "C:\program file\window media player\wmpband.dll" failed to load.
    Make sure the binary is stored at the specified path or debug it to check for problems with
    the binary or dependent .DLL files.
    the specified module could not be found. "
    could u help me ?

    thanks for reading.

  • I followed the instructions. Still no Media Player tool bar when minimized AND now I get error messages when I request album information from Microsoft's server.

  • ger888888888888t

    Thankssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssss

  • had some initial trouble (Windows Media Player" option not visible in Toolbars >), this is on Windows 7 Pro 64 bit.

    but i found this sequence worked:

    1. i registered both the x86 and the x64 wmpband.dll files in each of the Program Files and the Program Files (x86) directories,
    and
    2. i stopped the WMP sharing in services,
    and
    3. minimising normally the WMP window didn't work. so i right clicked right near the "minimise" box and selected minimise from that menu.

    Once i had done all those things, finally i had the Toolbars > Windows Media Player option to select.

    Thanks

  • cool!

    thanks, charles, for that! I had a hard time with the toolbar option as well, but this trick did the job! :D

    Kudos as well to the original author of the workaround! :D

  • It worked on my machine. Thanks for this mate. I'm using win8 x64 bit.

  • Appreciate you! I have downloaded so many skins trying to get something similar to the taskband (and the options are limited, in my opinion) and could never find anything. I just wanted something that integrated seamlessly on the screen and could be hidden but still had easily accessible commands. I do remember being able to adjust the length of it in the taskbar though, am I mistaken? Either way, thanks again, many blessings to you sir.

  • Okay this advice may be all well and fine for computer geeks but for the average person there is no way that we can implement this plan. Its too complex. I got as far as downloading the dll. Why on earth did Micorosoft come up with such a inferior plan for windows media player 12? The ability to use a mini player version should be put back into the player.

  • It's WOrk!!!!

  • Great.! Thank youuu.! :)

  • GREAT.! Thank Youuuuuu!!! :)

  • works on windows 10 tech preview. You have to open a movie with WMP 12 then minimize it, then right click on tool bar and under toolbars select windows media player. Close the minimized WMP 12 and press play on the toolbar player. BAM!

  • thanq very much .........i missed it......for info this works in even windows 8 and 8.1 friends

  • Great..thanks...

  • Dude my real concern is to remove the wmp taskbar icon and after doing the above part i have got the wmp toolbar but now wmp taskbar icon still shows up.. so i am in more trouble :( win 64

  • works for mp3 only , when minimize while running video , it goes black :P

  • Wow, nothing can be more helpful

  • Do all the steps, doesn't work on my 32 bit win 8!!

  • It doesn't work :( on the last step, "windows media player" won't show up in the toolbar! what do i do!?!?

  • Hi, I did everything, right click on toolbar and can select wmp but i click on it and nothing happens.... :(
    I hate windows 8, so dumb and I don't have a choice, it's my work laptop :( at home I have vista and 7 I love those.... but 8 is a disaster..... :(

  • Follow all steps described here or simply install a skin.
    windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/windows-media-player-skins#t1=topdownloads

  • Thanks so much, took a little tinkering, but I got this to work! :)

  • The toolbar band dissappears on reboot :(

  • Thank U very very much!!! A great tutorial ;-)

  • Thank you very much indeed!!! Missed it a long time; works perfect!!

  • Thank U so much!! That was my favorite part of WMP.

  • Sweet man, thanks for the awesome info :) helped out heaps

  • HI, Im running on windows 8.1 and i opened command prompt and tried new toolbar but it didn't work please help

  • Worked, but not very well and it didn't work for long... Now im stuck with an odd box in the middle of my screen that I can't remove. And I can't delete the installed files because "Explorer" is using it. Can't manually shut down Explorer though.... Now what?

  • thanks OP.. works well.

    I was a bit stuck after following the instructions until I read further down that you had to manually restart the service (thanks Jase and Priya).

    Now works as advertised ;) the toolbar itself is kind of tiny in the taskbar, it would be great if there was a way to increase it's size to more fill it's space on the taskbar?

    For those experiencing black boxes or similar problems, perhaps try adjust the width/height of you taskbar and see if that helps. (Unlock the taskbar and drag it to increase/ decrease size)

    Win 8.1 x64 running 32bit WMP

  • Question, I have put the .dll files in both WMP folders under Program Files and Program Files (x86) and ran the command in the command prompt under administrator mode yet it says that the module "C:/Program" failed to load. Am I doing something wrong or have done something wrong.

  • Thank You!!!

  • Thanks so much!

  • I am using Win 7 Home Edition and I did the step correctly.
    Thank you that my WMP appears on the toolbar, and the audio sounds well - BUT - I face a problem :) .. The video/visualization doesn't appear as I expected before.
    Please help me to solve this matter.

    Thank you anyway :)

  • Tried this on My Windows 7 Professional 64 bit machine. Performed all steps as instructed. Everything worked smoothly and with successful results messages. Checked Windows Media Player in the toolbar list, started WMP12, and when I minimized it . . . and . . . hum . . . NO MINI TOOLBAR! Yes, I used the 64 bit version of wmpband.dll. Yes, I put it into both the Program Files and the Program Files (x86). And yes, I ran the command as administrator for both WMP12 locations - commands ran successfully. But the mini toolbar does not show up!
    HELP PLEASE.

  • That's absolutely brilliant!! I followed the instructions exactly as given above and it all worked first time.
    I have my Mini Player back, yipee!!! :-)

  • thanks so much! GREAT HELP AMIGO! :)

  • thank you

  • AWESOOOOOOOOOME workeda treat

    Many thanks

  • I don't usually comment on threads but this one really helped me! THANKS!!!!
    This still works as of 07/29/15. :)

  • Aug 07, 2015
    Thank you! It is working fine with Windows 8.1. Moreover, the icon is app icon is no longer redundant with the other app icons on the taskbar.

  • Hi,

    Thanks for advising about adding it to TaskBar However it DOES NOT WORK when playing the video in the TaskBar using "SHOW VIDEO AND VISUALIZATION WINDOW"

    Please help about viewing the small video in the task bar..

    Thanks!

  • thaaaaaaaaaaaaannnks a lot it worked great :)

  • Thank you so much!!!!

  • thank you worked

  • thanks man that's rocks!

  • I'm running Windows 10 Pro 64bit and it actually even works on this :)

  • Wow, U just assisted me overcome one of my challenges; it simply WORKS!!! Thanks a lot.

  • I'm running it on Windows 10 Home 64 bit and it stays on the taskbar even when I'm not running media player. However I have to go to the toolbar and uncheck WMP and then go to toolbar and recheck WPM to get it to work when I resume using WMP. I really like having it again but don't understand why it needs to be re-added to the taskbar toolbar each time to work. Any ideas? Thanks!

  • Ohh... good one its really works in windows 8 & 8.1
    Really thankful to you...

  • Great!! Thanks!!

    @Dennisan

    Do you have the wmp service in autorun? If you don't, try that.

    :)

  • Did this in Windows 10 and it works! Once you've activated the toolbar on your taskbar, you do have to close Media player first and then press play again, but that's no biggie.

    Thank you! Skipping from Vista directly to 10, I really missed this feature (among things).

  • Awesome, easy to follow tutorial, thanks!

  • Step 3: I don't have a "Windows Media Player Network Sharing" service. I completed step 4 anyway (dll registrered correctly) but I don't get the TaskBand. Any idea why? Thanks!

  • [Windows 8.1, 32 bits.]

  • thx its great .. but i have to undo all this to previous can anyone help

  • Still works, 2016-01-17.
    Thanks.

  • I followed all steps properly and got the toolbar on the taskbar. It works fine for audio but video is not working properly. When I click "Show Video and Visualization window" in the toolbar, it displays a black box instead of the video. After doing this, the video is not playing even in the full media player itself until I remove the toolbar from the taskbar. Please fix this issue. I am using Windows 10 Pro 64 bit. Thanks.

  • Fantastic! Thank you!

  • Great, thank you.
    Note: works also on W10 (my case)

  • great fix, thank you :-)

  • Thanks a lot..... I checked my C: and WMP was in 32-bit and 64-bit wahahah... Put them in both just to make sure.. thanks again! You really saved me...

  • Works on Windows 10 x64. :)

  • Thank a lot of my Greats ^_^

  • Works on windows 10, but the controls are tiny (about 1/4 the hight of the taskbar) is there a way to make them larger?

  • video not shown....anyone help me?

  • Thanks a lot! It worked like a charm. Only thing is if you could mention in your steps to run cmd AS AN ADMIN. It took me few minutes to figure that out.

  • This worked almost perfectly! One thing I would Add:

    If your windows media player network sharing is already turned off: Once the process is finished, go to services, turn the network sharing on, then turn it off again. Only then will the option "Windows Media Player" be in your toolbars menu when you right-click the taskbar.

  • Bingo !!!! Works like a charm....

  • Hi, can you make this work with DisplayFusion? to get this toolbar in both taskbar monitors

  • It really worked.. Thanks a lot..

  • works perfect on win10/64

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