Feb 11 2011

Top Problems with Windows Live Movie Maker 2011

cnaxw4t5_thumb Top Problems with Windows Live Movie Maker 2011As the forums team with questions and issues with Windows Live Movie Maker 2011, the forums are but a charade to make the users of Windows Live Movie Maker think that someone is going to help them resolve their issues. The thing that Windows Live Movie Maker needs the most is a LOG; it needs an application log— to log things that it’s doing when these errors come a long.
Windows Live Writer has an application log, but let’s admit to some truth here, Microsoft really didn’t write Windows Live Writer; they just adopted a great application and made it good. The progression of Windows Live Movie Maker is slight, but the problem presented in the forums seem to go unanswered… For the past couple of months I have been hanging out in the Windows Live Movie Maker forums attempting to help other users;getting some some answers and figuring out others…
So I have the top issues/problems with Windows Live Movie Maker and the the official responses/resolutions.

I have spent enough time in the support forums to tell you exactly what the weak points are for Windows Live Movie Maker. And I have spent enough time in the Windows Live Movie Maker attempting to help other users while attempting to help myself. My last straw came as I, myself, was working on a video project only to be struck with the same bludgeoned problem as those many others I had been attempting to help. My Windows Live Movie Maker crashed as I was attempting to build my project. It crashed… there was no recovery, there was nothing. When I tried to re-open the project I have saved many times before; Windows Live Movie Maker just reported the project was corrupt…
Windows Live Movie Maker just expected me to suck it up and start all over. Nah- that’s not how I operate. So, I have some information to share and this will serve as my departure notice to Windows Live Movie Maker and the ‘support’ forum…

And for those who are searching for help… maybe one of these subjects below will help you.

Here’s the list…

There’s no official HELP MANUAL…
sfk1ezeg_thumb Top Problems with Windows Live Movie Maker 2011Windows Live Movie Maker doesn’t come with an official user manual; Microsoft expects their new application to be so simple it doesn’t require documentation… Thankfully, a kind soul created an user manual/guide for Windows Live Movie Maker 2011. It’s in PDF form and it’s 1.5mb; free to download. Link: http://www.box.net/shared/bedsnr2001 Microsoft has deemed that Windows Live Movie Maker is so simple that even a mental reject can figure it out and yet, there are so many questions. It takes a solitary person to sit down and write all the things about Windows Live Movie Maker to generate the unofficial user manual for Windows Live Movie Maker. I’m surprised the site isn’t crippled by the sheer requests for this document. And good work to the author by the way.

There’s no TIMELINE …
3ics24co_thumb Top Problems with Windows Live Movie Maker 2011

As much as the techs in the forum want make an attempt to convince everyone that the new GUI interface for the composing of the video’s is a ‘timeline’ it’s not; ask anyone who has every used a video editing program and they’ll tell you… Windows Live Movie Maker doesn’t have one. This is Windows Live Movie Maker version of a timeline.

The crap they add on the right is a storyboard.

xsfrvaqx_thumb Top Problems with Windows Live Movie Maker 2011

It’s virtually impossible to place the audio exactly where you want it. Half the time you can’t drag-and-drop the audio. You have to pull the storyboard pointer to a specific spot and then choose ‘add audio’— it’s friggin stupid.

Editing AUDIO in Windows Live Movie Maker is broken…
zih30jtm_thumb Top Problems with Windows Live Movie Maker 2011Windows Live Movie Maker allows you to add audio to a video, but if you have to go back to edit the audio, it affects the entire timeline. For instance, if you remove the first audio insert, all the audio after that’ll not stay in place. I have already reported this to the 2nd echelon techs and they confirm it, and there’s nothing to do about it right now. And if you are attempting to use the SPEED function of the VIDEO for a specific section/clip of video; as soon as you apply the affect, the audio for the video section is gone— completely. And the only options you have for sound are fade in, fade out and the audio mixer [between the default audio and the alternate audio].

Fonts and Font Backgrounds…
Windows Live Movie Maker doesn’t offer an option to have a font background color; all fonts for the titles are transparent. So you have to worry about placing the text in areas that are going to be seen, or not seen; or choose a font color that looks so out of place it’s nuts.

Video/Audio Codecs support is non-existent…
One of the biggest issues in Windows Live Movie Maker I the lack of video support for the common video formats on the web. The simplest fact is that Windows Live Movie Maker doesn’t work unless you have the proper codecs installed in to the operating system. You would think that Microsoft would have thought about this more…

According to the support page for Windows Live Movie Maker 2011; it supports an array of video formats; and those are:


According to the support page for Windows Live Movie Maker 2011; it supports an array of video formats; and those are:
Windows Media Video (WMV) files
» Native to Windows Live Movie Maker 2011 «
Windows Media files
.asf and .wm
AVCHD files
.m2ts and .m2t
Apple QuickTime files
.mov and .qt
DV?AVI files
Microsoft Recorded TV Show files
.dvr-ms and .wtv
MPEG?4 movie files
.mp4, .mov,.m4v, .3gp, .3g2, and .k3g
MPEG?2 movie files
.mpeg, .mpg, .mpe, .m1v, .mp2, .mpv2, .mod, and .vob
MPEG?1 movie files
Motion JPEG files
.avi and .mov

What this reference page doesn’t say is that you have to provide the codec! Most people are asking, what the Hell is a codec?! They know the video they shot on their camera is supposed to work with the Windows Live Movie Maker application. And the standard response from Microsoft on this is:

You should make an attempt contact the manufacturer of the device and see if they offer any download’able codecs/drivers for your device- making it compatible with your operating system.


Here’s the supported file types for Windows Live Movie Maker…


And something about codecs…



Really?! Really…
z2on4ab0_thumb Top Problems with Windows Live Movie Maker 2011Or they send you to a page to explain to you what a codec is, and that’s where their support stops. Microsoft/Windows Live Movie Maker techs typically don’t offer you a link to the right codec…

They typically only offer a link to a page with Codec FAQ’s and the formats Windows Live Movie Maker supports.

On the other hand, I have been attempting to point out, despite the lack of endorsement from the Microsoft tech in the forum, that download a ubiquitous codec pack COULD be a resolution…

I suggest two programs [either or], GSPOT or VLC; they have a built-in database/codecs to help to identify your media file.



Then search free-Codecs website for the matching audio/video codec; download and install it.

Or install a codec pack:

I did see this ONE time! And only once…
I called out the support techs on Windows Live Movie Maker, basically telling another user that ‘ Windows Live Movie Maker techs were not going to help, they can’t offer links to codecs’…
The very next post was by a support tech. The thing is, he was talking from his own experience, with his own Windows Live Movie Maker and his own iPhone
But I’ve never seen another response in that manner, or format. It was the Codec to IPhone and Panasonic Phones



Windows Live Movie Maker can’t handle LARGE projects…
According to Microsoft techs in the Windows Live Movie Maker forum, Windows Live Movie Maker has horrible issues with managing system resources. Basically, Microsoft has confirmed that you can add as many images and videos as you want to Windows Live Movie Maker 2011, but if you make an attempt save or compose with that media Windows Live Movie Maker could crash [based on your resources]. And these issues are based on the size of the video being produced and the resources on the local PC. It’s a legacy problem from the last version..


Microsoft support would suggest adjusting your page file… to account for a lack of local resources.



The techs in the forum report that they’ll be attempting to address this in the future… but right now; you’re screwed.

Movie Maker isn’t compatible with Windows ‘Live’ Movie Maker…
This is partly true. Windows Live Movie Maker doesn’t read the old Movie Maker files completely. And there’s some that are flat out not compatible. Many projects have been completely lost by attempting to go to the new Windows Live Movie Maker. And many that have chose make an attempt Windows Live Movie Maker have done so only to revert back to an old version of Movie Maker.
» Please note that Windows Live Movie Maker and Windows Live Photo Gallery are a bundle set. Uninstalling Windows Live Movie Maker will remove Windows Live Photo Gallery. To do this…

Start» Run» APPWIZ.CPL Windows Live essentials [update/uninstall] Select Windows Live Movie Maker and go through the steps of removing it.


To uninstall Windows Live Movie Maker, click Start » Run, then type/paste the following and press Enter: msiexec /x {9F479685-180E-4C05-9400-D59292A1B29C} …and go through the steps of removing it. [recommend rebooting at this point]

You should now be able to reinstall the older versions from here. This is for Vista and Windows 7 – 32 and 64-bit.

Link: [found by Grapeman1965]


The techs for Windows Live Movie Maker Don’t know…
For the most part the techs in the forum are lost— nothing but a crew of keywords and canned responses; they offer no straight answers on how to fix anything with Windows Live Movie Maker. Of all the questions that have been asked, I have rarely seen a resolution.

I believe most of the credit goes to PapaJohnMVP for having an already wealth of information about codecs and tips to pull from. And I find the techs lack of vigilance depressing. It’s taking DAYS on getting questions answered on topics; somet times they don’t even answer some poor souls. And if they do, when they do, it’s typically just a non-focued canned response. I can say I at least read the questions, tried to give users some information they could use.

And the forums SEARCH is worthless…

Christ does the SEARCH function in Windows Live forums suck! You can choose to search ONLY Windows Live Movie Maker and type in just the things you want to see and the friggin stupid thing goes out and grabs every ‘gorrammit’ word in the whole friggin world, except the forum you wanted to search. Microsoft doesn’t allow the forums to be indexed by Google, so you can’t even get results from the forum searched otherwise.

So you can take this for what it is, a collection of answers and resolutions to several things with Windows Live Movie Maker. And you can take this as a person who really tried to make it work, to really help others; but doing this is like defending a Ford Pinto… just not worth it. Sadly, this was a canned response I put on a lot of responses…
If you’d like, you can leave feedback for the Windows Live Movie Maker 2011 team for suggestions/improvements:
Link: https://feedback.live.com/default.aspx?productkey=moviemaker

And I don’t think ANYONE from Microsoft checks that box for anything. If they did, they’d have released some updates by now.


d0lfon4f_thumb Top Problems with Windows Live Movie Maker 2011Bonus Round Items
AND here are some other things for me to share…
How to Loop VIDEO with Windows Live Movie Maker
If you want Windows Live Movie Maker 2011 to loop video [over and over], that’s unrealistic. Windows Live Movie Maker doesn’t have that feature. To have the movie loop over and over again, would be a setting on the media playing application [continuous or loop]. Looping the video can be done via the Windows DVD Maker application, but you have to export the video to WMV first and then open Windows DVD Maker. Only then will you get options to LOOP the DVD video.

How to adjust the video output of Windows Live Movie Maker
To adjust the output of the WMV file of Windows Live Movie Maker, do this… In Windows Live Movie Maker, MENU, SAVE MOVIE The eMail option is typically going to give you the best ratio option for size and resolution. But you can use ‘custom settings’ if you need to. How to edit the audio in Windows Live Movie Maker

How to import MOV/MP4 files in to Windows Live Movie Maker
I was having issues with importing MOV files and found Windows Live Movie Maker has an issue with the extension of MOV; I changed the files to MP4 and it worked better. If you’re having issues with MOV/MP4/h.264 high def videos, I believe my information could help you import MOV files directly in to Windows Live Movie Maker without having to convert them first. Take a look at my video… Maybe it can help you…


How to SPLIT a movie with Windows Live Movie Maker
If you need to SPLIT a movie in half or in to multiple parts, you can do this… Windows Live Movie Maker 2011 doesn’t have a super intelligent way to ‘split’ a movie easily. [save this half/save that half] But you can open the movie in Windows Live Movie Maker, get to a breaking point and use the ‘split’ option under VIDEO » EDIT. Notate the time/positions of the break; you’ll need that later. Under the movie preview. Delete the [remaining] other half and then save the [first] one half to a WMV file. To finish, repeat the process for the second half of the movie, breaking the movie at the same time/position and exporting to WMV.

How to get a WMV on to a DVD- and it work.
If you’re trying to get Windows Live Movie Maker [WMV] file to work with a standard DVD player, there are some options…

Option A.
You can make an attempt simply write the WMV file to a DVD using any DVD software you want. Ensure your DVD player can handle the media you’re going to be using; either DVD-r or DVD+r. And while SOME DVD players will play WMV files, not all can— there lies a problem. A solution would be to buy another DVD player that SAYS it supports WMV, but this doesn’t make it compatible with ALL DVD players [back to square one].

Option B.
You can use the SAVE option in Windows Live Movie Maker to export to DVD. The MOVIE is then converted to WMV— The completed movie is handed off to Windows DVD Maker… Another issue is that NOT all DVD players are equal. Some will play self-authored DVD’s, others won’t [simple fact]. You can try other another DVD player, or you can try another type media [Memorex, Imation, Sony…] or try another software package to burn the WMV to a DVD [like ConvertXDVD]… The real answer is to find the right media and the RIGHT software package that burns the movies correctly. Personally, Windows DVD Maker doesn’t work for me, and mine [never has].

How to TRIM and DELETE video clips with Windows Live Movie Maker
If you need to TRIM and Delete sections of video… In Windows Live Movie Maker select the movie clip you want to edit by double-clicking on it. Then use the edit TOOLS at the top [ribbon]. To adjust the beginning and closing of the video, use the TRIM option. To take out parts of the video, use the SPLIT option at the beginning and the end of the section you want to remove. Then DELETE the section you don’t want [the middle].

That’s it friends…
I have nothing left to offer on the subject of Windows Live Movie Maker. I’m washing my hands of it. If you choose to use it, good luck. If it works for you, then your considered a ‘blessed’ user. I may get some crap from this post, but everything here is factual. It’s from the support forum and it’s from reports from other users, and myself. Your welcome to check out the support forums as well…
This is what I took away from using Windows Live Movie Maker. Windows Live Movie Maker is a free program from Microsoft. Microsoft doesn’t make anything, they copy/assimilate and then re-brand applications/software. I really can’t complain about free; it’s free. But you aren’t going to motivate developers on a free application by complaining. If I really want to get nasty, and complain; I’ll pay for it— then I have a true reason to complain. I hope this helps…

I wish you the best with your project…


Thank you,
Larry Henry Jr.

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