Ripping and Converting WMA Music Files in Windows Media Player to MP3 Format

Windows Media Player is the default player on your Windows XP machine. You may find that you have got files off online download stores such as Napster, but you want to play these on your iPod or other audio Device. The only problem is that stores such as Napster save the files onto your computer as WMA files, this is a file format created by Microsoft and supported by a lot of different players. However your player may not support this format of audio, so how do you get those files onto say an iPod. Well you have to convert the files in Windows Media into MP3 format, now MP3 is a supported format of the iPod and can be played on it, MP3 is a smaller file size and has no copy protection so you can easily transfer to any device.

To start off find where your files are located on your Windows XP machine, this is likely to be your ‘My Music’ folder. Make sure they are in your Windows Media Player library ready to be converted, now I am sure you’re going to say “Do I have to buy commercial software to do this WMA to MP3 conversion” and the answer is yes you can if you want but you’re wasting money doing that when you can do the conversion for free. To start off the process go into Windows Media Player, now I am going to instruct you as you have Windows Media Player 11, however in Windows Media Player 10 it’s the same process. You will want to get a blank CD-RW and then just place it in the CD drive and wait for it to be recognized. Now go into your Windows Media Player library and drag the files you want onto the tab on the far right hand side, you will see a little meter telling you how much space is left on the CD. Once you have added the files you want select ‘Start Burn’ this will then burn your files in Windows Media Audio format to the blank CD-RW.

Of course now you have to put them back on but this time before you do what is called ripping (the transfer of files onto a PC) you must change some settings so that you rip into MP3 format.

First go to the Tools menu.

Click Options

Then click the Rip Music Tab

Here you will see a variety of options at the top of the screen it will say by default rip music files into Windows Media Audio. You want to change this to do that click the arrow next to the text to bring a dropdown menu up. On this menu select MP3 then click ok. Now your files will be converted into MP3 format, so now we go to ripping to start the transfer click the rip tab. Make sure the CD you just burned is in the drive then the files will load up on the screen select rip music at the bottom of the window and the files will be transferred to your PC in MP3 format. Your files are likely to be in the same location to your WMA files so just go into ‘My Music’ locate the artist then the album and move the MP3 files out of there into a separate folder. For example if you wish to copy these onto an iPod go to iTunes select the folder add to the iTunes library and complete the sync process.

There you go you have just successfully completed a conversion of WMA files into MP3 files.