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How to Play Videos on Xbox 360

How Can I Watch Videos on my Xbox 360?

There are two ways you can watch videos on your Xbox 360:

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1. Download video from the Xbox Live Marketplace. Some of these videos are available for free while you may have to pay for others. Microsoft is in control of what videos are available through the Xbox Live Marketplace.

play video on Xbox 360

2. Stream videos from your Windows Media Center PC by using your Xbox 360 as a Media Center Extender. You are in control of what videos you want to watch, however there are restrictions on what kind of video you can playback. See below for more details

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Is there any way I can play my own videos WITHOUT a Media Center PC?

No. Without a Windows XP Media Center PC, you can only play back the movies Microsoft offers in the Xbox Live Marketplace.

Do I need additional hardware/software to playback video on my Xbox 360?

Yes. You will either need the optional Xbox 360 Hard Drive to download/watch video from the Xbox Live Marketplace or you will need a PC with Microsoft Windows XP Media Center as your OS in order to stream video from your PC.

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Does it support video streaming through Windows Media Connect?

No. There are video sharing capabilities built into Windows Media Connect, however, Microsoft has chosen to ONLY allow you to share Audio and Pictures through Windows Media Connect. You CANNOT stream videos through Windows Media Connect to your Xbox 360

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What kind of videos can I play using the Media Center Extender?

Microsoft Windows Media Video (WMV) 7, 8, & 9

  • Maximum resolution of 1920x1080 (1080p) at 30 frames per second
  • Windows Media Audio Standard or Windows Media Audio Pro audio
  • WMV content may be Windows Media DRM-protected
  • Bitrates up to 8 Mbps

WMV Image 1 & 2

  • Maximum resolution of 800x600


  • MPEG-1 layer I and II audio


  • Maximum resolution of 1920x1080 (1080i)
  • MPEG-1 layer I and II or AC-3 audio
  • Bitrates up to 19.2 Mbps

Does it support AVI? DivX? XviD? Quicktime? H264?

No. The Media Center Extender in the Xbox 360 only supports playback of DVR-MS, MPEG-1, MPEG-2 and WMV video.

How can I watch these other (AVI, DivX, XviD, etc.) videos on my Xbox 360?

You have to convert these videos into the video formats the Xbox 360 Media Center Extender can playback.
We recommend you to use iSkysoft video converter ( for Mac OS, choose video converter for Mac ) to convert all popular video formats to xbox 360 video and audio files perfectly with just a few clicks.

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Does the Xbox 360 support direct video streaming through Windows Sharing/Samba Shares?


Can I watch DVDs through the Media Center Extender?

No, you can only watch DVDs by using the Xbox360's DVD drive.

Can I use a DVD Disc Changer through the Media Center Extender?

No. This functionality is not available in through the Xbox 360's Media Center Extender. You can only watch one DVD at a time by using the Xbox360's DVD drive.

Will My DVDs be available on the XBox 360?

"No. We did not implement the ability to remotely play back a DVD from a MCE to an XBox 360 Extender so it did not make sense to make My DVDs available. I certainly understand how cool it would be if you could put your MCE and full loaded DVD changer in a closest and use XBox 360's to watch your DVD collection from any room wirelessly but this is something that's going to have to wait until a future release." - Matt Goyer - MCE Program Manager

Can the Xbox 360 play video off the Xbox 360 Hard Drive?

Yes, but only video downloaded from the Xbox Live Marketplace or preloaded on the Xbox, not your own videos.

Can you hook up an external hard drive to the Xbox 360 and play videos off that?


Adam Cash
I guess you can come to official site of Windows media center for help.
Hi, i have media center in windows xp, but i can´t find the option \"tasks\" on it. Is not available anymore to add an extender in windows XP?
you can also transfer your movies to a jump drive, or format your external hard drive to fat32. small jump drives are still fat32 so you dont have to do anything other than transfer the movies to it and then plug it into your xbox. if you format your hard drive, do a little research because there is only so much that you can format to fat32. and each file can only be 4gb. I do file shareing on my computer using zune. I have a 1TB harddrive and I can watch most of my movies. there are a few movies that I have on there that will not show up on my 360 and im not sure why
make sure its an AVI file.
Xbox does not support MKV movies, and you\'ll need to convert them to Xbox files first. You can use Video Converter, which provides presets for Xbox.
I am using my media center to play movies off my computer and it works great!! But, can i use a remote drive to play my movies and if so how or what settings for the files do i need to have...? for some reason i can see my remote drive on the xbox media center but it will not recognize or play the movies selected.
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