Windows Media Player encountered a problem with the skin file [FIX]

by Aleksandar Ognjanovic
Aleksandar Ognjanovic
Aleksandar Ognjanovic
Troubleshooting Expert
Aleksandar's main passion is technology. With a solid writing background, he is determined to bring the bleeding edge to the common user. With a keen eye, he always... read more
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Windows Media Player

Windows Media Player was a valuable built-in asset back in the old Windows iterations. However, Microsoft dropped support for this player and now the classic media player is stuck in 2013.

Some WMP aficionados and fans who are still gladly using Windows Media Player have tried to add some new skins and improve usually bland WMP aesthetics.

However, they were met with the Windows Media Player encountered a problem with the skin file. The skin file might not be valid error.

If you’re stuck with this error, make sure to check the steps we’re offering below. They should help you find a brief resolution.

Steps to fix Windows Media Player skin issues

  1. Make sure that the skin is supported by Windows Media Player 12
  2. Try re-applying the skin
  3. Reset Windows Media Player
  4. Consider moving to an alternative

Solution 1 – Make sure that the skin is supported by Windows Media Player 12

The skins you’ve used to acquire back in the days when Windows Media Player was actually on par with 3rd-party media players won’t cut it now.

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Make sure that the said skin supports the WMP 12 before trying to apply it. If you’re using the skin from DeviantArt, make sure to follow through the explained steps before you’re able to change the looks of Windows Media Player.

If you’ve done everything right and the error still appears, we encourage you to try the additional steps we enlisted below.

Solution 2 – Try re-applying the skin

Another viable step is to try and re-apply the skin within the Windows Media Player settings menu. There’s a Skin Chooser option that shows all available skins and there you should be able to find official skins or your custom ones. That way you’ll avoid a possible stir in the configuration file you’ve changed in order to apply the custom ones.

If you’re not sure how to re-apply a skin, follow these instructions:

  1. Open Windows Media Player.Windows Media Player encountered a problem with the skin file
  2. Press Ctrl + M to show the menu bar.
  3. Click on View > Skin Chooser.
  4. Select the skin and apply it.

Solution 3 – Reset Windows Media Player

Since Windows Media Player is an optional feature in Windows 10, you can reset it by a simple disable-enable sequence. This is analogous to the reinstallation of any third-party application and you’ll get the fresh Windows Media Player installation. Also, you’ll probably need to re-assign your Library entries afterward.

Here’s how to reset Windows Media Player in a few steps:

  1. In the Windows Search bar, type Turn Windows and open “Turn Windows features on or off“.
  2. Navigate to Media Features and expand it.
  3. Uncheck the Windows Media Player box and confirm changes.Windows Media Player encountered a problem with the skin file
  4. Restart your PC.
  5. Repeat the steps and re-enable Windows Media Player again.

Solution 4 – Consider moving to an alternative

Finally, and this is more of a suggestion than a solution, we encourage you to move on. Microsoft completely neglected Windows Media Player. The latest version is from 2013 and the support is discontinued a while back. Y

You can decide on the Groove Music, which is WMP’s successor and it gets updated. Also, there’s a lot of free third-party media players which are much more customizable and easier on system resources.

In case you’re interested in other great media player software, there are a plethora of options that can offer qualitative audio-video results.

If you have anything to give or take from this, hopefully, informative read, make sure to tell us in the comments section below.

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