When Playing DVD Movies in Windows 7, "Windows cannot access the specified device, path, or file"

When you insert a DVD media in the drive, right-click on the drive and choose Play from the context menu, the following error may occur.

Windows cannot access the specified device, path, or file. You may not have the appropriate permissions to access the item.

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However, you may be able to play DVD movies via the AutoPlay dialog, or by starting Windows Media Player and using the Play menu. This happens if the DVD/Play association setting is missing or incorrect, or is of incorrect value type. The DVD Play verb is stored in this registry key:

HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\DVD\shell\play\command

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The value data for the (default) value in the above key is as follows:

Windows 7 64-bit:

“%ProgramFiles(x86)%\Windows Media Player\wmplayer.exe” /prefetch:4 /device:DVD “%L”

Windows 7 32-bit:

“%ProgramFiles%\Windows Media Player\wmplayer.exe” /prefetch:4 /device:DVD “%L”

 

How could this problem occur?

When the above key is missing or its (default) value data is incorrect, the following error occurs when accessing Play from the DVD drive context menu:

This file does not have a program associated with it for performing this action. Please install a program or, if one is already installed, create an association in the Default Programs control panel.

… so you try to reset Windows Media Player as the default via Default Programs / Set program access and computer defaults…

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When resetting the values using Set program access and computer defaults, it does reset the data (unexpanded path), but the value type is incorrectly set as REG_SZ where as it should be REG_EXPAND_SZ. As a result, the following error occurs:

Windows cannot access the specified device, path, or file. You may not have the appropriate permissions to access the item.

Registry Fix

Download w7-dvd-play.zip, unzip and run the corresponding REG file for your Windows 7 Edition (32-bit or 64-bit.)

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One Response to When Playing DVD Movies in Windows 7, "Windows cannot access the specified device, path, or file"

  1. Andy says:

    Thank you Thank you Thank you!!!!

    I have been searching for a solution to this issue for hours and hours!!! I’m so glad I’ve found it,

    THANK YOU!!

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