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Day 26


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Video Help

Having problems using our video service to purchase and watch episodes of Channel 4 programmes? Browse our commonly-asked technical questions below.


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What are the minimum system requirements?
How can I check what software I've got installed?
Can I use other media players like QuickTime, RealPlayer, etc.?
Why can't I play videos on my Mac?
It says "No media in playlist" - What do I do now?
I'm outside the UK - can I still play videos?

 

What are the minimum system requirements?

For video to play correctly, this is what you need:

  • Windows XP
  • Internet Explorer 5.5 or 6
  • Windows Media Player 10
  • Cookies enabled (Internet Explorer security settings set to medium)
  • A high speed internet connection capable of streaming at a minimum of 512kps

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Can I use other media players like QuickTime, RealPlayer, etc.?

No. You need to use Windows Media Player with our service. If you have more than one media player on your computer (RealPlayer, QuickTime Player, etc.), please set Windows Media Player as your default media player to avoid problems accessing our content.

To make Windows Media Player the default media player:

  • Open up the Windows Media Player application.
  • Click on Tools > Options.
  • Click on the "File Types" tab.
  • Check the boxes for "Windows Media File (asf)", "Windows Media Audio file (wma)", and "Windows Media Video file (wmv)".
  • Click "Apply" and then "Ok".

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How can I check what software I've got installed?

This section explains how to tell which version of the required software is installed on your PC.


To see if you have Windows XP
  1. Click the Start button.
  2. Select Settings > Control Panel.
  3. From the top menu, select Help > About Windows. You'll see a dialog similar to this one:

    Windows system dialog showing operating system version

To see if you have Internet Explorer 6.0
  1. Launch Internet Explorer.
  2. From the top menu, select Help > About Internet Explorer. You'll see a dialog similar to this one:

    Windows System Version dialog

To see if you have Windows Media Player 10
  1. Click the Start button.
  2. Select Programs > Accessories > Entertainment > Windows Media Player.
  3. From the top menu, select Help > About Windows Media Player. You'll see a dialog similar to this one:

    Windows Media Player version dialog

To see if you have cookies enabled (Internet Explorer security settings set to medium)
  1. Launch Internet Explorer.
  2. From the top menu, select Tools > Internet Options . You'll see a dialog similar to this one:



  3. Select the Security tab. You'll see a dialog similar to this one:



  4. At the bottom, under the heading Reset custom settings, ensure it is set to Medium.

To see if you have a high speed internet connection capable of streaming at a minimum of 512kps
  1. Contact your ISP or telephone service provider.

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Why can't I play videos on my Mac?

Currently, Channel4.com offers full support only for videos on PC. There are a number of reasons for this. One of the most important reasons is that the native Mac format (Quicktime) does not support Digital Rights Management (DRM). DRM is a system for controlling licensing of copyrighted material. You can tell if a video has DRM content if you see a message acquiring license before it starts to play. Some of our content is licensed to Channel 4 on the understanding that it will be protected in this way, including the full episodes of Lost. You should be able to view the reviews and previews, however, using Windows Media Player for Mac or Flip4Mac. Learn more about alternative video players for Macs.

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It says "No media in playlist" - What do I do now?

Try clicking the Play button again; that often fixes it. Note that you may also see this message when the video has finished playing. Some videos are quite short, it might have played through to the end while you weren't looking. (This sometimes happens if it takes a little while to buffer and download.)

If clicking Play again doesn't help, please contact us. It would be a great help if you could send us details of your operating system and browser. See How can I check what software I've got installed?

Note there is a very specific issue that can affect people behind corporate firewalls. Please let us know if this applies to you.

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I'm outside the UK, can I still play videos?

If your web servers are located outside of the UK, you will not be able to view all the content on the site. This is because certain content is licensed to Channel 4 on the understanding that it can only be viewed by UK users. There are also copyright reasons why some types of content, such as the news, can only be accessed from the UK.

Channel 4 takes its responsibilities as a multi-media broadcaster very seriously including all legal and regulatory aspects, and therefore we have taken the decision to restrict access to our content in this way.

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If you have already paid for video content and have a query about billing and licensing please refer to the confirmation email you received after purchase and email videosupport@channel4.com

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