NOTE (2017): The method described in this article no longer works in some recent releases of Windows 10 + Windows Media Player 12.
The most typical method to caption Windows Media content is to use an external caption file known as a SAMI file (.smi). Whether your media file is on a web server, or you want to play it on your local machine, you just need to place the media and the .smi file on the same folder, with the same basename. The .SMI file is then picked up by Windows Media Player at play time and allows the player to display captions. The viewer can turn the captions on or off using menu controls in the player.
1. Log into CaptionSync, and choose the Windows Media Player captions (.smi .asx) format under the Advanced Settings. Click Apply Changes. You can check the Save Above Settings as Default box, if you need this output for multiple submissions. Make your Captioning request.
2. Once you get the caption files back, place the .smi file in the same directory as your media, and with the exact same basename:
The associated .ASX pointer file may be used to specify full URLs to streaming media servers and web servers if the caption file is not on the same machine or directory as the media file. Typically however this file is not used.
3. Ensure you can see file extensions in your Explorer. If you can’t see them, go to Folder and Search Options in your Explorer. Under the View tab uncheck Hide Extensions for Known File Types and check Show Hidden Files, Folders and Drives. Click Apply and then OK.
4. Open the Windows Media Player, and configure the following options (if you can't see the following menus, you'll need to expose them by clicking Ctrl-M):
- Open the Play menu, then the Lyrics, captions and subtitles option, and make sure On if Available is selected.
- In Windows Media Version 10 and greater, you'll also need to open the Tools/Options menu, select the Security tab, and then:
- Check Show local captions when present. Click Apply.
- Exit the Player and relaunch for the changes to take effect.
5. Right-click the media file, and choose Open with... Windows Media Player:
Now you should be able to see captions when you play your media file:
Ensure the user is on the Now Playing mode, as opposed to the Library mode: