Users will encounter the “Error loading media: File could not be played” error when trying to watch a video on a self-hosted video content website. The issue mainly occurs when trying to load a file in a nonsupported format using JW Player. Most of the time, the error is triggered when the JW Player is tasked with loading a .wmv or .mov video that doesn’t use the H264 video codec.
Method 3: Disabling Chrome Extensions (PC only)
Chrome Extensions are known to cause the “Error loading media: File could not be played” error on Chrome. This is even more likely if you’re using extensions to protect your online surfing.
Luckily, there’s a quick way to find out if extensions are triggering the issue. Just open Chrome in Incognito Mode. To do this, click on the action menu (top-right corner) and select New Incognito window. Besides allowing you to browse more privately, Incognito Mode disables all your extensions by default (unless you allow them manually).
While in incognito mode, open the URL that is displaying the “Error loading media: File could not be played”. If the video displays just fine in Incognito Mode, there’s a high chance that an extension is interfering with the playback of the video. In this case, paste “chrome://extensions” in Chrome’s omnibar. This will take you to a page where you can oversee all your extensions. Use this page to systematically disable your extensions by unchecking the Enabled box. After each disabled extension, check if you’re able to play the video. Once you’ve identified the culprit, remove the extension by clicking the trash icon.
Method 4: Reset Chrome settings to default (PC only)
If you’ve come this far without a result, there’s one final thing you can do. While this will most likely remove any setting or extension that is causing the problem, it can also create some problems.
When you reset your Chrome settings, most of the settings will be changed to the default state including site data, cookies, extensions or themes. Only your custom fonts, bookmarks, and saved passwords will be preserved.
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Here’s a quick guide to reset your Chrome browser settings to default:
Open Chrome and click the action menu (three-dot icon) in the top-right corner.Go to Settings and click on Advanced to expand the drop-down menu.
Method 5: Disabling Hardware Acceleration
In some cases, the hardware acceleration feature of the Chrome browser has been known to cause issues with playing media online. Therefore, in this step, we will be disabling hardware acceleration from settings. For that:
Open Chrome and launch a new tab.Click on the “Three dots” in the top right corner and select “Settings”.Scroll down and click on the “Advanced” dropdown.Under the “System” heading, click on the “Use Hardware Acceleration When Available” toggle to turn it off.Clicking on the “Use Hardware Acceleration Feature When Available” toggle to turn it offCheck to see if the issue persists.
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Once Chrome is back to the default state, the issue should be removed. If you’re still encountering the issue after following every method above, the problem is beyond your control and you’ll have to wait for the web administrator to fix it.