What to Know

  • A WLMP file is a project file used by Windows Movie Maker.
  • That same program can save the video to MP4 or WMV.

This article explains what a WLMP file is, how to open one, and how to export the video to MP4, WMV, etc.

What Is a WLMP File?

A file with the WLMP file extension is a project file created by Microsoft’s Windows Movie Maker program (older versions are called Windows Live Movie Maker).

WLMP files store all the project related material that Windows Movie Maker might need to store, but it doesn't store all the actual media files. It might contain effects, music, and transitions that pertain to the slideshow or movie, but it only references the videos and photos.

Older versions of the software use the MSWMM file extension for project files.

WLMP files in Windows 10

How to Open a WLMP File

WLMP files are created by and opened with Windows Live Movie Maker, which is a part of the Windows Live Essentials suite. This program suite was later replaced by Windows Essentials, thus changing the name of the video program to Windows Movie Maker.

However, Windows Essentials has been discontinued and hasn't been available from Microsoft's website since 2017.

You can, however, still download Windows Essentials from MajorGeeks and other sites. It includes Windows Movie Maker as part of a larger suite of applications. It should work with Windows Vista and newer Windows versions.

Be sure to choose a custom install if you don't want to install the other components of Windows Essentials.

If you have an older version of Windows Movie Maker that only accepts MSWMM files, just download the updated version through the link above. The last version of the program can open both WLMP and MSWMM files.

The Best Alternatives to Windows Movie Maker

How to Convert a WLMP File

Using Windows Movie Maker, you can export the project’s video to WMV or MP4 from the File > Save movie menu. Use the File > Publish movie menu if you need to publish the video straight to YouTube, Facebook, OneDrive, etc.

If you know what device it is that you want to ultimately use the file on, you can choose it from the Save movie menu so that Movie Maker will automatically set up the export settings to make a video that will fit that device. For example, pick iPhone, Android (1080p), or something else if you know that your video will be used on that device specifically.

Once your project has been converted to MP4 or WMV, you can put the file through another video file converter tool to save it to some other format like MOV or AVI. Through that link are both offline and online video file converters that both support a wide range of export formats.

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Don't waste your time with "WLMP to MP4" converters. No actual video content is stored in this file, just references to the video.

Still Can't Open It?

The first thing you should check if you can't open the file is to see if it really ends with the "WLMP" suffix. Some file extensions look similar, even though they have nothing in common and can't open with the same programs.

For example, Wireless Markup Language files use a file extension (WML) that looks really similar to WLMP, but they don't work with Windows Movie Maker. On the same note, WLMP files aren't compatible with a WML file opener.

Another example is the Windows Media Photo file format that uses the WMP extension. This kind of file opens with image viewers, including the Photo Gallery program that's part of Windows Essentials. It doesn't, however, open the exact same way as WLMP files.

LMP is yet another example. If you actually have an LMP file, it's a "lump file" that's used with games developed within the context of the Quake game engines.

MPL and MPLS are a couple others to watch for.

As you can tell, you should be aware of the suffix that your file has because that's the easiest way to tell what format the file is in. If you don't have a WLMP file, research the file extension that you do have so that you can find which programs open, edit, or convert it.

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