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Technical Help
Instructions for Viewing Video Clips

Short Cut Help

If the embedded player isn't working for you, try these links to view the videos.






Multimedia via the web is a fast-growing technology that has become user-friendly and widely accessible through a variety of browsers. If you should encounter difficulties viewing our multimedia, this section will provide some useful information.

System Requirements
We stream the multimedia files using an embedded Microsoft Media Player. Each video is designed to start playing automatically soon after the page is opened.

Please check your browser version, and, if necessary, install the latest version to minimize problems. Microsoft Media Player comes with Microsoft Operating Systems, so installing the latest browser ensures the best compatibility with current multimedia technology:

  1. Internet Explorer:
    Install newest version of IE
  2. Netscape:
    Install the newest version of Netscape
  3. Microsoft Media Player:
    Install the newest version of Windows Media Player
  4. MAC users:
    Download the Windows Media Player for the MAC OS
  5. Sound card and speakers: Make sure the volume is turned up


  • Close all other programs on your computer except for your Web browser and Windows Media Player
  • Volume: Make sure your volume is turned up
  • Wait for the buffering; it is normal and the length of time required for buffering is determined by your computer and Internet traffic
  • Make sure you meet the minimum system requirements for viewing Webcasts
  • Click on the Pause button twice to pause the player; once to make the player window active and once to pause.

What You Need on Your Computer

  • Windows Media Player 9 or higher. We recommend Windows Media Player 10 or above.
  • Broadband connection is highly recommended.

Operating Systems
If your operating system is Windows XP, we recommend that you install Windows Media Player, version 10 or above.

If you use the MAC operating system, you may need to install the Windows Media Player for your version of the MAC operating system.

Should you need to install the Windows Media Player, we recommend you seek the assistance of your system administrator or technical support staff. If you do not have administrative access to your computer, you may not be able to install any software.

Troubleshooting Q&A

Here is a checklist of questions (with answers) for you to use while troubleshooting if you are having difficulty viewing our multimedia files:

Are you allowing enough time for your computer to download the video?
A common complaint among new multimedia Web users is that once the media player opens, nothing happens. A short delay of 20 or 30 seconds is normal. During this delay, your computer begins to collect the information from the connection it has made with another server. Once a packet of information is received, your computer begins to display what it has stored. This process is called buffering. The faster your Internet connection, the less time will be required for this initial buffering.

You can tell if the video is downloading by watching the toolbars of the Windows Media Player window. There will be a message that reads "Connecting," "Loading," or "Buffering," and a progress bar or dial will let you know how much has loaded and how much is left to load.

Do you have the most recent version of your Web browser installed on your computer?
To check which version you own, click the "Help" menu and scroll down to "About Internet Explorer" or "About Netscape." The About window will tell you which version you own.

If you already have the most recent version of your browser installed on your computer, or downloading the most recent version does not solve your problems, please move on to the next step.

Do you have the most recent version of Windows Media Player installed on your computer?
To check, open the Windows Media Player from your "Start" menu or desktop, and then click the "Help" menu and scroll down to "About Windows Media Player." The About window will tell you which version of Media Player you have. If you have a previous version installed, please download the most recent version and try watching again. Note: Real Player is not compatible with Macintosh computers.

Does your computer have a sufficient amount of hard drive space available?
If you have completed all of the items on the list so far to no avail, then the problem could possibly be the amount of space you have available on your hard drive. Each video must be temporarily downloaded to your hard drive before you can view it, so if there is insufficient hard drive space on your computer, the file download will not be able to complete. To check the amount of hard drive space available on your computer, open Windows Explorer, right-click on the hard drive (usually the C:\ drive), scroll down, and click on "Properties." This window should tell you how much free space is available. If the amount is less than 250 megabytes, this could be the problem.

If none of this self-help works or you donít understand it, please contact us - Marie@benchmarkinstitute.org  or 415/695-9296.