[German]For users with a Windows 10 N variant, Microsoft has released the Media Feature Pack for Windows 10 N version 2004. Here is some information about this topic and how to obtain this pack.
What is Windows 10 N?
Windows N is the version of the operating system without media player and media functions. It has been offered by Microsoft (under pressure from the EU competition authorities) for years. N stands for no media features. Also for Windows 10 there is a so-called N-variant – Windows 10 KN is a reduced version developed for Korea without media features. In practice, I think that OEM manufacturers do not offer Windows 10 N installations. Usually, it is students or other users who at some point will be able to purchase a Windows 10 N installation at a reasonable price.
Who needs the Media Feature Pack and why?
If someone uses a Windows 10 N, the media functions are missing. In addition to the missing Windows Media Player, which could be substituted by VLC player, there are other problems. Without the media features that are missing in Windows 10 N, there are more limitations.
- Apps with media play back features (Groove Music, Video app etc.) won’t work
- Connecting smartphones, cameras and mobile devices via USB cable fails, because there is no support for media transfer using Picture Transfer Protocol (PTP) and Media Transfer Protocol (MTP).
- New features like Windows Mixed Reality, Cortana, Windows Hello, and the PDF display in the new Edge browser based on Windows Media files are not included in Windows 10 N.
This Microsoft site lists further functional limitations of the Windows 10 N version. Only by installing the Media Feature Pack are the missing functions retrofitted and it is, for example, possible to import photos or display PDF documents again.
Note that the Media Feature Pack for N versions of Windows 10 is not compatible with Windows Mixed Reality. Users who want to use Windows Mixed Reality must install a non-N version of Windows 10.
Where can I get the Media Feature Pack?
Microsoft provides the Media Feature Pack for the Windows N variants for free. The problem is that each Windows 10 version needs the appropriate version of the Media Feature Pack. For Windows 10 N Version 2004 (May 2020 Update) you need the Media Feature Pack for Version 2004.
In the past, you had to manually download the Media Feature Pack for the Windows 10 N version from a Microsoft site Media Feature Pack list for Windows N editions. Colleagues from deskmodder.de point out that a direct download will no longer be available. In this deskmodder.de article it is confirmed again for Windows 10 N 2004.
1. Instead you have to go to the Settings page and navigate to Apps – Apps and Features.
2. There you have to select the command Optional Features and on the next page the button Add Feature.
For a Windows 10 Version 2004 N variant, the Media Feature Pack should be offered for installation. At the latest after a restart of the system the media functions should be available.