Video Codec Hell

A new XP SP3 computer will not play a particular MPEG-2 file that plays fine on two other XP computers. For the first time, I purchased one of the MPEG-2 codecs (Intervideo - WinDVD) as recommended on the Microsoft site. The codec installed fine, but the video still doesn't play. The Microsoft Widows XP Video Decoder Checkup Utility reports that the correct codec is installed. The file plays fine in Media Player Classic - Home Theater.

Video codecs are and have always been a mystery to me. Earlier, I downloaded and installed CodecInstaller and found it to be quite impressive. However, since I don't understand the metrics, I didn't tamper with any settings. What I think I have determined is that there is problem a condec conflict with Nero, but none of the tools reports that problem. GSpot shows that the codecs are installed, although it will not render the video file (only the audio.)

I don't mind reading, studying, and experimenting to learn and to find the problem, but every time I start on a codec problem, I end up installed several codec packs, including ffdshow and dscaler5. Eventually the problem "goes away", but that's a crappy way to configure a computer. Please offer some suggestions for resolving the problem.
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More about video codec hell
  1. Try another program to open the MPEG-2 file, I'd suggest VLC (
  2. ^ +1...VLC has the codecs to play most anything.
  3. Thanks for the suggestions, but I'm trying to properly configure windows to handle the MPG files.
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