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How to set up parental controls in Windows Media Center

Protect your children from unsuitable content

Age ratings on films and games exist to prevent children viewing unsuitable content, but they don't prevent a child from watching the content on the family PC. Here, we guide you through how to set up parental controls in Windows Media Player.

Step 1. Parental controls can be used in Windows Media Center to prevent children from viewing unsuitable content. Choose Windows Media Center from the Start menu, then click Settings. Choose ‘Parental controls’ from the General tab and enter a four-digit PIN. Keep this number to yourself.

WMC parental controls 1

Step 2. Next, select ‘TV ratings’ and elect to ‘Turn on TV blocking’. Specify a ‘Maximum allowed TV rating’, using the plus and minus buttons to increase or decrease the age limit. Since not all TV programmes are age-rated, you can also choose to ‘Block all unrated content’. Click Save to implement your changes.

WMC parental controls 2

Step 3. It’s also possible to restrict DVD access by selecting the ‘Turn on movie blocking’ option in ‘DVD ratings’. There is the option to block unrated movies, if you decide this will be beneficial. As before, use the plus and minus buttons to specify the ‘Maximum allowed movie rating’ and press Save.

WMC parental controls 3

Step 4. In the event that your children get hold of the PIN you entered in Step 1, this can be changed within the main Parental controls screen. You can also remove the restrictions currently in place by selecting ‘Reset parental controls’ and confirming your decision.

WMC parental controls 4

Also see: How to use Windows Live Family Safety
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