Windows Live Movie Maker Tutorial (Video)

Posted November 20, 2009 6:00 am by with 36 comments

To note up front: This is for Windows Live Movie Maker and not the older Windows Movie Maker.

WLMM is something which is a separate download in the Windows Live suite of applications. It does not come bundled with Windows 7 but can be added in easily.

The last time I tried this software it was in beta form. Admittedly, I hated it. But now the software is finished so I gave it a go. It is far better than it was in beta and a truly completed product.

There is a video below this showing a basic tutorial of how to get simple thing done in WLMM, here’s a few questions answered up front.

Is it the same as the older Windows Movie Maker?

No. The way in which is operates is completely different. It has the ribbon interface seen in the updated versions of the Office suite, Paint and Windows Live Mail. This is an attempt by Microsoft to make everything look similar no matter what you’re using.

Is it better than the older Windows Movie Maker?

Yes. It supports the native import of more formats (like MOV, MP4 and M4A for example), has effects that are much more streamlined and useful and also has other useful bits, such as direct-to-DVD, direct-to-YouTube and so on.

Is there a learning curve with WLMM?

Yes. You will not take to it like a fish to water. But as stated in the video, once you start using it you’ll realize the way in which it works does make sense, and over time you will be able to edit videos faster and more efficiently. The only people who would purposely stay with the old Windows Movie Maker are robbing themselves of a truly good and useful video editor.

See video above for more details.

36 responses to Windows Live Movie Maker Tutorial (Video)

  1. Amy Proctor November 23rd, 2009 at 2:50 am

    It would appear that Windows Live Movie Maker doesn’t have the capability to transition OUT of a video or photo, only IN. I like some of the new transitions but if I cannot fade or transition out, it’s useless to me. Am I wrong about that?


    • Rich Menga November 23rd, 2009 at 7:08 am

      What you have to get used to is that transitions apply to the beginning of each scene and there is no need to add anything at the tail.

      Example: You have 4 scenes. You want to fade between scenes 1 and 2, cross-wipe from 2 to 3, then fade (again) from 3 to 4. Apply a fade at the beginning of scene 2. Apply a cross-wipe at the beginning of scene 3. Apply a fade at the beginning of scene 4. Scene 1 will fade into 2, 2 will cross-wipe to 3, 3 will fade to 4.

      There is no need to add any transitions specifically to the end of a scene. It takes some getting used to but it does work.


  2. Amy Proctor November 23rd, 2009 at 7:19 am

    Thanks, Rich. I appreciate your time.

    I do a lot of video editing and I rely on fading out at the end of the clip. So on the final scene, I cannot transition out. Now, I sometimes add a completely black photo at the end of the video to give the video some end time, so it doesn’t just abruptly end. I’ll try to cross-wipe from the video to that solid image and see if that works.

    I also don’t care for the storyline rather than the timeline. The Timeline feature made it easier to splice. The storyline feature cuts up my solid video into too many parts. It gets confusing. I cannot just delete the part of the video don’t want becuase there’s a gazillion pieces to it, and if I have video 1 minute after the part I want to delete, it’s completely confusing with so many image or video blocks.

    There are a lot of cool featurs in this new version, but it seems like it’s made for photos rather than video.


    • Kris February 18th, 2010 at 8:59 pm

      Thanks for this tip! I was stuck with the same issue, I really like to end the video clip on a fade out. Adding the black clip at the end is a great work-around. Thanks. :)


  3. Reid Wicks November 26th, 2009 at 11:04 pm

    Help! When I download movie maker it just gives me the windows live download thingy and it doesn’t have movie maker!


  4. Riannon November 30th, 2009 at 1:42 pm

    Helpp, can you get slow motion and fast motion on videos like you could on the old one? :(


  5. Brandon December 3rd, 2009 at 1:17 pm

    I’m liking the new setup for WLMM. It seems to work very similar to iMovie. On that note, is there a way to use “Advanced Features” like cutaways?

    In other words, can I overlay an image file on top of a video file while the audio continues playing?


    • Rael February 10th, 2010 at 3:04 pm

      Hi Brandon,
      Sorry I don’t have an answer for you but was wondering the exact same thing. Have you found a solution to adding a photo over a video while the audio keeps playing?
      Your help would be appreciated.


  6. STEVE purvis December 4th, 2009 at 1:53 am



  7. Kate December 8th, 2009 at 7:00 pm

    No slow motion!!!! That was one of the cool ones! This blows!!!


  8. Pat December 9th, 2009 at 4:50 am

    Hello Amy
    I had the same problem trying to fade out of a video and got around it like this. At the end of the video I add credits. Then I click on the credits screen in the preview pane and delete all the text. I now have a blank screen at the end of the video. In the video tools you can select “background colour” to change the colour of the credits clip to whatever you want to fade to – black screen, white screen etc. You can also change the “duration” that the credits display to whatever you want – I change it from 5 seconds to 2 seconds. Then I add a cross fade transition before the credits and the video fades out to a blank screen. This isn’t ideal but it’s better than an abrupt ending to the clip. Pretty much like your black photo but with a few more options. Hope this is useful


  9. Justin December 10th, 2009 at 10:34 pm

    I have a movie I want to play music overtop of and not hear the orignal music recorded in the video. I can’t seem to find a way to mute the video while having an audio track play. Is there anyway to do this?


    • Chelsea February 27th, 2010 at 7:25 pm

      When you go to the home tab, there should be a little button to the far right that says Audio Mix. When you click on it, there should be a slide bar and on one end, the picture of film and on the other end, a picture of a music note. To mute the video out completely, you slide the bar all the way to the music note. If you want a little music in the background, you will need to slide the bar more over towards the video picture.


  10. Wim December 15th, 2009 at 4:36 pm

    While editing music, I find it impossible to remove the music from one scene, (to replace it with some more suitable music) without the empty space immediately being filled with the music from the next scenes. It will not stay put!
    Any one with some good tip?


  11. Vic Voss December 20th, 2009 at 12:23 pm

    Two things you could do with the old XP Moviemaker:
    1. (& see Justin and Wim above) I want to fit video to music. This was great on the old one. How can I do it now?
    2. Extract a jpg at any particular moment?

    If these can’t be done and I want to use the old Mmaker, is
    there a safe way?


  12. Vic Voss December 20th, 2009 at 1:03 pm

    Apologies, Rich. You answered the last query above.
    I now have the old program aboard. Many thanks.


  13. Finiderire January 10th, 2010 at 2:53 pm

    Lol no video fade out. So dumb.


  14. Elyse Doerflinger January 13th, 2010 at 5:15 pm

    It won’t let me upload .mov files and edit them. Any reason why this can be? It is really frustrating.


  15. Angela January 27th, 2010 at 12:36 am

    I have a question, for some how, my videos, the audio coming from it speeds UP SOOO FAST that it sounds like chipmunks speaking. But, the video moves normally, and the audio…?!?? help please and thnks!


  16. tytboy January 27th, 2010 at 3:38 pm

    i no that is says the duration and stuff but i was wandering how i would speed up or slow down the actions like putting it in slow mo?


  17. Bart January 28th, 2010 at 6:07 pm

    One hell of a nice job. I was lucky enough to find what to do. It IS different from the previous version, but with this I’ll have it right in no time!

    Thanks for the well put together effort!


  18. c-man January 29th, 2010 at 11:17 pm

    Compared to Vista’s Movie Maker 6 (not 2.1 or 2.6), WLMM seems like a dramatic step dbackwards. The lack of a timeline makes aligning photos to specific spots of a song almost impossible. The constant right-down-over-and right again motion of the storyboard is irritating, esp. since everybody has a widescreen monitor – why go downwards when you should just go across? The loss of so many features, like right click fade in/out, narration and slo-mo, is another big step backwards. Thank god you can find some nice ported versions of WMM6 for W7 on Youtube!


  19. Brian January 30th, 2010 at 12:50 pm

    Does anyone know how to combine multiple WMV’s into one long movie? I want to take many clips from a vacation and make one DVD movie.


  20. Nicholas February 7th, 2010 at 10:00 pm

    how to publish movie into CD/DVD?


  21. ricky February 15th, 2010 at 3:00 pm

    when making anything my video clip colors are always very off.(ex. things that are purple appear orange.) and alwso my sound doesn’t match up to what the video is showing. I would really appreciate some help.


  22. Hannah February 19th, 2010 at 12:11 pm

    How do you make a video go backwards, on windows LIVE movie maker ??

    I have already imported it in (this is what it looks like –, but how do I reverse it ???


  23. Crystal February 27th, 2010 at 8:32 pm

    You can fade out, it is a visual effect.


  24. joel March 2nd, 2010 at 2:09 am

    how do i change the background colour?


  25. amanda March 2nd, 2010 at 9:27 pm

    I can’t get any video. When I take the videos that are on my computer and try to put them in Live Movie Maker, I can hear the audio but can not see the video. Any takers on what is going on there. The Windows Live help site was no help. I have already been there. Going back to Sony video editor.


  26. Caleb March 26th, 2010 at 2:56 pm

    Say I’ve got a video of me playing the drums to a track of music. When I make the movie, I want to “overlay” my audio track over the video so that the audience can hear the studio version of the music I’m playing. How can I line up the audio track so it is sync’d with what I’m doing in the video?


  27. sarah April 23rd, 2010 at 2:49 am

    Moving Titles, Layed
    i want this for my title animation but can’t find it on windows live movie maker?


  28. Marius May 18th, 2010 at 3:37 pm

    Hey! i made some movies in WLMM and saved them in HD 1080p. At each save, the movie gets smaller, I mean it has a lot of black on the sides. Is there anyway to avoid this?


  29. Rafael June 16th, 2010 at 9:43 pm

    How can you speed up a video?? D:


  30. Ciengineer August 9th, 2010 at 11:41 pm

    how do you combine two movies using WLMM?


  31. Julianseach August 25th, 2010 at 10:13 am

    just add them both and they become one as far as a i know, does anyone know how to make it play like 3 times faster or something


  32. loadmsn September 2nd, 2010 at 10:31 am

    Great Tutorial …Thank you : )


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