page contents
windows movie maker

How To Make A Video Using Windows Movie Maker

How To Make A Video Using Windows Movie Maker includes everything you’ll need to get started.

At then end of this post I’ve included several tutorial videos for visual explanation of certain aspects of Windows Movie Maker.

Windows Movie Maker or as it’s sometimes known, Windows Live Movie Maker, was first available back in 2000. This free video editing software from Microsoft was included in Windows XP as well as Vista.  The program wasn’t include in Windows 7 and Windows 8, but you could get it by installing the Windows Live Essentials suite. The Windows Live Essentials 2012 suite will no longer be supported as of January 10, 2017.

Windows Movie Maker however is still compatible backwards through Windows version 7 and is also fully compatible with Windows 10 although you’ll notice you’re prompted to note that this is a trial version. For those who haven’t installed Windows 10 I personally would advise doing so, however if you have an older OS you can still use those with Windows Movie Maker.

I’ve installed Windows 10 on Windows 7 machines as well as on Windows 8.1 units. The install was seamless with no hiccups. Still, I always advise backing up your crucial data and programs just in case.

With Windows Movie Maker, you can easily import and edit videos and slide shows, add and edit audio, edit your video by trimming, splitting or slowing it down and once you’re satisfied with your project you can upload the video to popular video sharing sites like Vimeo, Vine, UStream, Vube, Twitch, YouTube, etc.

If you’ve tried Windows Movie Maker before you will understand that it’s easy to install and use the software. For the purpose of this post we’re only dealing with Windows OS. Now, Movie Maker offers only basic editing tools, but with some creativity and doing your homework (like reading this tutorial and watching the videos included), you can pretty much make it do anything that the average user needs.

Additionally, when Windows Movie Maker is installed it will automatically install Photo Gallery which you can use to organize and edit images.

Windows Movie Maker Dashboard

When you open Windows Movie Maker (You can find it in your Start Menu under all programs, or you can search for “movie maker” and select it), you’ll first notice that the interface has a series of tabs at the top. This is pretty much typical for all Windows programs such as the ribbon in the individual programs of the Microsoft Office suite.

windows movie maker

windows movie maker

You’ll want to click on each tab and examine them so you’ll know where to find the various functions of the program.

Individual Tab Features of Windows Movie Maker

  • Home – You can use this tab to add videos, upload images or add audio to your project. There are some pre-made themes for your project or you can create your own. From here you can also rotate images, and upload the finished project to websites such as Facebook, Vimeo, Instagram and YouTube.
  • Animations – This tab allows you to add transition effects between the various clips.
  • Visual Effects – This tab will allow you to change the color tones of the image.
  • Project – You can make broad changes to your the full project by adjusting the audio mix and change the aspect of the video.
  • View – This tab lets you zoom in and out on the timeline, adjust the thumbnail sizes, and view the waveforms for your film’s audio.
  • Edit – This menu appears after you add your first video clip. You can use this tab to trim the clip, set a new start point or end point, fade in and out, and stabilize the video along with other appearance changes.
  • Options – This tab shows up after you add a music file to your project. You can set up the start and end times for the music, fade it in and out, and even split the file.

Adding Video

There are basically two ways to add video clips to Windows Movie Maker:

  • If you have, as most newer computers do, a webcam and software attached, you can (after you familiarize yourself with your particular software) just click the Webcam Video button, record your video and then insert it into your project.
  • The other way is to search your computer for videos you’ve already made and insert them. You can also make a slideshow of still images, include music and clips of text explaining the specific parts of your video journey.

Rearranging Video Clips or Still Images

Windows Movie Maker makes it very easy to rearrange (shuffle) your project clips or stills by simply dragging and dropping them where you want until you’ve got your video just the way you want it.


This tab allows you to change the duration and set a start and an end point. You can do so by inserting your cursor at the point you desire or you can enter a specific time in the appropriate field if you’re having difficulty getting the cursor insert point exactly correct.

You can add Transitions that will play at the beginning of the video, toward the end or at any point in between the frames you’ve added.


Let’s say you have a bunch of still images of the kids, the dogs or whatever and since you’re absolutely sure that everyone you know will want to see them (ahem), you can add your own narrations as you go along if you have a microphone attached. You’ll find this option under the Home Tab.

I’ve tried several microphones and either a good quality directional mic or a decent clip mic seem to work the best. I use a Logitech camera but I disable the built in mic because I don’t want to sound like I’m speaking from the other side of a tunnel. But still, try what you have before you go out and spend extra money and it may work just fine.

Another option is if you just want some type of music to play throughout or in certain frames, you can upload a music file from your computer. There are many sources on the internet where you can find music clips to download.


To add a title clip just go to the Home Tab and click the option. After you’ve got your title set up, go to the Format Tab to change fonts, backgrounds, etc.

Adding Credits

We’ve all seen the credits at the end of a movie we’ve watched (Never quite figured out why they think I’m interested in who the  caterer was that fed the film crew, but oh well), you can add your name, people featured in the video or you can give a shout out to someone special.

Tweaking The Final Product

Finally, you can examine the final project, your new movie, by going to the View Tab and using the View Full Screen Preview button.

Saving The Project Movie

Before you share your new movie (yes, you’re on your way to stardom now), be sure to save the movie to your computer. On the Home Tab you’ll find the Save button. Choose the type of device that it will be viewed on and Windows Movie Maker will convert it to the correct format automatically. You will be able to choose the recommended settings, which usually work fine, or you can choose to save it with your own custom settings.

Voilà, you’re now a superstar film producer! It’s fist bump time!

Sharing on Social Media

Many social media sites have their own rules for uploading to their site, but Windows Movie Maker has a few presets to assist you. If your target social media isn’t found, just go to a specific site or search in your browser for “How To Upload A Video to xxxx site” and follow the instructions. You’ll need a Microsoft account, so just set up a quick Outlook Email to do so.

Below are some helpful videos to assist you…

Have fun with your new set of skills and get out there and make the next viral video for everyone to see.

Windows Movie Maker Quick Start Tutorial

Windows Movie Maker Tutorial 2016

Windows Live Movie Maker Tutorial

Add A Picture To Your Presentation & Keep The Narration

Adding Overlay Video In Movie Maker

How To Compress Video Files

How To Make Videos Without A Camera

Create A Video Using A Template

Move Maker Special Effects

How To Strip Audio From Video and Use Your Own Narration

We hope How To Make A Video Using Windows Movie Maker has been helpful. If so, please share with your friends.

Thank you bunches for your comment-really appreciate you!

%d bloggers like this: