Sep 2009
Restore Zune 4.0’s “missing” features

The Zune logo. What did you expect here?

For those of you in the US or Canada, stop reading now.

Welcome non-US/CA readers! There’s nothing more frustrating than buying a Zune, plugging it in, and discovering the software is “broken” because of how your computer is “configured”. Features like the Marketplace and that snazzy intro video? Completely missing! Yikes.

If you’re positive you should be seeing these features, don’t panic. Microsoft spent a lot of time programming some overrides for you. Simply navigate to HKCUSoftwareMicrosoftZune and create a key called FeaturesOverride. Within this key, create a DWORD for each feature you want to enable and set its value to 1. A list of tweakables follow.

  • Quickplay
  • Marketplace
  • Picks
  • Videos
  • MusicVideos
  • Podcasts
  • Channels
  • Games
  • SubscriptionFreeTracks
  • SignInAvailable (allows restricted locales to sign in!)
  • FirstLaunchIntroVideo
  • MBRRental
  • MBRPurchase
  • MBRPreview

For those that are lazy, you can download a simple registry script to double-click. Don’t blame me if it eats your hard drive though.

  • http://beingmanan.com Manan

    Ah nice! But the sad part is if you’ve set US as your country for Live services, you won’t be able to sign in into Zune social unless the country setting on your Windows is also US, which if you set one doesn’t need the script. Having said that its always fun to learn such stuff :)

  • http://www.mujzune.cz Vlastimil Waic

    Nice tip. However the easy old way to set up Location to USA in Location and Language control panel works the same way :-)

  • Alberto

    Thanks Rafael, works great!!

  • Nutterguy

    When I try to sign in with my real Live ID it fails to download the ToS agreement and so cancels the sign-in…
    Guess I’ll just have to be from the “US” again and use my proxy signup account.
    Do share anything else about the zune software you find Rafael!


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  • http://imieiguaiconvista.blogspot.com/ EnricoG

    That is a perfect example of why I always keep the default settings (US) when installing Windows ;)
    I know it sucks… but if you known your enemy you can workaround him!

  • http://www.pretentiousname.com Leo Davidson

    There is one thing more frustrating: Not being able to buy a Zune in the first place. :)

    (Without the hassle of importing it, worrying about what happens if it goes wrong or needs replacing, etc.)

    Not that I’ll buy one until it’s at least 64gig, but if they released one that size in the UK they’d have my money moments later.

    Microsoft don’t care about European people!

  • http://www.pretentiousname.com Leo Davidson

    Oops, the kanye HTML tags around my last sentence got stripped. :-D

  • dovella

    Amazing Raf :) Congrat an thx!!!

  • David Taraso

    Actually, even in Canada, none of these features were available (and all of my regional settings are correct).

    These overrides worked though, thanks :)

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  • http://uxevangelist.blogspot.com Stephen


  • Benjamin Perdomo

    The reg file, and changing the location in the control panel, did the trick.

  • Asbjørn Rune Riis-Knudsen

    Thank you for this – it works excellently. I don’t get why they do this. I want to use Zune, but I can’t since I don’t live in the US. If they want to compete with iTunes, they had better look at their maps and discover that there IS a world outside North America…

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  • Derek

    Does this work with the Zune 3.0 software? I’m going to try it when I get home later. :D

  • http://www.thezoone.com Jason Dash

    Just wondering, but what do you make of the entries under “Radio” in that part of the registry. They’re definitely Internet Radio streams…. but uuh the Zune software can’t play radio streams can it? (Which leads me to ask whether you can actually disassemble radiopanel.uix and see if there’s some unfinished net radio stuff in there o.O)

  • Dan

    Thank you for the registry edit, Rafael!

    I have to say Zune is infinitely more enjoyable this way!

  • Anirask

    Thank you Raf. You’re restored the experience of the software to what I wanted. I was really angry about this stupid lockout.

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  • Stephen

    Rafael, thankyou from a very grateful reader in Australia.

  • Jesus

    You are awesome! THANK YOU!!!

  • Jakob

    I’m not sure I understand… Can you then buy and download music even though you are outside US?

  • http://www.thezoone.com Jason Dash

    Well I’m not sure I done it the same way as you, but I did get the radio stuff to show up by simply doing this:

    HKCU/Software/Microsot/Zune/Shell, and modifying the value of “StartupPage” to “Collection\Radio”

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  • Nicholas Mastracola

    Jason, me and Rafael are working on a hack to have radio show up under collections. I have managed to get at least to stations to stream. Even though trying to run Radio is pretty pointless as of now, doing this might get the Zune team’s attention and have them release it in the next software update. If not, like you said we could hack it into working correctly. It’ll be hard but fun!

  • http://www.zunecards.net wetworker

    Thanks for this hack, works like a charm. I’m from Toronto, Canada BTW.

    Here is a screen shot of it in action, there is another screen shot on my twitpic page with zune 4.0 gimped down without the zune marketplace :( . I’m happy now though. THANKS A MILLION!!!!!!!!


  • spendle

    Works a treat, though still can’t sign in unless your locale is set to the US.

    Any one know if it’s possible to SHIM it or similar instead of dropping your OS to the US locale?

  • abib

    Question is how is the location determined? The locale set in Windows or IP address? No need to apply if you’ve set the location to US right?

  • spendle

    I think there’s two things:

    1. If you don’t have a US based hotmail account you can’t do much.
    2. If you do have a US based hotmail account and you’re location is not set to the US it won’t let you sign in, you can resolve this by setting your location to the US…so that suggests it’s not IP based. Don’t know how it’s detecting it though.

  • Pavel

    I am feeling very stupid, but how I get to registry in W7?

  • Pavel

    well, I’m gonna change the question…. how do I get to HKCU?

  • http://www.mzzt.net/ Dan

    I don’t recall it being any different than in any other Windows since 3.1. Run regedit (or regedt32) and open the HKEY_CURRENT_USER tree.

  • cro

    Just to clear out things, in Canada we can buy a Zune, but we don’t have access to the marketplace. The hack is usefull for Canadian too !

  • http://www.ellianth.com ellianth

    You’re my new hero! Thank you so much for this. Now I can finally view the marketplace (and some other features) again.

  • Derek

    As stated above, You’re my hero too Rafael!! I’ve moved to Japan and missed a lot of the features I had back in the States. (T-T)
    Now they are back. I’m going to import a ZuneHD for sure now!!

    …It’s funny how my Zune has the frequency change for Japan, but they don’t sell it here. (-.-;;

  • Oren

    Thanks, Rafael, very nice but will this allow me to buy or rent videos outside of the US? Does it override the IP filtering on the server side?

  • http://jakies@live.com jakies evans

    im very happy wiht my life

  • jimmy b

    amazing, thanks, even though i’m in canada, for some reason i was still blocked from the marketplace, thanks a ton for the reg entry, worked perfectly!!!!

  • Danger

    Awesome, did not know there was that much options missing in my Zune software.
    BTW MS is no longer selling Zunes in Canada anymore… jackasses. Was looking forward
    to the Zune HD. Oh well there’s always eBay.

  • Jesse McGuay

    One question. I’m in the US so I realize I don’t need to do the registry edit but I noticed one key
    How does one access this feature in the US? I get fustraited trying to find stuff sometimes in the Market place, especially free video’s and it almost looks like this key would give me an option to find the free stuff easier.

  • http://raydowe.com Raymond Dowe

    You are awesome! I’ve been pulling my hair out trying to find a way to make this happen.

    Thanks man.

  • Rodney

    Good job! I was pretty PO’d when I couldn’t log in anymore. I live in Spain now. I am curious though, since I applied the 4.0 “upgrade” I no longer can view anything on my TV through the AV dock. I get music, but no picture. Does this have anything to do with the update? I have a zune 30 so I do have the option of using PAL instead of NTSC. I’ve tried everything I can think of. Thanks again,


  • Chris

    I am a us soldier deployed in Iraq and I was sent a Zune HD for Christmas but can’t use it. My problem is when I try to sign on with the desktop application It says “can’t sign in due to temporary server error, please try again later”. Now what I don’t understand is I have everything set up through the US, my windows live id is set to us locale, my credit card it set up in the us, my desktop settings are pacific standard time, and I have even tried running a vpn to us servers. If anyone could help I would very much appreciate it.

  • Veer

    Hey, i’m from Trinidad in the Caribbean and I saw that the SmartDJ feature is gone. How do i re enable that feature?

  • Kruller

    Yep, I’m fron France and i’m just like Veer: since the last update the smart dj feature is disabled. Would you find the registry key to unlock it? please? :)

  • Veer

    Something weird came up….. the Registry hack made available here is no longer working with Zune 4.2. It was working but now its doing nothing at all.

    The only clear solution is to change the region settings to USA, but that means all dictionaries and other programs like Word will make their default dictionaries USA.

    Rafael…. HELP!!!!

  • http://Zune.net Big Lou

    Thankz homie!!!!!!!!! You da man

  • Aditives

    Worked for me in 4.2 just fine, enabled login for non-us acocunt aswell :)

  • Fhernando

    That´s amazing!!!!!!!! I love Zune and Zune software, here in Mexico a lot of friend see it in my Pc and they useit whitout zune player, it´s great thank u for this

  • Fhernando

    Nooooo not works anymore for smartDj (the registry script) !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! help please!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • http://www.jay-wick.com Jay

    Thanks to EwanD (see post ’01-28-2010, 8:03 PM’) in http://forums.zune.net/0/2/574548/ShowPost.aspx#574548

    SmartDJ can be enabled similarly by adding the 32bit DWORD ‘QuickMixLocal’ and setting it to 1.

    Rafael could you also add this to the registry file?

  • JPS HP Enterprise Services Argentina

    UPDATE FOR ZUNE 4.2!!!!
    Add this to REG:


    Saludos desde Argentina!!!

  • Murilo

    Thx for the tip!!!!!!

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  • http://profiles.google.com/alok.sharma127 Alok Sharma

    could someone plz explain how to do this in a bit more detail? :-/


  • Lou
  • Arfasd

    WOW! U’r My hero!
    it still works, omg