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Click on My Computer, then on the left "View System Information", then click the Hardware tab, then click Device Manager, then Sound category. If there is a yellow question mark next to your Sound Card listing then you either need to update the driver or run the troubleshooter.
sounds like you're using windows media player which is missing a lot of codecs. try installing a simple player loaded with codecs like videolan. be cautious of downloading third party codec packages from the web. they can be a mess to your system.
reinstall your sound card driver using the driver cd that came with the system. download Media Codecs. if same hing happened. you an download VLC player to play you video file instead of using media player.
Your sound device is either damaged or has no driver installed. Look in Control Panel/System/Hardware/Device Manager for yellow marks. You'll find the driver at the Compaq site. I can't help you further without a model number.