Old 26th April 2012, 06:16   #1
50,000 WATTS
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All I see is Mike?

I am totally brand new to Winamp and how it works.
The sound of a .flac file is much much better than the smallish mp3 files that I am used to on iTunes. So this is going to be quite the learning curve for me, but I am certain it'll be well worth it.
The big confusion I am having is with the artwork. I have loaded albums from the seemingly suspicious and yet very gracious bit torrent sites and some come with artwork and others do not. Sampling the sound is all well and good but I like to see the whole picture before I make a purchase, somewhat like judging a book by the cover.
Well, in iTunes I am used to finding the art in Wikipedia,the free encyclopedia and just dragging that art into "add art here". This would give me some idea as to what the album may have or still yet look like. With Winamp I go to "get album art" and the window responds with "no cover art matching this album could be found". I seem to not be able to get around this ( other than one time when I changed the "year" ).
Where do I go for artwork? Can I drag art from another site? Can I instead install my own artwork to songlists I have compiled? I have utilized SEARCH with "How to artwork" and it seems to me there is none( threadbare? )
Thanks to those of you that can set me off in the right direction with your thoughts and encouragement. And I am sure Mike will be just fine amiss among the Yeti and not upon the album artwork.
5W

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Old 26th April 2012, 11:36   #2
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Hi,

I also find WA's artwork handling features confusing (as compared with what some other apps do) and lacking. Especially using WA to look for stuff on the WEB was/is more miss than hit for me. So I learned to step outside of WA for my artwork (and major ID3 tagging) needs.

You can either store your song files in 1 folder per album and add an album cover image file to each folder or embed album cover art in each song file, if the file's format (i.e. mp3 and flac, not wav) supports it. WA looks for an embedded image first.

Before I changed my file storage structure and began embedding all my artwork (not possible with 'true' wav files), I used Windows explorer to copy an appropriately named image file to each of my album folders. Artwork file naming must follow the following rules and are looked for by WA in the following order.

1. %album%.jpg/png/gif/bmp (where %album% is the exact name of the ID3 album tag in the song file.)

2. A .nfo file with the exact same name as an image file in the containing folder

3. cover.jpg/png/gif/bmp

4. folder.jpg/png/gif/bmp

5. front.jpg/png/gif/bmp

A .nfo file is just a text file with that extension. DrO (a WA developer and forum moderator) reports that "albumart.jpg/png/gif/bmp" will be supported in the next release of WA.

I use various free 3rd party apps (i.e. TagScanner, MP3Tag, etc) to download artwork from the WEB and now only use audio file formats that let me embed the image. So, no more renaming files (or making a .nfo file) and moving stuff around into 1 folder per album (even though there are plug-ins and other 3rd party apps to do the moving).

I don't suggest putting all files in 1 folder (unless you have a very small collection), just some structure other than 1 folder per album. I use 27 folders (1 for each letter in the English alphabet and 1 catchall for numbers) and store songs alphanumerically by artist.

Embedding does 'waste' hard drive space (image in each file instead of 1 image per group of files), but I accept this penalty to avoid the album folder structure. In my collection I only have songs that I like, so there are very few albums that I have all of the songs. Many just 1 or 2. I find it an almost equal waste of space to have a lot of folders with only 1 or 2 songs.

Another consideration is how you look for stuff. If you scroll through folders rather then use WA (or another music manager) to find stuff for you, an album folder structure may be best. Especially if your files are not tagged to the level that let's you use WA's search features to their full advantage.

One other thing, Windows Explorer will use an embedded image from a song file in each folder (or from somewhere else if allowed to) to create hidden folder image files with various names (some of which are the same as what WA looks for). It will change these files based on how you add or move song files around. These image files can be deleted, but you have to go through the hassle of finding them and over time they can come back (as you add or move song files). The rules Windows uses to create these hidden image files are not generally known. So if you use the 1 image per folder approach and the artwork you have associated with a folder mysteriously changes, look for a hidden file(s).

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Last edited by Aminifu; 26th April 2012 at 12:52. Reason: adding Win explorer considerations
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Old 27th April 2012, 05:11   #3
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i just put one Folder.jpg in each album folder. works great, easy to do, works with windows explorer as well, easy to change, etc. winamp is not good for getting art. i rip with EAC which is good at getting art, and does FLAC natively.

for art i need from the web, i just drag the image from the browser right into the album folder in windows explorer. i then copy it and rename the copy Folder.jpg ...i do that mainly to guard against WMP or other apps overwriting Folder.jpg files.

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Old 27th April 2012, 05:51   #4
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Wow... Ah yeah, huh?!?
Okay, well thank you very much both MrSinatra and Aminifu.
It is going to take me some time to digest all of this as I am new to computer speak. But I really do thank you and I will as they say "Give it a go".
Cheers 5w
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Old 30th April 2012, 11:08   #5
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There are many albums which will find the artwork for you. The downloader is probably a little too fussy and can come up with the wrong album cover which has a similar name.

A Google Image search will find the artwork you seek. Choose one around 200x200 pixels which can be seen by hovering the cursor over the image (at least in Google Chrome browser).
Save the image to the album folder. Load the album playlist and right-click any tune in the list. Choose "View File info" then click the Artwork tab. Click "load artwork" and you'll see the jpg you just copied to the folder. Simply select that and Winamp will rename it to the album title. You can then delete the original download.
Once your're used to it the whole process takes a few seconds.
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Old 6th May 2012, 16:27   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by frunet View Post
Save the image to the album folder. Load the album playlist and right-click any tune in the list. Choose "View File info" then click the Artwork tab. Click "load artwork" and you'll see the jpg you just copied to the folder. Simply select that and Winamp will rename it to the album title. You can then delete the original download.
Once your're used to it the whole process takes a few seconds.
So that's how that works! Thanx frunet.

Of course you need to use the classic (standard?) artist/album file storage structure and WA does not handle embedding, but it's good to know how the WA editor's Artwork tab works.

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Old 6th May 2012, 16:38   #7
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Originally Posted by MrSinatra View Post
for art i need from the web, i just drag the image from the browser right into the album folder in windows explorer. i then copy it and rename the copy Folder.jpg ...i do that mainly to guard against WMP or other apps overwriting Folder.jpg files.
Another way to prevent overwriting is to use Windows properties dialog to turn on the 'read only' attribute for your folder.jpg files. I do this with all my music files once I'm finished tagging them.

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Old 6th May 2012, 20:37   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by frunet View Post
There are many albums which will find the artwork for you. The downloader is probably a little too fussy and can come up with the wrong album cover which has a similar name.
i find the winamp album art downloader almost totally useless.

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A Google Image search will find the artwork you seek. Choose one around 200x200 pixels which can be seen by hovering the cursor over the image (at least in Google Chrome browser).
thats what WMP uses and winamp in the ML prob doesn't need bigger (altho in the playlist it can be) but i now when ripping with EAC, routinely choose ~500x500 or 600x600.

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Save the image to the album folder. Load the album playlist and right-click any tune in the list.
that can also be done from the ML. and you can "refresh" or attempt to get art, from the art icon in ML, by right click.

Quote:
Originally Posted by frunet View Post
Choose "View File info" then click the Artwork tab. Click "load artwork" and you'll see the jpg you just copied to the folder. Simply select that and Winamp will rename it to the album title. You can then delete the original download.
Once your're used to it the whole process takes a few seconds.
i didn't know winamp did that, but i think its good to have a copy in there, and i think its better to have one file with Folder.jpg so it works with windows explorer too, and the copy with any unique filename. the drag and drop in the browser and rename in explorer is quicker than messing about in winamp.

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Originally Posted by Aminifu View Post
So that's how that works! Thanx frunet.

Of course you need to use the classic (standard?) artist/album file storage structure and WA does not handle embedding, but it's good to know how the WA editor's Artwork tab works.
well, actually the only time i ever use the artwork tab, is when i either want to save an embedded image to the folder, OR delete an embedded image from the file/tag. but other than that, i never use it.

Quote:
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Another way to prevent overwriting is to use Windows properties dialog to turn on the 'read only' attribute for your folder.jpg files. I do this with all my music files once I'm finished tagging them.
but i don't want to do that either, b/c sometimes i change/delete/move the art. besides, i don't trust windows to respect its own rules.

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Old 7th May 2012, 09:32   #9
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well, actually the only time i ever use the artwork tab, is when i either want to save an embedded image to the folder, OR delete an embedded image from the file/tag. but other than that, i never use it.
Thanx for that extra info on the WA tag editor's Artwork tab. It's curious that WA will extract (copy) or delete embedded artwork, but not insert (embed) it. Especially since it looks for embedded artwork first when it's looking for artwork.

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but i don't want to do that either, b/c sometimes i change/delete/move the art. besides, i don't trust windows to respect its own rules.
The 'read only' attribute was provided to prevent inadvertent overwrites. It does not prevent moving or deleting a file. If you want to change something in the file, just disable that attribute first.

Since the days when Windows was just a shell for DOS, I have never seen (or heard of) it disobey a file attribute. To the contrary, an improper attribute (especially on a hidden file, another attribute) is often the reason Windows mysteriously can't do what it is trying to do or what the user is trying to have it do.

I have known users (myself included when I forgot) and 'bad' apps inadvertently change an attribute. Since you don't trust Windows for something as basic as this, it's a wonder you trust it for anything.

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Old 7th May 2012, 17:18   #10
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this is the kind of thing i should know, but if i "move" a read only file, won't the original still be left in the original spot b/c of the read only attrib? was it never like that? i thought i remembered it was, but i might be thinking of 3.1 or something like that, or conflating memories.

but regardless, there are times i want to replace a Folder.jpg with another Folder.jpg, and so its an extra step i don't need.

i don't trust any OS or app. i lost a LOT of art to WMP, i learned the hard way on that. i've had OS's do stupid things too, but i can't recall anything about the atrrib specifically.

as for embeds, i think winamp is saying "we will work with itunes files, but we won't make them, we'll instead stick to windows conventions" and that seems sensible to me. winamp was late to the art game to begin with, and they are just trying to avoid headaches uninformed users would have.

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Old 8th May 2012, 02:33   #11
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this is the kind of thing i should know, but if i "move" a read only file, won't the original still be left in the original spot b/c of the read only attrib? was it never like that? i thought i remembered it was, but i might be thinking of 3.1 or something like that, or conflating memories.
When you move a file, with or without the read only attribute enabled, the file is moved (nothing left behind). Counter-intuitive or not, moving a read only file some place else does not violate the attribute. Only when you copy, the file is in both places. It has always been this way, since the early days of DOS.

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as for embeds, i think winamp is saying "we will work with itunes files, but we won't make them, we'll instead stick to windows conventions" and that seems sensible to me. winamp was late to the art game to begin with, and they are just trying to avoid headaches uninformed users would have.
Not sure the 'artist/album with folder art' structure is a Windows convention. But irregardless, it is the de facto standard adopted by digital music management apps and Windows supports it. When this was decided, I don't think the huge collections anyone can have was foreseen. I mean how many people can legally acquire (buy) so much music. But it's too late to put the worms back in the jar.

This structure may make sense for those who store most or all of the songs from an album. It just doesn't make sense for me, since I frequently store only 1 or 2 songs from an album. I just can't see wasting the drive space for a directory structure for thousands of folders with very few files in them (or for the number of songs on most albums). On other hand it also doesn't make a lot of sense to fight against the 'standard'.

Also not sure iTunes started artwork embedding. But, if it turns out that WA does have tag read handling issues with embedded art, that can't be fixed due to early design decisions, then I will be forced to 'go along to get along'.

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Old 8th May 2012, 03:32   #12
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... i don't trust any OS or app. i lost a LOT of art to WMP, i learned the hard way on that. ...
I hear that! Hardware can fail you too. That's why automated backups (and the occasional manual ones) should be done and the extra investment in the backup storage media made. How often? Hourly, daily, weekly, whenever files in selected folders change? It's up to the user and how important and irreplaceable their data is.

Back in the day, I backed up everything to tape daily. Saved me a few times. Now I only backup (to an external hard drive and a set of thumb drives) what is irreplaceable or would be a big hassle to replace. I also re-backup the same stuff yearly. Magnetically stored data degrades over time. How fast depends on the media and storage environment. I got bit by this once.

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Old 8th May 2012, 04:27   #13
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Originally Posted by Aminifu View Post
When you move a file, with or without the read only attribute enabled, the file is moved (nothing left behind). Counter-intuitive or not, moving a read only file some place else does not violate the attribute. Only when you copy, the file is in both places. It has always been this way, since the early days of DOS.
right, i know the difference between move and copy, but i just have this nagging feeling that once upon a time i tried to move, and it copied instead, and i just can't remember why or the details, but oh well...

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Not sure the 'artist/album with folder art' structure is a Windows convention.
it is insofar as thats what it uses and expects, and also creates via WMP. it may not have invented it, but it does use it.

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But irregardless, it is the de facto standard adopted by digital music management apps and Windows supports it. When this was decided, I don't think the huge collections anyone can have was foreseen. I mean how many people can legally acquire (buy) so much music. But it's too late to put the worms back in the jar.
i actually am prob one of the few people with 59k+ collection whose stuff is at least 50% also owned on CD, and prob closer to 66%. and that doesn't count all the CDs i had that were stolen before i ripped them.

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This structure may make sense for those who store most or all of the songs from an album. It just doesn't make sense for me, since I frequently store only 1 or 2 songs from an album. I just can't see wasting the drive space for a directory structure for thousands of folders with very few files in them (or for the number of songs on most albums). On other hand it also doesn't make a lot of sense to fight against the 'standard'.
i'm not sure modern file systems do end up wasting appreciable space just from folder structure, but i'm no expert.

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Also not sure iTunes started artwork embedding. But, if it turns out that WA does have tag read handling issues with embedded art, that can't be fixed due to early design decisions, then I will be forced to 'go along to get along'.
they may not have, but they certainly are the ones who popularized the concept, esp since itunes will not read folder art.

winamp should be fixed, but again i think it was just slapdashed in there to work with itunes. everyone it seems feels the need to be itunes friendly, at least to some degree.

ps. irregardless isn't a word.

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Old 8th May 2012, 04:34   #14
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Originally Posted by Aminifu View Post
I hear that! Hardware can fail you too. That's why automated backups (and the occasional manual ones) should be done and the extra investment in the backup storage media made. How often? Hourly, daily, weekly, whenever files in selected folders change? It's up to the user and how important and irreplaceable their data is.

Back in the day, I backed up everything to tape daily. Saved me a few times. Now I only backup (to an external hard drive and a set of thumb drives) what is irreplaceable or would be a big hassle to replace. I also re-backup the same stuff yearly. Magnetically stored data degrades over time. How fast depends on the media and storage environment. I got bit by this once.
the problem was if i reverted to a backup to get the art back, i would have lot the intervening changes, and no way i'd remember them all. edits to tag, a tune added here or there, etc... so i figured i'd eventually just see which art WMP borked, since i had no way to know which ones it did without scanning datestamps and that kind of thing. still, a pita.

i've been trying to figure out rsync so i can clone my collection regularly.

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Old 8th May 2012, 06:19   #15
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i'm not sure modern file systems do end up wasting appreciable space just from folder structure, but i'm no expert.
Actually modern file directory structures use a lot more space than the old FAT structures. For error detection and recovery and a few other things.

But the real space waster is how the drive itself is partitioned. The default cluster size is selected based on the size of the drive. Files (and directories which are files) are broken up to fit within clusters. If a file is a perfect multiple of the cluster size, no space is wasted. But if a file is 1 byte larger than a multiple of the cluster size, a whole cluster is used to store that 1 byte. The extra piece of another file can not be put in a cluster that is only partially used by another file.

Take a look at the Windows properties screen for any file. You will see the size of the file and the amount of disk space used to store it. The space used will be equal or greater (usually) than the file size. That difference can not be used for anything.

The default cluster size can be changed. But it's not worth the effort, some space will always be wasted. Also changing the default cluster size can lead to other problems.

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ps. irregardless isn't a word.
Yeah I know. Just like the sound of it over 'regardless'.

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the problem was if i reverted to a backup to get the art back, i would have lot the intervening changes, and no way i'd remember them all. edits to tag, a tune added here or there, etc... so i figured i'd eventually just see which art WMP borked, since i had no way to know which ones it did without scanning datestamps and that kind of thing. still, a pita.
A good case for using the read only attribute. Just saying.

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i've been trying to figure out rsync so i can clone my collection regularly.
Can't help with that. Never used it.

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Old 8th May 2012, 14:41   #16
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...Take a look at the Windows properties screen for any file. You will see the size of the file and the amount of disk space used to store it. The space used will be equal or greater (usually) than the file size. That difference can not be used for anything...
.
I have 830 GB (95,000 files) of music and art spread over 7,000 folders.
When I look at Windows properties for the parent folder, I calculate a difference of 200 MB between "Size" and "Size on disk". That is comparable to approx. 30 mp3 files @ 320 kbps.

Is this difference what you say I should be concerned about? It seems minuscule compared to the total size. Maybe I misunderstood or miscalculated.

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Old 8th May 2012, 17:58   #17
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so instead of copying my whole collection everytime, rsync only changes whats different:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rsync

as to clusters, i almost always reformat a new hard drive i use for storage, and pick the smallest cluster size available to me in the drop down choices windows gives me.

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Old 9th May 2012, 01:43   #18
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Is this difference what you say I should be concerned about? It seems minuscule compared to the total size. Maybe I misunderstood or miscalculated.
No, I said wasted space is something I'm concerned about. Of course, you are free to do whatever you like.

It's one of the things I've been concerned about since hard drives were introduced (along with how venders report drive size). By now, a better way to format/partition drives should have been developed. I don't like not being able to use what I've paid for. Less an issue now, since drives are so large (but even more real space is wasted, percentages be damned). I think it has more to do with platter defects and saving drive vendors production costs, than anything else.

I have no reason to believe your calculation is not accurate for what you calculated. Determining how much space (and waste, allocated but not used) your folder structure is using is not as easy to do.

It's just the geek in me. Don't let it overly concern you.

PS:
Once again, I've helped take this thread way OT. Any further discussion of these OT topics should be in a new thread.

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Old 9th May 2012, 14:38   #19
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...Determining how much space (and waste, allocated but not used) your folder structure is using is not as easy to do.
Not as easy to do but maybe not impossible.

Just for fun, I collapsed my music directory by copying every file into 1 directory. The "Size" and "Size on disk" shown by the properties window was exactly the same as for the original multi-folder directory structure.
Then I copied the directory structure without the files. Here, "Size" and "Size on disk" were shown as 0 bytes.

While this is not proof, it seems to indicate that directory structure does not impact drive space.

When you say:
Quote:
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... I just can't see wasting the drive space for a directory structure for thousands of folders with very few files in them (or for the number of songs on most albums)...
,
it sounds as if you are saying that directory structure does impact drive space.

Can you share any examples or experiences or links to technical information that illustrates how drive space is wasted by a directory structure?

Don't worry about what concerns me. I am genuinely curious.
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Old 9th May 2012, 16:53   #20
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Hi ryerman,

Like I said, this is OT and should be done elsewhere. Of course, it's not impossible to find out how much space is used and how much wasted on a drive. It just takes the right tools and the knowledge of how to use them.

The names of all folders and files including the addresses of where each of the multiple clusters that house this data physically on the disk, checksums for all this data including the addresses of where each of the multiple clusters that house this data physically on the disk, and other stuff that the NT file system uses for 'tracking and protection' is all written inefficiently (due to how clusters are used) on the hard drive.

An OS does not report this space usage (why should it). How much space is reported for a folder with nothing in it? Is that folder really using 0 space? If it wasn't there then yes, since it is, then no.

An OS will tell what space is used to store a file the user has access to, not what the NT file structure uses to track and protect the file. There are other software tools that do report on this 'tracking and protection' data. Many are supplied by drive venders. Basic ones are free. They're among the tools data recovery folks use to pull data off of crashed drives.

One easier way to kinda see what I'm talking about is to use a free defrag app that highlights different structures on the drive (files, directories, mft (used by the file system), etc). As to fragmentation, it is not only bad for access time, but it makes the file system data tracking all the pieces grow and then have to be written to the drive inefficiently (wasting space).

I said I'm geeky on this space waste stuff, maybe nuts is a better description.

You can find (on the WEB) all the details on how what is written to a hard drive is physically stored and how different file systems keep up with everything. Sorry, don't have time to locate and post links. I may be able to PM you some links in a few days, but it could take longer.

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Last edited by Aminifu; 9th May 2012 at 18:05.
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Old 10th May 2012, 01:58   #21
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Hi Aminifu.
Thanks for the explanation.
Maybe you will one day find the time and desire to quantify your concerns regarding wasted disk space caused by directory structure.

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Old 10th May 2012, 03:02   #22
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Hi ryerman,

Desire is not the problem, but time is. There are other things higher on my To Do list.

Like you pointed out, the % of unusable to usable space (due to how clusters are used) on current huge drives is so low that it's of no practical concern to the vast majority of users. Our data files are forced to waste some space. The data that a directory structure uses is forced to waste some space too.

For those like me with some knowledge of what's going on 'under the covers', some things tend to be grating. My passion about this is a problem (for me). Every folder I create will waste some space (fewer folders, less space wasted). For me, it's not about the amount wasted, it's the waste itself.

If I could or would have figured out a better way, I would or could be rich.

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Old 10th May 2012, 21:00   #23
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i have to say, i am interested in this as well, but more from a mechanical POV.

i always assumed that that size vs size on disk difference was about the partial used clusters, and i think thats correct, and not much anyone can do about that, except to reformat new drives to smaller cluster sizes before using them.

however, i am genuinely curious about the folders question. if you think of a HD as a map, or to put it another way, a "file allocation table" then the boundries would all seem to exist, a set canvas, and the only real question is unused or used, and if used, named?

so i could see where it might not use any space b/c the space is there whether its named or not, meaning that in a way, its named either way. but it also doesn't seem posible to make trillions of sub folders infinitely either, (and not b/c of 32/64/etc bit limitations).

perhaps its a matter of fencing, or setting the smallest area on a disk that can be named (or un-named). so the name uses no space, but if each smallest "fenced in" or atom size bit of space is named, that then gives you the total names (folders) possible?

i think another issue is the "symbolic" nature of folders, vs naming direct physical space. i'm sure storage experts and engineers would laugh at this thread. but if anyone reading this who has a firm grip on understanding the mechanics involved feels so inclined, at least a few people here would appreciate it.

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Old 10th May 2012, 21:20   #24
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the file allocation table (irrespective of it being FAT16, FAT32, NTFS, exFAT, HFS+, BRTFS, ext4, etc) will always use space for the files entries and directories which then leads to less space being available vs the advertised size (and also from the stupid 1000 vs 1024 difference on terms).

the thing is that the FAT is not exposed in the drive totals shown so what you see is what is and can be used for files - which is why empty directories effectively appear as 0 bytes even though in the underlying implementation of the drive format used it is using space.

and as there was some talk about cluster sizes - http://support.microsoft.com/kb/140365 shows the official defaults used by the different Windows versions.

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Old 10th May 2012, 21:51   #25
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so DrO, what you are saying is that if someone took a 500gig HD, which usually shows as ~465gig when empty, and just made endless empty folders, b/c the F.A.T. is not exposed, eventually the the OS would show a diminished total capacity?

so for example, and i'm just making numbers up, an OS might say 465gig free when empty, but after a trillion empty folders were made, it might then say only 289gigs are free? this would happen b/c the total capacity would be reduced to account for the growing FAT which is nevertheless not exposed directly?

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Old 10th May 2012, 21:57   #26
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no that's not what i'm saying. if it shows as 465Gb free once formatted and with no files present, then that 465 total is already taking into account space for the directory and file records as needed by the underlying file system implementation to begin with.

so you can make as many directories as you like and it won't affect the 'free' size since the FAT has already taken the space needed for such things. it would instead come down to how the file system driver and views of the file system are done as to whether such underlying details are or are not exposed (with not exposed being the way that i'm aware off).

so that's my understanding of things from low level tinkering with hard drives over the years. and yes i could be wrong as i'm only basing it on the file systems i've had experience with but at least in the Windows world that holds true.

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Old 10th May 2012, 23:18   #27
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ok, so you are saying then that empty folders does not affect total free space available, even if you make trillions of them.

i wonder then, how much space does the FAT itself use, and what the capacity of it is? if it does not dynamically use more HD space, then surely there must be a limit to how many empty folders one could make?

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Old 10th May 2012, 23:23   #28
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correct, empty folders should not affect the empty space since a folder isn't a true 'file' anyway and is just an entry in the FAT and so you can keep creating them until you hit the upper limit allowed by the file system implementation.

the size of the FAT will depend on the drive size, the file system used, things like cluster sizes, how many backup FAT tables the file type uses, the upper limits it natively has, etc which is all set when the drive is formatted.

that's the main reasons a drive needs to be formatted before it is used so that that file system and all of it's FAT and anything else which is done for the file system is setup and in place before attempting to store files on the drive.

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Old 11th May 2012, 12:45   #29
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I thought the FAT is set up for a fixed number of folders (directories) at the root level of the drive. Other folders (off of the root) are stored on the drive like any other files. That's why when you run a defragger (that shows the file types) you see directory files separate from non-directory files, MFT files, a swap file (if any), and special files that cannot be moved.

Formatting 'maps' the drive into a fixed number of clusters. Once all the clusters are used nothing else can be stored on the drive. The number of files that can be stored depends on how efficiently the clusters are used. Having more smaller clusters as opposed to fewer larger clusters for a given drive size does not affect the number of files that can be stored because the size of the files effect how efficiently they can be stored. In other words, small clusters work best when most of the files are small and larger clusters work best when most of the files are large.

Since current drives are so large themselves, efficient use of clusters (and the number of defective clusters) is not much of a concern. Trying to determine the optimal cluster size for your files is no longer worth the effort it may have been 10 to 20 years ago.

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Old 13th May 2012, 20:39   #30
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there are different levels of defaults of folders in the root, files in the root, number of sub-folders, total number of folders allowed, total number of files allowed, etc depending upon the file system being used. yes the upper limits may not be possible with how the files, etc are actually laid out on the drive, but those upper limits are in place as soon as the drive is formatted to the chosen file system.

and yes, tinkering with cluster sizes is less important nowadays and what is set has generally been chosen for a reason based on reasonable usage patterns, etc. yes it's possible to get better handling of files on the drive to be able to get a few more on there but really who is going to fill a drive up to the maximum as that's just not practical to do even for storage backup, etc.

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Old 14th May 2012, 00:38   #31
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I do not disagree with the points made by DrO in post #30. My main point is "Other folders (off of the root) are stored on the drive like any other files". If this is true, they occupy space (very small compared to most other files). Furthermore, this space is used inefficiently (just like the space used by any other kinds of files) due to how clusters are used. I concede this waste was more of a concern when drives were measured in mega-bytes instead of giga-bytes.

The following info is provided in support of my main point. It was copied from the article linked at the end (emphasize added).

"The File Allocation Table file system (FAT) is a cluster based file system first developed in the mid 1970’s. Its latter version, FAT32 (released with Windows 95), is still widely used as the format for removable storage devices. This is largely due to the fact that it is a convenient way of sharing data between different operating systems. A disadvantage of FAT32 is its maximum file size limit of 4GB. In 2006 Microsoft released exFAT to address this issue and to improve performance on large media.

Every file on a FAT hard disk is stored in a directory (folder). A directory itself is considered by FAT to be a special type of file. The top level directory is referred to as the “Root”. On a FAT file system the Root directory is given special status and is usually positioned at the start of the disk. Other directories can be located anywhere in the data area of the disk.

Each file on a FAT system has a "directory entry". This is the place which stores the name of a file, the location of its starting cluster, and the size of the file. In order to find a file the Operating System uses this information to get to the first storage cluster of a file. It then uses a special table at the start of the disk know as the File Allocation Table or FAT to identify the remaining clusters that are used to store the file. It is important to realize that this information is stored completely separate from your file data and is why FAT data recovery is possible.

The NTFS File System is what you are likely to encounter on newer hard disk running operating systems like Windows 7 or 2008. Whilst an MFT is more complex, the principal of locating the start of a file and its subsequent storage clusters is essentially the same."

http://www.recovermyfiles.com/ntfs-f...a-recovery.php

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Old 16th May 2012, 20:04   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aminifu View Post
... My main point is "Other folders (off of the root) are stored on the drive like any other files". If this is true, they occupy space (very small compared to most other files)...
This prompted me to try and quantify the disk space used by folders.
Here's what I did:

1. Defragmented an internal, 1 TB, single partition disk using the native disk defragmenter included with Windows 7.
The disk properties then showed 49.0 GB free space.

2. Copied the directory structure from my music collection enough times to create 6 million folders (without data files) into a new folder on the disk (used a simple vbs script)
The structure is Music Folder\Artist Folder\Album Folder (and \disc folder if necessary).

3. Defragmented the disk again.
The disk properties then showed 46.2 GB free space.

I conclude that 6,000,000 folders required 2.8 GB of disk space.
Therefore, 10,000 folders require .00467 GB of disk space or approximately 5 MB.
For my collection (70,000 music files in 7,000 folders), that translates into about 4 MB of disk space used for folders.


To put that into perspective, we can consider some typical MP3 files.
Bitrate (kbps)..|..Length (sec)..|..Size (nominal, typical,MB)..|..# of files that could have been stored in disk space used for 7,000 folders
.......128............|........120............|..........................1.9...................|.................................2
.......128............|........240............|..........................3.7...................|.................................1
.......128............|........360............|..........................5.5...................|.................................less than 1
.......224............|........120............|..........................3.2...................|.................................1
.......224............|........240............|..........................6.4...................|.................................less than 1
.......224............|........360............|..........................9.6...................|.................................less than 1
.......320............|........120............|..........................4.6...................|.................................less than 1
.......320............|........240............|..........................9.2...................|.................................less than 1
.......320............|........360............|.........................13.8..................|.................................less than 1

Maybe this rudimentary analysis can complement your earlier, unquantified comment (post # 11) concerning directory structure and wasted drive space. But I have little knowledge of electronic data storage so maybe my analysis is horseshit.

I understand that it is not the amount of "wasted" space that concerns you but rather that there is any waste at all. So I am not trying to change your thinking but only to determine the magnitude of the issue.

My opinion is that the disk space taken by folders is not wasted, but is a cheap price to pay for easy access and organization. As always, others will disagree.

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Old 17th May 2012, 01:08   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ryerman View Post
...

My opinion is that the disk space taken by folders is not wasted, but is a cheap price to pay for easy access and organization. As always, others will disagree.
By definition, space is wasted (hardware and files). I agree that with current drives, it is 'a cheap price to pay' for easy and efficient organization. However, electronic access is easy regardless of the folder structure used. I would not consider it easy using my eyes to look through, or among, 7,000 or 70 folders (or a large number of files in 1 folder), even discounting the time it would take, imo.

I think the 'artist/album' folder structure was pushed and encouraged by media companies to help them hold on to their out-dated and inefficient distribution models. Discounting the miniscule structural waste (and expanding or changing the subject), what do you do when the exact same song is on more than one album? Do you keep the albums integrity intact or do you delete the duplicates? If you delete, which ones?

If media players recognized 'shortcuts' or other links from 'placeholders' to the actual files, handling dups in an 'artist/album' folder structure would be less of a 'wasted space' problem.

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Old 19th May 2012, 12:31   #34
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There are many albums which will find the artwork for you. The downloader is probably a little too fussy and can come up with the wrong album cover which has a similar name.

A Google Image search will find the artwork you seek. Choose one around 200x200 pixels which can be seen by hovering the cursor over the image (at least in Google Chrome browser).
Save the image to the album folder. Load the album playlist and right-click any tune in the list. Choose "View File info" then click the Artwork tab. Click "load artwork" and you'll see the jpg you just copied to the folder. Simply select that and Winamp will rename it to the album title. You can then delete the original download.
Once your're used to it the whole process takes a few seconds.

thanks frunet ,
i followed your step and great i have done this.


thanks again frunet
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Old 19th May 2012, 12:43   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by frunet View Post
There are many albums which will find the artwork for you. The downloader is probably a little too fussy and can come up with the wrong album cover which has a similar name.

A Google Image search will find the artwork you seek. Choose one around 200x200 pixels which can be seen by hovering the cursor over the image (at least in Google Chrome browser).
Save the image to the album folder. Load the album playlist and right-click any tune in the list. Choose "View File info" then click the Artwork tab. Click "load artwork" and you'll see the jpg you just copied to the folder. Simply select that and Winamp will rename it to the album title. You can then delete the original download.
Once your're used to it the whole process takes a few seconds.
hi frunet,

thanks i have followed you and done this .

thanks again frunet i am very happy today.
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Old 19th May 2012, 14:38   #36
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If media players recognized 'shortcuts' or other links from 'placeholders' to the actual files, handling dups in an 'artist/album' folder structure would be less of a 'wasted space' problem.
I just remembered that Win 7 and Vista have a command line utility called "mklink", that must be used in administrator mode. It allows symbolic links to be made. Symbolic links do not use space beyond what's needed to list them in a folder. All dups can be replaced with symbolic links that point to an actual file. A symbolic link in one folder can have the same name as an actual file in another folder. This should allow WA to use these symbolic links to access the actual files.

http://sourcedaddy.com/windows-7/how...lic-links.html

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Old 19th May 2012, 19:39   #37
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@shubhangi: This thread has waded massively OT. (Winamp's forums can be a world of knowledge on all kinds of subjects) But to get back to your question - that "File Info" dialog is closest to what you are used to.

A feature to notice is the PASTE ARTWORK buttons works well. You can just go into Google Image Search, Amazon, Wikipedia, or wherever and just COPY IMAGE from within your web browser. (Right click on an image) Then PASTE ARTWORK in the File Info Dialog. I find this is the quickest way to get a decent image associated to an album.

If you store your albums in separate folders, you only need a single image per folder.


The point to Winamp is there are dozens of ways to do many tasks. It can be confusing to deal with initially, but you soon find YOUR favourite method and not what you are railroaded into by an Apple designer.
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