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View Poll Results: Would you change your directory structure to accomidate an application?
Cool! Its already setup that way! 3 12.00%
I would change it if the application was desirable enough. 6 24.00%
No way! 15 60.00%
I have no idea what you are talking about. 1 4.00%
Voters: 25. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 21st December 2004, 18:37   #1
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Would this be too much to ask?

Some may think this should be in the developers forum. Here is why I put it here... I would like the opinion of people that use Winamp and not software developers. I know the 'right' answer that a developer would give, but I would like to hear from the masses.

'k. That said, I am developing an application that I feel will be a really useful add-on to Winamp. It may require that the music files be stored in a directory tree as such:
...\genre\artist\album\songs

The genre and album directories are optional, but if present, will enhance the experience.

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Old 21st December 2004, 18:43   #2
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too much to ask.

you'd turn off a lot of people if they had to reorganize their material a certain way
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Old 21st December 2004, 18:53   #3
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i've already got my mp3s set up like that. music\artist\album\songs

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Old 21st December 2004, 19:13   #4
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mines like deeder's. make a few options like "music\artist\album\songs" "music\genre\artist\album\songs" and "\artist\artist - album\songs etc
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Old 21st December 2004, 19:50   #5
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Make one that grants Winamp Unicode support. OR, make one that allows subdirectories inside a playlist.
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Old 21st December 2004, 20:16   #6
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Re: Would this be too much to ask?

Quote:
Originally posted by CaboWaboAddict
Some may think this should be in the developers forum. Here is why I put it here... I would like the opinion of people that use Winamp and not software developers. I know the 'right' answer that a developer would give, but I would like to hear from the masses.

'k. That said, I am developing an application that I feel will be a really useful add-on to Winamp. It may require that the music files be stored in a directory tree as such:
...\genre\artist\album\songs

The genre and album directories are optional, but if present, will enhance the experience.
I know I'm a "developer-type-personality" BUT...if I have to change my directory structure YET AGAIN just to ACCOMMODATE someone else's view of how MY MUSIC should be accessed, well, I think I may scream bloody murder. Getting it all organized in a form that let's me move from Winamp to the iPod to my Tivo was a LOT of work.

That said, what's the intent of the add-on? Wouldn't you be able to hook into the Media Library database for directory/tag information? If not, why the (proposed) specific directory structure requirement?

I was away for a while.
But I'm feeling much better now.
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Old 21st December 2004, 20:34   #7
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Quote:
Originally posted by Talbain
...make one that allows subdirectories inside a playlist.
hell YES! thats the reason i'd have switched to deliplayer had it been free...
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Old 21st December 2004, 20:38   #8
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Thanks for the feedback so far.

@Gonzo: This is the reason for asking up front, I see a lot of people getting slammed for writing something that doesn't take into account what others want.

Without giving away too much of the application for now... It will be a database app that will do much more.

The reason I was asking is that I need really reliable info to catalog the music. There doesn't seem to be any consistancy in how people store their music. I hesitate to use the tags, because many times they are missing or incorrect. I was hoping what I have seen others do was not the norm and could find an easy way out.

I tried to write a program that would attempt to 'figure out' what it could from the tags, directory structure, and file names, then it would store the data into the database. It seemed to work about 80% of the time. That isn't good enough if you are talking about 10000+ songs in a library.

Please continue to post opinions. I really would like to find out more how everyone feels...

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Old 21st December 2004, 20:39   #9
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Mine is My Music\Mp3's\Artist

and

Documents and Settings\Brian\Shared <---limewire

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I stayed for the ballbag.
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Old 21st December 2004, 20:43   #10
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Quote:
Originally posted by CaboWaboAddict
Thanks for the feedback so far.

@Gonzo: This is the reason for asking up front, I see a lot of people getting slammed for writing something that doesn't take into account what others want.

Without giving away too much of the application for now... It will be a database app that will do much more.

The reason I was asking is that I need really reliable info to catalog the music. There doesn't seem to be any consistancy in how people store their music. I hesitate to use the tags, because many times they are missing or incorrect. I was hoping what I have seen others do was not the norm and could find an easy way out.

I tried to write a program that would attempt to 'figure out' what it could from the tags, directory structure, and file names, then it would store the data into the database. It seemed to work about 80% of the time. That isn't good enough if you are talking about 10000+ songs in a library.

Please continue to post opinions. I really would like to find out more how everyone feels...
The problem is that everyone has a different idea of what the "right" way to name/sort/tag files should be. And in many cases what's "perfect" for one soul will be a PITA for another.
/edit: Including those poor unfortunate souls who just chuck every mp3 they download from any ole' place online into one large folder with absolutely no regard for names/tags/audio quality.

See also http://www.musicbrainz.org/. Maybe your program can take advantage of the guessing/searching abilities provided from musicbrainz.

-=Gonzotek=-

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But I'm feeling much better now.
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Old 21st December 2004, 21:10   #11
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Mine's all dumped in one big My Music folder on my desktop. It would annoy me otherwise.




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Old 21st December 2004, 21:14   #12
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ive got my music EXACTLY like that (genre\artist\album\songs), but i went through the painful task of doing so. Start recomending mass taggers that do it for you, maybe more people will do it that way.
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Old 21st December 2004, 23:34   #13
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Re: Would this be too much to ask?

Quote:
Originally posted by CaboWaboAddict
Some may think this should be in the developers forum. Here is why I put it here... I would like the opinion of people that use Winamp and not software developers. I know the 'right' answer that a developer would give, but I would like to hear from the masses.

'k. That said, I am developing an application that I feel will be a really useful add-on to Winamp. It may require that the music files be stored in a directory tree as such:
...\genre\artist\album\songs

The genre and album directories are optional, but if present, will enhance the experience.
Is this plug-in called iTunes?!?


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Old 21st December 2004, 23:41   #14
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My music is /matt/music All files are in the form Artist - Title.mp3 That's the way my cd encoding script does it and I am way too lazy to change it now. I haven't even gotten around to fixing the filenames that are fucked up because I was still writing the script.

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Old 22nd December 2004, 02:58   #15
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Re: Re: Would this be too much to ask?

Quote:
Originally posted by shakey_snake
Is this plug-in called iTunes?!?
Ha-ha! No...

Its not going to be a plugin... its an app that will interface with Winamp.

Looks like if I want to go public with this, it will have to work with whatever slop is out there. Just delays things a while.

Thanks for the input everyone. If anyone else has comments, I'd welcome them.

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Old 22nd December 2004, 03:08   #16
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My problem is, I store most my music in:
code:

..\music\albums\*artistname\*albumname (disk#)\ *artistname - *track# - *trackname


So that Albumlist2 can parse them,
but, incomplete albums get dumped in the ..\music\ folder as *Artistname - *trackname
So, as long as I could keep the 2 separate I wouldn't have a problem


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Old 22nd December 2004, 04:02   #17
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Quote:
Originally posted by nobby™
hell YES! thats the reason i'd have switched to deliplayer had it been free...
Foobar's album list does that.
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Old 22nd December 2004, 04:13   #18
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You don't even want to know how my music is organized.

Sometimes it's:
/My Music/Artist/Album/song
Other times it's:
/My Music/Artist/song
Also:
/My Music/genre/sub-genre/artist/song
or:
/My Music/genre/sub-genre/album/song
or:
/My Music/genre/sub-genre/song
or:
/My Music/genre/artist/song
or:
/My Music/genre/song
or:
/My Music/song

I don't always have a lot of spare time to sort my music, but I know where most everything is located, and I try to get things into different folders based sort of on a playlist I might wish to listen to. I never use playlist files, I just open all the songs in a directory.
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Old 22nd December 2004, 04:14   #19
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Quote:
Originally posted by CaboWaboAddict
Thanks for the feedback so far.

@Gonzo: This is the reason for asking up front, I see a lot of people getting slammed for writing something that doesn't take into account what others want.

Without giving away too much of the application for now... It will be a database app that will do much more.

The reason I was asking is that I need really reliable info to catalog the music. There doesn't seem to be any consistancy in how people store their music. I hesitate to use the tags, because many times they are missing or incorrect. I was hoping what I have seen others do was not the norm and could find an easy way out.

I tried to write a program that would attempt to 'figure out' what it could from the tags, directory structure, and file names, then it would store the data into the database. It seemed to work about 80% of the time. That isn't good enough if you are talking about 10000+ songs in a library.

Please continue to post opinions. I really would like to find out more how everyone feels...
You could probably do a "database configuration" wizard inside the program that sorts through the music and if it doesnt have any solid information on it (is just free floating) promt the user for information on it. As in: let's say you have a bunch of pink floyd songs in a folder called "Pink floyd", but you dont know what they consider the music to be categorized as (because the app doesnt categorize the music at all itself). You'd promt "What genre is PINK FLOYD"? They'd input something like "Old rock" and your program would then associate Pink floyd with "Old rock", without changing their database. Let's say there's a folder with a genre and a ton of mp3s without artist names. The user would then get prompted for each mp3 "what band is this"? Or, if the mp3 has the band in the name you could prompt "Is the band part of the mp3 name? Does it go bandname - song name, or song name - band name?". If there's free floating mp3s in the directory you specify you'd promt for both band name and genre, etc, etc. You could also allow the user to save and backup the definitions so they wouldnt need to do it again at a later time.

Just an idea - I'd do it that way if i HAD to have that information.
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Old 22nd December 2004, 04:18   #20
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all music files should be named "Artist Name - Song Name.extension" IMO.
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Old 22nd December 2004, 04:30   #21
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Quote:
Originally posted by Mattress
all music files should be named "Artist Name - Song Name.extension" IMO.
Mine currently is like this:

either
...\artist\album\track#_song.extension
or
...\artist\song.extension

depending on whether I ripped an album, or if it was from a single.

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Old 22nd December 2004, 05:00   #22
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mine is

\matt\desktop\stuff\music\album\year\artist\music.mp3

i am not normal, no really.
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Old 22nd December 2004, 05:07   #23
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we dont need the whole filepath.. just past "music".
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Old 22nd December 2004, 05:37   #24
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Quote:
Originally posted by CaboWaboAddict
Mine currently is like this:

either
...\artist\album\track#_song.extension
or
...\artist\song.extension

depending on whether I ripped an album, or if it was from a single.
If I did that I'd end up with a million directories with one song in each, that would just a be a pain in the ass.

What do you do for soundtracks/compilations with various artists?
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Old 22nd December 2004, 06:03   #25
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Im special, i like to have all mine in a single folder....

and have them organized by....

/mnt/Media/Music/Artist - Album - Track - Title.mp3

just a matter og habbit i guess, but i really don't like having different bands in seperate folders...
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Old 22nd December 2004, 15:22   #26
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I'd never change my current folder layout (music\[codec]\[Artist]\[album name]\[track#]-[song_name].[file_extension] or music\[codec]\[Various Artists]\[album name]\[track#]-[artist name]-[song_name].[file_extension]).

Mixing genre in to the folder names is silly when you've got tons and tons of music that you want to be able to search in without a database like Winamp's libary.
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Old 22nd December 2004, 15:34   #27
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I'd never change my file structure to accomidate a metadata program - that's what the metadata program is for, damn it!

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Old 22nd December 2004, 16:02   #28
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Of course not, i dont want to change anything.
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Old 22nd December 2004, 16:39   #29
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Quote:
Originally posted by Mattress
If I did that I'd end up with a million directories with one song in each, that would just a be a pain in the ass.

What do you do for soundtracks/compilations with various artists?
I have all of the 'singles' lumped together for each artist, so there isn't a directory for each song.

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Old 22nd December 2004, 17:00   #30
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i am sorry, but I am a developer and I totally agree with most here, no application should force you to totally reorganize a collection of files. Anyone who believes otherwise should really consider pulling their head out of their ass. A developer's job should be to make computing life easier for as many people possble.
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Old 22nd December 2004, 17:11   #31
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Simply put that way I agree.

But if this app can help organize a collection and give added benefits for doing so, wouldn't that make a difference?

Also, due to the problems of having files organized like a pile of pickup sticks, it would create work for the user to enter info into the database, when the program couldn't figure it out. 20% failure of 10000 file = 2000 files that would have to be manually entered.

Wouldn't it be worthwhile to use a tool to organize the files to eliminate the above error rate?

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Old 22nd December 2004, 17:54   #32
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that would depend on how badly someone wanted to use such a program. Using file paths to determine file information is inherently a bad option. Perhaps you should use the ID3 info.
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Old 22nd December 2004, 19:55   #33
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Originally that was my plan. I asked a lot of people I know to check their MP3s with a program I wrote and found that, on average 60% of the files had missing or incorrect info. That's when I started looking at directory structure.

I'm really not sure of the best approach at this point. I guess I'll probably use a combination of the two to try to 'guess' the correct info, and give the user the option of using directory, tag, both, or both with one or the other weighted.

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Old 22nd December 2004, 20:20   #34
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You could also ask the user if they want their directory sorted by your program. If they don't (which is most likley) then you could do what ever you said above.


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Old 22nd December 2004, 21:34   #35
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Personally, I have a fairly unique setup. First off, I don't dedicate a folder to music, but an entire partition. Then as I built up my collection, I created some random categories. Only two artists have made it to the to the top - The Beatles\ and Queen\. Then I have a Chart\, Classical\, Favourites\, Golden Oldies\, Grunge\, Random & Unclassified\, and Rock & Metal\. Within some of these are folders dedicated to artists (like "Golden Oldies\Simon & Garfunkel\"), some have sub-categories ("Rock & Metal\Techno & Dance\" which has DJ Shadow, Aphex Twin and Prodigy in it).

All in all I have one of the most random structures ever, to go with one of the most random taste-spanning I know.

Although, as much as possible I try to have "Artist - Album - Track Number - Track.mp3". Makes it easier to sort into the original album order.

I wouldn't use software that forced me into a certain structure. But if I have the option, and I see the benefits, I might.

As for the files that can't be sorted properly, IMO you'd be best leaving an "unsorted" directory/setting/whatever...
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Old 22nd December 2004, 23:02   #36
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Quote:
Originally posted by ryan
Foobar's album list does that.
foobar is ugly and confusing.
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Old 23rd December 2004, 00:00   #37
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I agree with most people here. You can't ask people to change the way they organise their music for an app, personally I would not do it. Maybe you can start it off with a wizard that asks how the music is organised by directories, and if it isn't, ask abuout ID3 tags. If the music is in a mess, the filename syntax is nonexistent and the ID3 info is wrong/missing... then I don't know what you should do. It seems like in that case the user would have no use for your app.
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