Version 4 wiped out my Custom Fields

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pgrimmer
Posts: 17
Joined: Thu Jun 26, 2008 12:19 am

Version 4 wiped out my Custom Fields

Post by pgrimmer »

I was running 3.2.5.1306 and had defined 4 of the 5 allowable Custom Fields as Billboard items (Chart Entry, Peak Position, Time on Charts and Misc). I have been using these fields for several months now. The only thing I didn't like was that the fields were in the database but were not part of my mp3 files.

I'm a Lifetime member and I was looking forward to the new release, partly because it looked like the custom tags would now be stored in the mp3 file. I just installed 4.0.0.1459 and all of my custom field data is now gone. I didn't tell the program to update; I assumed it would start out using my old database.

The bug is that instead of dropping all of my Custom fields (and quite a few hours of entering the data), I should have been offered a chance a) to use my old database and b) have my existing custom fields be imported and written out to my mp3 files. I love MediaMonkey and have been using it for quite some time but this was very irritating to say the least.

So there's the bug report. I have two related questions to this: 1) is there any way to have the version 4 use my old fields (does the old database still even exist & can I get MM to read the data from it into the new Custom fields) and 2) if I define the custom fields now doe they get written to every mp3 file I edit even if I don't fill in any data for one or more fields (for example, my classical music didn't chart in Billboard so I don't want to have those tags in those mp3 files even if the data items are blank)?

BTW, you should fix your forum software. It is underlining the word MediaMonkey as if it is misspelled. Since that is the product name it would seem to make sense that the name of the software wouldn't be flagged as a misspelled word.

Thanks
olekristian75
Posts: 10
Joined: Tue Jun 10, 2008 6:09 pm
Location: Oslo, Norway

Re: Version 4 wiped out my Custom Fields

Post by olekristian75 »

See here for location of the mediamonkey database:
http://www.mediamonkey.com/support/inde ... ticleid=17
Backup your mm4 database and copy the mm3 database to the location used by mm4.
When you start mm4 the next time it will use your old database and it should include your custom fields as custom fields are not written to the file, only the database.

See here for information about tags and where they are stored:
http://www.mediamonkey.com/wiki/index.p ... erties/4.0
MattTown
Posts: 38
Joined: Sun Mar 15, 2009 5:09 pm

Re: Version 4 wiped out my Custom Fields

Post by MattTown »

Yep, the V4 upgrade wiped all 5 of my custom column names, but luckily kept all of the data. I had to go back to an old copy of the mm.ini file to get the column names again and reset those through the Edit/Options/Appearance dialog box.
Custom fields are now as they were, but its a strange oversight for the upgrade.
RevolvingImages
Posts: 14
Joined: Wed Nov 28, 2007 12:18 pm

Re: Version 4 wiped out my Custom Fields

Post by RevolvingImages »

Ditto - I lost my custom field names, but not the data - it was a small annoyance. Sorry to hear you lost your data as well. That sucks.

On a related note - MM3 did store the custom field data in the mp3s. All of my mp3s had the data embedded. I'm curious why yours didn't.
Lowlander
Posts: 49039
Joined: Sat Sep 06, 2003 5:53 pm
Location: MediaMonkey 5

Re: Version 4 wiped out my Custom Fields

Post by Lowlander »

1) First of all custom fields are saved to the files, but as they're custom fields they're only available in MediaMonkey and software that can read all tags.

2) Did you use a custom database location with DBNAME in MediaMonkey 3? If so just set this up again in the MediaMonkey 4 ini and start MediaMonkey. Otherwise just copy the MediaMonkey 3 database to the MediaMonkey 4 database location: http://www.mediamonkey.com/support/inde ... ticleid=17

3) It is your browsers spell check that is underlining unknown words, not the forum software.
Lowlander (MediaMonkey user since 2003)
pgrimmer
Posts: 17
Joined: Thu Jun 26, 2008 12:19 am

Re: Version 4 wiped out my Custom Fields

Post by pgrimmer »

I think I have figured out what is going on. There was a time during version 3 releases that the documentation said that the custom tags were not saved in the file but rather in the database (I think). However, I just looked at another PC I have that is running v3.2.4.1304 and in the Help it says basically what the new version 4 is saying. It doesn't say that the data is not saved in the file but it doesn't say it isn't either. So I used Notepad++ (neat program, BTW) to look inside one of the files in which I had placed some of my custom tag info and I found that the tag info is there (done while editing in MM v3.2.4.1304) but strangely enough the names for the fields are not. For example, my first custom field was (and is) labelled "Billboard Entry" and I put text dates in this field in the form "yyyy/mm/dd". In the song called "The Rain, The Park and Other Things" by the Cowsills in 1967, the following info had been saved into the file in the id3v2 tag area:

XXXSongs-DB_Custom1[NUL]1967/09/30COMM[NUL][NUL][NUL][ETB][NUL][NUL][NUL]XXXSongs-DB_Custom2[NUL]2COMM[NUL][NUL][NUL][ETB][NUL][NUL][NUL]

So the first custom field has the text "1967/09/30" and the second custom field has the text "2" (Billboard Peak position). However, nowhere in the file is the text "Billboard Entry" or "Billboard Peak" contained. It only showed up as the title for all songs within MediaMonkey. When I put new titles back in for the Custom Fields into MediaMonkey v4 then everything showed up again in the various displays where I am showing the custom fields and also in the tag editor (it seems like MediaMonkey ignores any custom data until the headings are defined within MediaMonkey).

So on one hand I am thrilled that I didn't lose the info I had entered for my songs.

On the other hand, since the titles are not saved with the file, if I get a song from someone else and they have something else defined for these custom fields then it will show up in my listings in the same custom fields although the data have nothing to do with what I defined the custom fields as. I know that within the MP3 id3v2 specs technically the title of the first field is "XXXSongs-DB_Custom1" and not whatever I have given it within MediaMonkey but it wouldn't be too difficult to have twice as many of the custom fields defined with them being in pairs, the first one being the real title of the field and the second one being the text of that field (I know, that's not a bug & this section of the forum is for bugs so I'll drop that line of thinking here).

Having these custom fields is neat because within MediaMonkey I can right click on the various listings and have one or more of my columns show up and then I can sort on that. For example, it is a snap to show all of the Pop music I heard on the radio that came out the spring of my senior year in high school.

So the bottom line is that a) there is no bug related to custom fields that I have found, b) the old custom data had been written to the MP3 file and was still there, c) once defined in any way, data that has put in these special custom fields by MediaMonkey or any other program will show up as whatever has been defined with the new titles and d) I think the documentation could have been a bit more clear about what was/was not saved into the MP3 tags.
Lowlander
Posts: 49039
Joined: Sat Sep 06, 2003 5:53 pm
Location: MediaMonkey 5

Re: Version 4 wiped out my Custom Fields

Post by Lowlander »

pgrimmer wrote:(it seems like MediaMonkey ignores any custom data until the headings are defined within MediaMonkey).
That shouldn't be happening as Custom names are just an appearance thing, nothing more.

Saving Custom names to files would be problematic as MediaMonkey only has 5 custom fields and would not be able to show 20 custom names. If users had the ability to define unlimited Custom names this could work, but with a fixed amount it can't.
Lowlander (MediaMonkey user since 2003)
pgrimmer
Posts: 17
Joined: Thu Jun 26, 2008 12:19 am

Re: Version 4 wiped out my Custom Fields

Post by pgrimmer »

If someone like Amazon or Apple put something in the special custom tags and it is something I don't care about, as long as I could tell what it was (i.e., a paired title/data thing), I could easily ignore what they had put in their file. That would be perfectly fine with me. As long as I defined the 5 items I wanted to see within MM I don't care what else might be dropped in there by others. It would be nice if whenever the tags are re-written to the file that the ones from someone else weren't overwritten but were just left alone (as I would hope mine were in their system). Then when I defined a heading within MM it would like for that heading/title in the custom fields and use the one associated with it or a blank if there was nothing. Why wouldn't that work?
Lowlander
Posts: 49039
Joined: Sat Sep 06, 2003 5:53 pm
Location: MediaMonkey 5

Re: Version 4 wiped out my Custom Fields

Post by Lowlander »

How would you know which custom fields were there in the first place.
Lowlander (MediaMonkey user since 2003)
pgrimmer
Posts: 17
Joined: Thu Jun 26, 2008 12:19 am

Re: Version 4 wiped out my Custom Fields

Post by pgrimmer »

I believe it would be relatively easy. If there was an even number of fields in the "XXXSongs-DB_Custom" sections it might be reasonable to assume they come in pairs where the first custom field was the title of the first tag and the next entry was the second entry which would be the text that goes with the title. For example, the first custom field could be "Billboard Entry" and it could be paired with a text date such as "1984/01/10". Let the user (us) have the option of taking these custom fields in pairs or as individual entries. This could easily be done on a file by file basis with the yes/no switch stored in the MM database. For those where the value was "Yes" then MM could compare the title to whatever the 5 (or however many were allowed) custom fields were defined in the MM database.

An alternative is to define a new tag that was specifically set up for the types of pairs I describe above. I actually prefer that solution but that means the MM authors have to be willing to institute a new tag that initially is not used by anyone else.

Absent one of these two solutions there is really no way to expand what type of data can be stored in a song file. I suppose you could embed various things in the general Comments field but trying to parse that would get to be a nightmare and even then the interpretations would not be seen by MM.
Mizery_Made
Posts: 2283
Joined: Tue Aug 29, 2006 1:09 pm
Location: Kansas City, Missouri, United States

Re: Version 4 wiped out my Custom Fields

Post by Mizery_Made »

Perhaps the MagicNodes script would be of some interest to you, in particular it's "Involved People" example node.
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