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Author Topic: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?  (Read 5194 times)

Don Winter

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Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« on: May 22, 2018, 06:26:46 pm »

Why, when selecting "Play in Media Center" from the drop-down list for a folder with more than ten (10) numbered items, does Media Center not copy those items into its Playing Now in numerical order, rather than "alphanumeric" order" (i.e. it does 1, 10 . . . ,19, 2, 21. . . etc., instead of the desired 1,2,3,4, . . .10, 11, . . .)?

Is there a setting that can control this?
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JimH

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #1 on: May 22, 2018, 06:30:38 pm »

Try playing from within MC.
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Don Winter

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #2 on: May 22, 2018, 06:40:38 pm »

Yes, drilling down within MC tends to work, but isn't my preferred means of finding the folder I want to play. (I'm not searching for a RIPped album, but for classical concert folders I've downloaded in ways best located by folder name in a structured hierarchy, and was doing this long before I first purchased MC.)

So, is there a way to force the copy to be numerical, not alphanumerical?
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Don Winter

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #3 on: May 22, 2018, 07:07:56 pm »

A different question that would permit me to delve within MC: Can I sort my folders within MC by Date of Creation (so that I can use them in creation date order)?
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JimH

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #4 on: May 22, 2018, 07:13:28 pm »

If your files are tagged well, you don't need to think about where they are located.  Just search for what you want and play it.
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Don Winter

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #5 on: May 22, 2018, 07:49:15 pm »

The downloaded symphony concert broadcasts are not "tagged" at all. They don't come in to my filing system through MC, I just use the latter to play them.

While I might search for something fairly old by name of orchestra or conductor, the recently downloaded ones I play in the order in which I acquired them, which is easy to do through the windows filing system, but apparently hard to do within MC.

There are currently around 10,000 recorded symphony concert broadcasts within my filing system, so "tagging" them would be a process likely not to be completed within my lifetime!
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JimH

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #6 on: May 22, 2018, 07:55:48 pm »

You can tag the files by using the folder or filenames if you've organized things.

MC also has a folder browsing method under Drives and Devices.

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Don Winter

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #7 on: May 22, 2018, 08:08:16 pm »

Can I sort that "browsing method" (which produced an alphabetical list as default) by date?
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glynor

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #8 on: May 22, 2018, 10:02:06 pm »

Yes, you can alter the sorting in any of the Media Views, and make your own with a structure as you see fit.

Jim's point, and it is probably a good one, is that you'd be better off importing the data from your file and foldername structure (which you can do in an automated fashion) and use the power of MC's database to construct new, better, ways to browse your media. This thread would be a good place to start on how to import the metadata contained within your existing file and foldername structure.

However, that said... Yes, you definitely can alter your Media Views to allow you to browse by file and foldernames, sort by [Date Created] and [Date Modified] and other similar methods.

A good place to start might be using the default Audio > Files Media View. Make a copy of it so that you don't modify the original:

1. In the Tree, drag the Files Media View and drop it on the Audio node.

2. From the context menu that pops up, choose Copy.

3. This will create a new, duplicate of that Media View in your Tree, called "Files (1)" or something like that. Select it, right-click, and choose Customize View.

4. In the dialog that appears, you can change all aspects of the view. Under Set Rules for File Display, you can use the Search Wizard interface to alter what files show up in the view (with a Search) and what order they show up in (with the Modifications to that Search). Sorting files by [Date Modified]-d will sort them in descending order with the newest dated files "on top" in the view.

5. Likewise, you can alter the sorting for the Panes shown at the top of the View. To do this, click Edit on the Category you'd like to alter on the left-side of the Customize View dialog, under Show Categories in this Order. Select the pane you'd like to change, click Edit, and then select a Sorting under the Sorting dropdown combobox at the bottom of the dialog.

It provides a number of pre-defined sortings you can use, but if one of the built in ones isn't sufficient, you can make your own custom ones. Go back to the Search Wizard (it doesn't matter where, under Set Rules for File Display within this Customize View dialog, or somewhere else in a Smartlist or whatever.) Add a file sorting for the order you want to the search, and then save that sorting as a named Preset. Named Presets are available in the sorting drop-down for Categories in the Customize View dialog, so you can make your own with whatever order you prefer.

So, you can make your File Folder browsing pane in the Files View, sort by [Date Modified], or [Date Created], or [Date Imported], if you want.

It is worth mentioning that MC doesn't care at all about the folders themselves on disk, as they aren't really "things" just parts of a path to the imported files to it. When it is showing you the Files browser pane, it is really just navigating this heirarchy of path structure, not actually "opening" the folders themselves on disk. So it will sort the folders within the pane based on the most recent file modified date of Imported files within those folders, ignoring the [Date Modified] of any non-imported file. But that should do what you want.

There's no reason it has to be done with a Panes-based View, however. You can change that too. Try switching your test view to Categories mode, rather than Panes, for example. Change View As from Panes to Categories in the Customize View dialog (on the left), and see how the View changes.

You can make as many of these Media Views as you want, in whatever structure you want, and they can be filtered to show only, exactly the media you want, with exactly the metadata you want exposed.
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Don Winter

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #9 on: May 23, 2018, 03:38:19 pm »

OK, I managed to make the listing show "Files" by Date Created descending. But that isn't really useful to me. What I want to do is show the FOLDERS by Date Created descending, so that I can play the folders most recently created. Is that possible?

BTW, reading the (excellent) 2013 dialog on how to extract tags from filenames, I was reminded of the time when I was creating an application in MSAccess (pre-2000), and suddenly needed to switch from Drag-and-Drop to Access Basic. It felt like regressing 25 years in computer interfaces!

I had carefully chosen my folder names, 12 years ago, to make something like this possible, but I'm not sure there are enough days left in my retirement for me ever to implement it.

So, for now, is there a way to sort the *folders* by date?
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glynor

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #10 on: May 23, 2018, 07:23:12 pm »

#5 and below above is about exactly that. Unfortunately, I just tested it and it does not work correctly with [Date Created] or [Date Modified] on Location-type Panes. Or, at least, I can't figure out what it is doing. You can sort them properly by other things (Number of Files and File Size both work as you'd expect, for example), but the Date-based ones go all wonky. They are sorting, but just not in a way that corresponds to the date of the files or the folders.

I think there's a bug in there.

That said... If your File and Foldername structure was well thought out and chosen, it should be simple to extract the metadata from it in less than an hour (unless your scheme is extremely messy). To be clear, you don't have to (and don't want to) do this on one file at a time. In a perfect world, all of your files have the same structure. If so, you select-all and apply the rule once. If note, you subdivide your folder structure up into "sections", made up exclusively of like-named files, and do all of them at once. Then rinse and repeat until you get them all.

Describe your file and foldername structure, and we can tell you what rule(s) to use in Fill Properties from Filename, and make short work of it.
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Don Winter

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #11 on: May 23, 2018, 08:45:57 pm »

"#5 and below" was what I was trying to work with. But, to me (a neophyte at working with this level of MC), everything seems to sort the Files, not the File Folders. I don't want the Files sorted (I want the normal arrangement within the Folders), I want the Folders sorted. That's why I find myself working within Windows Explorer, and then wanting to use the dropdown to "pay in MC" or "Add to Paying in MC". When I do the former with a Folder selected, it doesn't preserve a Numeric ordering within the folder.

Examples of my Folder Names:
  Stenz NetherlandsRadio 2017             (or might be 2017-2, etc.)
  (Conductor) (Orchestra) (Year)           (in which case the '-2' is simply a serial within the year)
                    (Orchestraname may be hyphenated with a location if the concert was note at the orchestra's home base)

  Berlioz Requiem Franck 2018            (or might be 2018-2, etc.)
  (Composer) (Work) (Conductor) (year)

  Gounod Romeo Met 2018-2
  (Composer) (Work) (OperaCompany) (Year+serial)

These are never intermixed within a single folder, so are easily separable, but I suspect over the12 years I've been doing this, some names will not quite match this, maybe a space within a work name or an orchestra name, for example)

I have not tried, but these look like they might easily be matched by the templates you described. I will be interested to see your responses on this.
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glynor

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #12 on: May 23, 2018, 09:13:54 pm »

I'll definitely help you with the Fill Properties from Filename, as that should be pretty straightforward to get sorted. For the record, if you ever change your file naming scheme, don't use spaces as a delimiter. Use Dashes or brackets or something in a pattern that won't ever appear within one of the names. Usually " - " is pretty effective to separate fields. Sometimes square brackets are handy too.

But, it'll be tomorrow. I'm tired and done tonight. In any case...

That's why I find myself working within Windows Explorer, and then wanting to use the dropdown to "pay in MC" or "Add to Paying in MC". When I do the former with a Folder selected, it doesn't preserve a Numeric ordering within the folder.

This is the first time I understood your core question. It was about playing the files from the Windows Explorer context menu, and in that case, the files aren't added to Playing Now in the order you'd expect! Had not really followed that when I read your original posts. My reading comprehension was probably poor.

Within Windows Explorer, when you open the folder up, what sorting is it showing? Because modern Windows Explorer versions read file tags and do weird sorting (not by filename, ascending) on music files in many cases. I'd expect MC to use a Filename-based sort for those plays from the context menu (though I haven't tested). I can't imagine it would be able to honor any tag-based sorting applied in Windows Explorer though.
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glynor

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #13 on: May 23, 2018, 09:32:16 pm »

Now I re-read and see. The issue is your filenames don't have padded number fields. Well, that's easily fixed if you do get your file metadata into MC, because it will pad most relevant numbers when you use it to create a new filename structure.

But, if yours are already like that on disk, you'd be stuck using the Context Menu. I just tested to confirm: MC sorts the files played via the context menu by Filename, with no "smart-sorting" of numbers (like they'd be listed at the command prompt in Windows). Okay, at least I'm caught up now. Sorry for my misunderstanding.

I'll write back on how you can import that stuff tomorrow. Just to make it easy, can you post some example full filenames I can use as examples?
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Don Winter

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #14 on: May 23, 2018, 10:25:01 pm »

Within the folders, the files are (somehow) sorted numerically on the filename. AFAIK there are no tags already in those folders.

Here are some filenames from the folder that most recently copied alphanumerically (i.e., 1, 11, etc., 2, 21, etc., 3, 31. etc.) rather than 1,,2,3, . . . .20,21, . . .30, 31, . .

1.Konzertansage
2.Ansage_Varese_Integrales
3.Varese_Integrales

10.Webern_op.10_5

20.Ansage_Cerha

30.Webern_op.6_1

Note: those are the filenames provided by the Uploader. I wrote a folder name within which these and my notes file are encapsulated after unzipping
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Spike1000

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #15 on: May 24, 2018, 02:53:17 am »

This thread is a bit TL;DR for me at this time of the morning.  :(

If you need to manipulate filenames or tag files for the first time outside of MC consider using MP3Tag https://www.mp3tag.de/en/.

It can pad track numbers and write them to part of the filename resetting counters back to 1 for each new subdirectory so (with consistent structure) you can rename/re-tag 1000s files in one operation.

You can write tags tag based on fields in the filename (yes, spaces may be a problem here too).

Its sorting/sort grouping is really good even if your data is a bit wonky (eg if you sort by path, it'll sort the tracks in each folder logically (ie by track/filename) so the order is usually exactly how you want it. If it isn't it's easily spotted and fixed.

Spike

PS If you listen to each of those 10,000 concerts before you die I'll eat my hat  ;D If it was me I'd wouldn't worry too much about the tagging and concentrate on the music; you've got a lot to work through  :D

Don Winter

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #16 on: May 24, 2018, 02:33:08 pm »

I've been working on listening to those concerts since I started downloading them in 2006. I currently have less than ten new ones to listen to, but I download about that many new ones a week in small numbers on several different days. Only a few of them present the sorting problem, but the ones that do are quite annoying.

Thanks for all of the interesting assistance so far.
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Spike1000

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #17 on: May 25, 2018, 02:36:23 am »

Don,

You didn't ask how I'd like my hat served  ;D

Enjoy!

Spike

DJLegba

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #18 on: May 25, 2018, 08:17:38 am »

Although retagging all 10,000 concerts would be a daunting task, editing the track number for a single concert should take less than a minute. Why not just retag before you listen?
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Don Winter

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #19 on: May 25, 2018, 02:12:25 pm »

I can also fix the order after starting the Play In MC in less than a minute or so (which I would Likely have to do before tagging), but it's much less convenient than just having the files copy over in order. So I asked if there was a way to make the folder Play in the correct order.

The last couple of things I asked about were already possible, I just didn't know how. So maybe this one was, also?
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DJLegba

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #20 on: May 25, 2018, 04:08:19 pm »

I can also fix the order after starting the Play In MC in less than a minute or so (which I would Likely have to do before tagging), but it's much less convenient than just having the files copy over in order. So I asked if there was a way to make the folder Play in the correct order.

The last couple of things I asked about were already possible, I just didn't know how. So maybe this one was, also?

I suggest you stop using Windows Explorer to launch what you want to play. An hour or two looking at your collection within MC, with the idea of using tags to order what you want to hear, will be time well spent.
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Don Winter

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #21 on: May 25, 2018, 04:20:51 pm »

DJLegba,

Now we're starting to go in circles. It was suggested at the beginning of this thread that I do things in MC, and I asked how I should use MC to sort the FOLDERS by DateCreated/DateModified, descending. I was shown how to do this for the Files, which isn't what I need.

So, I use Window Explorer to sort the Folders by most recent first, and then use the MC Context menu to play the folder. Some folders don't copy into Playing Now in the expected order . . .
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JimH

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #22 on: May 25, 2018, 04:22:48 pm »

Have you tried importing the files and then looking in the Audio section of the tree on the left?
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Don Winter

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #23 on: May 25, 2018, 07:08:26 pm »

Jim,

Under "Audio" is where I've been looking at "Files", and while the Folders are listed there, I don't see how to sort the list of Folders by any kind of Date.

Yes, I can find the Folder by Name in that area, and then play it from there. (TBH, I haven't tried that with one of the problem folders, recently, to see if it sorts correctly in Playing Now.) But, that takes at least as long as fixing order issues directly in Playing Now!

Was there something more specific you had in mind?
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Don Winter

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #24 on: May 25, 2018, 08:38:47 pm »

After doing an Import that included the latest downloaded files/folders, I looked at "Recent Albums" to see if that was the desired solution.

Well, it certainly allows me to show and sort "albums" on Date Modified, but the list seems very incomplete (one folder on the most recent day I downloaded, for example, compared with the six shown in the Windows Explorer listing), and some very interesting "names" and "albums" (which seem identical) that certainly pertain to the folder, but for which I have no idea of the provenance. (Maybe the originator had tagged them thus?)

Another question: some of the folders I download are arranged alphabetically (not the desired Play sequence), but when I "Play" them in MC, they appear to have been Tracked already in the correct play sequence. Nothing in the Context menu seems to permit telling MC to play this folder in Track order. Is this feature missing, or just another thing I haven't found yet?
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~OHM~

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #25 on: May 26, 2018, 05:21:35 am »

depends where you are downloading from, a reputable site or a non reputable one.
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JimH

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #26 on: May 26, 2018, 06:57:51 am »

After doing an Import that included the latest downloaded files/folders, I looked at "Recent Albums" to see if that was the desired solution.

Well, it certainly allows me to show and sort "albums" on Date Modified, but the list seems very incomplete (one folder on the most recent day I downloaded, for example, compared with the six shown in the Windows Explorer listing), and some very interesting "names" and "albums" (which seem identical) that certainly pertain to the folder, but for which I have no idea of the provenance. (Maybe the originator had tagged them thus?)

Another question: some of the folders I download are arranged alphabetically (not the desired Play sequence), but when I "Play" them in MC, they appear to have been Tracked already in the correct play sequence. Nothing in the Context menu seems to permit telling MC to play this folder in Track order. Is this feature missing, or just another thing I haven't found yet?
You really need to spend some time working on the basics (import, tagging, etc.) and reading the wiki.  Otherwise, you'll probably continue to  flounder and get frustrated.  The time you invest will save you time in the future.

The wiki has a topic called "Getting Started".  Work on that until you understand it.

I'm sorry if this sounds harsh, but it's the quickest way to get what you want.
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Don Winter

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #27 on: May 26, 2018, 01:47:24 pm »

Jim,

I know how to import and Tag. Maybe there's some feature of Tagging I haven't found yet, though. Many features useful for creating a Library of popular albums don't seem particularly applicable for Classical concert  or opera downloads. However, I originally purchased MC because The Absolute Sound recommended it on sound quality, not library features, and I've been using MC for several years without developing these kinds of questions. (Most did not arise until I started to  RIP my CD collection, which has somewhat different requirements from the downloaded concerts, but nonetheless caused me to learn about importing and tagging.)

Clicking Wiki got me to the general Wikipedia site, and searching on JRiver Media Center on that site got me a page that does NOT have a Getting Started section. What am I missing?
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JimH

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #28 on: May 26, 2018, 02:01:16 pm »

https://wiki.jriver.com/index.php/Category:Frequently_Asked_Questions

When you have a problem, try Google.  Searching for "jriver wiki", for example.
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Don Winter

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #29 on: May 26, 2018, 02:12:35 pm »

That worked, but isn't it odd that clicking the Wiki button on MC doesn't (always) go to that?
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Don Winter

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #30 on: May 26, 2018, 03:42:39 pm »

OK, I have gone through the wiki, and especially the User Guide, in (I think) some detail, and have not found anything on:

Turning an Imported "Folder" into an Album when that didn't happen on Import;

Playing a "Folder", whether from inside MC or from Explorer, in Tracked sequence when the Track Numbers were not created in JRiver Media Center (but that may not be obvious from looking at them; or,

Playing a "Folder" already listed in Numeric sequence", whether from inside MC or from Explorer, in that numeric sequence rather than alphanumeric sequence.

(Yes, I know I can use the Library features to force the Index into something MC will use.)

So I would like to know if there are already ways to do these things that haven't yet shown up in my examination of MC or of the documentation thereof. Sorry if these seem naďve questions to those already well-versed in the features of MC.
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JimH

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Don Winter

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #32 on: May 26, 2018, 04:40:49 pm »

Yes, Jim, I found and read that section when going through the documents. I have just read it again. I'm sorry, but I still don't see how it answers my specific questions.

Now, please understand that this is not because I'm a computer dunce. I do know what these words mean, and I have tried many of the things suggested, with the same failings already reported in this thread. I understand that you may be exasperated because I don't seem to understand your responses, but I think that's because there's a disconnect between the way I'm using MC and the way the development team expected it to be used when designing and improving the system. (I'm familiar with requirements difficulties, having spent more than two decades performing "requirements engineering" as part of my job, before I retired.)

So, if MC doesn't do what I would like, that's OK. I just would like to know if that's really the case, and I'm not finding the answers in the documentation and in my trial and error, despite some of the very specific pointers with which I have been provided in this thread.
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DJLegba

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #33 on: May 26, 2018, 04:59:21 pm »

Problem: You drag a folder into MC and it plays the files sorted by name. Unfortunately, the files are named
1.first piece
2.second piece
etc.

When there are more than 9 pieces in the folder, MC plays 1,10,11,2,3,4 etc.

Solution: Rename the files, as Spike000 has suggested
01.first piece
02.second piece
...
10.piece 10
11.piece 11
etc

Try it manually in one folder to prove that it solves your problem. Then you can look into using the tool Spike000 has recommended, or see if you can do it with MC's move, rename, copy feature. But if you're going to do anything in MC, the preferred solution would be to select all tracks in the folder, assign an album name, and then order the tracks the way you want using the track # field.
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Don Winter

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #34 on: May 26, 2018, 08:06:43 pm »

DJLegba,

Both of your suggestions work within MC. Neither of them worked when editing the folders in Windows Explorer, even if I then re-Imported them into MC. There must be some other step I have to do to get MC to recognize the edited folders!
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BryanC

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #35 on: May 26, 2018, 11:33:30 pm »

My suggestion: forget about windows explorer. I think it is only tripping you up. Configure auto-import in MC to import your collection and use the tools within MC to edit your metadata. Once that is done you can optionally reorganize your files on disk using MC but that isn't really necessary
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Don Winter

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #36 on: May 27, 2018, 12:54:35 am »

There are two major reasons (so far) for not performing all of my actions within MC:

1) I have, as yet, been unable to find any way within MC to sort the Folders that appear within Window Explorer by Date Created/Modified, or indeed, any automatic way to turn these Folders into "Albums" which might be so sorted.

2) The Folder/File Listings within the various trees in MC do not remain the way I have last set them (and I see no way to have multiple parallel trees displayed) when I move on to other tasks. The windows in Windows Explorer just sit there on my screen while I do other things, so I don't have to drill down into the tree again to proceed with the next required action.

Doubtless those are both artifacts of the way I use MC to play music, and thus may be of no evident concern to other participants in this forum. But they do make it very hard, from what I know so far, to do what I wish to do within MC, as you suggest.
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RoderickGI

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #37 on: May 27, 2018, 02:07:33 am »

Okay, I've had a read of this thread, and all the advice is good, but now I'll have a go at a simple answer. First a few points:

1. MC doesn't know about Folders, it only knows about files. So it does not know the "Date Created" of a folder, and hence MC cannot sort by the folder's "Date Created". Glynor mentioned that above. Glynor was trying to help you use the file "Date Created" to sort the way you wanted. But that can get complex, and it didn't work as expected.
2. Windows Explorer will always pass a list of files to MC sorted by the file name. Again, Glynor confirmed that above. Windows will always do an alphanumeric sort on file names in this case. That is, a character by character, left to right sort. Hence a file starting with "11 - " will always sort before a file starting with "2 -". You can't change that.
3. All of this could be fixed using MC media file management capabilities, but that requires importing all the files, setting up tags, creating views the way you want, and so on. Lots of work. More time than you want to spend.

So, I think the simple answer has already been given, but I will reiterate it:
Use Windows Explorer to open each new folder of tracks, and rename each file so that it starts with a two-digit track/sequence number. So "1 - Part One" becomes "01 - Part One", "9 - Part Nine" becomes "09 - Part Nine", "23 - Part Twenty Three" remains "23 - Part Twenty Three", and so on. This is quick, easy, simple, and logical to understand. Doing this once means that at any time in the future you try to play a concert using the Windows Explorer integration it will be sorted correctly. Yes, you could just resort in "Playing Now", but that would have to be repeated each time you played a concert, or restarted playing a partly finished concert.

After the above, right clicking on a folder > selecting Media Center > Play or Add to Playing Now, will always be sorted correctly, and played in the correct sequence.

QED, but...



If the tool you are using for downloading is naming the files, or you have any control over the source, then an even easier solution would be to have the files named with padded track/sequence numbers in the first place. If your process used to work correctly, then maybe files from previous concerts were named that way?

Also, if you want to make this even easier, there are probably tools out there on the internet that could rename files this way a group/folder(s) at a time. It is a fairly specific requirement, but I would be surprised if it hasn't been done already, many times. Have a search through some of the bulk file renaming tools and see if you can find one that does the job.

Oh look (from a Google of rename files pad numbers):
https://stackoverflow.com/questions/5417979/batch-rename-sequential-files-by-padding-with-zeroes
http://www.bulkrenameutility.co.uk/forum/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=3621
http://www.rlvision.com/flashren/manual/func_zero_padding.html

Some of those will apply to UNIX/Linux. Some will be overly complex batch and command files. Find an easy to use Windows program.
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What specific version of MC you are running:MC27.0.27 @ Oct 27, 2020 and updating regularly Jim!                        MC Release Notes: https://wiki.jriver.com/index.php/Release_Notes
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  Running JRiver for Android, JRemote2, Gizmo, & MO 4Media on a Sony Xperia XZ Premium Android 9.
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runes

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #38 on: May 27, 2018, 04:01:13 am »

There is a solution to your problem but you will need to write a small script that will be called when you select the files and use the drop down menu to play them.
If you can program a little bit then write a script, preferably with AutoHotKey. It doesn't matter if you selected one or two or more files the script will extract the folder name from even one file that is selected, it then iterate through all the music files in this folder and will sort them according to how you want them exactly to be sorted after that it will call MC24.EXE /PlayReplace with the list of the sorted files and MC will play them according to the above order.
You will need to change or add a modified or NEW registry entry that will be called when you right click on a music file.
Of course it would be easier if MC will have an option to sort files alpha numerically when passed as a command line to the program using windows explorer but it doesn't seem that they will do it because most of the people that are using the program are using the library and not windows explorer to play them.
I hope that I was clear enough if you need more clarifications regarding how to do it then let me know.
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Don Winter

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #39 on: May 27, 2018, 03:05:13 pm »

Roderick,

I tried renaming the files to pad the numbers, and, for whatever reasons, this didn't work. Maybe because I had already played that folder the other way during this MC session? I don't know. I reported this somewhere back up this thread.

I do understand that MC doesn't understand Folders, and that therefore I need some other approach to doing what I need. No, I don't have control over the incoming file names.

Runes, I don't think me developing a script-writing capability is warranted by the issues that need to be resolved, here. If and when the number padding can be made to work, that will probably be the preferred solution. But, as yet, I don't know why it didn't work.
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RoderickGI

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #40 on: May 27, 2018, 09:17:24 pm »

I tried renaming the files to pad the numbers, and, for whatever reasons, this didn't work. Maybe because I had already played that folder the other way during this MC session? I don't know.

Okay, some more information for you.

There are two three ways to select the files you want to play using Windows Explorer and initiate a MC command;
1. You can click on the folder to select it and then right-click on it to bring up the context-sensitive menu.
2. You can select all the files in a folder and right click on the first file in the folder to bring up the context-sensitive menu.
3. You can select all the files in a folder and right click on any file in the folder to bring up the context-sensitive menu.

In fact, when using the first method, you don't need to select the folder first, you can also just right-click on it to bring up the context-sensitive menu.

The there are three main ways to initiate a MC command to play the file;
a. Select "Play in Media Center".
b. Select "Media Center > Play".
c. Select "Media Center > Add to Playing Now".

There are a couple of extra option under "Media Center" to replace or add to Playing Now that I shall ignore for this discussion.

The only way that I was able to get a set of files that were named beginning with a two-digit padded number to play out of sequence was using either 2a or 3a.

1a, 1b & 1c play in the correct sequence starting from the first file.
2a plays starting with the first file, but then randomises all other files, even when Shuffle is turned off.
2b & 2c play in the correct sequence starting from the first file.
3a was very inconsistent. Sometimes it started playing the selected files from the position of the file that was right-clicked on, in sequence to the last file, and then starts back at the first file until all files are played (as shown by the sequence in Playing Now). Sometimes it started at a random file, and sometimes it randomised playback sequence for all files. Whether Windows Explorer was in focus when a file was right-clicked seemed to make a difference, but not always. Whether the files were selected immediately before starting playback seemed to make a difference, but not always. This seemed to be a very unreliable and random method.
3b & 3c started playing the selected files from the position of the file that was right-clicked on, in sequence to the last file, and then starts back at the first file until all files are played (as shown by the sequence in Playing Now).

So which method were you using?
It would seem that right-clicking the folder, method 1, would be best, and then any method works, a, b, or c. Do some testing for yourself and see if you get the same results.

I don't know if these results are by design or a bug in the software. I think method a., the "Play in Media Center" method, is supposed to randomise the playback sequence if files are selected rather than a folder. But I'm not sure about that. Maybe it is a bug and should respect the Shuffle setting. I couldn't find any setting that would change this behaviour.


Note that I was using three separate folders of files for testing, but whether a folder had been played back before or not didn't seem to have any effect on the outcome.
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What specific version of MC you are running:MC27.0.27 @ Oct 27, 2020 and updating regularly Jim!                        MC Release Notes: https://wiki.jriver.com/index.php/Release_Notes
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Don Winter

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #41 on: May 27, 2018, 10:13:37 pm »

I used method 1a for the test I described. I have also on occasion used 3a, 1c, and 3c, but not for this test. I didn't know that 2 cold be different from 3.

The result of this test ordered the file 10 through 19, 3. (note, name showed no leading 0, ev en though the file in Windows Explorer did), 20 through 29, 4, 30 through 39, 6, 40, 7, 8, 9, 1, 2, 5.

I'm sure that the lack of leading zeros even after I added them into the original folder) is significant, but I hadn't noticed that at first. I have restarted MC during these tests, with no change in results. I don't have a folder exhibiting this problem that I haven't already played, so I can't test adding the padding first.

I have MC set up to Automatically Import folders to the Library as they appear in this Explorer directory, if that makes a difference. I have also tried explicitly Importing this folder.
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RoderickGI

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #42 on: May 27, 2018, 11:12:42 pm »

Well, method a. does seem to be problematic. It seems you got a randomised sequence while I was getting the correct sequence.

Try redoing the test using 1b and 1c. If they work for you, that is your solution for now, along with padding the numbers in the file name.

The [Name] tag in MC, if that is what you are referring to, should make no difference. Not having a leading zero in this case just means that you imported the file before you added the padding. It should only matter that the file name has a padded numeric value at the beginning. The file name and the [Name] tag are two completely separate things, although the [Name] tag is based on the file name if the tag doesn't already exist in the file during import. So, when you look at the sequence in Playing Now during testing, look at the [filename] tag sequence, not the [Name] tag sequence. You could add the [filename (name)] tag to the beginning of the Playing Now View so that you can more easily see the sequence based on the file name itself, and not the [Name] tag.

A folder having already been played would make no difference. You should be able to pad the numbers and then play again, and it should work, as per my methods.

As you are making changes in Windows Explorer after files have been imported, you should have "Update for external changes" turned on in the Auto Import configuration for your music folders, and should let Auto Import run before playing the files, either by waiting enough time or running it manually. However, that again shouldn't matter, because this is a file operation and not a MC library operation. After all, you can play files using the right-click method even if they aren't in the MC library, and you don't have to have files imported into the library when they are played.

Note that I did all my testing with files that have been imported into the library... However I just tested method 1a on a folder that has not been imported and it worked fine, playing in sequence. So either we are doing something different, have significantly different versions (I'm running MC24.0.30 at the moment), or we have some settings different that are making a difference in the result. But I don't know what those settings could possibly be...

Unless you have Shuffle turned on. With Shuffle On, methods 1a, 1b, and 1c all produced Shuffled (out of sequence) results. Are you sure Shuffle is turned off?

Check via the main menu, "Player > Shuffle > Shuffle Off", or using the Shuffle button.

Note also, I'm assuming that your test files are now named as below. From your examples;
Here are some filenames from the folder that most recently copied alphanumerically (i.e., 1, 11, etc., 2, 21, etc., 3, 31. etc.) rather than 1,,2,3, . . . .20,21, . . .30, 31, . .

1.Konzertansage
2.Ansage_Varese_Integrales
3.Varese_Integrales
10.Webern_op.10_5
20.Ansage_Cerha
30.Webern_op.6_1

01.Konzertansage
02.Ansage_Varese_Integrales
03.Varese_Integrales
10.Webern_op.10_5
20.Ansage_Cerha
30.Webern_op.6_1
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What specific version of MC you are running:MC27.0.27 @ Oct 27, 2020 and updating regularly Jim!                        MC Release Notes: https://wiki.jriver.com/index.php/Release_Notes
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Don Winter

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #43 on: May 28, 2018, 02:30:24 pm »

Roderick,

I have "Update for external changes" turned on, and Shuffle is turned off. Both were true when I performed the test using method 1a.

I just tried using method 2a, with the same folder as before (in which the files look as you surmised) and the files were loaded in the correct order. Thanks for providing me with this method of achieving what I need.

Now, if I could just find a way to get this to work with a file previously tracked by someone else!  In fact, for that case, I get different (not in Track # order) results using 2a and 3a!
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RoderickGI

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #44 on: May 28, 2018, 07:50:57 pm »

Now, if I could just find a way to get this to work with a file previously tracked by someone else!  In fact, for that case, I get different (not in Track # order) results using 2a and 3a!

I don't understand what "previously tracked" means. Do you mean previously played?

Try method 1b or 1c. They were the most reliable methods I found. As I said, 2a and 3a were the worst, and randomised track sequence at least some of the time.
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What specific version of MC you are running:MC27.0.27 @ Oct 27, 2020 and updating regularly Jim!                        MC Release Notes: https://wiki.jriver.com/index.php/Release_Notes
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The JRMark score of the PC with an issue:    JRMark (version 26.0.52 64 bit): 3419
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  Running JRiver for Android, JRemote2, Gizmo, & MO 4Media on a Sony Xperia XZ Premium Android 9.
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Don Winter

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #45 on: May 28, 2018, 10:29:48 pm »

"Previously tracked" refers to folders that come with an Index tag (seemingly) already created for each file in the folder. If these were MC tags, the folder would play in the sequence indicated by the tags, but with these tags, if I use (say) method 1a, I can then stop play immediately (since the play would be alphabetical), click on the index column to sort the files, and then start play again from the first file now listed (Index 1).

This did NOT vary with different methods of Playing from the Context menu.
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RoderickGI

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #46 on: May 29, 2018, 12:16:42 am »

I have no idea what an "Index Tag" is. MC doesn't have a tag called [Index]. Audio files such as yours will have any tags written into the file itself, and not in a sidecar or external file. You haven't said what format they are in, but I have to assume they are a format that is capable of storing tags, as most are.

So is an Index Tag a separate file in the folder containing the audio files? If so, that is something created by your source. If you are able to stop playback, click a column in Playing Now to resort correctly, then the audio files must have a [Track #] tag in them, and that is the column you are clicking. Right?

But frankly, that doesn't help you anyway really, except it gives you a way to fix a bad sort. By using Windows Explorer as you do will always sort by filename alphanumerically, unless MC randomises the sort.

Please, just try Method 1b for any and all of your existing concert folders.
If that always sorts correctly, after padding the filename numbers, that is your best solution.
Stop trying Method a. all the time!
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What specific version of MC you are running:MC27.0.27 @ Oct 27, 2020 and updating regularly Jim!                        MC Release Notes: https://wiki.jriver.com/index.php/Release_Notes
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The JRMark score of the PC with an issue:    JRMark (version 26.0.52 64 bit): 3419
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  Running JRiver for Android, JRemote2, Gizmo, & MO 4Media on a Sony Xperia XZ Premium Android 9.
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Don Winter

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #47 on: May 29, 2018, 11:19:26 pm »

Yes, I'm clicking on the Track# tag to get those folders to sequence correctly. Someone else has entered the Track#s in that tag before sharing the files/folder.
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RoderickGI

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Re: Playing Folder Contents in numerical sequence?
« Reply #48 on: May 30, 2018, 12:12:54 am »

That's great Don. Your source must be providing files with the basic tags in them.


Did Method 1b work for you? Does it work every time, once you pad the numbers?
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What specific version of MC you are running:MC27.0.27 @ Oct 27, 2020 and updating regularly Jim!                        MC Release Notes: https://wiki.jriver.com/index.php/Release_Notes
What OS(s) and Version you are running:     Windows 10 Pro 64bit Version 2004 (OS Build 19041.572).
The JRMark score of the PC with an issue:    JRMark (version 26.0.52 64 bit): 3419
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  Using the HTPC as a MC Server & a Workstation as a MC Client plus some DLNA clients.
  Running JRiver for Android, JRemote2, Gizmo, & MO 4Media on a Sony Xperia XZ Premium Android 9.
  Playing video out to a Sony 65" TV connected via HDMI, playing digital audio out via motherboard sound card, PCIe TV tuner
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