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Author Topic: Best Practices  (Read 1050 times)

markatit

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Best Practices
« on: February 12, 2015, 08:24:08 am »

what are best practices for organizing music files?  I want to simply create a series of folders (Classical, SubFolder Baroque or Mozart, Sub-Sub Concertos etc).  
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rudyrednose

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Re: Best Practices
« Reply #1 on: February 12, 2015, 09:28:33 am »

The first thing you need to understand is that MC is first a database engine then a multimedia player.
You don't need to organize (although you can and probably will) your media files along folders/sub-folders.

The key is to properly tag your media files in the database then use custom views to filter out and present the relevant media files, or use a generic view (audio, video, image) and filter what is presented to you, possibly using the Wizard (available in the top right search box).

Unfortunately, the same "tag" term is used to describe both information tokens in the database (database records or lines being media files and database fields or columns being tags) and information tokens written in the media files themselves (or a sidecar file).
So when you use the tag editor on a media file (a database record) you modify the database record, not the media file tags.

Hence when you have one ore more media file selected, you have 2 library tools available:
- Update Tags (from library), which you would use to update the media file tags (or the sidecar) after using the tag editor
- Update Library (from tags), which you would use if you know the media file tags are "fresher" that the database records (the library)

Once your library (the database) is properly tagged (and you updated Tags from Library) you can use the powerful "Rename, Move and Copy Files" tool to store back your media files with a logical Folder/Sub-folder/filename" structure that suits you.  

A full backup of your media files and a backup of your library will be you friends as a safety net while you discover the different functions available in Library tools.  
Also, I would suggest operating on a few media files at a time at first, to get used to what happens from the different commands/tools.

In MC, the database backups are of a very reasonable size.  Using MC for music, movies, tv series, OTA tv and family photos, we have more than 100 000 individual media files and the library backup file is below 8MB.

To use your example, I would have a folder structure like D:\Media\Music\Classical\Composer\Album\Filename and all the rest of the information would be in the tags (both database and embedded in the media files), so on a whim I could call all the music files composed by Mozart and performed by Jean-Pierre Rampal.

Also, you may want to have your cleaned up files (fully tagged and organized) in a different location from the ones you are not done with, to easily find what remains to be organized, like in:
- D:\Final Media\Music\Classical\Composer\Album\Filename
- D:\Temp Media\Music\New Rips\Artist-Album\Filename
Again, "Library Tools/Rename, Move and Copy Files" can then be used once cleanup is done on a bunch of files to specify exactly where you want them in a directory structure and filenames built directly from the tags.  
Do not move media files manually using Windows Explorer, use the real power of MC !!!
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