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FLACs w/no tags, only XML files—how to get info and change file names?, Was: Adding metadata (TOS #6)
Overworked33
post Feb 23 2012, 17:46
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Hi,
I am new to this and new to flac in particular, so I apologize if this question has been answered before.

My problem is flac files with no metadata. My goal is to insert the correct metadata and change the file names to something more informative.

I have several directories of flac files. I don't know what program was used to rip them. It may have been on a PC or a Mac. It looks like they were ripped in 2006.

Can anyone tell me if any currently available software can make sense of the files listed below?

Thanks.

--------------

Each directory has the same files:

01.flac
02.flac
....
cover.bak
cover.jpg
info.xml
info.xml.backup
info.xml.bak
infonew.xml
infonew.xml.new
prescrub2.xml
rescrub3.xml
titles.tmp

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db1989
post Feb 23 2012, 19:27
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Please note the amended title of this thread. The previous one provided barely any description.

The suggestions in the recent topic on recommended programs for FLAC tagging may or may not have this capability. Perhaps you could try something like this or something else.

In any case, this demonstrates yet again just one of the reasons not to obtain files from questionable sources—something that, by mentioning, you may have reduced your chances of anyone taking time to help you.
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mjb2006
post Feb 23 2012, 22:18
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If it was ripped from CD, and each file is a complete track, IDs can be calculated from the track durations, and those IDs can be used to look up metadata info in various databases like freedb and MusicBrainz.

I suggest using Mp3tag. Drag the files into the main window, make sure they're all selected, go to Tag Sources > freedb, and choose to do the lookup based on the selected files. In the forums there are more Tag Sources add-ons if freedb isn't meeting your needs. Another option would be to use CUETools with its 'Encode' action, and the freedb and MusicBrainz options checked.

The downside of this process is that there's a risk that you'll misidentify the disc. The basic artist/title metadata might be OK, but other details about the pressing could be wrong.
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skamp
post Feb 23 2012, 22:33
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Picard would help.


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Overworked33
post Feb 23 2012, 22:40
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Thank you for your reply and for correcting the title.

I understand the concern about pirating. In this case it couldn't be further from the truth. I'm a computer consultant. I spend my days customizing corporate equipment. In this case, as a courtesy, I'm helping a client with a personal matter. In this case the music was ripped by the ex-husband prior to divorce, so I can't go back to him for answers. Also, the client is French and in her mid-fifties. Listening to her music brings tears to my eyes -- and not tears of joy.

Back to business. I tried mp3BookHelper. I got a parser error when I tried to import the xml files.
I tried mp3tag. Good program, but it doen't import xml files. The database lookups don't work well because of the odd music. (It will be a good backup if I can't find better.)

I am hoping to find the program that created all of those extra data files, since it would most likely be able to read them and use them.

-- Overworked
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Porcus
post Feb 23 2012, 23:45
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mp3tag imports text files. What about exporting?


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db1989
post Feb 23 2012, 23:46
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QUOTE (Overworked33 @ Feb 23 2012, 21:40) *
Thank you for your reply and for correcting the title.
You’re welcome! smile.gif

QUOTE
I understand the concern about pirating. In this case it couldn't be further from the truth. […]
Then I apologise for being presumptuous. That sounds like a tricky job! Logistically and artistically. wink.gif

QUOTE
I am hoping to find the program that created all of those extra data files, since it would most likely be able to read them and use them.
Yeah, hopefully you can find it; perhaps other members have better suggestions programs than mine, which make it obvious that I have no experience in this area.
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mjb2006
post Feb 24 2012, 02:47
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XML files are also text files. Did you try opening them in Notepad to see what they contain?

This post has been edited by mjb2006: Feb 24 2012, 02:48
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Overworked33
post Feb 24 2012, 22:12
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I opened the info.xml file.
Everything you could possibly ask for is in the file:
<artist>, <name>, <rating>, <review>, <import_date>, <release_date>, <release_label>, <gain>,
Tags for genres, moods, performers, plus the usual track information.
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mixminus1
post Feb 24 2012, 22:47
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Information about the program that created the .xml file is often contained in the first several lines - for instance, here's a few lines from the beginning of an iTunes playlist exported as .xml:

CODE
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<!DOCTYPE plist PUBLIC "-//Apple Computer//DTD PLIST 1.0//EN" "http://www.apple.com/DTDs/PropertyList-1.0.dtd">
<plist version="1.0">
...
<key>Application Version</key><string>10.5.3</string>

Is there anything like that in any of your .xml files?


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"Not sure what the question is, but the answer is probably no."
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Overworked33
post Feb 24 2012, 23:33
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I checked several directories. None of the .xml files have the typical file header!

All of the .xml files start as follows:

<album>
<artist>Yves Montand</artist>
<name>Face a Face</name>
<rating>3</rating>
<review>...
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Ouroboros
post Feb 24 2012, 23:48
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I'm sure you can write an import filter for MP3Tag to extract the metadata from those files. It definitely exports in html/xml, and you can define import formats. Have a look at the MP3Tag website forum.

This post has been edited by Ouroboros: Feb 25 2012, 00:10
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db1989
post Feb 24 2012, 23:52
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Or, if that doesn’t work for whatever reason, and/or you like this kind of thing, you could (perhaps with the help of someone code-savvy) put together a script that would read the values from the XML file and add them to the corresponding FLAC file via metaflac.

This post has been edited by db1989: Feb 24 2012, 23:53
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