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Brooke

multiple dir file aggregation

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Sorry for the title, but it seemed to say it. I have hundreds of music directories in the form of artist/album/*.mp3 that I want to copy the tracks from, into a single directory that my players will correctly play from. They don't seem to like multiple separate directories. Is there an easy way? Tips much appreciated.

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Not too sure on this one. Perhaps try searching within the directory for the extension of all the media, say *.mp3 and making a special folder called MPlayers and copying everything into there?

Also, what are the media players you use called? Most I've dealt with - even really cheap ones - are able to read within directories.

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Thanks much for the reply.

Not too sure on this one. Perhaps try searching within the directory for the extension of all the media, say *.mp3 and making a special folder called MPlayers and copying everything into there?

Well, I don't want to copy the folder structure itself, just the files and I don't know how to pick at once the files within the many folders in order to copy them.

Also, what are the media players you use called? Most I've dealt with - even really cheap ones - are able to read within directories.

The player in question is the one in my truck.. A Clarion of some ilk, playing from a microSD in the USB slot.

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OK, car audio player :D a model would help if we need to further assist with issues of tags, naming etc. This is what I would do... I'm using Windows XP.

Btw, this is essentially what Tarun advised with detail.

First, you need to read the documentation for your player - does it have any restrictions on number of characters used for folders and files? What about tags for your MP3 files. Will your player recognize ReplayGain... If your player displays audio information (tags) or if some files are noticeably louder than others or even distort when played (ReplayGain) and a tagging tool can help.

What you can do is move the files to a single folder on your thumb drive using your personal computer. As I mentioned you can clean up any tag issues or possibly correct loudness issues using ReplayGain and a free tagging tool - assuming your audio player agrees - for later.

Note: If your audio is important and you can't afford to lose it or don't have the original CD - backup your music on the microSD - make a Copy before you mess with anything. OK, now your music is safely backed up to your computer, cd, or dvd right :).

Also: You know it will be a bit of a mess having a single folder with hundreds, maybe thousands of files but if that's all your player allows.

... Load the microSD in your personal computer, once the drive is detected create a new folder \audio on the microSD using Windows Explorer - close WIndows Explorer when done.

... Open Search from the Start menu. Locate your microSD drive - let's assume it's letter N:\ in Windows Explorer. The list of music folders should be in the right side pane and your search options should be on the left. To make it easy simply click All files and folders from the list on the left side pane - image001.

... You want to search for *.mp3 files in All or part of the file name: - make sure you are at the root (top level) of your microSD drive when you begin to Search - it is the Look In: drop down. Click Search. When the search is done you should have a gaggle of files listed in the right pane, notice the number of objects found listed in the status bar on bottom - img002.

... Move the files to your new folder - \audio. Go to Edit - Select All (you should have the same number of objects selected as found) - go to Edit - Move To Folder, locate your new \audio folder and Move when ready.

... Cleanup the existing music folders, save what you want out of them (album art etc) and Delete the folders from your microSD drive. All your music should be in the \audio folder - all 1 million files :)

There may be some fine tuning that needs to be done. Let us know :cry:

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I appreciate your reply. My apologies to you both. That is a good use of the search function which I will try to make use of. I was stuck in thinking of search for searching for what is unknown rather than what is known.

UPDATE: Worked like a charm.

Forget what follows - I wasn't listening very carefully:

Perhaps I wasn't clear enough. I know how to copy the files one by one from their individual folders to a new bulk folder. However as there are thousands of these directories I want a quick way to do this, e.g., click on the parent dir and copy all the files within the subdirs to a new dir without the intervening subdirs.

From each and every: \music\artist\album\cut.mp3

copy to: bin\cut.mp3

(If the cut names are insufficient, that is don't have the artist and/or album name included then so be it; I don't want to muddy the issue with renaming.)

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Hmm, I'm unsure if what I said was any help or not. I apologize for the XP screenshots (I'll remove them), Vista Search is much different. I was hoping the basic principles would come across clear enough :questionmark:

However as there are thousands of these directories I want a quick way to do this, e.g., click on the parent dir and copy all the files within the subdirs to a new dir without the intervening subdirs.

This is why I mentioned the root (top level) folder on your microSD - N:\microSD - it is the top level parent folder, you want to search all subsequent sub directories which in effect would be the artist and album directories. Vista's Search feature may need to be adjusted (if possible) so it will properly display file extensions (.mp3) and know to leave any directories and only Move all files with the extension .mp3 to the new empty directory - N:\bin.

If by chance the results also included folders (notice the icons) you don't want to move these, you only want the mp3 files (notice the icons). In my results only .mp3 files were located and displayed in my results so it was safe to Select All and Move.

Btw, if you don't search using *.mp3 (which looks for all files with the extension .mp3) and use mp3, this will look for files with mp3 in the name as well. It may not be a problem here but with other searches it can produce faulty results. 'doc' could be doc01.txt, bird_documentary.avi, or recipes.doc.

(If the cut names are insufficient, that is don't have the artist and/or album name included then so be it; I don't want to muddy the issue with renaming.)

The file name (cut.mp3) is not the same as tag information (Album, Artist, Year, Genre, Codec), the info your audio player displays in the playlist. There is a difference in bulk file renaming (not what I was referring to) and tag editing. If you don't have the tag info most players will revert to the actual audio file name - cut.mp3. The time to edit is before all the files are in the same folder.

Anyway, I said enough :whoa:

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You were a big help, if giving more than I needed. Searching for *.mp3 at the top level and copying to another folder was perfect, as I had done after your first post pointing me back to Tarun's suggestion. The other tips may assist someone else.

Thanks mucho.

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