m3u, Firefly, Roku, Media Monkey and accent marks

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    I have problem with making m3u lists in Media Monkey to play on my Roku via Firefly.

    I have an increasing number of tracks that have non-English characters, mostly accents but there are others. I use the Roman (English) alphabet, nothing in Greek or Cyrillic. The tracks are there in the Roku. When I put them into a playlist (m3u), they do not show up on my Roku (I make my playlists through Media Monkey). I play my music mostly through playlists, so this is a big issue to me. In the past I’ve changed the letters to non-accented ones, but since I am getting more international stuff, I want another solution.

    This is an example of a m3u in UTF 8. I copied it from the Firefly log.
    2009-01-07 12:22:04 (a62fae73): Playlist entry ..Compilationsemusic9 – Violin Concerto No. 10 in E Major – ‘L’Amoroso’, R.V. 271- II. Cantabile – Angèle Dubeau & La Pietà – Fairy Tale.mp3 bad: Path not found

    This is an example of playing the track directly from Roku, also copied from the log.
    2009-01-07 12:23:45 (936260e4): Session 0: Streaming file ’09 – Violin Concerto No. 10 in E Major – ‘L’Amoroso’, R.V. 271- II. Cantabile – Angèle Dubeau & La Pietà – Fairy Tale.mp3′ to (offset 0)

    I don’t know enough to know what kind of code the successful one is in, except it’s not UTF 8

    Any help would be appreciated.
    Lori Reeser


    I’ve had a similar problem – I think the problem lies in the code that loads the Firefly database on a file scan that’s the problem. I was able to work around it by directly modifying/fixing the database, that’s not so scary as the schema is quite simple.

    You need Firefox with the SQLite Manager add-on to modify the Firefly database file.

    If you want to come back to me on it & what your confidence level might be around that task I may be able help with some instructions.


    I was distracted by life, but I now have some time. i have confirmed this is a Firefly issue. My Roku can find the tracks, but if I add a track with ‘odd’ characters to a playlist using the smartplaylist option, the tracks don’t show up on the Roku.

    Vaiodon offered to help me, but I don’t have a way of contacting him/her. If anyone else knows how to do this, please help!


    P.S. Is there any way to block all these spammers? I think there were 30 posts today (Sept 7). I haven’t been visiting this forum, but this is ridiculous.


    @LoriReeser wrote:

    My Roku can find the tracks, but if I add a track with ‘odd’ characters to a playlist using the smartplaylist option, the tracks don’t show up on the Roku…. If anyone else knows how to do this, please help!

    I think the solution of editing the database is a silly and futile one– every scan of your music files is likely to add newly objectionable characters and probably also replace the “cleansed” records in the database with the same accented characters anyway.

    Although I also use MediaMonkey to do things like add composers, I have not tried to figure out ways to script changes to filenames, etc.

    My solution is to use MP3Tag (http://www.mp3tag.de/en/), which would cost you nothing– unless you generously want to donate. I have created a rather simple converter lookup table that compares the characters in song filenames to a list of the non-ASCII characters I already “taught” it. (My music comes from French, Spanish, German and Portuguese sources.) The converter replaces the objectionable characters with near-equivalents that remove accents, diacriticals, umlauts and the like. You can run this against a large batch of files at one time– when you find that the converter has not identified a certain character you simply add it to the lookup.

    So you can pretty easily add your Greek characters and your desired replacements for each of them to the file I started. You’d do this using MP3Tag’s built-in interactive editor. (Or if you get really motivated, you could eventually figure out how MP3Tag expects the script file to look and then modify it directly using a simple text editor like Notepad.)

    You can email me at mschnapp AT s.e.r.v.i.c.e.m.a.r.c DOT c.o.m and I can guide you through this. (Leave out the dots!)


    It’s not that “silly & futile”, it’s simply a workaround. Nothing “objectionable” is added to the DB, the problem is that some of the information that one wants isn’t added.

    So that Firefly doesn’t perform a complete rescan and overwrite my edits I simply turned off “scan on startup” in adv config and add my new music to Firefly’s DB with the [Start Scan] rather than [Start Full Scan] control.

    Apologies to Lori – I haven’t been keeping a watch on this forum as I’d worked around my issues and things had become very stale here (I’m glad to see that there’s now a renewed impetus to maintain Firefly).

    The songs table is scanned correctly with the all the appropriate characters in its rows. The playlists scanning “barfs” at lines in M3U files with extended characters: any row representing an M3U file containing extended chars will have an incorrect playlist item count and, consequently, the offending item/songid isn’t updated into the playlistitems table.

    The track will be visible in the Firefly library but not the appropriate playlist if viewed, say, from iTunes.

    The workaround is simply to update the playlists table, i.e. correct the number of items column for the given playlist row and then add corresponding rows to the playlistitems table (only 3 columns).

    Using the SQLite Manager addin to Firefox is very, very straightforward. Just open/connect to the DB with Firefly shutdown and make a copy of the songs.db file before you start (on Windows it’s in c:program filesfirefly….)

    I also use MP3TAG, a great tool, but I would prefer to keep the meta-data in its natural language. For interest, my “ingest” process is: EAC rips CD to FLAC, review the tags in MP3TAG, search for album artwork at http://www.albumart.org , resize the artwork found with imagemagik/mogrify to a JPG less than 35k as Firefly seems to have a problem with larger image metadata blocks in FLAC, select & save the artwork to the FLACs with MP3TAG and create an M3U file.

    Don (vaiodon-at-gmail-dot-com)


    This is a little to technical for me. I’m a user, not a programmer.

    I have decided to go with editing the file names. I can still get all the accent marks on the tags.

    Thanks for the help though.

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