I spent some time today sorting out my music collection. It was a mess with a lot of duplicates and even missing files, thankfully all of our music is stored on the server, so my personal collection, which resides on an internal disk that is accessible from both Windows and Linux (iTunes and Rhythm Box) is merely a subset of the main library.
So any missing files are at least accessible.
Booting into Windows and using iTunes to manage the music makes some sense due to the ease of use of the application and the extra facilities over RB. The major advantage is that drag and drop will simply copy and catalogue files and place them into the correct structure.
However my quad core 64Bit 8GB machine actually struggles to run iTunes at a decent rate, adding or deleting more than a couple of hundred files in a single hit it will report that it is out of memory. Secondly there is little to no scripting abilities in Vista compared to Linux.
After a couple of hours of frustration, performance issues and more frustration I switched to the land of $ prompts.
To find missing files I simply compared the number of files in the album folders using ls – | grep wc -l (number of lines) and then also looked for dupes with a few simple grep’s.
Once I had the missing and dupes under a reasonable level of control I started to look at the albums that I had in the collection and deleted ones that I do not want.
Again this was easier from the file manager than from RB (or iTunes).
Cleaning up this way reduced my local storage nicely and made sure that I only had whole albums (or CD singles) as far as possible. Running RB to show the results and to sync with my iPhone was pretty gratifying.
It also sparked a memory.
I rarely listen to the radio, but one morning a few months ago I was using ooTunes to listen to BBC Radio 1, a British pop channel and they played a track called ‘Paper Planes by a band called MIA when I heard it I bought the album on iTunes within a few minutes. The song was oddly familiar but I could not for the life of me figure out where I had heard it. Until today.
It turns out that I already had the song, albeit in a massively re-mixed form as it is used in Slumdog Millionaire, one of my favorite movies of last year.
How do I know this ?
There was a missing track in the Slumdog OST folder and my script highlighted it.
Somehow my brain had made the link when I had heard the un-remixed version on the ‘radio’ hence the familiarity.
I really prefer the original version over the remix though.
Now if only I could use this association and recognition skill for something useful…..
Oh and at the end of the scripting and messing, I booted back into Vista and imported the new library back into the iTunes library and all was well in the world…..