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ISO9660, Joliet and writing files in the correct order (mp3)

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ISO9660, Joliet and writing files in the correct order (mp3)

Postby istomtom on Tue Aug 26, 2003 1:56 pm

I am burning mp3 discs for my Alpine CDA 9815 car headunit. The manual indicates that the headunit will play back the tracks in the order they are written to the disc (not the way I want them to or in numerical order). Apparently with Joliet the files are not written in exact order so they don't play in order, which SUCKS.

I haven't tried ISO9660 yet but does anyone know if ISO9660 writes files in the order they're arranged in the burning software? I remember something back in an older version of Easy CD Creator about burning files in the correct order. I'm using Roxio 6 now and I don't see any option like that.

Can someone help me out so I can get my files playing in the order I want them to?

Thanks
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Postby cfitz on Tue Aug 26, 2003 2:15 pm

They are written in alphabetical order, which is standard for ISO9660. The cheapest solution is to add a numbered prefix to all your filenames using the order in which you want them to play:

001_first_song_I_want.mp3
002_second_song_I_want.mp3
003_third_song_I_want.mp3

The handy, free program Flexible Renamer can semi-automate this process so that all you have to do is drag and drop the files in the order you wish to have them played and it will automatically prepend the proper numbered prefix.

A commercial program that will allow you to specify various ways to in which to specify the order your mp3 files will play is MP3BR Imager:

http://www.mp3br.com/

According to the authors of MP3BR Imager, many mp3 CD players play the songs not strictly in alphabetical order but rather in the order they are burned on the CD (which happens to be alphabetical). Thus, if you create an image that has the files burned in the order you want them to play (not alphabetical) these players will play the files the way you want. One free (although rather limited) program that will create images with the files in the order you dropped them rather than alphabetical order is Easy ISO Creator from Dirk Paehl:

http://www.paehl.de/xpburn.zip
( from http://www.paehl.de/english.php )

This download also includes a burning utility named XPBurn that you can skip during the installation process if you only want Easy ISO Creator.

cfitz
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Postby istomtom on Tue Aug 26, 2003 4:27 pm

Thank you.

I am assuming that something like:

fgf_6thd_01.mp3
fgf_6thd_02.mp3
fgf_6thd_03.mp3

would work just as your example..

There's no way to force the Joliet FS to write in order? Would really like to use Joliet as it allows for spaces and upper/lowercase. With ISO9660 I can't use spaces or upper/lowercase.

Thanks again.

-T
istomtom
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Postby cfitz on Tue Aug 26, 2003 9:46 pm

You're welcome.

As for your additional questions, first I need to tell you that Joliet is not an entirely separate filesystem. It is an extension added to the ISO 9660 filesystem. Thus, when you enable Joliet you aren't substituting it for ISO 9660; you are adding it to ISO 9660. The result is that you can include both long and short filenames. Windows will show you the Joliet long filenames by default, but the ISO 9660 filesystem and its short filenames is still there.

Here is an example of a disc (actually a disc image, but the characteristics are the same) that has some mp3 files. You can see both the Joliet long names... :

Image

... and the ISO 9660 short names:

Image

The naming convention you describe (with numbers last rather than first) will work subject to two conditions:

1. The portion preceding the numbering is the same for all files. If not, then the alphabetical order of the preceding portion will dominate, not the numbering.

2. The total filename length (not including extension) is less than or equal to 8 characters (27 if using ISO level 2)

The reason for the first restriction is obvious. The reason for the second is that when disc mastering software converts long filenames into ISO 9660 compatible short filenames, it generally keeps the first several characters of the long filename, truncates the rest, and then adds something to make the short filenames unique. This is bad for your scheme, because the part you are relying on to order the files is the part that will be truncated and replaced. Here is an example showing Joliet long names adhering to your naming convention... :

Image

... and the shortened ISO 9660 filenames automatically created by the mastering software:

Image

By comparing the file sizes and the logical block addresses (LBA), you can see that the ISO 9660 filenames are in the reverse order of what was desired. Thus, your tracks will play out of order. Stick with keeping the numbers first, even if you don't quite like the look of it.

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Postby istomtom on Fri Aug 29, 2003 1:21 am

WOW!, MP3BR Imager is incredible. Not only do I not have to worry about filenames at all, but I don't have to do any renaming of my source files, and it allows my headunit to display many more than 30 characters including all sorts of punctuation that normally wouldn't jive. BAD ASS!

If anyone is looking for a good mp3 disc creation software (doesn't actually burn, but creates ISO files that you can burn with most popular burning software), you should check it out. http://www.mp3br.com

It's probably the best solution I've found for creating "write in order" discs, which is what some disc based mp3 players require for tracks to play back in the correct order.
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Postby cfitz on Fri Aug 29, 2003 2:44 am

If you do a lot of mp3 burning, the $29 price tag is probably worth it. Glad I could help.

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