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Q: Play List to MP3 ( Answered 5 out of 5 stars,   3 Comments )
Subject: Play List to MP3
Category: Computers > Software
Asked by: carlossierra-ga
List Price: $10.00
Posted: 20 Apr 2003 19:03 PDT
Expires: 20 May 2003 19:03 PDT
Question ID: 193111
I recently lost all my MP3 file collection, but I found the WinAmp
Playlist File (.m3u file) with all the names of the songs that I had.

Is there any software / add on / tool that I could use to download
automatically the files listed in the playlist without having to
search for each individual file?  I mean, without having to type the
name of each file in any downloading software (Kazaa, Imesh, etc).

I hope you can find an answer.

Subject: Re: Play List to MP3
Answered By: dogbite-ga on 20 Apr 2003 23:07 PDT
Rated:5 out of 5 stars
Hi carlossierra-ga,

  The first problem you'll run into is that m3u playlists contain mp3
filenames, but not "meta" information like artists and albums. It's
possible that your playlists are <a
href="">extended playlists</a>,
which contain track length and freeform name information, but it's
unlikely. It might be possible to infer artist information depending
on the naming scheme for your mp3 filenames (e.g., did you use a
convention like "Arist\Album\01 - Track.mp3"?). If it's not possible
to extract the artist information (either from extended m3u
information or the mp3 pathname), then your attempts at automatic
downloading will be thwarted by the ambiguous matches for a given song

 If your playlists contain the artist information, then the next
problem you run into is that no peer-to-peer music clients support the
automatic bulk downloading interface that you require. You might be
able to load the song information into a client (e.g., <a
href="">Soulseek</a> has a "wishlist" of automatic
searches, which is loaded from a plaintext configuration file), but
there's no way to automatically initiate downloads. What you'd have to
do, then, is write some "scripting" code for an open-source file
sharing client. Freshmeat's <a
href="">file sharing</a> category is a
good place to find such programs. You would have to write code (e.g.,
in Python or Java) to load your list of artists and songs, search the
network for the songs, and choose a promising peer to download from.
Most of the code would already be there for you, so there wouldn't be
much coding involved.

If you don't know how to program, though, then this obviously isn't an
option, and there is no solution to your problem.

I hope succeed in getting your songs back.


Request for Answer Clarification by carlossierra-ga on 21 Apr 2003 00:25 PDT
Hi there,
Well, probably I didn’t make myself clear… I need the actual program
or script or whatever application that will do this. I think it might
be possible… that’s why I am asking if anyone knows a program to do
Sorry, but I don’t need to know that it’s doable. I need the link or
the name of the program that makes it possible.
Thanks anyway for trying.

Clarification of Answer by dogbite-ga on 21 Apr 2003 07:46 PDT
Hi carlossierra-ga,

  Sorry, my answer should have been more clear
  in summarizing the problem:

    1) No such program or feature already exists to both
       automatically search and *download* every file.
       Soulseek's wishlist feature will execute the search,
       although I doubt it scales to every song in your 
    2) Creating such a program would be possible,
       but not easy.
    3) The reason the program does not exist already
       is that it would not perform satisfacorily.
       Each filename would produce multiple search
       returns within the file sharing program.  For
       example, most popular songs have multiple 
       encodings out on the Internet.  Also, people 
       misspell filenames or pieces of meta 

  Also, your question does not request a program to
  actually be developed.

  I'm sorry for the negative answer, but I honestly
  believe it is the correct answer.

carlossierra-ga rated this answer:5 out of 5 stars
Thanks... I know I was a little angry for the negative answer, but I
know it's not dogbite's fault. Anyway, I'm bery satisfied with what he

Subject: Re: Play List to MP3
From: feilong-ga on 20 Apr 2003 21:09 PDT
I think that would't be possible. Otherwise, that kind of software
will be one of the most sought-after programs ever, especially among
music lovers. And since it would have that kind of popularity, many
developers would try to make one and even you would have heard of it
for sure.
Subject: Re: Play List to MP3
From: carlar-ga on 21 Apr 2003 08:07 PDT
One way would be using a macro recorder software, such as the
shareware program Aldo's Macro Recorder:

With that you could for example record how you copy one row in the
playlist, containing the song and artist, paste it into e.g. Soulseek,
press the search button, click on the first result to download that.

Then you go back to the playlist, and scroll down so that the next
track in it gets at the same "screen coordinats" as the previous was
when you recorded how you copied it's name.

By repeating that macro for all the tracks, you could get most tracks
downloaded, although you won't be sure it's the exact same version as
you had, but that isn't possible in any way, since the playlist just
contain the name of the tracks and artists.

I would recommend using a p2p software without a lot of bogus files,
i.e. NOT Kazaa but for example Soulseek. I should also point out that
you should check with the copyright laws where you live too before
using p2p software!

Subject: Re: Play List to MP3
From: carlossierra-ga on 21 Apr 2003 12:19 PDT
Thanks to all of you. Now I really have a couple of ideas that could
help me make this task easier to accomplish.

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