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If a root folder contains any files, emby will ignore tags in subfolders


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I just restarted my emby server after about a year of inactivity, and the first thing I found seems like a pretty horrendous oversight.

Nearly all of my music is from ripped albums, and is nicely separated into subfolders of style(I'm a Vocaloid fan, and keep that separate from everything else), artist/publisher(for compilations), album title, disc#, songs.  However, for a few lowkey release singles (i.e. things release as soundcloud downloads) they don't have an album folder, and so just sit in the artist root folder.  In one fit of laziness, it turns out I dumped one song in the root folder for my entire Vocaloid music library.

The file had some nonsense in its ALBUM tag... and emby decided that it should ignore all other metadata.  Suddenly, I ended up with 1800 songs grouped under a single made up album.  Creating a "Temp" folder and dumping the offending song into it fixed everything... Or so I thought.

Remember those singles I mentioned earlier?  Those ruin everything for the artist folder they sit in.

A few hours later, after making sure not a single file exists outside of some sort of folder, and things seem to be working alright, but that is one hell of a piece of failed design.

Just in case my explanation wasn't clear, in short:  If a folder contains both subfolders and music files with a filled album tag, emby will assign the ALBUM tag of one of the music files in the folder to ALL of the music files within the subfolder, regardless of if the subfolder music files have their own ALBUM tag set.

Edited by advanceratio
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I'll do my best, but please let me know if I'm unclear anywhere.


For reference before I start:  The library in question has all external metadata sources turned off.  The files in the worst affected subfolder (Vocaloid, the one I'll be discussing first) are all grouped within appropriate artist folders and properly tagged (and I doubled checked for unexpected filled tag fields).  The only "un-nested" files are tracks with no appropriate artist folder.  Moving those files into appropriate artist subfolders fixes the broader issue, but then can problems at the artist level (I'll get to that later).

First, based on what I did to fix it early, and reproduce it just now, it seems to be an issue with folder structures.  The problem library comes from one of my music folders, which is broadly separated into the music's origin, as such:



Now, I came across minor issues in all of the subfolders, but the biggest issue came in Vocaloid.  This subfolder in particular had some tracks outside of artist subfolders.  Two tracks in particular (highlighted) had a filled ALBUM tag (ignore the highlighted SONOCA folder, that was a mistake).


What this led to was emby assigning one of those two tracks' ALBUM tag to nearly everything in the Vocaloid folder.  Experimentation suggests that the ALBUM tag is taken from the track with a filled ALBUM field and is higher in the alphabetical sort.  As can be seen in the following image, 1,899 tracks have been assigned to that album (the ALBUM field from "Dreaming Chuchu..." in the previous image).  For the record, the Vocaloid folder has a total of 2,129 files, but I haven't yet figured out which files aren't getting grouped, or why.  Also, the album art applied to the super-album seems to be taken from the alphabetically first artist folder (1st Place).



I was able to fix this by rounding up all of the un-nested tracks and dumping them in a their own folder.  All of those files still act as a single album, but no longer affect anything else.

Also worth noting is that I could not reproduce this case of the issue if I treated each of the folders in the first image as a separate library (e.g. Vocaloid as one library, Anime as its own library, etc.).  However, this is an issue for me as (to my knowledge) there is no option to shuffle multiple libraries together.


And also, if we look at an artist level folder, this issue can occur at a smaller scale.  For example, below is the Bump of Chicken root folder, and the Butterflies album folder:



As you can see, I have two albums (properly tagged) and a single track from a different album.  That single track's album tag overrides the ALBUM tag for the other album in the folder, and everything gets awkwardly smashed into the album of the un-nested track, resulting in everything for Bump of Chicken being listed under the アンサー album:


Based on everything I figured out writing this, it seems like ensuring that only bottom level folders contain files is a fix, but that means having a lot of folders to contain single files.

Hope this has made sense.


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Thanks for the info. Yes, currently we do require folders for albums, as I mentioned in your other posting. We are planning on becoming fully tag driven and once that happens this will be solved. Thanks.

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