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About the Music Collector Connect online music cataloging software



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 Post subject: First time with connect, some questions before I continue
PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2012 9:21 am 
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I've decided to take up your offer of a free account, thanks for the generous offer.
I have a few questions, and this is after I've read the online manual (there is a dead hyperlink in the How to Link Albums section http://www.collectorz.com/music/manual/connectsync.html )-
When going to the linking screen in muc there is a search button, what is actually happening when it is searching? It appears to be looking for matches.
What concerns me is that where there are multiple matches it is often choosing the wrong result. Does this have any effect on the connect viewable page or the data in my muc collection?
I seem to have a lot of albums that are not linked, can't tell how many as the screen does not tell me the total?
With 5000 albums there appears to be a lot not linked, despite me submitting everything in my collection to your database (except for albums already there)
Do I still link these albums with wrong results?, surely I don't have to change all this manually?
Tell me I'm mis-interpreting something here, as a long time user I find this screen and instructions for connect very user unfriendly.
My main concern is that my data/covers are not changed by this process.
Also what about albums that have no barcode entered? I presume you match by disc id for connect? what about digital albums?
Why does the search routine match albums to discogs, usually incorrectly, what does this have to do with getting my albums on connect ? I thought that I read in the manual that linking was a matter of finding the album in the central database and making a link so that tracks and covers were used from there instead from my collection. Therfore I would have thought unless there was a definite link the album would be uploaded unlinked with just my basic information? Is this correct? if so why would it match an artist like "King King" with a wild guess like "B.B. King" does that mean it will show that album on connect with tracks and covers from BB King for eaxample?

Once I've uploaded and if the info is incorrect can I delete the entire albums in connect.......this feels very shaky....hope I'm wrong as the idea is good.

Think I'll wait to get some answers before uploading.

cheers

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 Post subject: Re: First time with connect, some questions before I continue
PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2012 11:27 am 
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Geoff wrote:
When going to the linking screen in muc there is a search button, what is actually happening when it is searching? It appears to be looking for matches.


I am not sure I understand your question.
At that point it is searching our online database, to show possible matches for your local album entry.

Geoff wrote:
What concerns me is that where there are multiple matches it is often choosing the wrong result.


You do the choosing, not the program.

Geoff wrote:
Does this have any effect on the connect viewable page or the data in my muc collection?


Yes, the linking is necessary for Connect, here's the full story:
http://www.collectorz.com/music/manual/linking.html

Linking does not affect your local collection data, other than the filling of the ClzAlbumID field.

Geoff wrote:
I seem to have a lot of albums that are not linked, can't tell how many as the screen does not tell me the total?


You can find out by finding all albums with ClzAlbumID = 0.

Geoff wrote:
With 5000 albums there appears to be a lot not linked, despite me submitting everything in my collection to your database (except for albums already there)


If you submitted AFTER adding it to your database, your local entry does not have the ID of the online entry yet.

Geoff wrote:
Do I still link these albums with wrong results?, surely I don't have to change all this manually?


No, definitely do NOT link to wrong results!
But yes, you will have to link manually. But only once.


Geoff wrote:
Also what about albums that have no barcode entered? I presume you match by disc id for connect? what about digital albums?


The link screen uses the CD-ID and Artist/Title for matches, it works just like the Add Automatically screen (in fact, it IS the Add Auto screen in a different mode).

Geoff wrote:
Why does the search routine match albums to discogs, usually incorrectly, what does this have to do with getting my albums on connect ? I thought that I read in the manual that linking was a matter of finding the album in the central database and making a link so that tracks and covers were used from there instead from my collection. Therfore I would have thought unless there was a definite link the album would be uploaded unlinked with just my basic information? Is this correct?


Yes, that is correct. Make sure you read this:
http://www.collectorz.com/music/manual/linking.html

Geoff wrote:
if so why would it match an artist like "King King" with a wild guess like "B.B. King" does that mean it will show that album on connect with tracks and covers from BB King for eaxample?


If the link screen cannot find a match by CD-ID, then it will search by artist/title, which will of course produce more "fuzzy" search results. Nothing new, nothing strange, exactly the same as in the Add Auto screen. The search results are just that: search results. It is *you* who does the matching.
But yes, if you match King King to BB King, then yes, your Connect account will show a BB King track list for that album... (not a good idea).

Geoff wrote:
Once I've uploaded and if the info is incorrect can I delete the entire albums in connect.......this feels very shaky....hope I'm wrong as the idea is good.


Nothing shaky, nothing new. This has been around and working like this since October 2010 :-)

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 Post subject: Re: First time with connect, some questions before I continue
PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2012 5:03 pm 
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Alwin, what I mean't by 'shaky' is that when you first bring up the linking screen due to the large number of unlinked entries that appear it's seems a bit unstable (delay in responding). I would imagine that the majority of my 5000 albums are unlinked. Is it possible to only show in batches according to what has been highlighted in the main screen? EDIT: I now see that I can access a right click option in the main screen to just link highlighted albums, so why doesn't this work when you highlight and then press on the connect button on the toolbar?
Also with albums that have no proper match how do I choose not to link those? Do I just "Skip"

It would be helpful if in the search queue it showed the number of tracks on each disc, this is quite confusing to match with multi disc albums.

EDIT It would appear that muc has flagged all unlinked albums in my collection (under CLZAlbumID) as -999, is this correct? It appears I have approx 4200 unlinked albums, so will be quite a job.........may have to wait until I have more time.

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 Post subject: Re: First time with connect, some questions before I continue
PostPosted: Thu Mar 15, 2012 3:51 am 
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Geoff wrote:
Alwin, what I mean't by 'shaky' is that when you first bring up the linking screen due to the large number of unlinked entries that appear it's seems a bit unstable (delay in responding). I would imagine that the majority of my 5000 albums are unlinked. Is it possible to only show in batches according to what has been highlighted in the main screen? EDIT: I now see that I can access a right click option in the main screen to just link highlighted albums, so why doesn't this work when you highlight and then press on the connect button on the toolbar?


You can indeed do the linking as a separate task, by selecting a bunch of albums, then choose Link Albums.
This cannot work with the Connect button because this would Upload only that part of your collection (and possibly REMOVE the rest of your collection online).

Please note that the Linking is a one-time action and something different from the actual uploading.
Also, Linking is not only necessary for Connect, but also for the Update Automatically feature. Sounds like you never used that? I am surprised so many of your albums are not linked...

Geoff wrote:
Also with albums that have no proper match how do I choose not to link those? Do I just "Skip"


Yes.

Geoff wrote:
It would be helpful if in the search queue it showed the number of tracks on each disc, this is quite confusing to match with multi disc albums.


Yes, that may be helpful.
But on the other hand, if you added your CDs by scanning, the linking process should be VERY easy, giving you only exact matches on each search (exact matches on CD-ID).

Geoff wrote:
EDIT It would appear that muc has flagged all unlinked albums in my collection (under CLZAlbumID) as -999, is this correct? It appears I have approx 4200 unlinked albums, so will be quite a job.........may have to wait until I have more time.


How can this be? Do you never use our online database to add your CDs?

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 Post subject: Re: First time with connect, some questions before I continue
PostPosted: Thu Mar 15, 2012 3:52 am 
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BTW: could you email us your database? to music at collectorz dot com
Then we can take a look to see what is happening on your end.
I am surprised there is so many unlinked albums and that linking gives so many fuzzy results.

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 Post subject: Re: First time with connect, some questions before I continue
PostPosted: Thu Mar 15, 2012 4:07 am 
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I think it is because I get mostly pre-release albums and yes I do scan the discs, but they are usually not in your database yet, so I get them from Gracenote if they are not in CLZ database and add them via cdplayer.ini.
I will send you my database anyway, it's not all that are fuzzy must have been the first few I tried.
Can you comment please on my -999 comment and also comment on how the linking copes with digital files without cdid or barcode?

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 Post subject: Re: First time with connect, some questions before I continue
PostPosted: Thu Mar 15, 2012 4:19 am 
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Geoff wrote:
Can you comment please on my -999 comment and also comment on how the linking copes with digital files without cdid or barcode?


About the -999 IDs:
Unlinked albums are indicated by ClzAlbumID = 0.
ClzAlbumID = -999 is used for albums for which *you* indicated "Don't ask me to link this album again".

If you have albums with digital files you can either upload them unlinked (which means you don't get track lists online), OR link them to a "similar" album in our online database.
Barcodes are not necessary for Connect or linking.

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 Post subject: Re: First time with connect, some questions before I continue
PostPosted: Thu Mar 15, 2012 4:30 am 
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I don't recall having elected to not link them again, especially for so many......confused. Could it be if I loaded them all into the search queu yesterday and tried to link all that would have happened?
Alwin Hoogerdijk wrote:

About the -999 IDs:
Unlinked albums are indicated by ClzAlbumID = 0.
ClzAlbumID = -999 is used for albums for which *you* indicated "Don't ask me to link this album again".

I

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 Post subject: Re: First time with connect, some questions before I continue
PostPosted: Fri Mar 16, 2012 4:39 am 
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When syncing to Connect with unlinked items it asks you whether your want to link them. If you then select "Don't ask for these items again", all items are marked as "ignore" by setting the ClzAlbumID to -999.
This can easily be reverted by selecting all those albums and choosing Unlink from the right click menu.
This will mark them as unlinked again (set the ClzAlbumID to 0).

We have looked at your database and indeed over 4200 albums of your database are NOT linked. This is quite unusual, most user databases have at least 95% LINKED. This is probably because of the way you add your albums (that is, never choosing a result from our online database).

However, linking them now shouldn't a huge job, because the Link screen has been designed to do batch linking.
I would recommend to do say 100 at a time (select 100 albums and select Link). These 100 album will then appear in the Queue. Now select Search All.
After the search has completed, the Queue will show which ones have resulted in one exact match (should be most of them because you scanned your CDs). Then just click Link All to link em all.

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 Post subject: Re: First time with connect, some questions before I continue
PostPosted: Fri Mar 16, 2012 4:55 am 
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important

It could be that for some reason you do get multiple results after a "Search All". In that case, since you can't have "nothing" selected, the first result has been selected. This means you should act as follows:

1. Select 100 albums
2. Select "Link"
3. Click "Search All"

4. Important: see the 100 results and verify they're all "1/1 result selected" (Exact Match Alwin mentioned)
IF you have one album that is "1/5 results selected", check that album and select the right result.

5. Now click Link All.

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 Post subject: Re: First time with connect, some questions before I continue
PostPosted: Fri Mar 16, 2012 6:01 am 
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thanks for the help.
I find it best to click on the column header for Matches and sort it, then highlight all the "1" matches, right click "link selected" first, then deal with the multiple matches.

I still think it would be handy if the search queue showed total tracks on each album.

I'm finding a little bother with double discs in the early part of my collection as they were imported from another database that didn't show individual discs......however that's a unique problem in the first 900 albums in my collection, I can always create another discs and drag the tracks onto it.

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 Post subject: Re: First time with connect, some questions before I continue
PostPosted: Sat Mar 17, 2012 8:26 am 
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Having a hell of a time entering digital albums. Very slow. Mainly due to not having track totals in the search queue, worse with multi disc albums.

It's a matter of writing down the total tracks for each disc before linking and comparing that in the linking screen search results. There can be many results to go through........pretty clumsy way to do it, and being digital they can't be submitted to the database.

Alwin you really do need more info in the search queue to make it easier for linking correctly. Also the search queue has a very bad habit, ie when you link an album the focus doesn't return to the position in the queue you were in but instead goes to the top of the queue?

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 Post subject: Re: First time with connect, some questions before I continue
PostPosted: Thu Mar 22, 2012 6:51 am 
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Well pretty much have most of my collection on Connect now.....thanks for the free access

One thing that puzzles me is that it is possible to sort (in list view) by the index number. But in the public view with personal details blocked, index is treated as personal data and not shown. So you end up with a list sorted by index yet the index is not shown.
Surely index number should not be treated as personal data? If it is can this be changed please?
Also wonder if you could consider adding "Country" to the data shown on Connect?

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 Post subject: Re: First time with connect, some questions before I continue
PostPosted: Sat Mar 24, 2012 5:16 am 
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gentle reminder Alwin, could you answer my last couple of questions please?

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 Post subject: Re: First time with connect, some questions before I continue
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 4:44 am 
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I agree that handling the Index field as a Personal field could cause unexpected results. But it IS a Personal field.

We don't have the Country field in the central database, so this means it would have to be uploaded from the desktop editions. We may add more fields later, but for now the idea of Connect is to have a list of your CDs online, so that you know which ones you own and which ones are on your wish list.

Also, adding a field would require changing 3 software editions, so not something we can easily do. Maybe for Music Collector 10.

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