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Old 03-18-2010, 11:23 AM
Zendude Zendude is offline
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Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 26
Lightbulb How To on Supporting mp3 resume - simple audio bookmarking

Since the Zune HD Team is either having a hard time implementing simple mp3 audio resume (regardless of how they are tagged), or they just don't care, I've figured out at the technical level on how to get your mp3s to resume to where they left off. It's a simple form of bookmarks where you really just want to resume where you left off in the audio stream. I did not want to try to use Overdrive to "convert" mp3s into audiobooks which is stupid to require the user to do. It's a matter of tagging the mp3s via the id3 tag properly and putting it in the Zune music dir (or if you define a separate podcast dir.. I set my podcast dir to my music dir). This method may have been discussed before but maybe not in this fashion. Read on if you care for this feature.. if not, move onto the next thread of your interest.

As of today, there are 2 types of tags in mp3s: id3v1 and id3v2. The older id3v1 used a numeric value from 0-255 to identify the type of genre. Even players like WinAmp only associate 148 genres types to values for id3v1. However, there is no official value of "podcast" for id3v1 (that I've seen). So, if for some reason you are using an id3 tag editor which only supports id3v1, set the value to 255 if possible. This usually means "unknown" or "other". I haven't tested to see if this works but it should. Most users will use the id3v2 tagging method discussed next.

For the vast majority of the rest of us, we should all have id3 tag editors which support id3v2. This genre data is now in string form. You can put whatever you want there. You should put in "podcast". Do not make it plural by adding an "s". This should actually tag the id3v1 with a value of 255 (both id3v1 and id3v2 tag data can co-exist in mp3s). At the technical level, the id3v2 tag name/frame is "TCON" which means "content type".

If you are running any modern version of Windows, you do not need an mp3 tag editor. You can simply right-click on properties in Windows Explorer on the actual mp3 file and choose "Properties". Then select the "Summary" tab. You want the "Advanced" view, so if you see an "Advanced >>" button, click on it. Now, under the "Genre" Music Property, change it to "podcast". Windows will properly update the id3v2 tag. Players like WinAmp will also let you set the genre string under id3v2. The Genre field will show as a combobox list, but you can manually enter "podcast" as a string in the combobox.

If you are a linux guy like me, you can use a command line tool like id3v2 and issue this command: id3v2 --TCON "podcast" your.mp3

Forgot to mention, if you did this id3 tag modification while the mp3 file is in your Zune software music/podcast path, you will simply need to move it out of that path into a non-music path and move it back in. This will trigger the Zune software to sense the update.

Now, in the Zune software, you should be able to see the mp3 under "PODCASTS" instead of under "MUSIC". Sync it up to your Zune (if you use manual syncing like me), and you are good to go. The mp3 will show under the Zune HD's main menu "PODCAST" item.

If this helps at least one other person, it was worth writing.

Last edited by Zendude; 03-18-2010 at 11:31 AM.
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audio, bookmark, mp3, podcast, resume

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