I am looking for a music player and/or database for using with a read only music library.

The situation is this:

  • I have a music library (FLACs, OGGs, MP3s) that I, for diverse reasons, want to keep read-only and not change at all (apart from adding more files...).

  • A few of the files are not tagged at all and some files are badly tagged.

Features I look for

  • A music player with an external ‘tag’ database. That is, the tags are saved separate from the audio files and override information found in the audio files.

  • The database should be initialized form the tags in the files, but subsequent edits should (as per the previous point) be visible in the program, but not written to the audio files. The program should never even attempt to write to the audio files.

  • Import/export function for tag data would be appreciated.

    • Situation: The audio files are on a network drive and I want to synchronize the database between the computers that mount the net-drive.
  • Convert-feature would also be appreciated. Where a selected subset of the audio files would be re-encoded (for example, into low-bitrate OGG Vorbis for use on my phone) and would be put outside the collection and automatically be tagged with the information in the database.


  • Searching or playing by artist/genre/year/... is not a required feature. (see next point)

  • I use playlists; so managing playlists and adding from the present folder structure is a wanted feature.

So, is there any program fulfilling (most of) these points?

Or, could someone point me towards a solution for this situation? I am not too averse to some scripting and such...

1 Answer 1


Try foobar2000 with the m-TAGS plugin. It is a Windows program, but runs reasonably well with Wine.

  • Thanks. I know of foobar2000 (I used to use it on Win, and tried it on Ubuntu some years ago). I will investigate the m-TAGS format.
    – JohanE
    Jan 24, 2013 at 8:40

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