Strange problems with the database


I just got my Fuze and am very happy with it; however, I am having a very strange problem with the database. I have a 16gb sdhc card that I am using with the Fuze and there are about 4 songs on the card that will not play and have no tag information loaded. Their tags appear in the tag browser (not the in the track info screen) as just an empty rectangle. Under the track info screen, the sizes are listed as ~4000mb. The songs will not play and I cannot skip past one of these songs once it has been loaded.

At first, I suspected some kind of tag corruption, so I set out tonight to track down the problem. I removed the 16gb card and reset the player. Then, I loaded one of the corrupted songs onto the internal memory of the player. The track was scanned and played correctly. Next, I removed the track from the internal memory and loaded it onto a different sdhc card. Again, everything worked correctly, so I suspected that the card I was using had some kind of filesystem or physical problem. I put the original 16gb sdhc card back into the player and verified that the file was still unplayable, and then I connected the Fuze to my computer. I transfered the unplayable file to my computer, and compared it (with md5sum) to the original file, thinking that if there was filesystem or physical corruption the copy from the card would be corrupted. However, the files were equivalent.

To make things even more interesting, I am also having problems with the genre listing. I have some files tagged with Genres like “Classical” and “Rock”. In the genre listing, I see this:











So there is corruption on the “Classical” genre but not the “Rock” genre. Each of the substrings of “Classical” contains only a few tracks, with most of the other tracks listed where they should be. I have verified that the tracks are tagged correctly and in the exact same way as the other tracks that do not have this problem.

I am at a total loss about what to do, and I would really appreciate any tips or suggestions. I am using the current firmware, 2.03.31a, and the songs in question are Ogg Vorbis format.


In all honesty, I would format the card and the player and start again, assuming you have no problems transferring all the data back again afterwards.

The database itself is mtable.sys in the root directory. You can delete it and it will rebuild from scratch when you disconnect. Might help, might not.

The other problem may be the amount of information in a classical track’s tag. I believe there is a limit on the total numbers of characters in a tag, although I don’t know what it is. But if you have an opera with all the soloists listed along with composer, orchestra, etc., it may just be too much by the time it gets around to Genre.

Mp3tag is free. Look at your troubled tags and see if you can edit them down. You can highlight all the files and change a field like Album or Artist all at once.

To make the Sansa happy, under Tools/Options/Tags/Mpeg set the Write default to ID3v2.3 ISO-8859-1. You can also set it to make Comments <blank> by default–sometimes there’s way TMI in there.     

Message Edited by Black-Rectangle on 02-21-2010 06:31 AM

Thanks for your replies.

I have managed to track down what may be the problem. The tracks that were getting corrupted tags had total path names with more that 256 characters. It seems that the internal fat32 driver the Fuze uses barfs all over the place when the path name is too long. Before the Fuze, I had an iPod running rockbox with the same directory structure and tags as I have on the Fuze, so I don’t think that this restriction on the length of the path name is a limitation or requirement of the fat32 filesystem. Reducing the pathname corrected the problem with the files being unreadable.

However, the problem with the messed up genres still remains. Looking at the files that manifest this corruption, they do all have quite a bit of information in the tags. Most of the information are contained in hashes that I have on the files that identify them via musicbrainz. Does the limit on the total number of characters contained in a track’s tags include tags that the Fuze doesn’t read or use?


Yes I believe it does, as comments can cause issues.