This is a tutorial on how to use pyTagging.


pyTagging manages ID3 and user tags and generates play lists. In this document, I will show how to generate and manage library, generate user tag, play MP3 and generate play list.

Generate library

Seek directory

To generate a library, you need to register MP3 files in your hard disk. Click 'Seek' in 'File' menu. Dialog shows. Select a directory including MP3 files. pyTagging finds all of MP3 files in that directory and its sub directories. These MP3 files are registered to your library and shown in the library window. It will take a while. If you once register MP3 files, they are automatically shown after registration.

If you seek that directory again, pytagging reloads ID3 tags from MP3 files but user original tag information is kept.

pyTagging shows all of library data after seeking.

Load directory

Click 'Load directory' in 'File' menu and choose a directory. pyTagging loads MP3 files in that directory and shows only their information in the library window.

Load playlist

Click 'Load playlist' in 'File' menu and choose a M3U file. pyTagging loads MP3 files in that playlist and shows only their information in the library window.

Show all files

If you want to manage all files in the library data, press 'U'.

Manage tag information

pyTagging has four windows, library window, keyword-items window, player window and path window.

Library window

pyTagging manages ID3 tags and user tags. User tag has a 'keyword-items' structure. (e.g. ((weather: fine, rainy, cloudy), (color: red, blue yellow, green)...)).

Library window shows keywords of tags in the most upper cells. Items, which is linked to a MP3 file, are shown in each cells.

A keyword of the cell at the cursor in the library window and its all items are shown in the keyword-items window. Items are shown with numbers. It start from 0. Some items are marked when they are linked to a MP3 file in a cell at the cursor.

Cursor motion

You can operate with only one key press in pyTagging. You can also use Up, Down, Left and Right key.

up k
down j
right l
left h

This is similarly to vi.

Input tag information

Move cursor to the 'weather' column and press 'i' to enter the input mode. Enter numbers of items, which are shown in the keyword-items window. A item is linked to the MP3 at the cursor. You can input multiple items with delimiter, ','. (e.g. 0, 1, 4). If you input single space, ' ', all items are deleted. When cursor positions ID3 tag column, you can write ID3 tag. Press Enter key to complete input. Press Esc key to cancel input.

If you want to add or delete items, press 'a' or 'd' and input their number.

Copy and paste of tag information

Press 'w' to copy items in a cell. You can paste them with press 'p'. Items of different keywords are separately saved in pyTagging. Hence, items of keyword1 are pasted to the cell in the keyword1 column even after you copy items of keyword2 if the cursor positions keyword1 column. This means that items which will be pasted are determined by position of the cursor. Mp3 files are linked to multiple keyword-items. If you want to copy all of them, press 'W'. Press 'P' to paste them. Only items of user keywords which are shown in the library window are copied (see below).

Reload ID3 tag information

Press 'r' to reload a ID3 tag information at the cursor. Press 'R' to reload all ID3 tag information of MP3 file at the cursor.

Sort library

If you press 's', library is sorted by items of keyword at the cursor. If you press 's' once again, library is sorted by reverse order.

Search files

Press 'f' to search files in the library window. Focus shifts from the library window to the search window. Please input word(s). If capital words is included to words, search is case sensitive. pyTagging shows all MP3 files that contain search words in their ID3 tag information.

If you input nothing and press return in search window, pyTagging shows all files which are shown after seeking or loading directory or playlist.

Manage lost files

Click 'Find lost files' in 'Tool' menu to delete files from the library data, which was deleted or moved after registration. Losts and Finds windows show. Losts window shows files, which exist in the library data but not exist in your PC. Finds window shows files, which have similar ID3 tag information to the file where the cursor positions in Lost window. These files are shown in the order corresponding to similarity of their ID3 information.

Input 'd' to delete a file in Losts window from the library data. A file where cursor positions is deleted. Input 'D' to delete all of them.

You can copy the information of files in Losts window to the files in the Finds window. Input 'e' to copy the infomation of the file at the cursor in Losts window to the file which exist in the most upper row in Finds window. Input 'E' to copy the informations of all files in Losts window.

To copy the information to the file which does not exist most upper row, input TAB. The focus of cursor moves to the Finds window. Set the cursor on a file and input 'e' to copy information of the file at the cursor in Losts window to the file at the cursor in Finds window.

To go back to Library window, input 'u'.

Play MP3

rewind z
play x
pause c
stop v
fast forward b
volume up .
volume down ,

This is similarly to XMMS. A MP3 at the cursor is played. Rows of playing MP3 file are marked. A MP3 file in next row in the library window is played when MP3 is finished to play. Cursor moves to the row of playing MP3 when you press 't'.

Manage user tags

Click 'Manage Tags' in 'Tool' menu. In this windows, you can delete and add user tags and change their order. You can operate cursor moves in similar way to library window.

Add and delete keywords and Change their order

Press 'A' to add a keyword at cursor position. Press 'D' to delete a keyword at cursor. You can not add or delete ID3 tags. Press 'H' or 'L' to move a keyword to left or right. This change reflects to the keyword order in library window. You can set a keyword visible/invisible in library window to press 'V'. Invisible keywords are shown with ().

Add and delete items and change order

Press 'a' to add items. Press 'd' to delete an item at cursor. Press 'J' or 'K' to move item at cursor up or down. This change reflects to items order in keyword-items window.

Save changes

Press 'S' to save user tag changes. If you delete keywords and/or items, keywords and/or items in the data base, which have been linked to MP3 file before, are also deleted. So you might not want to delete keywords and items. It is recommended that you change their order down or set invisible.

Making playlist

Click 'extract' in 'Tool' menu to show extract window.

Set Conditions

pyTagging has three operators, 'and', 'or' and 'not'.

Press 'a' to mark an item at cursor as 'and'. Press 'o' to mark as item as 'or'. Press 'n' to mark an item as 'not'.

Generate Playlist

Press 'iTunes' or 'XMMS' button to generate a playlist. You can import playlists from File > import in iTunes. All songs in playlists have to be already registered in iTunes.

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