Tuesday, December 18, 2007

MusicBridge 3.0

Today I started work on MusicBridge 3.0. The main planned features revolve around export/import functionality. Giving users the ability to take advantage of MusicBridge syncing across disconnected multiple computers. The functionality will offer the opportunity to export from either iTunes or WMP into a format ready to be imported into either iTunes or WMP. MusicBridge will be required to be installed on each machine. The export/import process will be disconnected and the data will be transferred by means of an XML file that the user will move from one machine to the other.

The process will require a 'similar' structure for the music folders on each machine. It will not require matching absolute paths, but will require filenames and 2 levels of containing folders to match.


Computer A path:
C:\Users\James\Music\iTunes\iTunes Music\Bruce Springsteen\Magic\Last to Die.mp3

Computer B path:
D:\My Music\Bruce Springsteen\Magic\Last to Die.mp3

would match.

The level to which paths must match is "Bruce Springsteen\Magic\Last to Die.mp3"

My current plans are for an "All data" sync only, excluding artwork.

I would like feedback regarding this functionality and whether you would like to see more flexibility in the types of sync and whether you would like to see the inclusion of artwork.

I also welcome any other feature requests.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

MusicBridge is Paul Thurrott's Pick of the Week

Paul Thurrott chose MusicBridge as his software pick of the week on his Windows Weekly podcast (episode 35) on the TWiT network.


The MusicBridge section starts at about 48 minutes in.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Positive comments from Paul Thurrott

I am a big fan of Paul's and listen to his Twit Windows Weekly Podcast, so I am pretty excited that he has made some very positive comments about MusicBridge 2.0 on his blog:


Wednesday, August 29, 2007

download.com fixed it a while back

Just a follow up note to say that cNet did fix the extension problem.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

download.com extension problem

For some reason download.com have added a .bin extension to the MusicBridge download, it should in fact end at the .zip

I have asked them to fix this.

Friday, July 20, 2007

MusicBridge 2 now available

QUick post as I ma on a short vacation, but MusicBridge 2.0 is now available to download from download.com

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

7/25 is Estimated Availability

Download.com is giving me a date of 7/25 for MusicBridge 2.0 availability.
It seems a long time to me, so I wouldn't be surprised if it were a little earlier.

Going for Gold!

In the absence of further beta testing I am preparing to release MusicBridge 2.0 to the general public via download.com. It usually takes a few days to show up there, but keep your eyes open.

Friday, July 6, 2007

Chasing a bug

I am currently chasing a COM Threading issue that a couple of beta testers have found. I of course cannot recreate this...

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Moving into testing and documentation phase


I am done bar the testing and any last minute feature requests. I need to test on XP and Vista non-admin accounts. iTunes 7 will be required so I'm interested to see what kind of problems that might cause.

Other than Vista'ing MusicBridge there are only a couple of new features:

- PlayCount is now an optional sync item
- Uses the iTunes 7 AlbumArtist tag

If anyone else wants any features in let me know. Also I will need Beta testers soon, so let me know.

Monday, June 25, 2007

More playlists

You know sometimes I wonder why I do this. Many of you know I don't actually have a personal need for MusicBridge any more, and even when I did use it I didn't need the playlist sync. I have spent all day trying to make this work nicely, but WMP insists on being difficult especially around the "All Music" playlist. I do it because I enjoy it, and I will get MusicBridge 2.0 out one day.

So I had a choice with how to deal with multiple playlists of the same name which is allowed in WMP. The route I have now taken is that I am suggesting that you not have multiple playlists with the same name and MusicBridge will assume that the first one that it gets returned is the one you want to change, its either that or change them all. There basically is no 'good' way to handle it so I have chosen this route. We shall see if it causes problems in beta testing.

So now I think I have the core functionality pretty solid on Vista and .Net 2.0. I want to improve the error reporting and the logging and then I can move on to the couple of new features that have been requested.

Playlists are go!

So it looks like my playlist issues were based on a couple of problems.

1: I had my WMP 11 storing music and playlists etc. on a remote share. This appeared to make things a little strange and will need to be revisited.

2: The sync only playlists were being troublesome especially the All Music one. I now filter out the sync only playlists and ignore them and all seems well.

Thursday, May 31, 2007

Playlist Fun

I am running into some really weird behavior with playlists in WMP, which is probably why they behave so strangely in the current version. It seems like a bug in WMP to me, but I am still looking into it...

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Good Progress Today

Today I spent a few hours in MusicBridge. I upgraded some of the code to be thread safe as required by .NET 2.0

I then spent a little time modifying the installer and changing the location of the logfile to a more Vista friendly location.

I still have a few more threadsafe issues to resolve, then I need to go through the existing functionality and make sure it is all working as expected. Then I will look at the couple of feature requests that were made here or on the discussion group.

What do you guys think about the user interface? Do you think it needs an overhaul? Is it too confusing?

What about the command line options, are they working OK for you?

As part of the 2.0 release I will include real documentation that goes beyond the readme. The most common misconception that people have with MusicBridge is that it will physically move files between the two apps, I will address that and other questions in the documentation.

I will also need your help beta testing the application on both Vista and XP so that I can try and get it as stable as possible before the 2.0 release.

I plan to keep MusicBridge free, and I really appreciate those who have sent me donations through paypal. The donate button can be found on the MusicBridge web page at jrmwillis.googlepages.com

Sunday, April 1, 2007

Slow progress... Still

I am currently looking for a new job which is again impeding the time I have available for MusicBridge development. Sorry people.

If anyone is looking for a MS based Web Development Manager in Iowa (Dubuque, Iowa City, Cedar Rapids) then let me know...

Thumbs up for Dell tech support

A little unrelated but I thought it was worth posting about. As you know I just got a nice new Latitude laptop from Dell. Well I noticed that I had a single pixel that was half broken, and the problem was only intermittent. I emailed Dell about it fully expecting them to tell me where to go, but to my surprise they immediately replied and organized a replacement and an engineer to install it. It was a fantastic tech support experience, something that is very rare these days so worth commenting on. BTW I do have US based gold level business support.

Tuesday, March 6, 2007

Laptop Arrived

So here I am posting from my new Vista laptop. This means I can start development work on MusicBridge 2.0. Unfortunatly I am finding Vista a little troublesome for my business reasons. I cannot get a Cisco VPN client that works and I can't install SQL Server 2000... This is going to be quite a transition.

Thursday, March 1, 2007

Laptop Ordered

A nicely specced Dell Lattitude D820 is being built as I type, it should be here by the end of next week, maybe...

Then the real work can begin.

Monday, February 26, 2007

Feature Ideas

Please be sure to post your feature ideas over on the discussion group: http://groups.google.com/group/MusicBridge/

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Italian Computer Weekly

The Italian version of Computer Weekly has asked for permission to put MusicBridge on its cover CD-ROM. I find that encouraging.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Slow Progress

Unfortunately I have decided to look for a new job, the current one just isn't working out for me so this could be good or bad for MusicBridge. I could find another job soon and be a little tied up in that, or I could quit my current job and have plenty of time for devlopment, so we shall see how it goes...

Tuesday, February 6, 2007

First steps

OK, so after making the decision to rewrite MusicBridge for WMP11 and Vista I sat down to at least get started. This is where I hit my first problem, it seems that I cannot download the WMP11 SDK onto my development machine (Win2k). Hmm, so I am going to need try downloading it onto my lone Vista machine (my Media Center PC) and see if I can at least move some of the SDK to my development machine.

So off to a slow start...