Snorkeling Trips and Strong Swimmers

If you are a strong swimmer, you may be disappointed with how you are treated when you go on a “snorkeling” trip in a tropical location.  Some places require you to wear a life vest and have other restrictions.  The first clue that this is not a real snorkeling trip is, they don’t ask if you know how to swim.

Dear Tropical Tourism Boards, Legislatures, Rule and Law-making Entities, Snorkeling Trip Vendors :

Do not treat people who have worked hard to develop swimming skills

2008 LEN European Championships Final 400m Freestyle Women
Competitive Swimmers

the same as those who have not.

depositphotos_92827284-stock-video-people-relaxing-in-swimming-pool
An example of casual swimming

I am a 66 year old former competitive swimmer. I am a Water Safety Instructor,  I taught a LOT of kids how to swim in the YMCA program.  I was certified to SCUBA in 1987.

I work out three to four times a week.

What is Snorkeling?

“Snorkeling allows you to enjoy the underwater world from the surface of the water and diving down while holding your breath to get a closer look.”
— Scuba Diving vs. Snorkeling • Scuba Diver Life
https://scubadiverlife.com › scuba-diving-verse-snorkeling

That means that from time to time, if you see something interesting, and are a good swimmer, you take a momentary surface dive from the top to view something on the bottom a bit closer.

When we go on a tropical vacation, I do a few Scuba trips, and I also Snorkel with my wife.  I do not go to places that require snorkelers to wear a vest.  I am a very experienced snorkeler. I like to do surface dives (Also known as a Duck Dive  ) when I go snorkeling.

You cannot do a surface dive with a vest.

I am neutrally buoyant, with nine pounds of weight (I wear a full sun protection suit when I snorkel and dive).  I find taking weights is preferable to doing what they call Free Diving. There are many semantic differences and confusion about what free diving is. I refer to the more technical definition used by the some of the standard bodies (and for competitive free diving events) . See http://www.roatanfreediving.com/. I do not feel the need to use breathing techniques that require a lot of training, when, with a few pounds of weight, I can stay underwater for a minute.  Free diving requires skills and practice.  Wearing a few pounds of weights requires no special skills. Wearing nine pounds of extra weight does not impair my swimming or floating on the top — it just makes it easier for me to do a quick surface dive to get a closer look at some of the marine life or corals that are a few feet  below me.

If you are negatively buoyant, getting and staying underwater is easy.  If you are positively buoyant, it is more difficult. See Personal Buoyancy

I am not unusual in doing surface dives. Every tour guide I have ever been on a snorkel trip with will do many during the course of an hour snorkel. Any good swimmer will do a few when something catches their eye.

Having a one size fits all mentality for snorkeling safety does not make sense.

I am not unusual.  Statistics on the number of capable versus casual swimmers are not available.  The https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USA_Swimming  has over 400,000 current members.  The number of people who have been members at some time in their lives is in the millions.  Think of these people as Olympic Hopefuls.  This does not include many of the swimmers who are members of their Junior and High School swimming teams.  College Teams…Water polo players ….  Swimming Instructors…  Synchronized Swimmers. .. Navy Seals … Japanese Pearl Divers .... Add in Iron men, Marathon Swimmers, and groups like the L Street Brownies.  Capable swimmers number in the tens of millions.

Dear Tour Operators and Tourist Boards:
If you want people to visit your area and enjoy the marine life there — for many, the very reason they have paid good money to be there — do not treat people who have spent hundreds, if not thousands of hours, working on becoming the best swimmers they can be, like casual swimmers. That disrespects their skills — and in essence penalizes them for knowing how to swim well.

In fact, these are the kind of people you want on your boats, just in case a situation arises where your team could use some additional help.

IMG-20191202-WA0006
Gary and Anne snorkeling

Snorkeler’s Pledge

 

  • Maintain good mental and physical fitness.
  • Ask in advance about snorkeling conditions like currents, tides, aquatic life from a knowledgeable, source who is familiar with local conditions.
  • Snorkel within your limitations.
  • Look but don’t touch — marine life is fragile.
  • Keep your fingers away from turtles, and eels.
  • Give sharks and rays a wide berth.
  • Snorkeling is a recreational activity. It is for enjoying nature, not competition.

Ten Tips for Divers (and Snorkelers) to Protect the Ocean Planet
The Divers Pledge to Protect the Ocean

I would be more than happy to sign a waiver saying I take personal responsibility for my snorkel trips. If I have a heart attack or stroke, my number came up. If I am swimming in a protected area, with a boat and dive flags, and I get run over by a drunken boater, that is another thing. Snorkeling insurance does not need to cover my heart attack. It should cover the rogue boater who runs over swimmers, or snorkelers or scuba divers.

Setup your Google for an International Trip where WiFi is Limited or Slow

As of Android Pie 9 Nov 1, 2019
Trip where WiFi is Limited or Slow

How to Disable Push Apps Like Google News ?

Google Fi app

Fi Network Tools

Select Enhance network – off to turn off
VPN – off (less overhead for slow connections)

Spam and blocked numbers

Block spam calls – on

International settings:

Select Account
Account settings

Select Alerts- on.
Select International
Select Notify about coverage before and during travel – on ( should work without Mobile Data or Wifi)

Open the Project Fi website

Select Account tab — your plan (or group plan), select a person.

Select Service outside the U.S – on.
Select Calls to non-U.S. numbers – on.

On your device

Settings – Select Network & Internet – Select Mobile Network – Roaming – on.

Once you turn on the settings, you can use the International services uninterruptedly. For more information, please refer to this link. https://support.google.com/fi/answer/6157794#intl_countries

International charges:

Text messages are free of cost (both sending and receiving)
Here is the article that breaks down the international call rates depending on the country you call. https://fi.google.com/about/international-rates/
As far as Wi-Fi calling is concerned, you’ll be charged, depending upon the country you’re calling. Refer this link for WiFi calling rates. https://voice.google.com/u/0/rates?hl=en&p=hangout
You can enjoy data for just $10/GB.
To make a pure Wi-Fi call, make sure that the Airplane mode is enabled and then the Wi-Fi is enabled.

Chrome, Google Drive etc

Sign into your Google Account on all the devices you want to use on your trip before you go.
Synch everything the day before then turn off synch

Chrome on Laptop or Desktop

Right hand side, Settings, Advanced,Privacy and security
Sync and Google services , turn off

Disable automatic App updates

Open Google Play.
Tap the hamburger icon (three horizontal lines) on the top-left.
Tap Settings.
Tap Auto-update apps.
To disable automatic app updates, select Do not auto-update apps.

Turn off automatic picture and video uploads

Open Google Photos
Tap the hamburger icon (three horizontal lines) on the top-left.
Tap Settings.
Tap Backup and synch.
Toggle Backup and synch off
See Cellular Data Backup – Photos should be off, Video Off

Settings – System

System -Backup – Do a Backup – if you try and turnit off it says it will delete everything

Google Maps

Make sure you’re connected to the Internet and signed in to Google Maps. Search for a place, like San Francisco . At the bottom, tap the name or address of the place tap More . Select Download offline map Download.

Android System Updates

Google “turn off {your phone maker ex moto } Android system updates.

Standard Settings to Consume Little Data

Wifi off, Bluetooth off, NFC off,
Disable Automatic App Updates
Turn off Automatic picture and Video Uploads
System – Backups – turn off System backups
Google Account – Turn off Synch

Enhance Network off (VPN off)
International alerts on

Downloaded Maps for the area in Google Maps
Favorite Maps and Location in Google Maps
Enter Location in Google – Google Maps
Google Maps – toggle Wi-Fi ONLY on

Data Saver off (to lessen impact on the network) May have to turn on
Location (GPS ON)
Mobile Data off

Google Drive, OneDrive, DropBox, pause synching

When I want to use the phone and apps over Cellular Data
Mobile Data on
Google Maps – toggle Wi-Fi ONLY off
Data Saver on (may need to turn this off)

When I want to use WiFi (there is a network available)
Wifi ON
Google Maps – toggle Wi-Fi ONLY on
Data Saver off

If app problems, trying clearing cache:
https://tunecomp.net/clear-app-cache-android-8-7-6/

Change Settings Notes

Data Saver
If enabled, your Android handset will restrict the background use of cellular data, thereby saving you from any unpleasant surprises on your monthly mobile bill.
Pull down from the Top Data Saver, then flip on the switch

Bluetooth
Pull down from the Top Bluetooth, then flip on the switch

Battery Saver
Pull down from the Top Battery Saver, then flip on the switch

Mobile Data
Pull down from the Top Mobile Data, then flip on the switch
Also Settings, Network & Internet, Mobile Network (Google Fi) – Mobile Data -toggle, Roaming – Toggle Mobile Data

GPS on off
Settings > Security & location .
Privacy section
Tap Location to turn on or off .

Airplane Mode
Cellular: Your device will stop communicating with cell towers. You won’t be able to send or receive anything that depends on cellular data, from voice calls to SMS messages to mobile data.
Wi-Fi: Your phone will stop scanning for nearby Wi-Fi networks and attempting to join them. If you’re already connected to a Wi-Fi network, you’ll be disconnected.
Bluetooth: Airplane mode disables Bluetooth, a wireless communication technology..
GPS: Airplane mode also disables GPS-receiving functions, but only on some devices. This is a bit confusing and inconsistent. In theory, GPS is unlike all the other technologies here—a device with GPS turned on is only listening to GPS signals it receives, not transmitting any signals. However, some aircraft regulations do not allow the use of GPS-receiving functions for whatever reason.

Security And Privacy
Google Play Protect on (turn off Unknown Sources)
Find My Device (requires WiFi)

Google Translate
What do you need to have on for google translate to work
https://support.google.com/translate/?hl=en#topic=7011755
Check Google Play before Download and use from above link
Download on laptop
Open the Google Translate website. You can access it at translate.google.com

Windows 10
open settings Update and Security – updates, pause updates for 7 days
Win 10
?Install Windows Defender Application Guard
?Security
Isolated Browsing

All Settings

Privacy – Some of these might be useful,If I was connected to WIFI

Activity History Off

System

Alarms Only

Shared Experiences – Off

Remote Desktop if Win 10 Pro
Turn off synching for Google Drive, OneDrive, DropBox etc

The Google Links
https://docs.google.com/
Open File Picker
https://drive.google.com
https://photos.google.com/
https://fi.google.com/account
https://maps.google.com/
https://www.google.com/maps/place/Ambergris+Caye/@18.0326562,-88.0677905,11z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m5!3m4!1s0x8f5b61fbed6153e9:0x41424c2902bd3290!8m2!3d18.001592!4d-87.9432837

Google Drive 
On device , in system tray, right click on GD, See 3 dot hamburger at top, select pause

Google Fi
You can contact a Google Fi expert through the Google Fi app. You can also dial 611 or call the number below:
Touch and hold 0 until you see the + icon on the display
Dial 1-404-978-8610 (international rates may apply).

https://support.google.com/fi/answer/6202294?hl=en Fi international problema

Use your Phone Outside the US
https://support.google.com/fi/answer/6157794?hl=en#targetText=Contact%20a%20Google%20Fi%20expert%20while%20traveling&targetText=Dial%201%2D404%2D978%2D,(international%20rates%20may%20apply).

https://fi.google.com/about/international-rates/

International use is supported in over 200 supported countries and destinations. Cellular calls are $0.20 per minute, and texts are included. You can also make calls over Wi-Fi. The rates for calling over Wi-Fi internationally depend on the country you’re calling. For specific rates, see Google Voice calling rates. 22 cents a minute. Text Free

https://www.cellmapper.net

If you don’t want to receive system updates notification, you can turn off the Automatic System Updates via Developer Options.

To Enable Developer Options:
Settings > About Phone > Tap Build Number 7 times
Go back to Settings > Developer Options > Disable Automatic System Updates

Feature Request for Contacts – Stock Android

This URL for this request is at: https://garyjohnson53.wordpress.com/2019/10/08/feature-request-for-contacts/

Update Nov 11, 2019

I made some Project Fi support requests and posted questions on the Google Fi support forum before I wrote this.  To my suprise, I found this setting in the Google Fi app on my phone.  Select Spam and blocked numbers,  Block spam calls.  We shall see how this works. If it allows phone calls from people not in my contacts, like some Doctors, Acquaintances and others, that will be great.  I think it still would be a good idea to have a seperate ringtone for calls that the number is not in my contacts, but this, hopefully, will make my life better.

My Moto X4 shows the:
Phone app (https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.google.android.dialer)
and the
Contacts App ( https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.google.android.contacts  to be from Google LLC.

This information was obtained by opening the app, (example Contacts) Left Menu – Help and Feedback – Right Menu – View in Google Play Store.

My carrier is Google Fi.

My system:

Device Name: moto x4
Sim status: Google Fi
Software Variant: google_fi
Software Channel: retus
Android version: 9
Build number: PPW29.69-39-6
Contacts Version 3.8.2.268513760 @2019 Google Inc.
A lot of open source licenses

In the Terms of service, it says you may need a google account to use some services. My phone contacts synch with my Google Gmail account and I see them at: https://contacts.google.com/

More on Gmail and Android Contacts integration at:
https://support.google.com/contacts/answer/2753077

Maybe there is some coordination needed between the apps and the carrier to make this requested functionality available.  Maybe the automobile options might need tweaking.  Contacts are integrated with the Phone app, the Messages app, DUOHangouts, the  Gmail app and other apps can use the functionality through APIs. We note that care must be taken not to interfere with any existing functionality.  Other apps or services might need to changed to fulfil this request. Other apps or services might want to incorporate similar types of features.  If the phone makers are given the default functionality, it will be better for all of us.  Please adjust, expand and forward this request as necessary.

Please implement and integrate the following in the Google Contact and Phone apps:

1. Create the capability to set a default ringtone for everybody in your contacts

2. Set a different default ringtone (system) for any number not in contacts.

3. Optionally and in addition, set a default ringtone for calls already identified as spam.

4. Create another capability to set another custom ringtone for people in a group (or with a label)

5. Keep the option to create a custom ringtone for any individual, no matter what group they are in. 

6. Option 5 overrides option 4.  Option 4 overrides option 1. 

Benefits:

Identify calls from people you know.

The primary reason I am pushing for this is I just had a situation where one of my neighbors called me.  She was scared, there was someone at her door that would not go away.  I ignored her call, because, most of the calls I get are spam. People rely on other people. Please give us the capability to set an auditory clue as to the caller, not just a visual one.  It is wonderful that Google has implemented phone calling spam detection techniques.  This request makes that implementation better. 

Having the ability to have a separate ringtone for people in you contacts and another for non-contacts makes reacting to spam calls a lot better.  Think of moms with babies, people walking around without their phone on them, because they are home.  People in the shower etc.  Think about the blind and visually impaired.

Where are we now:

My research shows no easy way to do this.  You can set a ringtone for a contact, but, not a group.

https://www.whistleout.com/CellPhones/Guides/how-to-custom-ringtones-for-iPhone-Android-Windows-Phone

https://android.stackexchange.com/questions/160816/how-to-set-one-ringtone-for-contacts-and-another-for-non-contacts

If there is a macro / scripting / automated solution, can someone please tell me about it? The above link has a suggestion; however, it is tied to an event and a single contact. It is really inadequate.

It is not a significant task to create these requested features. The core functionality already exists.

Some additional notes on implementation:

Add to Settings

Enable Advanced Custom Ringtones
Default Ringtone for Contacts
Default Ringtone for non Contacts

Some additional logic

Check and warn if (Enable Advanced Custom Ringtones and [a member of multiple groups]

Check and warn if trying to delete a ringtone that is used.

If ringtone cannot be found, use a system default ringtone.

My Moto x4 with stock contacts has the label feature.  Option 4 might use the ability to set a custom ringtone for that label. Can a contact have multiple labels?  In some instances, like sending emails using the label, this would be desirable. It would not be desirable to have a contact have multiple ringtones.  If creating a label for a group of contacts, if one of the members of the group already has one or more labels, pop a message that says, this contact is in the group (label) and you are over riding the label ringtone.  Would it be desirable to use the default as the existing label ringtone or use the new label ringtone? Other details on this would need to be defined.  For example: would it be desirable to identify and keep any individual contact ringtone already set, if trying to set a label ringtone.

Suggestions on Ringtones – what you hear

example chirpy for contacts
plodding for non contacts

Use different instruments, pitches, very different tones for different groups.  This request is independent of the actual ringtone used; however, it might be desirable to provide defaults that are very easy to remember and identify.


Would it be possible to have different types of vibrations?

Not implementing this type of feature will from now on be referred to as the Boeing 737 plan.

Dear Google product experts, please refrain from telling me your suggestions, unless you have a concrete way of accomplishing these requests.  This feature may require some implementation by the phone manufacturer, but most of the core functionality I am requesting can be encapsulated in the Google Contacts app.

One of the core reasons I use Google Fi, is that you get a pure Google Android experience. If you know of another place to submit this request, please advise.  It has been suggested from the help and feedback on my phones Contact app and sent to apps-help@google.com and requested through Google Fi support.  if you like this idea, please do the same!

Please also see:

https://developer.android.com/guide/topics/providers/content-provider-basics.html
https://developer.android.com/guide/topics/providers/contacts-provider

I have not locate the source for the Google Contacts app. Is the contact app open source?

Voracious Readers Only .com

Do you read eBooks

on your Kindle, Nook, iPad, tablet, laptop?

If you’re an avid reader and you’re willing to read a first, second, or third novel by an author building his or her career, then

Go here and check out

https://voraciousreadersonly.com

for Free offerings from the genre/s you love.

Fantasy, Young Adult, Mysteries/Thrillers,
Romance, Science Fiction, Horror, Inspirational, Western

Free Health Care

Single Payer, Universal Healthcare, Medicare for all, the Canadian Model, whatever you want to call it. I am for it.

Canada’s universal, publicly funded healthcare system—known as Medicare—is a source of national pride, and a model of universal health coverage. It provides relatively equitable access to physician and hospital services through 13 provincial and territorial tax-funded public insurance plans.

I think it would also be appropriate to give anyone who works in health care free parking and no tickets, ever. Going to the front of the line is under consideration.

Primary Care – Preventive Visit – Patient Information

An email from the helpful folks at MGH about my upcoming physical:

During your upcoming preventive visit, your primary care provider may need to treat a new or a chronic problem that has changed or is worse. You may have a co-payment or deductible with your insurance plan for the additional management or treatment of the new or worsening problem(s).

Immunizations and tests (laboratory, x-rays, screening tests) may also be billed during your annual physical visit. Some tests or services may not be covered so you may have to pay coinsurance and the Medicare Part B deductible may apply.

It is important that you understand your plan’s benefits. We encourage you to learn about your health insurance benefits by calling the phone number on the back of your health insurance card, or by reviewing the website of your health insurer.

I am supposed to anticipate any new conditions that they may find as a result of my physical. I need to look up whether these conditions are covered. I need to know what tests or services are covered.  The ones I don’t know about, yet. 

It’s important that I understand this.

I need to be able to predict how sick I am going to get in order  to select the appropriate health coverage.  But, even if I select the most expensive and comprehensive coverage, there still is not guarantee I will covered

Privacy in our world

It is a simple matter to get your credit card, bank and other financial company data.  While there are safeguards in effect to prevent this, consider that a lot of the folks with legal access to this data are not paid very much, well, enough said  Your credit report likely has a nice list of all your important financial connections. Got a modern cell phone, unless, you turn off tracking, your phone knows where you have been. Between the  phone and facial recognition, your exact locations are pretty easy to track. Got a resume, is it online somewhere? Now for public information, ever been arrested, got a speeding ticket, own property?  This is not a comprehensive list, but you get the idea.

If you want to cut down on how you are tracked on the web use the the Ghostery extension, which allows you to stop some of the tracking cookies. Of course, they can track your ip address and there are services that associate ip with physical addresses.  The Brave Browser and other software that is designed to help protect you privacy while browsing are under development.

MediaMonkey Portable Installation

Updates

Dec 2019. On the Toshiba Portege, Windows 10, latest updates, the visualization was a little wanky when connected to a Sony Brava TV, over HDMI using clone monitors option.  Kept getting song title over the animations.  Turned off all song animations etc, still had an issue.  Turned on Caffiene, most of the issues with song title animations when away.

Here is the procedure I use to update the portable install created in the process documented after “A work in Progress”

insert Update.bat here:

 

 

 

A work in Progress

  • Install media monkey as a portable install to a big usb 3. drive.
  • Copy your music library from x:\ to z:\
  • copy the database and cache to media monkey portable
    see dick sledge below
  • go here and get the extension>
    http://solair.eunet.rs/~zvezdand/UpdateLocationOfFiles.htm
  • Start portable MM as administrator and add the change drive extension.
    Send they guy who wrote the extension some cash
  • Run the extension (under Tools-Scripts), pay attention to the dropdowns from the from part, make sure it says something like, 7000 files , fkfkf, 7000 missing
  • run the library maintenance, just for grins, bobs your uncle

This needs more work but the above process should give you a general idea. I did a portable installation as the Backup of my music and library.


Setup your USB 3.x device

1) Format as NTFS
2) Properties – Customize = Optimize for Music
3) Device Manager
Disk Drives
Double click on the device for which you want to quit using the Safely Remove Hardware option.
Click Better Performance

You need to use Safely remove unit you change this option, but, its good when your doing big file copies.

I use a bat file with xcopy, with lines like
xcopy "C:\Music\Blues\*.*" "F:\Music\Blues\*.*" /s /r /y /q /d
I did not get album art when I used the procedure above.


Actually, a migration – backup from a hard disk installation.  Part 2 of my rethink of my music library. First part is here: The Reorg. The main part that is applicable to doing a portable install is that I moved all of my music files to a usb drive.

The MediaMonkey documentation is at :
http://www.mediamonkey.com/wiki/index.php/Portable_Mediamonkey
It does say much except, click on the portable install,

I downloaded the latest debug build from here:

http://www.mediamonkey.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=54426&sd=d

Click on the MediaMonkey_4.1.19.1859_Debug.exe. Of course, allow the “install” , “change”, elevate, access to private network requests.

Select Portable Installation and specify the drive you want to install it on ( I chose a USB, not the location in the following image)

2017-11-25 (1)

Eventually you get here:

2017-11-25 (2)

2017-11-25 (3)

I did not scan.  I unselected the the location it had by default clicked (Music)

2017-11-25 (4)

2017-11-25 (5)

I let it share, for the moment.

We get to the Monkey Startup and it asks if you want to:

Import Missing file playlist and rating from your other applications; however, MediaMonkey is not one of them.  I skipped this step.

It shows Media Servers for all users?

I changed a few default things:

Turned off : Volume Leveling
Tags and playlists: ID3v2 encoding ascii always.
Media Tree: turned on Classical Music
Search: Turned off Custom and other fields that I don’t care about


Now I want to migrate all of my , auto organize rules, playlists, Milkdrop 2 installation and custom scripts to the new portable install.

I have reviewed the forum posts for a search on “portable” and have narrowed down my first attempt to be based on the following post:

Portable install loses settings.

http://www.mediamonkey.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=64297&p=436095&hilit=portable#p436095

Thank you – MediaMonkey Forum User DickSledge

When migrating from a local install to a portable install, do not follow the instructions on “moving to a new computer” that tell you to copy the .ini file. Only copy the .db file and the Metadata Cache folder. Overwriting the .ini file in the portable install will cause that install to look to your hard drive for the database.

It was that easy, I copied:

C:\Users\{USERNAME}\AppData\Roaming\MediaMonkey\MM.DB
To
X:\{your MM install location}\ Portable\MM.DB

and

C:\Users\{USERNAME}\AppData\Roaming\MediaMonkey\MetadataCache\
to
X:\{your MM install location}\Portable\MetadataCache

X: is the drive I had my music files on and installed portable MediaMonkey to.

BTW: my MetadataCache/Thumbnails directory was empty

I also adjusted skins, options, font size to 150% so I could comfortably read the MM screens.

Next, using my portable install on different computers. I connect it to a laptop, MM automagically adjusts for the new drive.  My scanning and editing {Tools – Options – Auto Organize}  Auto Organize rules still reflect the original drive letter I set them up for.  Example  If genre “Rock” ,

Main Directory I:\Rock\

In my case I alway plan on staging my new files for the library on the USB in a folder called “ToBeOrganized” .  Next thing is to test adding a new file with the Auto Organize rules, to see if it automatically adjusts.  In my case it would make sense to adjust the rules.  How do you code the “Main Directory” so it is not hard coded {I:\Rock} and defaults to the Rock Directory off the root?

2017-11-26

The other Auto Organize rules {Tools – Auto Organize} also reflect the prior installations drive letters.  That and the File Monitor {Tools – Options -Library – File Monitor} also needs to be adjusted.

I renamed this USB drive as music; however, I see it in safely remove drive as “Ultra MT Slim”.  I wonder if I can rename this or if I can rename it, if I do rename it, will it screw up the MM library?


Things of interest

Based upon:
How to export current settings? Where is settings file?
http://www.mediamonkey.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=87100&p=432698&hilit=portable#p432698

points to
Retrieve old MM environment?

http://www.mediamonkey.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=86940&p=431752&hilit=portable#p431752

The documentation on where things are stored is here:

http://www.mediamonkey.com/support/index.php?/Knowledgebase/Article/View/16/0/modifying-the-mediamonkey-db-and-ini-files

Things worked fine, as along as I was on the original pc.  When I tested it on another machine, I had to update the driveID in the database. The following Third Party Addon can do this: http://www.mediamonkey.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=63823

Hopefully, I will not be expanding to much on this:

Disadvantages of portable mode?

http://www.mediamonkey.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=87379&p=434148&hilit=portable#p434148


I did my portable install on a “standard” computer config, with a C drive and a D optical (combo DVD /Cd) (it’s been a few years since we had a and b drives, but some things never change!) So my portable install ended up being drive E:  Now when I plug a usb stick in, it goes to drive F.  That’s okay, but it shows the drive E attached.  I attached to to a computer that has c,d,e,f and at G optical drive and it goes to I.  My portable installation showed up as drive H, and it worked.

If when you click on safely remove drives, it gets a little flaky, go to Windows File Explorer and eject the drive.

I turn the following settings for artwork and lyrics on. If I were are on a metered internet connection, I would turn these off:

Tags
Artwork – Save image to tag (if possible) otherwise save to folder

Search for missing lyrics automatically
Search for missing artwork automatically

How to Reorganize a Media Monkey Library with Lots of Playlists

A work in progress  MM = MediaMonkey

Tags
“A guide to reorganizing a large MediaMonkey Library”

MediaMonkey Version 4.1.18.1853  Gold
Microsoft Windows 10 Home 10.0.15063

I wrote this guide as I was researching how to reorganize my music library.  Media Monkey has many capabilities and features that make this extremely easy.  It is flexible and powerful.  This guide pulls together the steps I think are prudent when undertaking this task.  First thing, buy a USB drive large twice as large as your collected works.

BTW, my library was in pretty good shape, until I whacked it.  It was either when I was adding some public domain music or when I was creating previews. I never really had to do much with MM, it just worked.  Then I started adding non standard (missing meta data, etc) files to the library.  My original library was segregated into 2 major sections.  Everything I ripped from CD originally was in folders by my own “genre” classification.  The actual genre classification in the metadata was much more diverse than my personal “genre”.   Everything else was added to “Recordings Purchased After 2009 Music”. I used this setup for over 10 years, and never really had to think or worry about it.   I am know going to set up automatic rules that keep my library organized the way I want it.  I hope this guide gives you an idea of some of almost unlimited things you can do with MM.  This post is rather long, mostly because it shows lots of examples and details.  The Short Story (TSS) is, I fixed the crap I added to have 2 of my own “genres”.  Then I set up automatic rules to keep the rest of the library organized by the original genre in the metadata.

My Original library:

D:\
Classical Music
Jazz Music
Miscellaneous Music
My Music
Other Music
Our Music
Pop Music
Recordings Purchase After 2017 Music
Soul Music
Soundtracks Musicals Music

E:\
Christmas Music
Recordings Purchased After 2009 Music

Let us get started!

1) ->File – Create Reports – Click on Statistics

MediaMonkey Music Library Statistics (Edited)

Totals
Type Library Played
Artists 876 491
Albums 722 461
Genres 64 49
Years 70 55
Playlists 118 108
Tracks 6929 1750
Length (h:mm:ss) 502:55:23 125:20:46
File size 155 GB 37.4 GB
Top 10 Genres
Tracks Genre Length File size
2080 Rock 151:35:48 54.1 GB
944 Classical 73:11:44 17.0 GB
899 Jazz 79:15:09 25.0 GB
435 Blues 26:40:33 8.60 GB
367 Soundtrack 21:34:41 6.37 GB
359 Pop 24:45:13 8.13 GB
233 Soul 13:00:03 4.29 GB
195 Variété française 11:41:58 3.82 GB
112 Christmas 4:21:55 1.32 GB
79 PublicDomain 2:33:19 304 MB
….

Generated by MediaMonkey ON Sunday, November 5, 2017 at 9:04:42 AM

Add up the space you see in File Explorer Properties for your Library

D:\ 107.0GB
E:\   48.7GB
=========
155.7 = Library File Size from above. Yeah, they agree!

->Click on Entire Library in the Media Tree

->File – Create Reports – click on the file list format of your choice. Save copies of these reports to compare totals etc after your reorg.

2) Backup your music (and other media) and MM files

How to Backup and Recover a MediaMonkey Library
Updated by Russell Samuels on Nov 30, 2014
http://www.mediamonkey.com/support/index.php?/Knowledgebase/Article/View/63/3/how-to-backup-and-recover-a-mediamonkey-library

I backed up everything under
C:\Users\{USERNAME}\AppData\Roaming\MediaMonkey

CDPlayer.ini
Extensions
Extensions.ini
favicons
MediaMonkey.ini
mediamonkey.m3u8
MediaMonkeyDEc2011.ini
MetadataCache
milkdrop_config.ini
MM.DB
Plugins
Scripts
Skins
xcopy "C:\Users\{USERNAME}\AppData\Roaming\MediaMonkey\*"     "I:\MMDB\*.*" /s /r /y /q /d

I also backup my Milkdrop2 visualizations:  C:\Program Files (x86)\MediaMonkey\Plugins\Milkdrop2.

I also exported all my playlists with a script (Tools – Scripts – Export all Playlists)

Related topics

Modifying the MediaMonkey db and ini files
http://www.mediamonkey.com/support/index.php?/Knowledgebase/Article/View/16

Moving MM to a new computer http://www.mediamonkey.com/wiki/index.php/Moving_MM_to_a_new_computer

I have extensions etc. that I would probably have to reinstall if I moved to a new computer.

http://solair.eunet.rs/~zvezdand/UpdateLocationOfFiles.htm
Update Location of Files in Database
Version 1.4.3
– MediaMonkey Add-on –

3) Fix problems with your library

You can fix issues you find, or you can just ignore them.  This does let you find some things that otherwise, you might have forgotten about. You should probably review the settings you have for you library under:

->Tools – Options – Library

There are a lot of options. I use:

I turn on File Monitor for a folder “To Be Organized” when I add new files to the library.

Library

Tags and Playlists

Metadata lookup

This is one of the most important sections I will discuss later.  I learned the hard way to click on “Delete emptied folders”.

Auto Organize

I turned on Automatically organize file (during scans and edits)  for the reorg.  I turned it off after. I turn it back on when I add new files.

Apperance

Media tree

Search

To edit a song or multiple songs, select them in the media tree, right click ,  -> Properties.  Change the fields you want to change. When doing multiple files, you can change things like genre, but not title.

You can tag things with multiple genres

http://www.mediamonkey.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=34372

Review the sections in your media tree under Available Tracks (also Music):

Artist & Album Artist
Album
Files to Edit
Genre

Look for unknown and other anomalies. Missing titles, album names, album artists, genres etc.

I have a few files that are sound clips, previews, funny clips from the internet, public domain music (for videos I post to YouTube etc), ripped from vinyl that have issues. I have files that I just plain screwed up. I scan under Albums and other categories see stuff that’s not right.

Album Excerpts (Sound clips)
Doctor Gary
Doctor Gary (Doctor Gary)
None
Track 10
Ultimate Download Disc and MediaMonkey Guide to Better Sound (ceu) (I screwed these up by using artist instead of album artist when I put thes in my DB)
V-Disc-308A
gj (gj and others)

I also looked at the files in Windows File Explorer.  I navigated to the folders called Unknown (etc.),  I see some of the MM library issues in the files on disk:

I have /Unknown/Unknown.

Back in MM, check the section Files to Edit in your Media Tree under Available Tracks.  Give it some time to work. Review the sections you care about under Files to Edit.  It don’t care about ratings and beats etc, however, some folks really like this capability. Fix the sections you care about.

For  Unsynchronized tags
http://www.mediamonkey.com/wiki/index.php/Synchronizing_Your_Tags

Select all files in this section (Ctrl-A).
Click Tools > Advanced Tag Management > Synchronize tags…

Multiple Artist Albums
If you have an album that has multiple artists, like a Woodstock album, you will get the artists for each track, but, the whole album will have  “Various Artists” for Album Artist.  That is the reason they have that field.
I have 2 albums called Greatest Hits, there were different artists, that confused the multi album process, but otherwise it worked really well. See Optimize Database – Create Multi Artist Albums.

I had instances where Artist / Album / Genre information was missing or inaccurate. I had files I edited and created for ringtones, or for phone messages etc and the stuff I downloaded for Videos (Public Domain).  My genres for these items was all over the place or missing.  I reviewed  the section under “Genres”. When you sort the column for genres by genre, you can get a list of all the empty genres!

I setup new Genres for:

Excerpts = from internet, audacity whatever, if it could be claimed as copyrighted

Genre -excerpts
Album -Album artist
Album artist -Artist

Examples
ItsABeautifulDay,  U2 U2
It’s a drag getting old,  Rolling Stones, Rolling Stones
ClintonLew,  Unknown, Unknown

PublicDomain is for anything that is not copyright protected
Genre – PublicDomain
Artist  – unknown
Album – ShortClips

I fixed the tags for genre (my main organization rule).

Some things have subtle problems.  It will prompt you if a file is read only.  You have to give it some time to work on occasions; however, the Monkey is pretty snappy.  I was unable to write the tags for some .wav and .ogg files. I selected the files, Tools – Convert Format, select “convert replace”, and I rewrote the tags and it worked. The new mp3 files had the tags. Then I did not see a few files, I tried to rescan, but, I had checked , ignore files shorter than 20 kb.

Again, do not forget to update the tags in your files after editing:
Click on Unsynchronized Tags, it will scan your entire library.

->Tools -Advanced Tag Management – Synchronize Tags.

And on another note, if you see strange things in the Media Monkey Library, trace them back to the source files.  I bought ‘Green Onions’ by Booker T and the MGs from Amazon.  It ended up showing up under up in the under media tree Artist and Album under  “Booker T. and the MGs”. I shows up under Artist & Album Artist twice.  Amazon had coded the meta data with Booker T. as the contributing artist and album artist as Booker T, no period.  In this case, you delete the libtary entry, edit the source  file to be consistent and rescan into the library.

4) Where are you going to store your new Library?

Some of the free and other media managers will try to import music files it sees in the Windows default locations for music under libraries, into their own catalog.

C:\Users\{USERNAME}\Music

I do not want that to happen, so for the time being I am leaving my MM library out of the Windows Music Library.  I am moving my library to a USB drive that I will eventually connect as a NAS and share with all the computers in the house.  There are other options to explore, see “For your consideration” below. If you ever want to include your music in the library structure, it is relatively easy.

How to use libraries in Windows 10

5) Do some Research

Read these topics:

Organizing Files and Folders

http://www.mediamonkey.com/wiki/index.php/WebHelp:Changing_Filenames/4.0

I see collections for Classical Music.  There is a category under properties for Type, and it looks like it is for different types of media, mostly, classical music being the exception. I don’t know if we can set up our own collections. I don’t know how MM determines Type = Classical?.  I am guessing this is used for different file extension media types.

http://www.mediamonkey.com/wiki/index.php/WebHelp:Playback_Rules/4.0

Auto organize

Configuring Directory and Filename Formats

http://www.mediamonkey.com/wiki/index.php/WebHelp:Configuring_Directory_and_File_Formats/4.0

If you click on Tools – Auto-Organize Files and set up a rule there, it will show you the changes that will be made prior to making them. It will show if you will end up with duplicate files (which will overwrite files). You can use it to move to a different folder, different drive or to network storage. When you use MediaMonkey to move/rename files it will update any Playlists within MediaMonkey.  I am trying to set up automatic auto organize rules that will keep my library  organized they way I want.

User Auto-Organize File Masks Examples

http://www.mediamonkey.com/wiki/index.php/User_Auto-Organize_File_Masks_Examples

Auto organize problem:
I saw this in the MM forum.  While running auto organize “It is very possible that Windows explorer is creating Thumbs file and read it so it is locked for moving. Thus Retry works.”

Turn off Thumbs.db

https://www.computerhope.com/issues/ch001061.htm

To disable it, all you need to do is just to enable “Always show icons, never thumbnails” option in Folder Options. To open Folder Options window, the easiest way in Windows 7 and 8 is to press Win key, type “folder options”, and click it. Your image folders will become so plain and boring once you Apply the change.Nov 2, 20

7) Set up Auto Organize

Review this to get some good ideas of what you can do with auto organize rules.

http://www.mediamonkey.com/wiki/index.php/User_Auto-Organize_File_Masks_Examples

To set up auto – organize rules,  Tools – Options – Auto Organize
Double click to edit a rule, or on new, to set up a new Auto-Organize Rule.

2017-11-08

Expand the arrow by Genre and select the genres for this rule (and destination).  In this example I show the last rule for my set, the default.  Click on Configure and you will see the dialog box below.

Note the destination, I:\Default is hardcoded as the first item. Be sure to use album artist so that multi artist albums go to Various , instead of every different artist.

2017-11-26 (1)

I setup destination folders for the main categories (Classical , Jazz).

I have the Classical collection, and I moved it by selecting on the genre and setting up the destination.  Check Type in properties.

Classical\album  A collection

Classical
Check that Classical + Opera etc works

Setup the section Organize these files using the following Directory and Filename format.

The destination folders are in bold.

I use #Track – Title for the file name.
Underneath this for each main category (Classical, Jazz…) is the genres that go with that section

\Jazz\album artist\album

Acid Jazz
Bluegrass
Easy Listening
ethnic
Fusion
Instrumental
International
Jazz
Jazz  + Bebob
Jazz +  Big Band
Jazz + Fusion
Neuvo Flamenco
New Age
Other
Smooth Jazz
World
World Music

\Comedy\album artist\album

comedy

\Christmas\album\

Christmas

Rock\album artist\album

50’s Rock
Alt/Punk
Alternative
Alternative Rock
Blues Rock
Classic Rock
Country
Country-Rock
Electronic
Folk
Folk Rock
Hard Rock
Metal
Rap & Hip-Hop
Rock
Reggae
Pop/Funk
Rock/Pop

Blues\album artist\album

Blues
blues   is it case sensitive ?

Pop\album artist\album

Club
Dance
Dance & DJ
Disco
Funk
Latin
Pop
R&B
Vocal

Soul\album artist\album

soul

Soundtracks\album

Soundtrack
Soundtracks

French\Album artist\Album

Varrite francais

Excepts/Album artist/Album

Excerpts

Traditional\album artist\album

Traditional

Jason\Album artist\album

Jason

Rich\Album artist\album

Rich – Richard Van Deuson

Meditation\Album Artist\album

meditative

Default\album artist\album
None (but lowest precedence)

Last rule I set up has no selection for genre, hopefully the exceptions will always fallout there.

I made sure to do both a quick and complete File Maintain Database and I made another copy of the MediaMonkey database before starting the the auto organize.

I also did a Tools – Export All Playlists

Did you review Files to Edit under Available tracks again?

I selected sub sections of my library, for example D:\Blues, and hit the Insert key, and MM did its magic.  A couple of hours elapsed time to reorganize my library.

At the end, I still had a few things to fix, so I was editing, Ctrl S, synchronizing tags and then hitting Insert. Easy Peasey after you do it for a couple of hours!   I had one album, Bach: Well-Tempered Clavier, Book 1, by Kimiko Ishizaka (free Classical Music) that I had to change the Type from Music to Classical to get in the right place.

For your consideration

Final Thoughts
Exclude your music library from indexing and searching.

When I want to move new files into the library. First I check the tags. Most music that is bought will have valid tags; however, free, Public Domain and other sources may not. If I need to I fix the tags. Then I move the file into my folder “To Be Organized”.

Turn on File Monitor to scan “To Be Organized” at startup
Turn on Auto Organize
After the new stuff has been has been added, I turn them off.

I am going to do another post on Setting up a Portable Media Monkey Installation.

A view of my auto organize rules

2017-11-07 (1)

Multi Album Artists:

2017-11-07

This is screenshot showing playlists, on the right.

2017-11-07 (2)


If you did not select delete empty dirs under auto organize, this might be helpful

Powerscipt to find empty dirs ( run it multiple times as it is not smart)

(gci X:\ -r | ? {$_.PSIsContainer -eq $True}) | ?{$_.GetFileSystemInfos().Count -eq 0} | select FullName

Where X:\ is the drive:\path you want to check for empty directories

I copy the empty dirs and put it in a batch file with RD (remove directory) and /s to do subs, example:
RD “E:\Recordings Purchased After 2009 Music\AAA\the life” \s

Windows RD in a bat file did not like the characters that are above 128 in the code page, so files like this will fail:
E:\Recordings Purchased After 2009 Music\Björk\Homogenic

This looks like a work around, but I have not tried it:

https://stackoverflow.com/questions/9849486/is-it-possible-to-use-extened-ascii-characters-in-a-bat-file