NewDeal Hot Tip 1532

[Hot Tips for...] General Use

CD Player Database

The title and track information for the CD Player are stored in a database file named \USERDATA\BBPLAYCD.DAT. If you delete this file, you will lose all the information you have entered for music CDs, and the CD Player will build a new database file the next time you run it. According to the authors of the CD Player, the database stores the information for each music CD based on the UPC (Universal Product Code) which is normally encoded on the music disk. By industry standards, this code is supposed to match the UPC as printed on the label or packaging for the music CD.

A customer reported that the CD Player displayed the wrong title and track information for a music CD.

We knew that music CD manufacturers do not always follow the standard. In some cases, disks might go to press before the UPC has been assigned, for example. According to our research, in cases like this the UPC on the disk typically contains zeros or non-numeric values. We designed the CD Player so that when it encounters invalid UPCs like these, it calculates a unique code of its own based on the number of tracks and the exact length of the CD (1/75 second accuracy). We designed this so it would avoid duplicate entries in nearly any collection of music CDs. Indeed, we are aware of no cases where the player has automatically generated the same code for two different music CDs.

However, as it turns out, some manufacturers have stamped the same valid UPC on two different music CDs. This we did not expect. The very definition of a UPC is that it should uniquely identify a product.

If you try to play a CD with a UPC that matches a previous entry in the database, and the new CD has more tracks than the previous one, you may not be able to access all the tracks. In this case, try using Play Mode, Random to try to access the additional tracks. Sadly, the track names displayed for the previous CD will continue to show up for both CDs.

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Last Modified 11 Mar 1999