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2.3. Setting up a Music Store

Now that you have some music playing, let's get more organized. In the Music Store window click in the empty area with the right mouse button and choose Create empty store... from the menu. Enter a meaningful name such as `Tom's Music' and choose a location to save the XML file of the store to. This should be a writable location, so it is wise to stick to a location inside your home directory. (A system-wide path or a remote NFS mount with read-only access won't do.)

You can have any number of such stores in the Music Store organizer, and it is indeed a great idea to have separate stores for music differentiated by origin, genre, or some other aspect. One great use is multiple stores with the actual music files stored on multiple remote machines, one store for each machine. Or just a store for your local music and another for files on your bedroom file server box. There are several possibilities.

But how do you populate the store with music you already have on your drive? It's easy if your music is stored in an organized manner on the filesystem level. As a minimum, this means that tracks intended to go into one store are found under a common root directory in the filesystem (there may be several directory layers down from the root to the individual files, but there must be a common ancestor). In this case the so-called Music Store Builder will take care of things for you. Right-click on your newly-created empty store and choose Build / Update store from filesystem. Choose Independent mode and in the dialog you get, enter the root directory under which your collection resides. As you can probably guess at this point, the store builder interface is pretty flexible, however the default settings should be good to get something together quickly without further hassle.

Pressing OK will start the process, during which the directory structure below the root you specified will be traversed. The artist/record/track names are determined from potentially multiple data sources (CDDB, metadata e.g. ID3v2 tags or Ogg Xiph comments, and filesystem names). The logic involved is fairly elaborate. You are strongly advised to read the detailed usage instructions for the Music Store Builder.

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