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Windows 7: How do I identify and remove corrupted files from my Music Library?

08 Oct 2014   #1

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
How do I identify and remove corrupted files from my Music Library?

I recently tried playing some music in Winamp and kept running into an issue where files would playback incorrectly. Instead of playing the displayed/selected music file, another song would playback (one from a completely different album/artist). This is a consistent problem and is repeatable.

At first I assumed that the files had been corrupted while being transferred to and from a (new) portable hard drive to my (new) laptop. However, after checking the files on the desktop they were originally transferred from it became apparent that they had been corrupted at the source. Then it dawned on me - I had remembered that one night I had accidentally deleted my entire music library (somehow the music library was copied into my pictures library and I had figured that a shortcut had accidentally been placed there, so I deleted it thinking it was just a shortcut or copy). Upon complete shock, I frantically tried to restore the files. I downloaded Recuva on another computer and installed the program to restore the files. Everything seemed fine, as Recuva reported all the files had been fully recovered, and upon initial playback things seemed fine.

About a couple of months after this incident, before moving to a different country, I purchased a new laptop (as my desktop would be too large and costly to ship) and a portable hard drive to store my files. After installing Winamp and playing some music, I encountered the problem I described in the first paragraph. I thought it was a problem with Winamp reading back the files. I then uninstalled Winamp and installed Foobar. This did not fix the problem. I then recopied the files from my desktop to my laptop through LAN and this did not work either. It was at this point that I remembered that the files had been accidentally deleted previously and then realized that they must have become corrupted.

So now I am here, almost all the songs play, but are playing back incorrectly (not as the file which is displayed), and a few files do not play at all (complete silence and skip to the next track).

I have explored my options online and it seems that there is no way to recover these corrupted files or re-tag them to display the song which is actually playing.

Now my question is this - is there a utility or command line which can identify which songs are corrupted in my library (~ 90+GB) so I can then delete them?

I know there are some large chunks of the library with contain no corrupted files and I don't feel like deleting all of my music.

Sorry for the long-winded OP. I hope this can be resolved. Thank you.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Oct 2014   #2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1, 64-bit

There are utilities that can examine mp3s and tell you if they have errors of some type.

I use such a utility from time to time, but it has limitations:

1: A file that supposedly is error free may still have audible defects or show incorrect running time or bit rate or have other peculiarities.

2: A file that supposedly has errors may in fact play well and sound perfectly fine, with no anomalies at all.

3: The utility may say that a file has an error in March and then say it is error-free in August. And vice-versa.

I've never had a large-scale problem like you have, but I have seen mp3s suddenly become unplayable for an unknown reason.

Some of these programs can "fix" errors as well as identify them. Sometimes the fix will make an unplayable file playable again, but just as often the "fixed" file will still have issues of one type or another.

So, it's a crapshoot.

All I can suggest is to re-tag as best you can and maybe try an error-correction program if you care to, but don't expect a whole lot. Other than that, I'd look to replace the problem files.

If you are referring to something other than mp3s, I can't help you at all.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Oct 2014   #3

Windows 8

Since you have foobar2000 already installed you can try one of its 3rd party plugins that might help you.

foobar2000: Components Repository - File Integrity Verifier

It should help you filter the files that are corrupted : they don't play or stop playing in the middle because of an error.

There's also 2 options to fix a mp3 in fb2k (Utilities > Fix VBR MP3 Header and Rebuild MP3 Stream). I've never used them before so not sure if they're useful or not, but it's worth a shot.
My System SpecsSystem Spec


 How do I identify and remove corrupted files from my Music Library?

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