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Question: iTunes omits first song from each imported .m3u8 playlist

I have about 200 playlists that I have exported as .m3u8 files from foobar2000. I am importing these playlists into iTunes. I have found that, for some reason that I don't know, iTunes omits the first track from each playlist. That is, iTunes just neglects to import the first track of each playlist. So if I have a playlist that in foobar2000 has 1250 tracks in it, in iTunes the playlist has 1249 tracks in it, and the song that should be the first track in the playlist, just isn't in the playlist at all in iTunes. I've checked this with many different playlists, the audio files are all iTunes-compatible, they are all .mp3 files or .m4a files. This happens with every playlist I import into iTunes this way. I'm assuming this has something to do with the format of the playlists.


Several months ago, I switched from iTunes to foobar2000, so at that time, I exported all of my playlists from iTunes, as .m3u files. These playlists are now old and out of date, but the beginning tracks of these playlists have remained the same, so I can look at these for comparison's sake.


One thing I noticed is, when I export a playlist as an .m3u from iTunes, and open it in Notepad, I find this:


#EXTM3U

#EXTINF:355,Quiet Now (Live) - Bill Evans

D:\Music\OFFICIAL MUSIC LIBRARY\Music\Bill Evans\The Paris Concert, Edition 1 (Live)\02 Quiet Now (Live).m4a

#EXTINF:286,Giant Steps - John Coltrane

D:\Music\OFFICIAL MUSIC LIBRARY\Music\John Coltrane\Giant Steps\01 Giant Steps.m4a

#EXTINF:348,Cousin Mary - John Coltrane

D:\Music\OFFICIAL MUSIC LIBRARY\Music\John Coltrane\Giant Steps\02 Cousin Mary.m4a



When I export a playlist as an .m3u8 (or .m3u) from foobar2000, and I open it in Notepad, I find this:


D:\Music\OFFICIAL MUSIC LIBRARY\Music\Bill Evans\The Paris Concert, Edition 1 (Live)\02 Quiet Now (Live).m4a

D:\Music\OFFICIAL MUSIC LIBRARY\Music\John Coltrane\Giant Steps\01 Giant Steps.m4a

D:\Music\OFFICIAL MUSIC LIBRARY\Music\John Coltrane\Giant Steps\02 Cousin Mary.m4a




So all that #EXTM3U stuff and #EXTINF stuff is there in the first one, and I don't know what the difference is between these 2 examples.


While it would take a bit of time, I could fairly easily go through and just add the first track, in iTunes, to each playlist after importing each playlist into iTunes. But I was just wondering if anyone knows why exactly this problem is happening, and if there's some edit I could make to the .m3u8 file in Notepad in order to make it so that iTunes does NOT omit the first track from each playlist. If there is just some prefix that I have to add to the beginning of each .m3u8 file in Notepad, that would actually be easier for me. (It would be easier for me because all of the .m3u8 files are consolidated into one folder, so that way I wouldn't have to identify, search for, find the location of, and manually add the first track for each of the 200 playlists into my iTunes library.)


And, unfortunately, something else that could have been a potential solution, is not going to work: I could export the playlists (from foobar2000) as just .m3u files, and that does fix the "first track" problem. However, because these .m3u files are not encoded with UTF-8, if I use this method, iTunes (or any program) will NOT be able to import any tracks that have special characters (ö, Ø, ø, etc.) in them. And, unfortunately, I have many tracks that happen to have special characters in them, sparsed all throughout my 20,000-song music library. So the .m3u or .m3u8 files have to be encoded with UTF-8. However, for some reason, encoding the file in UTF-8 seems to be what is causing the problem of iTunes not importing the first track. Even if I export a playlist (from foobar2000) as an .m3u, then open the .m3u in Notepad, click save as, save as "playlist.m3u" and make sure it's encoded with UTF-8, and I import the playlist into iTunes, iTunes won't import the first track. Also, it seems when I export a playlist from foobar2000 as an .m3u8, this playlist will be automatically encoded with UTF-8, because when I import the playlist into iTunes, it will import the tracks with special characters, but it won't import the first track.


Also, (if I export a playlist from foobar2000): Regardless of whether the playlist file is encoded with UTF-8, or unicode, or whatever, and regardless of whether the file is an .m3u file or an .m3u8 file, it still looks the same when I open it in Notepad, like this:


D:\Music\OFFICIAL MUSIC LIBRARY\Music\Bill Evans\The Paris Concert, Edition 1 (Live)\02 Quiet Now (Live).m4a

D:\Music\OFFICIAL MUSIC LIBRARY\Music\John Coltrane\Giant Steps\01 Giant Steps.m4a

D:\Music\OFFICIAL MUSIC LIBRARY\Music\John Coltrane\Giant Steps\02 Cousin Mary.m4a


So, does anyone know more detail about what is causing the "first track" problem, or about something I could do to fix it?


Thank you for any help.


As noted in the post details, I am on Windows 10 64-bit.


Additional search tags: playlist, playlists, import, importing, imported, export, exporting, exported, won't import first track, doesn't import first track, removes first track, remove, removed, 1st track, m3u, m3u8, song, songs, track, tracks, file, files, play list, play lists, text file, txt, edit, will not, does not import first track, bring in first track, have first track, omission, omitting

Windows 10, 64-bit

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Mar 11, 2018 7:44 PM in response to murrin26 In response to murrin26

From your description it would seem that iTunes is simply expecting to see the first line as a comment line and ignoring it. The specification says that #EXTM3U must be the first line, so it looks like foobar2000 is doing it wrong.


I wrote a script call ImportM3U some time back when iTunes couldn't import M3U files for a build or two. It could be tweaked to recursively add all M3U files in a folder and its subfolders rather than just a single file.


tt2

Mar 11, 2018 7:44 PM

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Question: iTunes omits first song from each imported .m3u8 playlist