last changes before 2.2
[clinton/abcde.git] / README
2 =====
4 abcde is a frontend command-line utility (actually, a shell script) that
5 grabs tracks off a CD, encodes them to Ogg/Vorbis, MP3, FLAC, Ogg/Speex and/or
6 MPP/MP+(Musepack) format, and tags them, all in one go.
8 Your finished Ogg/MP3/FLAC/Speex/MPP's are, by default, stored in a subdirectory
9 of the current directory (named after the artist) with a filename based on the
10 track title. Spaces are replaced by underscores, and apostrophes and control
11 codes are filtered out. Colons are replaced with an underscore and a hyphen. The
12 end result usually looks like: Our_Lady_Peace/01.Supermans_Dead.ogg This
13 filename munging is customizable - edit the mungefilename function in your
14 abcde.conf to change it.
16 Many of the questions related of problems executing abcde have been moved to the
17 FAQ, which should be distributed along with this package. Reffer to that file
18 for help.
20 To make abcde 2.x work more like 1.x, put these options in your abcde.conf:
24 ID3TAGV=1
27 =============
28 Changes in 2.2:
30 * Support for MPP/MP+(Musepack) format. It can be downloaded from
31 It is supposed to be Free (not only free), and released under
32 the GPL...
33 * New "-t <number>" option for starting the numbering of the output files at a
34 given starting number. Ideal for albums with more than one CD.
35 * New "-T <number>" option, similar to "-t" but also modifies the tag entries
36 on the files themselves.
37 * New "-w <COMMENT>" to add a comment to the tracks of a given CD rip. Use
39 * New "-W <number>" option to combine both a comment with "CD #number" and a
40 starting number for both the tracks and the tags with "#01" (that is, 101 for
41 the 1st CD, 201 for the second...)
42 * Support for keeping an existing playlist (and not add new entries to it),
43 erase the existing one (overwrite) or append new entries to the existing
44 one.
45 * Under ./examples you will find a very basic way to make abcde run in the
46 background and start a non-interactive rip of a CD, if it can find an
47 audio CD in the tray.
48 The abcded script depends on eject and cdparanoia being installed in your
49 system.
50 * New mungegenre function to switch off (or modify) the default behaviour of
51 transforming uppercase characters to lowercase.
52 * cdparanoia permits performing a query to the CD drive and obtain a list of
53 valid audio tracks. So, now we perform such query and process the results.
54 * Support for "None of the above" has been added with the "0" selection. A
55 template is created, and the selection to edit it is defaulted to "y".
57 New options in 2.1.19:
59 * ONETRACK mode has been introduced. Setting the flag "-1" will create a
60 single file with all the tracks from the CD.
62 Changes in 2.1.18:
64 * CDSPEED option defaults to eject. However, since cdparanoia has a built-in
65 option to set the speed, we use it. There is not way (right now) to force the
66 use of eject, but it will be introduced in a future release. Also one can use
67 the pre_read function to set the speed with other program.
69 New options in 2.1.16:
71 * -S, CDSPEED and CDSPEEDOPTS for setting the speed of the CDROM. One can set
72 the options in abcde.conf and pass the value on the command line. This option
73 can be used with "eject -x <speed>", "setcd -x <speed>" or the built-in
74 cdparanoia option "-S <speed>", if the CD reader supports it.
75 * Added a pre-read function. Modify it at your pleasure in abcde.conf
76 One can use it to close the CD drive.
77 * -m option, to modify the playlist to include CRLF in every line. Some players
78 insist on having those to work properly with playlists.
80 New options in 2.1.15:
82 * -V can be used to obtain some more information about the CDDB queries.
83 * -v shows the version, basic help, and exits.
85 New options from 2.1.10 to 2.1.13:
87 * CDROMID has been introduced for cdda2wav use with SCSI devices.
88 * Use -L to retrieve the CDDB entries from a local repository (also one can
89 set CDDBUSELOCAL in the config file).
90 * If CDDBCOPYLOCAL is set to "y" we store copies of the CDDB entries, under
91 CDDBLOCALDIR (defaults to "~/.cddb).
93 Modifications from 2.1.9 to 2.1.10:
95 * Initial (still incomplete) MacOSX support is on the works.
96 * A new tool (curl) has been added for MacOSX compatibility, as HTTPGET
97 option.
99 Options modified from 2.1.8 to 2.1.9:
101 * KEEPWAVS option now sets the clean to "no".
103 Options added/modified from 2.1.3 to 2.1.5:
105 * Ogg/Speex added. Use "-o spx" to rip your audiobooks, for instance.
107 Options added/modified from 2.1.1 to 2.1.3:
109 * WGET has been substituted by HTTPGET. Now we support fetch as retrieval
110 program.
111 * KEEPWAVS has been introduced. Set it to "y" and the wav tracks will be
112 kept.
113 * CDDBPROTO is used to specify the protocol level in the CDDB retrieval.
114 * DAGRAB has been introduced as a cd ripper.
116 Options added/modified from 2.0.3 to 2.1.x:
118 * -b use batch processing. It uses normalize-audio to adjust the volume of
119 the songs, and a -g gapless option from lame to remove gaps. Only available
120 for mp3+lame combination.
121 * a new "normalize" option has been added to -a, to normalize the volume.
122 * -o works now with a combination of the different outputs: ogg, mp3, flac.
123 Combine them separated by ",". Example: "-o ogg,flac".
124 * OUTPUTTYPE is no longer used for the output file type. From version 2.1 abcde
125 implements multiple-output and the file type is always appended at the end of
126 the file. The OUTPUT variable can be used in the PLAYLISTFORMAT and
127 OUTPUTFORMAT to create different directory structures and playlist names for
128 each of the output formats selected.
130 * DYEAR can be used as DiskYear value in CDDB data. If the data is not supplied
131 by the CDDB server, it can be added.
133 Other options that changed from 1.x to 2.x:
135 * -e doesn't exist anymore, abcde now presents you with all of the cddb data
136 and asks you if you want to edit it. If you don't want to be asked,
137 use -N or INTERACTIVE=n
138 * The output type defaults to Ogg/Vorbis. Specify -o mp3 or OUTPUTTYPE=mp3
139 if you still want to output mp3's.
140 * -l 2 is now just -l, LOWDISK=2 should now be LOWDISK=y
141 * -V and -v are gone, abcde will now prompt you if you'd like to use Various
142 Artists handling, after showing you the cddb data.
143 * -P is now '-a playlist,clean', PLAYLISTONLY=y is now
144 ACTIONS=playlist,clean
145 * -p is now '-a playlist,move,clean', PLAYLIST=y is now
146 ACTIONS=playlist,move,clean
147 * cddb-tool has been cleaned up a little bit. 'get' is now 'query' and
148 'read', and the tempfile handling has been removed.
149 * ID3COMMENT is now COMMENT.
150 * FreeDB is now the default CDDB database.
154 ============
156 abcde requires the following backend tools to work:
158 * An Ogg/Vorbis encoder (oggenc, the default, or vorbize) or:
159 * An MP3 encoder (lame, gogo, bladeenc, l3enc, etc). Any MP3 encoder that
160 takes two filenames on the command line, one for input, one for output,
161 will work.
162 You can get lame at:
163 You can get gogo at:
164 You can get BladeEnc at:
165 You can get a trial version of mp3enc at:
166 or:
167 * FLAC encoder (flac) or:
168 * Ogg/Speex encoder (speexenc) or:
169 * MPP/MP+(Musepack) encoder (mppenc)
170 * normalize-audio for volume normalization.
171 * CD Paranoia, an audio CD reading utility,
172 * Or cdda2wav, the audio CD reading utility cdparanoia was born from,
173 * Or dagrab, another audio CD reading utility.
174 * cd-discid, a CDDB DiscID reading program. Formerly bundled with abcde.
175 It's available in Debian or
176 * An HTTP retrieval program: wget, fetch (FreeBSD) or curl (MacOSX)
177 * id3, an id3 tagging program. Available at:
178 * id3v2, an id3 version 2.0 tagger.
179 * (optional) distmp3, a client/server for distributed mp3 encoding.
180 You can get distmp3 at
182 Abcde's new mailing list is So far has not
183 been actively used.
184 The posts from non-subscribers are moderated to prevent spam.
186 Archives of the old list are publically available at:
189 Abcde's current page is at
190 Abcde's old homepage is at
191 --
192 Jesus Climent <>
194 abcde was originally created by Robert Woodcock <>