Warning if settings changed but no files selected

As a new user, I was puzzled when I opened a single MP3 file and changed some metadata settings, but could not figure out how to save them. I didn't realized that I had to select the file. With a single file loaded, I assumed that it was selected by default. I did not understand that I can select a whole folder and change settings for selected multiple files, which is a great feature.

I suggest that the software should warn the user if they change settings but no files are selected -- especially if they then try to exit the program. This may be redundant or unnecessary for experienced users, so I also suggest that this be a settable preference so experienced users can turn it off if they do not need it.

IMHO, the program should never allow a user to exit with unsaved changes.


IMHO, no changes were made to a file that had to be saved.
I think it is one of the basic principles of programs that manipulate objects that you select the object first.
Yet, if you have larger collections that deal not just with a couple of files from a single folder, it may be just as bad to have a selected file on loading as it it to have none - depending on one's preferences and workflow.
To cater for the different preferences (whether loaded files should be selected or not) MP3tag has a setting in
File>Options>General: Select files automatically.

I could not disagree more. I opened the file by right-clicking on it in Explorer. If that is not "selecting it", then I don't know what is.

That may be true. I am a brand new user and haven't worked with large collections of files and never will. Any solution must serve those users as well.

I just tested that option. It may solve my problem, I'm not sure yet. I worry that it might not be so good if I have multiple files loaded.

But the save problem still exists. I set that option and opened a single file. It was selected and the Save button was activated. I changed a setting and then closed the program. No warning that I had unsaved changes. This is very bad.

It is often easy to forget the learning curve, especially for many of us users of mp3tag that have been growing with it for many years :grin:
New users often come with new perspective, and can bring suggestions to the table that maybe were overlooked. I think @CynthiaMoore has some good ones that have been mentioned in the past by other new users. Perhaps @Florian may be able to incorporate some into future updates?

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The problem may be that the tag panel has no cancel button. The OK button for the tag panel is the disc icon in the tool bar or pressing Ctrl-S.
Both can be pressed as often as you like, BTW, there is no evalutation if really something changed - every time you save, the files are treated and the current available information is written to the files.
The implicit cancel button is navigation to other files or closing MP3tag.
There is no evaluation that some information could be different or not.

Even though, admittedly, this would be a little strange for new users: if you do not like the tag panel, hide it, use the extended tags dialogue instead - that has the kind of user-guidance with OK and Cancel and the question if tag information should be written.
A warning about the consequences when closing or moving on to another file, might be a help, I admit.
Yet, I am absolutely sure that this message will be one of the first to be switched off after getting a little more experienced with MP3tag.

I am using MP3Tag now for more than a decade and it still happens that I press CTRL-S unsuccessfully to save in the extended tag menue. :wink:

Yes, indeed, I think I caught myself pressing Ctrl-S in the extended tags dialogue - simply because you get so used to it. Just like pressing Enter for other interactions.

The problem with the possibility to enter data in the tag panel without a single file being selected, is puzzling, I admit.
But actually, where I stumble frequently: why can't I edit actions without selected files. Yes, different topic, should be discussed here:

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It's not clear to me if you are offering this as an argument against the message. If so, my response would be that it is common for software to have warning messages that prevent new or casual users from unintended, and possibly serious, consequences and that can be turned off or disabled as they become more experienced. Many programs offer help text when starting the program with an option to stop showing them. Many browsers have a setting to warn users if they try to close multiple windows. They allow this me3ssage to be turned off, but of course the idiots at M$FT made theirs a registry setting forcing novice users to edit the registry -- always a sure way top corrupt a system.

Experienced users do not have the same needs as less experienced. But it is insensitive and arrogant for experienced users to lobby against warning messages for less experienced users. The lack of such messages turns off new users and prevents developers from including features that would benefit experienced users but are error-prone for newbies.


I tried to offer some kind of olive branch that a message when closing the program might be of help for new users.
I do not agree that the information should then be written to any loaded but not selected files in MP3tag.
This would lead to real

when all the loaded files get the same (modified) data and so possibly get the same TITLE and TRACK. Would be pretty hard to get the original back again, esp. if you close the program immediately afterwards and therefore loose the "undo" buffer.

Who suggested that? Certainly not me.

My suggestion was that if any data has been entered into any field in the left panel and not saved, a warning message should be issued if the user tried to exit the program.

Another option is to grey out the data entry fields until one or more files are selected. But even if this is implemented, I still think the warning message is needed for unsaved data.

Yup, I agree that this would be a welcome improvement. Probably the single most often Grrrr-inspiring incident I've encountered.


Thanks all for your input on this. I'll revisit this after v3.07 is released and will keep you posted.

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And thank you for a really great product. I'm a retired software developer, so I always see things that could work better. But overall, you have made a really great product. :smiling_face_with_three_hearts:

However, I just noticed another little glitch, but I'll post that in its own thread.

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I’ve now added a confirmation message with Mp3tag v3.07a that is shown in case changes made via the Tag Panel are about to be omitted. This message is only displayed if auto-saving of tags is disabled.

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