Update Dec 8, 2018: Version 1.4 available.
vorbiscommentedit 1.3 (download link) is a program to
edit the tags of Ogg and FLAC files with a text editor. (See also
the description of version 1.0)
Given one or more Ogg and FLAC files, it creates a temporary text file with the tags, opens the user's default editor and, after the editor ends, puts the changed tags back in the Ogg and FLAC files.
vorbiscommentedit [-m] file [file...]
It can operate in two different modes. By default, it compares the tags of all the files and only operates on those that are common to all of them. This is a quick and safe way to change the tags that are the same in all files. This mode also allows to add new common tags to all the files passed as arguments.
E.g., if you have a bunch of file with the same ARTIST tag, but
there is a mistake in the name of the artist, this is an easy way
to change all the files at once:
With the option
-m (for “multiple”), all
the tags of the files are edited, not just the common ones. The
tags are grouped by file in the temporary text file. When the
editor ends, all the tags are written back to the file they belong
This mode also allows editing the names of the files.
Files that are neither Ogg nor FLAC are silently ignored
(default mode) or only their names are shown in the editor (option
-m). This allows to invoke
vorbiscommentedit with a wildcard, e.g.,
vorbiscommentedit -m *
even if there are other types of files in the directory. And
-m, this can also by useful to rename
those other files.
Which editor to use is determined from the environment
neither is defined, a few well-known editors are tried.
vorbiscommentedit * in a directory with
numbers from the the album “Oxygène” might, e.g., open an editor
ALBUM=Oxygène [Remastered] ARTIST=Jean Michel Jarre CDDB=37094f06 DATE=1976 GENRE=Electronic REPLAYGAIN_ALBUM_GAIN=-5.28 dB REPLAYGAIN_ALBUM_PEAK=1.15025377 ~ REPLAYGAIN_TRACK_GAIN ~ REPLAYGAIN_TRACK_PEAK ~ TITLE ~ TRACKNUMBER
This indicates that all the Ogg and FLAC files in the directory have in common the tags for ALBUM, ARTIST, CDDB, DATE, GENRE, REPLAYGAIN_ALBUM_GAIN and REPLAYGAIN_ALBUM_PEAK. Some or all of them also have the tags REPLAYGAIN_TRACK_GAIN, REPLAYGAIN_TRACK_PEAK, TITLE or TRACKNUMBER, but with different values.
vorbiscommentedit -m * opens a much
longer file in the editor, with, e.g, this content:
# Edit, remove or add TAG= lines. # Edit the "+" line to rename the file. # Empty lines and lines starting with "#" are ignored. # Don't change the :" lines! # # For Ogg files: # - Backslashes must be doubled (\\). # - Use \n, \r and \0 to for LF, CR, and the null character, resp. # (Multi-line tags are not supported for FLAC files yet.) : 1_Oxygene__Part_I_.ogg + 1_Oxygene__Part_I_.ogg ARTIST=Jean Michel Jarre ALBUM=Oxygène [Remastered] TITLE=Oxygène (Part I) DATE=1976 GENRE=Electronic TRACKNUMBER=1 CDDB=37094f06 REPLAYGAIN_TRACK_PEAK=1.08939934 REPLAYGAIN_TRACK_GAIN=-4.93 dB REPLAYGAIN_ALBUM_PEAK=1.15025377 REPLAYGAIN_ALBUM_GAIN=-5.28 dB : 2_Oxygene__Part_II_.ogg + 2_Oxygene__Part_II_.ogg ARTIST=Jean Michel Jarre ALBUM=Oxygène [Remastered] TITLE=Oxygène (Part II) DATE=1976 GENRE=Electronic TRACKNUMBER=2 CDDB=37094f06 REPLAYGAIN_TRACK_PEAK=1.10011435 REPLAYGAIN_TRACK_GAIN=-4.90 dB REPLAYGAIN_ALBUM_PEAK=1.15025377 REPLAYGAIN_ALBUM_GAIN=-5.28 dB : cover.png + cover.png
This shows that there were three files: two Ogg files and a PNG
file. The tags of the Ogg files are shown. The PNG file has no
tags, but its name is shown. All tags can be edited, and also the
file names can be edited on the +-lines. (The :-lines should not
be changed, otherwise
vorbiscommentedit will not
know what the original name was.)
The comment at the start gives some basic instructions. It shows, e.g., that certain backslash-escapes can be used to include special characters in the tag values.
vorbiscommentedit was inspired by
vorbistagedit by Martin F. Krafft (available in Debian's
vorbis-tools package), but is meant to make editing the same
tags in multiple files easier.
-m, the program behaves very similar
vorbistagedit, with the following differences:
The program also handles FLAC files and allows to rename (but not
change tags in) arbitrary other files. (Handy if you have, e.g.,
files music.ogg and music.info and want to rename both.) Unlike
vorbistagedit, it doesn't allow to set common tags
for all files in the preamble. It also doesn't rely on file
extensions but uses the
file command to get the
file's type (which makes it slower, though). It also allows
editing multi-line tag values (using the backslash-escapes
vorbiscomment). Unfortunately, that
only works for Ogg file, not FLAC files, because metaflac doesn't
handle escapes yet.
There are other programs that work similar to
vorbistageditwith support for FLAC files.
vorbistageditwith support for mp3 files.