Correct tag errors in your music collection with Easy Tag

Jack Wallen
Jan 9, 2010
Updated • Dec 3, 2012
Music, Music and Video

I have a number of large music directories on numerous drives. The files in these directories have been added (over the years) from various sources. The biggest problem with my collections is the tags on the files aren't all correct. Because of this, some music players won't list the information for the file which means (in some cases) the only way I know what a file is is to listen to that file. Some music players allow you to edit the tags on a file. Sometimes, however, that editing will only work for that music player. So what do you do when you want a more universally accepted tag editing system for your music? You open up Easy Tag.

Easy Tag is an open source application available for Linux and Windows that allows you edit tags for the following file types:

  • MP3
  • MP2
  • MP4/AAC
  • FLAC
  • Ogg Vorbis
  • MusePack
  • Monkey's Audio
  • WavPack

And what's best about Easy Tag is that you most likely won't have to manually edit all of those files.

Simple installation

You will find Easy Tag in your distribution repository, so you can fire up Synaptic, search for "easytag" (no quotes), select the package for installation, and click Apply to install.  Or, if you prefer command line, you could install with a command like yum install easytag. Once installed, you will find Easy Tag in your Audio (or Sound and Video) menu.

How Easy Tag works for you

Figure 1

There are two painless ways Easy Tag can be used: Automatic tag recognition and CDDB search. Althought it might be tempting to use the automatic tag recognition, the best, and most reliable method is using the CDDB choice. So when you fire up Easy Tag (and after it searches through your music library) you will see that it lists all of your music in the middle pane (see Figure 1).  What you see, in Figure 1, is a section of files with incorrect tags. You know a file has an incorrect tag if it is listed in red. Now let's fix those tracks.

The best way to do this is to select an entire

Figure 2

album of tracks. Although it looks like all of the tracks for the Rush album Signals are correct, there is something amiss. So I will highlight all of those tracks and right click the selections. From the right click menu select CDDB search. When the new window opens (see Figure 2) select the correct listing and then click Apply. It will seem as if nothing has happened, but something has. Click the Close button. Now you have to save the changes. Go the the File menu and select Save. A small window will appear for each change you are about to make (See figure 2). Click Yes for each change (unless you check the "Repeat action..." checkbox).

When the save is complete you can go back to the track listings and see that those files are no longer listed in red. Their tags are now correct.

Figure 3

If your CDDB search comes up with no results, then you might have to reconfigure the server Easy Tag uses. To do this to go Settings > Preferences and then click the CD Database tag (see Figure 3).  You can change the server settings for automatic and manual searches. When I changed mine to, all of my troubles went away.

Final thoughts

Use Easy Tag to clean up your music collection tags. Not only does this make a tedious task simpler, it keeps your music collection clean so that music players can easily read and display the tags for your music files.


Tutorials & Tips

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  1. Justin said on November 30, 2011 at 10:18 am

    The warning message about AAC streams when you load streams is because you don’t have the free Orban AAC/aacPlus Player Plugin installed.

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on November 30, 2011 at 10:56 am

      Justin, thanks for the information.

  2. santosh said on December 1, 2011 at 12:43 am

    does this support AAC ? or only mp3 streaming

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on December 1, 2011 at 1:43 am

      I’d say it supports all pls streams but I have not tried that so cannot verify it 100%.

  3. Barnabas said on August 3, 2012 at 5:15 pm

    Thank you Martin for a most informative and viable solution (it allowed me to play streams from a Netherland internet radio station in my WMP)! Continued success to you!

    Barnabas (USA)

  4. AppleRome said on October 7, 2012 at 7:31 am

    Your steps’ recommendation is still valid until 7th October 2012.. Thank you very much !!

  5. Laura said on December 1, 2012 at 4:41 pm

    Thank you!

  6. sak2005 said on December 9, 2014 at 8:03 pm

    You must convert file.pls to file.m3u
    because file.pls open with winamp and file.m3u open with wmp.

  7. Lithium said on February 10, 2017 at 11:10 am

    2017 still kicking on Windows 7
    Thx a ton

  8. Dennis said on April 18, 2017 at 4:05 am

    Hey, even i can do it, i stumbled through it and it works great! The only instruction advice i will add as i had to figure this out, when the wmp box opens that says save or open the bar on right says wmp click that drop down and select “open pls in wmp” once you do that it will work . Took me quite some time to discover that as i am no computer expert by any means. Having said that, previously i had downloaded codec packages and something about aac. None did any good. This rocks, i listen to a lot of internet radio and a number of them have dropped flash player and getting wmp to work had been a nightmare. So many thanks for this great solution to another problem that Micro-Hell will not even address. Peace- Out

  9. stephen marshall said on March 19, 2019 at 2:07 am

    openplsinwmp came in a zip file. I unpacked it, and didn’t find anything that looks like an executable, and even the files in the “doc” folder were in a format windows didn’t recognize. I’m not stupid. you said it would open effortlessly. It didn’t. This a rabbit hole I don’t want to go down.

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