Warning: Windows 7 beta could corrupt your MP3s

Several reports from users testing the latest leaked build of Windows 7 indicate a potential data corruption issue using Microsoft's Windows Media Player 12.

Windows 7 beta 1 build 7000 leaked over the Christmas holidays and a Microsoft spokesperson has confirmed that there is a bug which affects the leaked build. Approximately 2-3 seconds will get shaved off the beginning of MP3s if you have set your Windows Media Player 12 settings to retrieve information from the internet and update files. The default configuration for WMP12 sets this if you use the "express" option during setup.

"The problem only happens when you edit metadata on a certain class of MP3 file (a file with a header larger than 16KB). When the new metadata is written, it corrupts the beginning of the file. This can happen either when you edit the metadata from inside WMP or Explorer, or it can happen if you have WMP set to automatically fill in missing metadata using the online service and add the MP3 to your library. This problem is only present in the recently leaked build" (7000) according to one poster in our forums.

Microsoft's official response is "Microsoft is aware of this issue and it will be addressed in the beta program". The company is currently hard at work readying a QFE (quick fix engineering) patch that will be distributed by Windows Update for those with official and non-official access. A support (KB) article is expected soon.

This highlights the importance of not using leaked builds with any applications or data that is critical and waiting for beta builds from official channels. We expect Microsoft to stress the urgency of applying the QFE patch to those in the beta program.

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Always do custom install when u first start up WMP and deslect all options for connecting to internet, libraries, etc. These choices turn on services that bog down any computer. Spend some time making sure you have turned off every option that you don't absolutely need (which for me is nothing) and then go into the Services in Computer management and turn off all the Windows Media Player services except for the player which u set to Manual. This is a CPU sucking hydra headed monster if u don't tame it down ruthlessly.

unfortunately now that these betas are so easily available to people that don't know better, we are seeing more and more people who shouldn't be getting their hands on them using them on their home machines then crying when they hose 1tb of data.... ALWAYS keep betas away from anything you don't want trashed.

unfortunately this the reason why Microsoft can't let Joe shmoe download and test beta's. Joe Moron Shmoe downloads the beta. Puts it on his production machine. Corrupts his mp3's and starts slamming Microsoft every change he gets.

If you are:
a ) installed this leaked win7 (build 7000)
b ) uses wmp12.
c ) Edit metatag from a mp3 using wmp12 where there are several application that do a better job editing tags (massive, automatic and such).
d ) The edited mp3 contain a non-common size of metadata (larger than 16k).

then you are in trouble.

I think its Googles ever growing list of betas that never leave Beta that makes people complacent into thinking its safe to use Betas on a day to day basis...

These same people then cry tears when it nukes their system

How is it that people are alarmed that the beta version of an operating system (or media player) has "bugs." I mean, seriously, it is beta software. You would be a damned fool to load this on anything other than a testing station. If you are running this on a production (work or primary) system, you need to seriously rethink being a beta tester. Otherwise, just accept your fate and wallow in your own self induced frustration.

bradsday said,
How is it that people are alarmed that the beta version of an operating system (or media player) has "bugs." I mean, seriously, it is beta software. You would be a damned fool to load this on anything other than a testing station. If you are running this on a production (work or primary) system, you need to seriously rethink being a beta tester. Otherwise, just accept your fate and wallow in your own self induced frustration.

+1 .. my thoughts exactly ^

I thought beta projects were just meant to be experimented with... some people sound like they imported whole collections of music to WMP12... using this Win7 beta as their main OS? kinda silly if thats the case....

I love it when something in a beta, for any software or game, doesn't work and people cry about it. Their tears sustain me.

this is too funny, espically for those who are using the beta operating system as their main OS.

When will they learn.

barteh said,
this is too funny, espically for those who are using the beta operating system as their main OS.

When will they learn.

Not anytime soon. I'm using it as a main OS, with the full knowledge that if anything goes wrong, its my fault.

I currently use my machine to play games, surf porn* and listen to music - via itunes. Nothing too serious or important.

If you are too stupid to accept that, thats not my fault. This whole news post fills me with "meh"

* - occasionally I have been known to use the internet for other purposes.

Using official (not leaked) pre-release builds DOES NOT prevent people from surprises like this.

I'm wondering whether the 'official' beta build will be updated with a proper fix or will it just be the same (byte-to-byte) like the leaked one. Not everyone runs Windows Update just right after the installation, many people have it turned off.

soldier1st said,
when will ppl learn to never use express and use custom instead?

I'd have ticked the same option when using "Custom" install as well.

It's a useful feature when it doesn't take the first few seconds off your songs :P

soldier1st said,
when will ppl learn to never use express and use custom instead?

Maybe because some people don't know much about computers and/or the custom settings and just use express.

Does it only affect MP3, or other audio format as well? I rip my music in WMA lossless and have not tried Windows 7 yet on my PC, but only in virtual PC, I don't want to rip everything again!

Gonna do a backup just in case.

Only MP3, and only files meeting certain criteria. I have not yet identified any MP3 files on my system that were affected (but I always keep back ups just in case).

If you wait for the official beta release you'll have nothing to worry about.

Thanks, I rip every CD I buy in WMA lossless, so I'm good!

Do you happen to know if technet subscribers are going to get the beta any sooner, or if it's going to be at the same time as the public beta?

Brandon Live said,
If you wait for the official beta release you'll have nothing to worry about.

So judging from your answer we can expect the fix being integrated into the official beta? Which means it would be a different build from what has leaked.

Tom

tom5 said,
So judging from your answer we can expect the fix being integrated into the official beta? Which means it would be a different build from what has leaked.

Tom


That is not what I said.

Hmm.. well i was wondering why one of my songs sounded weird like that. Gladly it was only 4-7 songs that got affected. Guess i should backup more often too!!

so thats what happened! way back in build 6801 i noticed a few of my mp3's were missing a few seconds from the beginning after i had opened them..i didn't think nothing of it till now...this inst localized to build 7000 only then

Windows7even said,
so thats what happened! way back in build 6801 i noticed a few of my mp3's were missing a few seconds from the beginning after i had opened them..i didn't think nothing of it till now...this inst localized to build 7000 only then


6801 didn't have this problem.

Beta software ; do not use in production systems.

I'm not suprised things like this happens, but some seem to be, and blame everyone else than themselves :p

morphen said,
Beta software ; do not use in production systems.

I'm not suprised things like this happens, but some seem to be, and blame everyone else than themselves :p


since when has listening to mp3's been productive? same time watching pr0n at work did i guess

Windows7even said,



since when has listening to mp3's been productive? same time watching pr0n at work did i guess :)

He means a production machine as opposed to a testing machine. At least... that's what I think he means.

Silverskull said,

He means a production machine as opposed to a testing machine. At least... that's what I think he means.

precisely

An error in an unreleased version of WMP isn't really a very good reason to switch to WinAmp.

There are plenty of other reasons not to use WMP, but that's beside point. lol

portauthority said,
too bad winamp is garbage...

Give up. Winamp has been around as long as the MP3 format itself and doesn't deserve any criticism. Admittedly they lost their way when they got bought out but.. I'm willing to bet it's been on computers as long as you have!

Chicane-UK said,
Give up. Winamp has been around as long as the MP3 format itself and doesn't deserve any criticism. Admittedly they lost their way when they got bought out but.. I'm willing to bet it's been on computers as long as you have!

So what? Microsoft and Apple have been around how long exactly? Does that make them exempt from any sort of criticism?

How long it's been around doesn't matter if the software isn't that great. Some people like it, and that's fine. For me, and probably others, it's not what I'd call a "decent" choice of media players.

And perhaps due to bad experiences from some individuals, they may feel it's absolute garbage. That's how I feel about Ubuntu, but hey, if we're not allowed to express our opinions, what are we doing here then?

welll i used wmp11 for sometime now, had no reason to move to winamp, it worked as a media player. wmp12 is not for me, so thats the main reason for moving to winamp.

kouhii00 said,
Title is very misleading...it's WMP12 not Win 7 corrupting the MP3's

Hardly - the first sentence explains more fully, and the only way you can be running WMP12 is with the Win7 beta.

I agree, it should really be changed. Some people might just see this headline and be like whoa, I'm staying away from Windows 7. Probably not too many, but still.

The article states that the Explorer shell can do it too. Even if the shell is just using WMP's libraries, it's still pretty fair to classify it as a "Windows 7" bug.

That said, this is what betas and test builds are for! It also makes a good excuse to give the Windows Update features a little widespread testing, too.

random_n said,
The article states that the Explorer shell can do it too. Even if the shell is just using WMP's libraries, it's still pretty fair to classify it as a "Windows 7" bug.


Technically it's the property handler code that commits data back to the MP3 when you change metadata.

Brandon Live said,
Technically it's the property handler code that commits data back to the MP3 when you change metadata.

Of course! lol

the last sentence is highly suspicious. I hardly think there's a difference between a leaked 7000 build versus a normal download

The 7000 build, while most likely the beta, is not the official beta. Microsoft could patch it and release a 7001 build and call that the beta. And there is a huge difference between a "leaked download" versus a normal official download.

Chrono951 said,
The 7000 build, while most likely the beta, is not the official beta. Microsoft could patch it and release a 7001 build and call that the beta. And there is a huge difference between a "leaked download" versus a normal official download.


Sure there is. Just as an example, official downloads tend to have release notes, "known issues" sections, and other warnings or special instructions.

I would say the last sentence applies to all beta software. In the end it's tagged "beta" because there are most likely bugs in what is nearly release software, if you're using it as your Primary OS, then you should learn well from your experience.

I'll admit, I'm running a leaked copy (6801 in Virtualbox) but this is for testing purposes for my software, I wouldn't even dream of using it as an OS yet.

"Microsoft's official response is Microsoft is aware of this issue and it will be addressed in the beta program"

- Does that mean Microsoft purposefully leaked the Beta?

georgevella said,
edit: oh and ... how did you imply that MS leaked the beta purposefully?

Read the forums (link in the article)

Chaks said,
Read the forums (link in the article)

Not sure where you're getting that impression. Nowhere in the forums does it state MS leaked the beta on purpose. Seems a little crazy.

creamhackered said,
Not sure where you're getting that impression. Nowhere in the forums does it state MS leaked the beta on purpose. Seems a little crazy.

oops..that was my bad, I thought georgevella was asking about the bug, which is discussed in the forums

creamhackered said,
Not sure where you're getting that impression. Nowhere in the forums does it state MS leaked the beta on purpose. Seems a little crazy.

I think it's more of a conspiracy theory that he's suggesting.

creamhackered said,
Not sure where you're getting that impression. Nowhere in the forums does it state MS leaked the beta on purpose. Seems a little crazy.

http://www.microsoft-watch.com/content/win..._windows_7.html

BitTorrent brought the Christmas present Santa didn't: Leaked build of Windows 7, whose official Beta 1 release is perhaps days away. Was this a craftily timed Microsoft marketing leak?

I sure as hell think so. It's certainly what I would do if I worked at Microsoft on Windows evangelism. The timing is perfect, from a marketing perspective. The leaked build hit BitTorrent sometime on Saturday, right after Christmas when the Windows geeks had nothing better to do and bloggers and journalists had nothing better to write about. The leaked build is designated "7000," which strongly suggests that the code is the same as forthcoming Beta 1, or close to it.

toadeater said,
http://www.microsoft-watch.com/content/win..._windows_7.html

BitTorrent brought the Christmas present Santa didn't: Leaked build of Windows 7, whose official Beta 1 release is perhaps days away. Was this a craftily timed Microsoft marketing leak?

I sure as hell think so. It's certainly what I would do if I worked at Microsoft on Windows evangelism. The timing is perfect, from a marketing perspective. The leaked build hit BitTorrent sometime on Saturday, right after Christmas when the Windows geeks had nothing better to do and bloggers and journalists had nothing better to write about. The leaked build is designated "7000," which strongly suggests that the code is the same as forthcoming Beta 1, or close to it.


Obviously if a blog says it's true it must be...

Bloggers never have anything better to do or say other than speculate even the most trivial things. How this was released "for their convenience" is beyond me. Microsoft doesn't need Christmas to leak a build, especially a beta at that. The internet will jump on it regardless of timing.