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I've recently discovered an annoying problem with Windows 7: Windows Explorer and Windows Media Player cannot edit ID3 tags if the version used is 2.4 (and presumably above, and sometimes even v2.3 - bah!). It just doesn't work!

Does anyone know of some way to allow me to edit the details of newer MP3s within Windows Explorer?

(I realise that I could use another bit of software like MP3Tag, but it's annoying to have to change my habits just because Microsoft haven't updated their software. Why haven't they??)

Thanks for any help!

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dang... i was going to suggest mediamonkey and then you had to go and say "no software".... fine make me actually work on this one.... – KronoS Oct 25 '10 at 16:21
hehe.. sorry! :) – Django Reinhardt Oct 26 '10 at 8:42
I don't think there would be a hack. Just use MP3Tag, it's focused on working quick and you probably change your habits faster than ever finding a solution for this. – Tom Wijsman Apr 23 '12 at 9:34
I totally agree with @TomWijsman. – Mehper C. Palavuzlar Apr 23 '12 at 18:54
@JohnnyW: You're are enumerating a lot of steps, while this could be easily integrated into a single click in the right click menu OR even be automated upon downloading files with the mp3 extension. Or just take my first solution, but that one Ender finds unacceptable... – Tom Wijsman Apr 24 '12 at 11:48
up vote 3 down vote accepted

This doesn't answer the original question, but here are two suggestions on using free software to rewrite the tags in ID3v2.3 format, which is common to both Windows Vista and 7:

  1. The free Kid3 - ID3 Tagger (source)
  2. The free Mp3tag as follows, quoted from this thread :
  1. Install mp3tag, and open it
  2. Brought up my Music library
  3. Chose Arrange by: Song* so that all my songs would be shown in one list (even those contained in folders) in detailed visualization
  4. Typed "*.mp3" in the search box right over the arrange by option so that only mp3 files would show up in the list (excluding album covers etc.)
  5. Scrolled all the way down till songs with no tags started appearing
  6. Selected all these files and carried them over to the mp3tag window
  7. Selected all the files in mp3tag and right-clicked them
  8. Clicked Cut Tags, chose Yes and waited
  9. Repeated step 6 and clicked Paste Tags.

It's unlikely that Windows 7 will ever support IDTags 2.4 or above as it uses UTF-8 which Windows Explorer doesn't support. There are Explorer extensions such as Infotip Shell Extension that show ID3 v2.4 info on mouse hover, or extensions such as MP3Ext or AudioShell that add a new property-page.

A last solution would be to use another viewer than Explorer. Many such are available,.

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I appreciate the attempt, but I specifically asked for a solution not requiring any additional software, which is likely why you've received a downvote. :-\ – Ender Apr 23 '12 at 12:31
@harrymc What's the point in converting the downloads with software that allows you to edit the MP3 IDtags anyway? How often do you think I need to edit an ID3 tag? This is for MP3 files that I've bought and downloaded. I only need to update their details once. Converting them and then editing them is adding a step to a process. I could easily just use Mp3tag to edit the files while it's open. And let's not forget that I acknowledge that I could use Mp3tag in my question(!). Nice try at solving the problem, but this just smacks of someone trying to get the bounty by default. – Django Reinhardt Apr 23 '12 at 13:21
Well, the software I mentioned is only for a one-time use, not for editing one-by-one. Note that in Mp3tag an even simpler method is to delete the tags then undo. There are Explorer extensions such as Infotip Shell Extension that show ID3 v2.4 info on mouse hover, or extensions such as MP3Ext or AudioShell that add a new property-page. But no way I know of to tweak Explorer as-is to show v2.4 tags (such tags also use UTF-8 encoding which Explorer doesn't support). – harrymc Apr 23 '12 at 13:27

Ender, the reason you couldn't edit your MP3s was because you had them in a protected folder. Windows Vista and 7 protect files in certain folders to help secure your system. You can disable this protection by turning off UAC, but I wouldn't recommend it.

All you need to do is move the files into your c:\users\{YOURUSERNAME}\ folder (or sub folders). You have complete control over that folder, with no permission issues.

I hope that helps you understand what happened!

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The correct path is contained in the environment variable %USERPROFILE%. – Bob May 1 '12 at 10:16
Thanks, it makes perfect sense. I was under the impression that such things would be irrelevant if I was using an administrator account. – Ender May 2 '12 at 12:04

Had found a way sometime back.

All you need to do is give yourself full control to that folder.

Windows shows that 'everyone' has full control but isn't it a surprise that we are still not allowed to change the details :)

Enough of me ranting.. All you need to do is do a right click on the folder.. Properties.. select the security tab.. click on edit, for the permissions.. search for your username.. click check names.. your name should appear with as hyperlink now.. click on it and then give check the full control box for your username.

And you are done..

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Other answers gave me the impression that I would need 3rd party software, but this answer indicated that it was possible to edit the "details" with just Windows 7, and then I found it in the right click menu. I'm sure I knew this before and forgot. thanks. – Maitus Apr 28 at 0:54

Had the same issue on Windows 7 Professional N, and resolved by installing Media Feature Pack from Microsoft. I suppose this pack should be there by default on non N systems. ID3 tags suddenly started to show up on Explorer and it is editable through file Properties -> Details tab.

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At the bottom of the Details tab after right clicking Properties, you'll see a hyperlink with "Remove Properties and Personal Information". Do click this.
Then change the radio button off of the default "Create a copy" and onto the "Remove the following properties from this file" option.

Do not worry about ticking any boxes. Just click OK. You can now edit the fields just like in older Windows versions.

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Well, I like and use the freeware tag editors mentioned here on this page, but I also like and recommend AudioShell - ID3 tag editor shell extension. It is freeware too. It allows you to view and edit ID3 meta-data tags directly in Windows Vista/7/8 Explorer.

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