('14+) USB Flash Drive problems - I've tried 2 different USB sticks - Subaru Forester Owners Forum
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post #1 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-31-2017, 03:57 PM Thread Starter
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USB Flash Drive problems - I've tried 2 different USB sticks

I have a 2017 Foreseter 2.5i Premium (no Nav system). I've tried 2 different USB sticks with the same results.

The order of the mp3 files appears to be the order in which they were copied from my computer (Win 7) to the flash drive. So if I copy (say) 25 files from the computer to a folder on the flash drive the files will be in some random order when I look at the folder in my car. Also if I add an mp3 file to a folder at the end it will appear at the end of the listing in the car even if the file name starts with "A"

Not all mp3 files can be seen in the car (although my computer sees them all.) Also if I create a hierarchy of folders (artist folder with album folders underneath) all folders are brought to the top-level when I look at the List in my car. (This isn't such a big deal to me.)

I'm not trying to put more than 45 mp3 files in a folder (and that was just to experiment).

The flash drives are KOOTION 16GB USB 2.0 Flash Drive (from Amazon) and an old SanDisk 4 GB Titanium Cruzer. Both are formatted as FAT32.

I can give lots of details if it will help on what exactly I've tried and what the specific results were. But this is driving me nuts. Any suggestions will be appreciated. The threads I found were for older models and the suggestions I found didn't work for me. I just want to be able to order the tracks in folders (yes I've added numbers at the beginning of the track name as well to no avail).

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post #2 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-31-2017, 04:38 PM
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While in USB, Click "List" button... switch to "Album" (not genre, artist, etc.) and it should play your folders in order.

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post #3 of 24 (permalink) Old 04-02-2017, 12:44 PM Thread Starter
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NABOBISH, thanks for your reply. I tried that it helps with some aspects of my problem but doesn't fix everything. Here's the main issue: I have 3 James Taylor CDs. I grab the best tracks of each and put them in a folder called James Taylor. If I click on the Album link and I want to listen to James Taylor I have to remember which CDs I have and where they are. (Yes I think I could fix this issue by going to the artist tab but I'm trying to minimize the amount of tapping on tabs and switching things around while I'm driving down the road).

Or if I want to create a Folder of blues slide guitar. Different artists, different CDs. If I go to Artist or Album tab none of them will appear together.

Am I just stuck having to create a folder from scratch and making sure that the folders are put on the stick in the order I want to see them? And the mp3 files and then put in the folder in the order I want to see them?

My last car (VW Jetta) didn't have any of these problems. It just ordered songs and folders in alphabetical order. Very easy to move around when I had to.
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post #4 of 24 (permalink) Old 04-05-2017, 01:05 PM
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Buy an old iPod Classic and use that for music storage. The file system is much better than a USB drive. I have a few 30GB and 80GB iPods that I use specifically as music storage in cars and home theatre receivers. The Subaru head unit lets you search the iPods music much better than a USB drive. You don't need a new one. I pick the older versions up on ebay for $100 or so.
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post #5 of 24 (permalink) Old 04-09-2017, 01:12 PM Thread Starter
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EJH,
Thanks for the suggestion. I must admit I'm frustrated that I need to make it more complicated (buying the iPod) rather than simple. I thought to ask whether there was a USB interface (my last car had an SD card interface for the same purpose). It never occurred to me that I needed to bring in an USB Flash Drive and see whether it worked the way I expected.

You'd think that in 2017 we shouldn't have to go through this.
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post #6 of 24 (permalink) Old 04-09-2017, 01:32 PM
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Try one of the free File Sorting Utilities available online to put the USB drive into alphabetical order. Here's a link to one at CNet:

File Sorting Utility - Free download and software reviews - CNET Download.com
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post #7 of 24 (permalink) Old 04-10-2017, 10:42 AM Thread Starter
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bbottomley - thanks for the reply and the suggestion. I will look at the file sorting utilities, pick one and see how it goes. I appreciate the help and the link.
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post #8 of 24 (permalink) Old 04-11-2017, 06:11 AM
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Try this (copied and pasted from this thread - USB Music Files):

"The issue you're experiencing is related to the formatting of the USB drive. Since you're having this issue, I'm guessing the drive is formatted as FAT32 (as opposed to NTFS).

The default sorting method used by FAT32 drives is by the date the file was added to the drive, which is not the desirable order for something like audio files. Unfortunately, the Subaru audio system doesn't have software in place to automatically sort audio files like iTunes or Windows Media Player do. The Subaru software just reads the files in the order that they exist on the USB drive.

To fix the issue, you need to use some additional software to properly sort your files. Personally, I used something called DriveSort. However, if you search for "FAT sorter", you'll come up with a plethora of options (including DriveSort) that will allow you to sort the files on your USB drive in alpha-numeric order. Transfer your audio files to the USB drive and then use the software to adjust the file order of the audio files on the USB drive."
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post #9 of 24 (permalink) Old 04-11-2017, 11:14 AM Thread Starter
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kubu4 - I went and looked up the thread you linked to (thanks - wish I'd found it when I searched originally before starting this thread). Seeing your comment in that thread on trying to format the USB stick as NTFS I ran that experiment. I did not have success. In fact, the USB stick was not recognized at all by my Forester.

Where did you download DriveSort from? Don't know which sites I can trust.
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post #10 of 24 (permalink) Old 04-11-2017, 12:31 PM Thread Starter
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Just tried the File Sorting Utility from CNET (link above). The utility is very old (2002). I tried sorting one folder with 59 files in it (kind of a greatest hits from several CDs). And a James Taylor folder with 3 subfolders (James Taylor, Mud Slide Slim, Sweet Baby James). I'm afraid it didn't help. In the 59 file folder I'm not sure that anything changed - it's in an apparently random order. 2 of the 3 James Taylor folders were sorted correctly, but I don't know that they weren't in the correct order in the first place and the utility didn't do anything. The third folder (Mud Slide Slim) had at least one file out of order.

Also my Subaru manual says that the USB sticks need to be in FAT16 or FAT32 format. So I guess it's no surprise that the NTFS formatting couldn't be seen in the car.

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post #11 of 24 (permalink) Old 04-11-2017, 12:43 PM
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Sorry to hear that the program from CNet didn't work. It's not the one I use, but it seemed to be a trustworthy source, and the site I got mine from no longer exists.

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post #12 of 24 (permalink) Old 04-11-2017, 05:11 PM Thread Starter
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bbottomley - thanks. If I can find a trustworthy source for DriveSort I'll try that.

Conceptually this seems simple - sort the entries in the directory and re-write the directory file. (OK so why can't Subaru do that.) Wish I had some programming skills left.
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post #13 of 24 (permalink) Old 04-13-2017, 06:52 AM
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I grabbed DriveSort from here (the download link is at the bottom of the page and links directly to a ZIP file): Anerty's Lair - DriveSort

Note: It's Windows only...

Also, thanks for the NTFS note. I actually discovered that the owner's manual indicates that NTFS is not a supported format.
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post #14 of 24 (permalink) Old 04-13-2017, 01:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EJH View Post
Buy an old iPod Classic and use that for music storage. The file system is much better than a USB drive. I have a few 30GB and 80GB iPods that I use specifically as music storage in cars and home theatre receivers. The Subaru head unit lets you search the iPods music much better than a USB drive. You don't need a new one. I pick the older versions up on ebay for $100 or so.
As a "heads up", I have a new IPod Classic that will not work with the Subaru longer than about 10 minutes. It then locks up. I have a 17 XT Touring. I have tried 2 different IPods. They are both larger capacity (can't remember the exact size). I can use my wife's small IPod with no problem. Subaru says it's an Apple issue, Apple says Subaru.
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post #15 of 24 (permalink) Old 04-17-2017, 01:31 PM Thread Starter
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kubu4 - I downloaded DriveSort and have been working with it this afternoon. Mostly the results are good - you can see the files in the original order and then see what happens when they are sorted. As long as I remember to save the folder when I take the USB stick back to the car the files are indeed in order. Which is great.

The only issue - I can't figure out how to sort the entire USB stick with one sort. I've tried all 3 configurations for the Directories (before the files, after the files, mixed with the files) and results appear to me to be the same. Whatever folder I'm in gets sorted. Any subfolders do not get sorted. If I'm missing something here please let me know. I can live with this though - it just means I have to manually traverse the folder hierarchy and sort as I go. It's just that it would be easier if I could do everything at once.

One more tidbit I discovered - my Subaru does not recognize *.wav files. I can't remember what the owner's manual says (it may have mentioned this).
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