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Magellan - Amarok released (including security fix)

Amarok 2.0
Just a few weeks after the 2.0 release the new and improved Amarok, codenamed Magellan, is ready for you. Don't let the small version number increase fool you though! We brought back features a lot of you have been waiting for and of course fixed a lot of bugs as well as one security issue.

Welcome back a few well known and loved features from the Amarok 1.4 series: queuing, playlist search and filtering as well as "stop after current track". And, long awaited and finally available: sorting the collection by composer. We of course also worked on other features and extended the Scriptable Service API to allow smoother integration of service scripts. The LibriVox service script has received some love and comes with new icons amongst other improvements. Media device handling has also seen many improvements: MTP devices can now delete multiple tracks at once, and the status bar gives visual feedback when deleting tracks from iPods. Our OS X users will certainly like the built in Growl notification support.

Thanks to the feedback of many we were also able to spot and correct some annoying bugs: The collection scanner now doesn't miss entries anymore and completes its work, and the user now gets a warning when the scanning fails. Please read the changelog below for a list of the most important fixes and features.

Security advisory: We have been made aware of a security problem concerning the parsing of malformed Audible digital audio files 2 days ago by Tobias Klein. We fixed it immediately and informed packagers so they can provide new packages for you. Please upgrade your installation as soon as new packages are available for you.



  • Add advanced, configurable, searching and filtering to the playlist.
  • Add "Stop after track" option to the playlist menu.
  • Queue track functionality has returned. (BR 171939)
  • Growl support on OS X.
  • Add automatic recovery option to MySQL embedded server.
  • Greatly improved service script. It now works for all books, and dynamically fetches a summary of each book that is shown in the service info applet. The script now also has a propper icon in the service browser and its own emblem and default "album" cover for books.
  • Sorting collection by Composer is now possible. (BR 177271)
  • Service scripts can now dynamically fetch context info when items are selected (info can still be applied statically to each item as well).
  • Album items from a service script can now have custom covers.
  • Items from a service script can now have a custom emblem.
  • Service scripts can now set custom icons for the service browser.
  • Add simple filtering to the service browser.
  • Podcast channels are automatically refreshed once per hour if autoscan is enabled.


  • MTP devices can now delete multiple tracks at once.
  • Status bar notification on copying or deleting tracks on Ipod.
  • Don't fold the Collection Browser after editing or updating the collection. (BR 166841)
  • Replace the systray icon with a more modern logo.
  • "Cool-Streams" radio service script is now enabled by default.
  • Show more verbose output when copying tracks to the local collection.
  • Custom Sorting in the Collection Browser has returned.
  • Memory use optimizations.
  • Playlist items now have tooltips. (BR 170844)


  • Fix possible buffer overflows when parsing Audible .aa files.
  • The QtScript Qt binding generator has been updated to the latest. This should complete some features such as Model/View in the QtScript API and fix building with Qt 4.5. (BR 177863)
  • The Files browser now remembers its settings, like the active directory. (BR 173742)
  • Fix problems with the collection scanner often missing a part of the collection, or potentially failing altogether. (BR 176154)
  • Fix Context View crash when quitting the application. (BR 179110)
  • LibriVox: Don't crash when double clicking "Enter Query". (BR 177991)
  • Files could be deleted when moving files to an unwritable destination. (BR 178701)
  • Don't override cached lyrics when fetching. (BR 178196)
  • Show a warning when the collection scanner dies. (BR 176154)
  • Set date correctly on MTP devices. (BR 171194)
  • Ipod ratings are read/written/displayed.
  • Ipod playcounts are read and displayed on Current Track Info applet.
  • Lastfm Settings Dialog can now check to ensure username/password is correct. (BR 144456)
  • Don't delete files if an error occurs during transfer. (BR 178701)
  • MPRIS GetMetadata() call returns arturl for streams. (BR 178695)
  • Fix grouping of various artist albums in the playlist. (BR 175604)
  • Update statistics properly on Windows and Mac versions.
  • Fix progress indicator disapearing when skipping in streams.
  • Write the discnumber field for mp3 tags.
  • Don't start a fadeout when stopping paused media. (BR 178057)
  • More accurate Amarok 1.4 database imports.
  • Ipod tracks' sample rate is now shown correctly in Tag Dialog.
  • Tracks did not always report that their editable status correctly. (BR 177058)
  • Gapless playback of MTP tracks one after another now works.
  • Podcast with some unsafe characters in them caused database corruption. (BR 172594)
  • Amarok no longer stalls on large Ipod copy operations. (BR 173707)
  • Fix switching between basic and advanced mode in the filename scheme chooser.
  • Fix MTP device attached on startup crashing. (BR 177201)
  • Tracks with same tags as a track on Ipod are no longer copied. (BR 177198)
  • When reaching the end of the playlist, actually show stopped state. (BR 177782)
  • Fixes in playing tracks in repeat modes.
  • The wikipedia applet did not give a status update when an entry was not found. (BR 173940)
  • Add tooltips to icons in context view. (BR 174478)
  • Fix icons and layout in Advanced Filter dialog.

Join us in Amarok'ing in a Free World!
PS: One free beer at FOSDEM in Belgium next month for the first person to figure out the current release name theme ;-) Leave a comment below and join us at FOSDEM.


I know the team at is responsible for the Windows port, but about how far behind are there usually? What's the ammount of collaboration between you and them? Will we ever see concurrent releases?

We are very close to the Windows guys, so we usually have pretty good cooperation. The thing that would help them most is sheer manpower, I assume. And I expect more people to join their team as KDE applications are becoming increasingly popular on Windows.

Why not help them? :)

The newest announcement from the team may well cause an explosion in contributors for KDE - the one where it's now possible (bar some minor inconveniences with plasma data engines for tasks and system tray icons not being there yet ;) ) to run Plasma as your Windows shell :) Announcement here:

Another Amarok version, another regression. Tray icon stopped showing progress of the song and is plain ugly with visible aliasing. :(

Pathetic is the only world i can use to describe all the - good - energy and efforts of you people to produce a Windows and Mac version. I used to prefer Kaffeine but yes i am a satisfied user of Amarok thanks to its improve features. In the past it had a nice interface but too limited functionality. I could but don't understand why one would work FOR FREE for the software Giant that has it is said 60 billions NOT millions but billions in its bank account for law suits and that is said to have presented the future release of Windows aka Windows 7 as the ultimate Linux killer.

In Windows to be fair there are so many free players do you think for an iota of a second you are going to make a DIFFERENCE?

Good intentions but pathetic indeed you should concentrate on Linux users in Windows you are a NON player but if you are stupid enough to work for the US giant be my guest.

I personaly think you should work on resolving the TOO MANY bugs still afflicting Amarok instead of helping - for free!!! - the US giant to become even richer and put a couple more billions into Bill Gates bank account.

Sorry, but you completely misunderstand how Amarok is technically designed. Thanks to using Qt 4 and KDElibs 4, we basically get the Windows and OSX versions "for free". It's exactly the same code base, because we are using excellent cross-platform libraries.

Then consider the following: The more users = the more developers = the more bugs get fixed. Every bug fixed by a Windows developer on Amarok is automatically _also_ fixed on Linux and OSX.

Last not least, not all of us are working on Amarok for free. Some are working on it professionally, and a bigger userbase increases our chances of generating more income (while keeping Amarok _Free Software_, of course).

This does put things into a different perspective, doesn't it? :)

In fact, one of the features that I use the most, the new service, ( and I run linux exclusively ) was initially developed by a guy developing on windows. So this is not a "zero sum" game where all effort spent on Windows or Mac is effort not spent on the Linux version. There are a few tweaks that needs to happen on each platform specifically, but in terms of code its almost negligible.

I just discovered that one can have KDE 4.2 under Windows.
Right away I installed it on my wife's computer
so now I can use amarok, konqueror, and other favorite KDE applications on this machine. All is not fully functional (still missing is kmail, for example) but what a pleasure this is! Although this will not get me to give up my own linux portable, at least now my family can discover the joys of amarok.

Amarok is still 2.0 - I image that 2.0.1 will be ported soon.

Yes, there are plenty of free audio players on Windows. There are also many free audio players on linux - however, I will prefer Amarok every time on every system I use. This Gollum-like obsession and jealousy between operating systems doesn't help anyone.

You really think Microsoft is cheering when Amarok is released for Windows? They have their own media player and won't be so happy about fading vendor lock-in. I have seen troves of people switching to Linux or OSX after they could get acclimated to the open source library of applications on their familiar system.

Sounds like is the real 2.0 - I think I might be able to switch over now!

I think wouldn't come so quickly if there was no 2.0. Big thanks to Amarok developers for improving the already the best music player!

Somehow I expect to hear similar things ( 2.x.x is _the real_ 2.0. ) for the next many version we release, as the specific features that was missing for someone in 2.0.0 makes it back:-)

Sounds like 2.0.11 is the Surreal 2.0!!!

No it's not, still many regressions. Even the stop button doesn't work. :|

Amarok for MacOS X is still in Beta. Still the list of new features in Magellan lists "Growl support on OS X." :-(

why does this make you sad....

It makes me sad, because it looks like there is a Magellan for OSX, yet I'm still waiting for Amarok 2 Final. Therefore someday, when Amarok 2 Final for MacOSX is finally available, I will probably go straight to waiting for Magelllan. Not a very happy outlook...

Booooh, Amarok has a kdebase 4.2 RC 1 dependency on opensuse 11.1. But the opensuse team will not make RC1 available before the official release date (Tuesday, I guess). Now I have to wait two more days to be able to install it. Life's tough...

Switch from UNSTABLE to KDE:KDE4:Factory:Desktop and you'll get Amarok Factory now has KDE 4.2 (4.1,.87 snapshot).

This release finally puts back those features that made Amarok a great audio player, I especially appreciate the return of the queue track and stop after current track features and the fact that compilations are now displayed under one heading instead of many. I think this release might be enough for those that were holding back with Amarok 1.4 to upgrade now.

Thanks for all the hard work guys, much appreciated.

I'm a long time Amarok user on Ubuntu 8.10 who upgraded because the features I use are now present (I thought). First thing I noticed is that much less information is present in the playlist, which is instead pushed aside by a not-very-useful track info pane, which is extendable with other applets, yes, but not in a way that would be useful in the way that the table-style playlist was.

I noticed that the collection tree display was not showing tracks at first (only empty albums), which is a problem that disappeared after a few restarts.

After importing my Amarok 1 collection (which I did first, so I don't know if this is the cause of problems), I notice that most of my tracks have wildly incorrect track info, except for the title, which is correct. The rest of the fields (artist, composer, album) look like they were borrowed at random from the rest of my playlist, with tracks from the same album getting the same randomly borrowed fields. See my homepage for a self-evident screenshot of this behaviour.

I tried to search for a specific piece, and found to my dismay that the search filter currently fails to break up words into separate search tokens, instead treating the entire search text as if it were in quotes (if we're talking about google or Amarok 1 style search syntax)

To add insult to injury, it also seemed to leak memory, and running it within Valgrind confirmed this. It may even leak at a constant rate while playing, but I didn't run it long enough to confirm this last issue.

As a consolation, it didn't seem to damage my Amarok 1 preferences, which made the downgrade fairly painless. If you bother to open bugs about these issues, feel free to subscribe my email.

What prevents YOU from opening bug reports? This would be the easiest way for you too to get rid of these malfunctions.

Believe it or not, I'm sick of filing bug reports that don't get fixed, and it takes a few minutes to file each one when you factor in the time taken to search for duplicates. I didn't have the time to do it at that moment, so I just made that comment and washed my hands of the matter.

This is also my views regarding the middle "applet" pane.

Is there a way to include a Hide Button for this "applet" pane?

I've tried squeezing it to make it disappear by adjusting the left and right pane but it have a certain visible minimum width which is very annoying.

It is actually possible to hide it by using the drag handles. Just drag the edge of the playlist all the way to the left edge, and then use the drag handle of the browsers to give that the size you want it to have

It's not possible to hide totally the middle "applet" pane.

I did just what you've mentioned by squeezing it to make it disappear by adjusting the drag handle of left (browsers) pane and right (playlist) pane but it have a certain visible minimum width.

You need to keep pulling it - the minimum size is a sanity value, to ensure the widgets don't have to deal with very small sizes. If you keep pulling the splitter, it will snap closed.

It will snap close, BUT it push back the left (browsers) pane hiding much information on the file browser.

If I would re-adjust the left (browsers) pane to make the width equal to the right (playlist) pane, the minimum visible width of the middle "applet" pane would POP out again!!!

Not if you use the drag handle of the browser and not the playlist to readjust it :-)

In my latest blog post there is a screenshot where I have hidden the context view this way:,-...

It very hard to do. It should be easier and shoudn't leave any sign of the middle panel.

Agreed. It is hard to do.

It took me a while to get the trick down. What would be cool is if we could optionally shove it into the browsers list on the left and be able to call it at will. (I know, old-skool amarok 1.4 style, but hey, it worked, and gets it out of the way.)

Ok, this is good news. This middle plane is the most anoying thing since vista comes out ;)

But i think the best part of amarok 1 is gone: the multi-tag-editing feature direct in the playlist window, where you can see and edit the most information on the smalles room. I can't understand why there are developers out there they think that "funktion follows desing" is the right way?? Don't understand me wrong, i love design, but funktions and stability is much more important! With amarok 2 the tag workflow is now much more complicatet and slower.

Knows enybody if the best tag-editor comes back? Or at least a look-at-all-tags-at-the-same-time playlist design?

Ok, this is good news. This middle plane is the most anoying thing since vista comes out ;)

But i think the best part of amarok 1 is gone: the multi-tag-editing feature direct in the playlist window, where you can see and edit the most information on the smalles room. I can't understand why there are developers out there they think that "funktion follows desing" is the right way?? Don't understand me wrong, i love design, but funktions and stability is much more important! With amarok 2 the tag workflow is now much more complicatet and slower.

Knows enybody if the best tag-editor comes back? Or at least a look-at-all-tags-at-the-same-time playlist design?

I've thought about my complaint about the new UI, and I think it's possible to please everyone by adding more flexibility to the interface. The idea would be to design a container widget for the applets and sidebar items that would let users graphically choose how these things (the playlist, track info, and other applets) should be displayed. I would put this in a separate mode, so that the user says they want to customize the window and then the widget can go out of its way to highlight what customizations are possible. If the current Amarok 2 UI style is to remain possible, this widget should be able to put applets into sidebars, along with some kind of splitting in the remaining window space. Then, the playlist and sidebars could all become applets with equal standing, leaving the user to be able to decide how to arrange them under this container. Finally, an Amarok 1 style playlist would be implemented as an applet that could be positioned prominently in the window using the layout UI, for users who prefer Amarok that way.

Unless Amarok 2 can replace the functionality that seems to be no longer present (various sorting options, table-based display of track info, and quick editing of multiple track tags), many existing users are not going to enjoy switching versions.

Is the project no longer active? I don't even seem to be running the latest Amarok release, nvm the latest development version.

Very, very "usefull" thinks - and where is equalizer? For most people basic think?!

They won't bring back the equalizer until Phonon supports an equalizer, which unfortunately may take forever to happen. I wonder if anyone on the Amarok team is also working on Phonon?

Unfortunately we currently don't have the manpower and time to contribute to Phonon. But we might do it at some point.

At least the phonon excuse is a real answer why there is no equalizer in Amarok 2. Its a better response than Amarok developers insulting your music collection and giving a BS line that equalizers are just toys and any audio developer worth their salt doesn't care about them. Its a BS excuse because everyone knows what worth equalizers bring to a music player, well everyone but audio software developers apparently.

For me too, the only thing preventing a real adoption of amarok 2 would be the equalizer.

Project NEON is still active and working wonderfully.

However, keep in mind that only the latest stable Ubuntu release is supported - This would be 8.10 (Intrepid).

Ah, that is the reason. I am still using 8.04 LTS (Hardy). Thanks for the information.

Amarok screenshot changelog

Nice work, as always, with the visual changelog! :-)

Personally, I prefer the Amarok1 location of play control on the lower right of the GUI window just below the playlist pane.

You see, a mouse pointer is just a virtual extension of your hand. Let say you have an open Amarok2 application with its GUI window fully maximized.

Now, imagine that you don't have a mouse but using your hand to activate the play control. You need to extend your hand (assuming you are right-handed) and coordinate it with your eyes all the way across and on top left of the screen just to activate the control button.

But then you can also activate the play control button inline in the playlist pane.

Well I'm not an expert on ergonomics of GUI design, maybe this is just me. Experiencing resistance to change...

What went wrong?
In the 2.0 release it's memory usage was around 35 MB.
But now from the starting itself it takes 52 MB.....
Do the new functionalities cost us more than 15 MBs....?

I don't know how you tried to measure the memory usage, but at least on Linux this is much harder than meets the eye.

E.g. you have to take into account that Amarok uses many shared libraries, which means that it uses less memory on its own than it would appear.

I checked the memory usage in the "System monitor".....
so, same kind of measurement for both the versions....

can anyone confirm it???

my box has 8gb ram which costs me 150€ , lol looking @ memory usage !!!!!!!!!!!

After playing with the latest version of Amarok2 (amarok-nightly-20090113+svn910580) for a while familiarizing with its new features, I could now appreciate its full potential although it is still in its rough form and continuously evolving.

The resistance to change that I've experienced as a Amarok1 user is due to the default initial setting of Amarok2 where-in the 3 pane (1 of the side-bar tab, the middle applet pane and the play-list pane) are simultaneously open.

It would be better (for Amarok1 user) if the default initial setting of Amarok2 is in this manner:

1. No right side tab (side-bar) is open.
2. Middle (applet) pane with maybe the current track info open.
3. And of course the always open Play-list pane.

The problem or confusion (for me and maybe for others) appear when you open one of the side-bar maybe the File browser and the middle applet pane is squeezed on the middle.

Three simultaneously open pane IMHO is an information overload.

After learning the "Undocumented Trick" below (thanks to Dan Leinir Turthra Jensen) on how to fully snap closed the middle applet pane, my original orientation with the old Amarok1 came back to me and now appreciate the new version.