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File Types

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This page contains a description of the content and purpose of each file type used by mAirList.

All the file types described below are XML-based except for Scripts and .M3U playlist files, both of which are plain text files.

NOTE TO PROGRAMMERS: All cue point values (for example, Ramp) are stored in mAirList files as numbers in units of 1/10,000,000th of a second; hence a stored value of 100,000 equals one-hundredth of a second.


mAirList Desktop (.mld)

A mAirList Desktop file (.mld) contains the complete state of your mAirList session (see the list below). Using a desktop file, you can easily prepare your show in advance, save everything into a single file, and re-open it later.

These elements are saved in desktop files:

  • contents of each Playlist
  • history of each Playlist
  • View settings of each Playlist
  • Event List of each Playlist (*)
  • contents of the Cartwall (*)
  • contents of the Played Items list (*)
  • list of all open Browser panes (*)

Elements marked (*) will only be saved if you have enabled this in Configuration.

Please note that when you open a .mld file, mAirList will restore all the elements in that file, including any (*) elements which are not currently marked in Configuration as 'save in desktop files.'

You Open and Save desktop files using the main Toolbar buttons. The name of the currently loaded desktop file (if any) is displayed in the mAirList window Title Bar.

mAirList Desktop Template (.mlt)

A mAirList Desktop Template file (.mlt) is identical to a mAirList desktop file (.mld). The only difference is that when you Save a desktop originally loaded from a .mlt file, mAirList will force you to specify a new file name.

A Template file is a good way to create a 'template' desktop for a particular show, perhaps with specific carts already loaded in the Cartwall, show opener and closer already in the Playlist, and so on. When the presenter adds the music tracks and Saves the desktop, they will not accidentally overwrite the template!

You Open and Save desktop template files using the main Toolbar buttons. The name of the currently loaded desktop template file (if any) is displayed in the mAirList window Title Bar.

mAirList Playlist (.mlp)

A mAirList Playlist file (.mlp) contains the contents of a single Playlist (but not the Playlist's history nor its View settings). You usually Load, Append, Insert, and Save playlist files using a Playlist's right-click menu, but you can also Open and Save them using the main Toolbar buttons, or using Events scheduled using the Event Scheduler.

The IPlaylist interface contains Methods to handle .mlp files. There is some mAirListScript sample code in the Wiki topic Things You Can Do with Scripts.

You can also directly Open, Insert, Append, and Save playlist files in the popular .M3U (Winamp playlist file) format by changing the File Type dropdown in the file dialogs, or in mAirListScript by using Methods specific to .M3U files.

mAirList Event List (.mle)

A mAirList Event List file (.mle) contains the contents of a Playlist's Event List. You Open, edit, and Save .mle files in the Event Scheduler dialog, which you open by clicking the Event button in the main Toolbar, or by clicking the 'E box' in a Playlist Toolbar.

If you want an Event List file to load automatically in Playlist 1 when 'Auto' mode is initiated, save the file as standard0.mle inside your mAirList program folder. For Playlist 2, name the file standard1.mle, and so on.

mAirList Cart Set (.mlc)

A mAirList Cart Set file (.mlc) contains the contents of the Cartwall; in other words, the currently loaded carts and any TRIGGERs you have set up (see Using the Cartwall). You can load or save .mlc files using the dropdown and buttons in the Cartwall toolbar, or by executing a CARTWALL LOAD SET filename command.

mAirList Script (.mls)

A mAirList Script file (.mls) is a text file containing Pascal-like mAirListScript code. Scripts are small programs which run:

  • when a specified action happens (notification Scripts), or
  • when you click Actions in the main Toolbar, then click one of the menu items (action Scripts), or
  • by the Event Scheduler, or by clicking Open, Run Script in the main Toolbar (ordinary Scripts).

See the Scripting topic for more information on mAirListScript, and how to write Scripts.

mAirList Metadata (.mmd)

A mAirList Metadata file (.mmd) contains metadata about a single audio file, such as artist and title, cue point settings, ending type, and any user defined data fields. A .mmd file is a universal, extensible replacement for internal audio file tags (for example, ID3 or OGG tags), and allows 'tagging' of audio file formats (like .wav) which do not support internal file tags.

Despite creating more files on your hard disks, .mmd files have several advantages over internal file tags:

  • Your original audio files are not modified.
  • You can use them with any audio file type.
  • You can save them while the audio file is playing in a Player (not possible with file tags, because audio files cannot be saved while playing).
  • You can create, modify, and process them using external software without touching the audio files. Programmers will find it easier to handle XML files instead of XML and file tags.
  • You can delete them without affecting your original audio files.

You save .mmd files by clicking the Save to Metadata button in the PFL, Extra PFL, and Properties dialogs, or in the mAirListTag program. This creates a file in the same folder as the audio file, with the same name as the audio file, followed by .mmd. For example, the .mmd file for an audio file named The Sisters of Mercy - Logic.mp3 would be named The Sisters of Mercy - Logic.mp3.mmd, and would be created in the same folder.

When opening an audio file, mAirList will always look for its 'companion' .mmd file and if it exists, mAirList will use the .mmd file contents instead of any tags stored in the audio file.

mAirList Inline Files (.mif)

(Will be introduced along with mAirListDB.)

Inline Files are much like MMD files. They contain an XML structure with the meta data of a single audio file. However, the audio file itself is embedded into the XML, so you only have one big XML (.mif) file instead of one audio file and one MMD file.

Inline Files allow audio files to be stored in mAirListDB without the need for an "external" storage medium, such as a shared network drive. All data is kept within the SQL database.

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