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<H3><U>Usage information for Jack</U></H3>
<IMG SRC="jack-logo.jpg" align=right alt="Jack" height=50 width=101></TR>
Jack is mostly command line-driven, but there are some options which can only
be set by editing the preferences file, typically named $HOME/.jackrc. This
file is python code executed at startup so be careful. Invoke Jack with -h for
a short description of the command line options.
If you get bored reading documentation, check out the <A href=examples.html>application examples</A>!
<H4>Important things to configure in this file:</H4>
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<TD>with this variable you can determine how jack will rename your MP3s after a
freedb query. Use "%02i" for track number, "%a" for artist, "%l" for album name
and "%t" for track title. Example: "%02i.%a (%l) - %t" which would result in
"01.Artist (Album) - Track title.mp3"
<TD>same as above for "various artists" CDs. For normal CDs I use "%02i.%t.mp3" while I use ""%02i.%a - %t" for VA CDs.
<TD>if rename_dir is set, use this format for naming directories. Again, %a is substituted by the artist, %l is the album's name. I use "%a - %l" but "%a/%l"
is also common, every artist then has his own subdir.
<TR><TD>my_mail<TD>be sure to set your e-mail address if you are planning to submit
<A href=http://www.freedb.org>freedb</A> entries. Otherwise you won't get
<TD>I no longer use this since there is now a curses mode. Only set this if you have <A
When enabled, Jack can - when running in an xterm - adjust the
size so all track information is visible. In addition, the xterm is deiconified
when all is done.
Everything else is controlled by the command line, try jack --help for a quick summary. You can still change the defaults by editing your .jackrc!
<H4>Command line options:</H4>
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<TR><TD>-t, --tracks <tracks>
<TD>limit ripping and encoding to the specified
tracks, use comma to seperate track. Ranges are also possible; 5-9 is
equivalent to 5,6,7,8,9; 12- is like specifying track 12,...,last_track. The
default is to process the whole CD, I do not know why you would want an
incomplete rip, but be my guest.
<TR><TD>-b, --bitrate <bitrate>
<TD>bitrate of the resulting MP3 in kbit/s, default is 160.
<TD>Generate variable bitrate MP3s, only on encoders which support this. Default is no.
<TR><TD>-e, --encoders <num_encoders>
<TD>encode how many MP3s in parallel. If
you have a SMP machine or simply want to stress your system, you can have Jack
encode several MP3s at once. Default is the number of CPUs I have, which is
<TD>On-the-fly operation. Only on some encoders/rippers. Do not create WAVs, pipe ripper output through the encoder. Default is no as it's a torture for the CDROM drive (IMHO).
<TR><TD>-E, --encoder-name <encoder_name>
<TD>choose which MP3 encoder to use,
valid choices are: blade, lame, l3enc, mp3enc. Note that you may have to install
<TR><TD>-n, --nice <nice_lvl>
<TD>nice-level with which the encoders are
started. Default is 12 which shouldn't hurt your system much.
<TR><TD>-l, --max-load <max_load>
<TD>only start new encoders if your system's load is below (max_load + num_encoders). If the load is too high, encoding operation is suspended until above criterium is satisfied.
<TR><TD>-a, --read-ahead <read_ahead>
<TD>read how many WAVs in advance. At most read_ahead +
num_encoders WAVs are ripped before a track has completely been encoded. Default is 99 which will
read the whole CD, provided there is enough disk space.
<TD>optimize track-order for disk space. This can save you some
peak disk space during the encoding process; this may make it possible to do a
CD which would otherwise fail to be encoded.
<TR><TD>-s, --space <free_space>
<TD>forcably set usable diskspace, in bytes. This option lets you
limit the disk space Jack uses, maybe you need it for something else? Be
careful: if set too high, ripping and encoding will probably fail. The default
is to look how much is free and to use this value.
<TD>overwrite existing WAVs and MP3s, i.e. do not check if
already ripped WAVs or an already encoded MP3s seem to be ok. Use this if you
<I>know</I> something went wrong last time. This is off by default.
<TD>only produce WAVs, implies --keep-wavs. This is off by default.
<TD>do not delete WAVs after encoding them. Maybe you still
<TR><TD>-f, --from-tocfile <toc_file>
<TD>rip from CD image on hd. This option is a
somewhat special option. There are two reasons for it's existance:
<LI>When I copy a CD for my car stereo, most of the time I also want to
have it as MP3s. To copy a CD, I use the exellent tool <A href=http://www.ping.de/sites/daneb/cdrdao.html>cdrdao</A>. This works best
when having the whole CD in a single WAV file, which I call the image. It also
needs a so-called toc-file containing the track, pregap, index, CD-TEXT, ...
information. If I use this image as the source, I do not have to rip the CD a
second time. My cdrom probably likes that.
<LI>same cdrdao has a great way of doing a bit-wise exact copy of the CD using
special Plextor-commands. This is superiour to cdparanoia as "bad" samples can
be detected and - hopefully - repaired.
The specified toc-file contains the name of the image file.
<TR><TD>-F, --from-image <image_file>
<TD>read audio data from image file. Like --from-tocfile, but
the image itself is specified instead of the tocfile. Use this if you do not
have a toc-file; the TOC is the read from the CD itself.
<TD>swap byteorder from image file. As cdrdao momentarily only
outputs "raw" .cdr files, you quite likely want to swap the byteorder. Try this
option if your WAVs and MP3s contain only noise (no, not the noise I call
music, the pseudo-random one). This is on by default as cdrdao currently
generates .cdr files that are "wrong".
<TD>compare toc-file and cd-toc, then exit. Jack caches the
TOC of a CD in a file ("jack.toc"). If you want to know if the inserted CD
matches the toc-file in the current directory, use this option.
<TR><TD>-g, --guess-toc <mp3_files>
<TD>make up a TOC from the MP3 file given in mp3_files. Format is:
<PRE>track_01.mp3 ... track_nn.mp3 ;</PRE>
Note that the trailing ";" is only necessary if you want to append more options
to your command line. This option makes me especially proud. You can use it to
do a freedb query based on MP3s alone - no need for the CD. Very useful if you
have no idea which CD the MP3s are from. The MP3s must be given in the same
order as they were on their CD. The generated TOC file is similar, but not
identical to the TOC of the CD - do not
<TD>when parsing freedb data, jack assumes that if the disc's
artist is set to "Various Artists" the track titles have the format "[artist] -
[title]". If the disc title is set to something else and you still want above
behaviour, use --various. You can use --various=no if the FreeDB data says
"Various Artists" but you want the normal renaming scheme, e.g. if Jack
can't seperate artist and track title.
<TD>have jack remove it's temp files. See below for details on these
files. Be careful - don't delete them too early!
<TD>have jack re-create it's temp files. Use this if you deleted them too early.
<TD>don't do DAE or encoding. This may be useful if you only want to
do a freedb query.
<TD>tells Jack to create sub-directories in which Jack puts all the files
for the current CD. If no freedb data is available, i.e. when not using -Q,
these directorys will be named "jack-xxxxxxxx" where "xxxxxxxx" stands for the
CD's freedb-id. Otherwise dir_template (see above) will be used.
<TD>print what would be done and exit.
<H4>The following options are needed for <A href=www.freedb.org>freedb</A> queries:</H4>
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<TD>do freedb query when all is done. This is useful if Jack was prior run
without a freedb query. If all tracks are done you don't even have to have a CD
inserted as the TOC is cached by Jack. After having finished ripping and
encoding, Jack will rename the MP3s and tag them using Ben Gertzfield's ID3.py
<TD>do freedb query when starting. Use this if you are
connected to the internet when starting jack. Know that the query may need
user-interaction. After having finished ripping and encoding, Jack will rename
the MP3s and tag them using Ben Gertzfield's ID3.py module
<TD>rename and tag files according to freedb file. On startup, Jack
creates a blank freedb entry file (except if --query-now is used, then the file
is queried from your freedb server). If you have changed it's contents (e.g.
because the CD was unknown to freedb) and want to rename and tag your MP3s
accordingly, use this option.
<TD>undo file renaming and exit. If you don't like how jack renamed your files, use this option to restore the previous state. Note that ID3 tags are not restored.
<TD>submit freedb entry via e-mail. HTTP submission is
preferred but while freedb only supports submission by e-mail you have to use
this. You will have to enter the category of the CD.
<TR><TD>-M, --mail-address <submit_addr>
<TD>when submitting a database entry via e-mail, use this
option to specify the address the entry is mailed to. Default is
<TD>use this to specify which e-mail address submission results are
mailed to. Please use your real e-mail address.
<TD>submit freedb entry via HTTP. You will have to enter the category
of the CD. At the moment, this does not work with freedb. Or with a buggy
<TD>which freedb server to use. Don't forget to set your proxy.
Default server is freedb.freedb.org.
<TD>do not ask. Like when deleting incomplete (?!) files.
Jack creates a couple of files when running:
<TD>The CD TOC (Table Of Contents) is cached here. Will be re-created
if deleted but be careful to insert the matching CD!
<TD>when you are not telling jack to do a freedb query, this file
is created as a freedb template file which you can fill out yourself. When
using --query or --query-now it is filled with the query-result. Existing files
are backed up as jack.freedb.bak.
<TD>Status (main) screen output is cached here. When resuming
work, previously finished processes' output is still displayed. Jack also uses
this file to mark ripping/encoding steps as done, so if you delete this file,
everything is done again!
Do not delete these files too early, this may case frustration!
Wanna go <A href=index.html>home</A> or do you wanna know <A href=install.html>how to install Jack</A>?
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© Arne Zellentin,