Musicbrainz server not accessible

When the software I am using (NCH Express Rip) tries to connect to the Musicbrainz server, a message pops up saying “The operation failed when trying to access the online album database. Check you are connected to the internet.”

With Express Rip there are 2 options for obtaining music album metadata, either FreeDB or Musicbrainz. FreeDB always connects (but, like Musicbrainz, doesn’t always recognise the album) and Musicbrainz did work until about 3 weeks ago - that’s when I started to get the ‘failed’ message. Can somebody there check to see what is going wrong?

I asked NCH Software Tech help and they said it might cure itself in time but so far it hasn’t happened. Forgive me if I’m in the wrong place, forum etc but this is my first visit here and I’m totally lost! Thank you.

Can you provide me the IP used to connect to MB servers ?

I’m sorry, I don’t know how to do that. In ‘Options’ all it offers are the two databases by name, nothing else. And all the error message says is as I wrote before. So I don’t know how I would find it. Thanks for replying.

It won’t. NCH have been relying on our old and now discontinued freedb gateway. Please refer them to this tweet:

Edit: If you want to continue using MusicBrainz data when ripping CDs, consider looking at one of the other MusicBrainz enabled CD rippers:


Thank you Freso. I will certainly email them what you said but they can take days to respond (although I paid for the program) but I’m blowed if I’m going to pay more for a ‘Tech Help package’ which promises replies within 8 hours!

@Ian_G Have a look at Picard instead for tagging. Combine that with EAC to do your initial rip and you don’t have to pay those NCH people again.

They are an “interesting” company. I doubt they will ever fix that ripping tool as they tend to buy up products and repackage them for sale. Then aggressively sell other products once they have their hooks in to your system.

I’ve had a few run ins with them over certain products I have found my clients using. Not the best of people to deal with.

Thanks Ivan. Your points are duly noted.

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If you are used to how their ripper works, then keep using it, but feed your ripped files through Picard to correct the tagging.

Generally when you pay for that NCH stuff the licence only lasts a year and then you get no more updates. So as features start to fail on you, turn to alternatives to plug the gaps.

Lol. Hmmm. I hadn’t heard of Picard before a few hours ago… and as for ‘feeding the ripped files through Picard to correct the tagging’ … I haven’t a clue, unfortunately :frowning:

Picard is a tool that will look at your music files, identify what they are, and correct the file names and tags using a full lookup into the MusicBrainz database. (The same database you had been using via the old freedb back door).

So you’d rip with your current ripper. As your current ripper relies on a service that is no more, you’ll need to manually name the CD. It will then probably call it all track 1, track 2, track 3.

That is when you take those ripped files and pass them through Picard. It will then correctly identify the CD and the files and then update the tags and filenames.

Though there are probably other rip and tag options out there that will better fit your needs. I really like EAC to do that task, but it may be a bit geeky for some. It depends what your needs are.

Thanks again Ivan. ‘I tread a solitary path’! I learn as I go. I pick things up fairly quickly but this is relatively new to me. I’ve been putting a lot of my music (old LPs I’ve had for 50 years and more recent CDs) on my smartphone, which I only got 6 months ago. I’m up to 6,000-plus tracks now (including whole symphonies and operas) and hadn’t ripped anything before about 6 weeks ago. But I’m learning fast.

I just find that it is so much easier to play my music from my phone (through a Bluetooth connection to any one of 3 sets of different speakers) than I found it was before. And since my hearing isn’t what it was, MP3 sounds fine to me!

EAC can go to MP3 if that is all you need. It is especially good on old battered CDs. It may look a bit geeky to setup, but once configured it will rip disks, grab details from MusicBrainz - including artwork. And put this all out as MP3 files for you.

Though something simpler like CUETools may be better for you. One simple program to rip a CD and tag with MusicBrainz data

Certainly no need to pay for this kind of stuff.

Flipping bluetooth between speakers is certainly a time saver. :smiley: I often do similar in my house. And I may be all fussy and audiophile on my main hifi, but walking down the street with bluetooth headphones means less cables to get in the way.

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I know what you mean. I used to be as much of a purist (audiophile) as my wallet allowed, back in the 70s - in fact my turntable is from that era… oh, and my speakers. But through years of hearing-abuse [working on V-bomber jets in National Service, then years in unbelievably noisy engineering workshops - plus many rock concerts ( :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye: ) and, I might add, ear-defenders were unheard of in those far-off days] I have come to be fairly satisfied with the afore-mentioned MP3 quality of sound. And being, as I am now, rather arthriticky, playing with my phone saves a lot of movement.

I will look into the methods you so kindly detailed, although I am reaching the end of my CD collection now. I have had to enter all the tags in manually several times, when the program didn’t recognise the CD. It’s not difficult, just takes longer.

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Good luck with making sense of it all. Come back and post if you need any help. Including when you get to the vinyl as that is when you want to get hold of the free Audacity instead of another NCH tool…

And mention of V-Bombers will get me in trouble as I’ll start dragging this far to far off topic… :smiley: Now there is a noise that I miss…

Too late! lol. Already got one - and I have to say it’s pretty good. I have got Audacity too but haven’t really used it. Actually I am already well into my vinyl and chugging along nicely. I will certainly look into and learn, more about Picard. You have given me some very helpful ideas, thanks very much, Ivan.

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