beaTunes News

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

beaTunes 1.2.11 is released

beaTunes LogoAlright, beaTunes isn't quite Firefox 3, but it too has a new release out. As the version number 1.2.11 indicates, this is mostly a maintenance release - no new features are introduced. We're saving those for beaTunes 2...

This is not to say that nothing has changed. We finally taught our iTunes Music Library.xml parser to deal with the malformed XML files exported by iTunes. Yes, you read that right: iTunes exports malformed XML. More specifically, the iTunes XML exporter does not safeguard against illegal UTF-8 or illegal XML characters. RFC-3629 clearly prohibits encoding character numbers between U+D800 and U+DFFF, which are reserved for use with the UTF-16 encoding form (as surrogate pairs) and do not directly represent characters. Unfortunately, users have told us again and again that their iTunes Music Library.xml contains such characters. The same is true for the non-characters U+FFFF and U+FFFE. They are contained in some libraries, but are clearly illegal in XML.

We assume that the bad characters stem from bad id3 tags - iTunes probably copies them without paying any attention to their legality. In any case, instead of choking, beaTunes will now silently ignore them.

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