Google Play Music won't parse/play files uploaded to the SD card

Hi, This may well just be a problem with Android 8 in general, not sure, but at the moment I can't play *any* of my music sitting on my SD card using Google Play Music.

Google Play Music won't parse/play files uploaded to the SD card

c128 c128


This may well just be a problem with Android 8 in general, not sure, but at the moment I can't play *any* of my music sitting on my SD card using Google Play Music.

I've a newly purchased UK Nokia 7 Plus - TA-1055 - running Android 8.0.0, and I have a large body of music, as .ogg files, that I upload separately to my SD card.

I follow the procedure below:

  • Phone off
  • SD card out
  • Files transferred into a "Music" folder off the root of the SD card using a PC (artist/album subfolders, fully tagged)
  • SD card in
  • Phone on
  • In Google Play Music settings:
  • -> Account
  • -> -> Refresh
  • -> Downloading
  • -> -> Clear cache
  • -> -> Storage Location
  • -> -> ->External
  • Select "Downloaded Only"
  • ...wait a bit ;)

The following is the result:

  • Google Play Music fails to scan and pick-up most of the music
  • Many tracks that are present have a 0:00 length, although some do have the correct length
  • When I try to play any track that is present, with a length or not, I get "Music playback error - Couldn't play the track that you selected"

Tearing my hair out on this:

  • There are similar, although not identical, reports for other phones, but no workarounds seem to work
  • I used to follow the same steps above with my prior phone, a Wileyfox Swift 2x Plus running Android 7, and all was fine
  • The .ogg files on the SD card play fine on the phone if I install andI use VLC (VLC picks up all of the tracks)
  • I've tried re-copying the files and multiple refreshes/clearing of the cache - Google Play Music picks up a differing amount of tracks from the Music folder each time, some with track times/some without, but can play none of them

Anyone seeing the same or got any ideas on how to fix this?



  • c128 c128

    No-one else seeing this?

    Would be interested, also, to hear if anyone has uploaded their music collection directly to the SD card and can successfully play it all with Play Music.

    This feels like some sort of Android bug, but I've not seen it with any of my prior phones....

  • random random
    ✭✭  / 
    Any luck resolving this? I'm very keen to buy this phobe but like you I will need to put music on an SD card.
  • c128 c128

    I'm afraid not - tried a few times, and still have the same issue.

    I'd be a little surprised if it turned out to be Nokia 7 Plus specific though, and I guess nobody else has reported this as an issue, so I wonder if it's an oddity I'm seeing.

    The music collection I use on my phone is ogg-based though, and I guess most folk use mp3.  I wonder a bit if that's related and/or some oddity with tagging.  Although....exactly the same music collection is fine from the same SD card on a Wileyfox Swift 2x Plus - Google Play Music pulls in all the tracks and they're all playable.

    When I get time I'll try again with my music collection converted to mp3 and maybe with a different SD card.

  • quigger quigger
    ✭✭  / 

    It works for me.

    I added "Music" folder to an SD card. Add music to folder.

    Put it in phone. Switch phone on.

    Phone detects SD card and asks if I want to Explore or Eject. I cancel both.

    Go to GPlay and it just works. No refreshing or anything required. Took a while as I had 15GB of music.


    I'm using .m4a and .mp3 files only though.

    Perhaps try a few files of that type as a test?

  • random random
    ✭✭  /  edited May 2018
    Thanks for your reply. Does seem very odd. Like most people I mainly use mp3 although I do have a few flac files for my favorites.

    Are you now on 8.1? They appear to have sneaked a few bug fixes into the 2nd 8.1 security updates ota. Eg Bluetooth and Garmin issues appear to be fixed.
  • quigger quigger
    ✭✭  / 

    Hi Random,

    "Are you now on 8.1?"


    Android: 8.0.0

    Security patch: 1 February 2018

  • quigger quigger
    ✭✭  / 

    Possibly this may help?

    "OGG (.ogg) - Files are converted to the same bitrate (quality) .mp3 files"

    Maybe if you didn't load them through Google Play Music they haven't been converted on the fly so can 't be detected?

  • random random
    ✭✭  / 
    Hi quigger

    That's really good to know. Thanks.
  • c128 c128

    Yeah, I suspect it's an oddity for me and, as earlier, possibly related to .ogg files - however, as above:

    • there's no issue with the same music collection using the same SD card on a different phone
    • VLC finds all the files correctly on the Nokia 7 Plus and can play them

    I'll try with a .mp3 collection, to see if that's different (I convert from FLAC for phone use anyway) but there's a reason I use .ogg files.

    Out of interest - how big is your music collection size/files?

    From memory mine's ~60+ GB and over 10000 files - I wonder if Google Play Music is somehow getting in a bit of a mess due to the size/number.

  • c128 c128
     /  edited May 2018

    Oh, just noticed you said 15GB, missed that, sorry.

    I'd guess it's possibly unlikely to be related to sheer size/file number anyway though.

  • quigger quigger
    ✭✭  /  edited May 2018

    My collection is 15GB.

  • c128 c128

    Oh, and just for reference (and in reply in reply to Random), I'm on 8.0.0 with the February security patch too.

  • random random
    ✭✭  / 
    Although I mostly use Google play music in the car and out and about, I often use shuttle+ at home. It's a pretty good player with the advantage that it can send directly to a Chromecast audio without having to upload to Google's servers.
  • c128 c128

    As a follow-up, I re-ripped my music collection from FLAC to MP3, transferred it over and it's fine.

    So...something odd with Ogg files then that I didn't see on my previous phone.

  • random random
    ✭✭  / 
    @c128 Thanks for reporting back.

    I'm assuming sound quality is important to you. Have you used the headphone socket on your phone? Is the sound quality over a cable ok? There seems to be lots of threads saying both the sound and cable fit are poor.
  • c128 c128


    >> Have you used the headphone socket on your phone?

    A few times, but I mostly use bluetooth headphones, so I can't really comment with any authority.

    >> Is the sound quality over a cable ok?

    I'd say it was average, for me - not great/but not awful either - I've certainly had better quality from past phones.  There's no supplied equaliser - you could either see as good or bad.

    >> There seems to be lots of threads saying both the sound and cable fit are poor.

    The fit certainly isn't with mine - it's fine - but there do seem to be a lot of folk complaining, too many to think it isn't a thing, I guess.

  • random random
    ✭✭  / 

    It's often difficult to judge what's a real issue as people rarely post good news.

    I mostly use Bluetooth too but occasionally I have wired earbuds stashed various places in case I get stuck somewhere boring :)

    I'm on a OnePlus 3 at the moment. I'm very happy with it apart from the battery life, which now it's two year old, is getting worse. The forums are full of complaints but it's a good phone.

    A mid-range phone with 2 day battery, clean android, decent build and sd card storage for music will do me.

    Btw I'm a UK migrant to Australia. If an Aussie says something is Average, it means it's terrible.

  • Avdshare
    Audio Converter is voted as the best FLAC to Google Play Music converter,
    with which any unsupported FLAC can be easily converted to Google Play Music
    supported one. See the
Sign In or Register to comment.