Rockbox Technical Forums

Support and General Use => Hardware => Topic started by: dudlo on July 16, 2022, 08:01:20 PM

Title: Sansa Clip/Clip+: not remembering position of "early" songs?
Post by: dudlo on July 16, 2022, 08:01:20 PM
Rockbox people (if anyone is still around),

I am a long-time Rockbox user, and I love it. Over the years I've been through 10+ mostly Sansa players (c200, Clip v1, v2, Clip+). Lately I've gone through hardware repair (re-soldering audio jacks, swapping batteries from dead players). Most of my payers died of memory failure (corrupt to the point the system fails to run) or screen failure (dark or pitch black). Buying a working player is getting harder. I've now resorted to buying dead ones, hoping is is just a battery. I still have one or two decent batteries. My latest eBay purchase of 2 dead Clip+ players resulted in one 8Gb brick (battery swap did nothing) and one beautiful red 2Gb players that works great after giving it decent battery.

My question is about the failure to remember position (automatic resume). I noticed that when the memory starts to fail, it is this functionality that is affected first. I've now observed it in some 3-4 players, and I have a (perhaps crazy) theory of why it could be happening.

I am listening to podcasts, and my file structure is like this:
- 1 (folder)
  - file1.mp3
  - file2.mp3
  - file20.mp3
- 2 (folder)
  - fileA.mp3

I typically store about 80 files (podcast episodes/"songs") - that's how much fits in the 2Gb capacity. Once I am done listening (about every 2 weeks), I remove all files and folders, and download a new batch in the same directory structure (directory names 1, 2, 3, 4, 5).

Everything works great with the following exception/problem: when I turn off the player while in the middle of file2.mp3 in directory 1, the playback position gets "lost". That is, on startup, it starts at the beginning of file1.mp3. It does not matter how the player shuts down (idle poweroff or direct shutdown). Once I get past the first 4-6 files in folder 1, it starts behaving normally (as expected). That is, the playback starts from the exact position of the file it stopped at shutdown.

To summarize: the playback position gets messed up for the first 4-6 "absolute" files on the device. Again, I want to emphasize that this is what I observed on 3-4 Sansa Clip/Clip+ players (all running Rockbox). Here is my crazy (or not fully thought out) theory: If the position is remembered in the same absolute memory location, it is the "early" (first in absolute term) positions that are remembered most often, and the thousands of writes/rewrites caused memory failure. I cannot explain why it is a problem only for files on top of the file structure/file list. I have not explored any workarounds - like using different directory names.

My questions:
- did anyone observed this problem?
- is my observation or explanation crazy?
- is there some workaround?
- is there some fix (like reformating or fsck)?
- is anyone still using Rockbox or this forum?

Thank you,
Title: Re: Sansa Clip/Clip+: not remembering position of "early" songs?
Post by: cela on July 17, 2022, 06:55:19 AM
Multiboot might help with clip+
Title: Re: Sansa Clip/Clip+: not remembering position of "early" songs?
Post by: Bilgus on July 18, 2022, 09:05:11 AM
multiboot will help as long as you get the bootloader installed prior to the flash going read only and boot from the SD card

It is entirely possible that the continued overwriting of the same file on the device wears out the flash
also consider rockbox does a whole lot less of this than the sansa OF did

In 2021 I committed patches that now make a copy of the configuration, and emulated NVRAM (resume info) files rather than appending

The idea here is by keeping the old file a new file gets created and this should further spread the wear across the flash device