Some FLAC audio files can be corrupted by Windows Update

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Make sure you don't modify the metadata of FLAC (Free Lossless Audio Codec) downloads from an online website using Windows 10's File Explorer if you're managing your own collection. According to a recent Microsoft support document, this is the case.

Some FLAC audio files may be corrupted by a Windows 10 problem

There is an issue in Windows 10 version 2004 and newer that corrupts FLAC music files if the metadata is modified using File Explorer. Windows 10 Pro, Home, Enterprise, Workstation, and other versions of the operating system are affected by this flaw.

According to a support post released earlier this month, the File Explorer flaw in Windows 10 corrupts FLAC files with an ID3 frame before the FLAC header. ID3 is a frame that stores information such as the title of the song, the artist, the album, the track number, and so on.

The FLAC handler on Windows 10 disregarded the ID3 frame because it thought FLAC files started with the 4-byte fLaC. The ID3 frame was rewritten without the start code when users modified the music file. As a consequence, music players were unable to recognize the altered file.If the title, artist, or other information of the music files is altered in File Explorer, the music files will not play or load.

Fortunately, Microsoft has discovered the source of the problem, and a remedy is now available via Windows Update. The error has been solved, according to the KB5003214 update changelog, and Free Lossless Audio Codec (FLAC) audio files will no longer become unplayable if their title, artist, or other information is changed. For individuals who have music files that have been corrupted, Microsoft has provided a new PowerShell script that may be used to restore playback. However, it is unable to recover the missing info from the ID3 frame.

Microsoft suggests installing this month's optional cumulative update to prevent future difficulties with FLAC audio files. To be safe, though, it's a good idea to wait and observe how other users are reacting to the new upgrades before deciding to upgrade. According to complaints, KB5003214 is creating problems with taskbar and system tray icons, particularly when the News and Interests feature is active.

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