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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
While most of this will be specific for Mac OS, UNIX (Solaris) and Linux I'll cover Windows too.

General Tips (every OS)
1) Always reformat the USB Flash Drive and Format it as FAT but not exFAT stick with FAT32 when possible.
2) I recommend creating a single directory at the Root of the Drive. I've found if you start at the Root of the drive and have more then a few directories it causes the Head Unit to experience memory issues. I believe it's because the OS mounts each of the directories on the Root of the Drive as it's own mount point. Each one of these mount points means the Unit's OS treats each one of these directories as it's own drive. My best experience as been to create one directory at the root and then, my music types, then by Artist, Albums and then my actual MP3 music files.
3) keep the bit rates of the MP3 Files down to 320kbs or less the best is 256kbs VBR. I have a bunch encoded at 320kbs and they work fine but, when the unit first starts playing it's still loading and sometimes will cause some minor audio skips. Once the unit is fully started up it's fine, On rare occasions if the GPS is doing a lot of route crunching there may be a few minor skips on the hight encoded files.
4) Plan and create a copy of the files and the directories you plan on using ob the flash drive.
5) delete all files that are not your MP3 files.
6) copy the directory hierarchy and to the USB Flash Drive. once that is complete follow the steps for you OS to remove the hidden files/directories added by the OS.

Mac OS, Linux and UNIX
1) open BASH and change directories so you are at the root of the USB Flash Drive. Then us the following command >ls -a This will show a directory with all the hidden files.

Example 1:

System_Name: ~ User$ cd /Volume/BRZ_Metal

System_Name: BRZ_Metal User$ ls -a
. .DS_Store .Trash
.. .Windowing My Metal

System_Name: BRZ_Metal User$

2) If you continue to explore your sub directories down to were your MP3 are stored you discover files named ._Track_Name.mp3 and you see in the same directory the real mp3 file named Track_Name.mp3. Note if you browse to that directory you will not see the files or directories that begin with a ".". All of this files and directories that begin with the . need to be deleted.

3) to delete the hidden system files that start with the ".". You'll need to use the command rm with the options r and v (r is for recursive and v is for verbose. we'll want to see what is being deleted and we want to delete the hidden contents of hidden directories. The Command will look like this rm -rv .* (or .*.* if you are not using bash) this will delete all the items that start with the ".". It's important to note that this command results in an error that states "." and ".." can not be deleted. The error is find because we don't really want to delete "." or "..". all of the other hidden files in the root of the drive will be deleted. Now we need to move up a level in the directory structure do that we'll use wild cards to have the system delete them from the file structure without navigating to each directory. see example below.

Example 2 :

While you are at the root of the flash drive enter the following command

System_Name: BRZ_Metal User$ rm -rv */.*
System_Name: BRZ_Metal User$ rm -rv */*/.*
System_Name: BRZ_Metal User$ rm -rv */*/*/.*
System_Name: BRZ_Metal User$ rm -rv */*/*/*/.*
Continue till you have cleaned your complete directory hierarchy.

Each time you run the command for a directory depth you'll get a list of the hidden files/directories deleted and the error message that "." and ".." can not be deleted.

4) if the wholesale deleting of these hidden files/directories makes you nervous just modify the ".*" to target the hidden files/directories you want to delete. The Head unit will not show most of the hidden files. The ones that it does show and the really troublesome are the ones that end in .mp3 or .wma. So, you can target just the offending files if you want by using the command.

System_Name: BRZ_Metal User$ rm -rv .*.mp3
and
System_Name: BRZ_Metal User$ rm -rv .*.wma

you will still need to use the wild card directories as shown in Example 2 just replace the .* with .*.mp3

5) I do recommend getting rid of all the hidden files you can because it improves the performance of the Head unit dramatically.
6) once you're done unmount/eject the Flash drive and disconnect it from the system. Do not leave it connected and do not use the windowing system to navigate the directory hierarchy because the hidden files and hidden directories will be added back to the flash drive.
Windows

1) even Windows as pesky hidden files that impact the head units performance. That should be deleted. Open Explorer
2) in explore select options and select to show hidden files and folders and hidden system files.
3) navigate through your directory hierarchy and delete all the hidden system files and folders
4) once you are done eject the flash drive and unplug it from your system

General all OS types

What is the best USB Flash drive to use?
Well I'm sure there are lots out there that will work fine but, of the USB Flash drives I have the best and fastest one I've found are the Kingston DT SE9. Beyond their speed they are small and all metal and can be attached to a keyring.

Want is the largest size USB Flash Drive that works?
The manual saids 8GB but, So far based on a few tests I did with a the 16GB Kingston DT SE9 it appears to work and all the files appear to be accessible by the unit. As long as you do not exceed the file and folder limits (8 layers deep and a maximum of 9999 files) I don't think the size of the USB Flash Drive really plays much of a role until you exceed the maximum size allowed by FAT32 with is 32GB. The Head Unit does not have the RAM to track and store the file data for the 2 million files that could be stored on a FAT32 Volume. For more information and limitations of things like file names and character limits, look a page 246 of the manual in the Audio Operations selection. If you downloaded the PDF files of the manual from Subaru's website it's file MSA5M1312ANaviOM_5.PDF and it's page 58 of 92.

If you have questions or comments please let me know and I'll see what I can do to help.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Have you tried to put more than 9999 MP3 files on it yet?

I think I'm going to get a 32gb myself and see if I can pack on more than the 9999 mp3 files.
I'm also going to test to see if the hidden files count toward the total 9999 files.
 

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9999 MP3 files, I'm still downloading, not in the evil way:). Mine is filled up to 17.9G with ~ 2500 files and 4 layers deep. The manual said 16G is the limit.
 

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This sounds like a great thing because I have soooo much music it won't all fit on my phone, which I normally use in the car. Thanks for step by step directions.... But do you think it would be difficult for someone that doesn't know much about hidden files and all that? :)


Sent from my iPhone using AutoGuide.com Free App
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I don't think so, and I'm happy to help if someone fines it a bit much for them.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
This is a copy of page 244 of the manual (PDF manual from Subaru's website) MSA5M1312ANaviOM_5.pdf

About the supported USB memory standards
Supported file formats:
FAT32
Supported audio formats:
MP3/WMA
Maximum current:
1.0 A

Supported capacities:

16MB to 8GB

Compatibility:

USB1.0/1.1/2.0 (maximum transfer speed is same as USB 2.0)
Mass memory support:

Supports USB mass storage class.
Does not support USB hubs or multi card readers.
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
I've read some comments on here and on some other BRZ forums on the US Head unit and the USB music working when the USB Drive is first connected to the unit then when the car is turned off and then when it's restarted the unit only play the songs in the directory that it was in when it was turned off.

This appears to be related to one of three possible issues.

The first is the directory structure (I have been able to duplicate the issue using various directory structures at the root of the drive.). if you have multiply Root directories the head unit seems to treat these as mount points (keep in mind that based on the way the unit operates it's underlying OS is most likely a custom Linux. I have ask Fujitsu for conformation, and I've asked them for information on the variant they are using.) These extra mount points appears to cause the unit to reinitialize the cached directory information incorrectly when the is powered off and then back on.

The second possibility is with certain hidden directories that could be causing the cached directory structure, file lists and last play pints to be loaded incompletely or incorrectly. While I have not been able to duplicate the issue using the possible cause it does not completely rule it out, but, it is not case that I would rate as the most likely.

The final possible cause is the USB Storage device itself. This is by far the least likely. But, I did find and duplicate the issue with one of the USB drives I had. When I testing the drive I discovered that the drive had a hidden ROM hardware partition that contained backup utility software. That formatting the drive of course would not remove as it was a separate hardware volume and as it was on a ROM and not part of the Flash Memory volume. I used a ROM Flash utility to delete the contents of the ROM and then disable the ROM altogether this corrected the issue on this USB Flash Drive.I would like to point out the USB Storage Device was an older one and may have even been a drive that contained promotional information from a trade show. So, I'm discounting that a newer retail USB Storage devices would contain such a hardware setup.

Remember if you are seeing odd behavior follow this bit of advise. Create one directory at the root of your USB Device. Then place your other directories in it. That way you only have one directory at the root of the device. My second bit of advise would be to Check the directory names and the file names to make sure you do not have any special characters not supported by the unit. See character limits, look a page 246 of the manual in the Audio Operations selection.

If you have questions or need some help please feel free to ask me.
 

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I bought a Sandisk 32GB thumb drive yesterday. I removed the files and folders that came on it by just deleting them. I have a Mac laptop. I put it into the USB slot. I went to the Disk Utility and it showed it was already formatted Fat32 so I just did the Erase to make sure it was clean. I then copied over 75 mp3 files. Took it down to the car plugged it in and as you can see by the images I included here, the songs will not play. The double arrow is active but the single arrow is not.
I'm pretty mad at this point I just spent $20 for this thing and its useless for what I want to use it
for.

20130730_081612.jpg 20130730_081625.jpg 20130730_081724.jpg
 

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if you go back and re-read the first post in this thread, you'll notice that files beginning with "._" aren't the actual song files and will not play. Your second photo shows what I'm referring to. All the track titles begin with "._". Delete those and locate the actual MP3 files as mentioned in the first post.

I'm running a 64GB stick with no problems.

YMMV
 

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if you go back and re-read the first post in this thread, you'll notice that files beginning with "._" aren't the actual song files and will not play. Your second photo shows what I'm referring to. All the track titles begin with "._". Delete those and locate the actual MP3 files as mentioned in the first post.

I'm running a 64GB stick with no problems.

YMMV
I just uploaded another screen shot from the USB drive itself and it shows that their is no empty characters before
the first letter. It does show those empty spaces when I insert the disc in the car. How is that possible?

The mp3 files play just fine on my Mac as well as directly from the USB drive plugged into my Mac. Why should I
delete them?

I did not have to format the USB stick as it was already formatted to Fat 32. All I did was delete the SanDisk files it comes with. I also used my Mac Disk Utility to erase the USB stick just to make sure its clean.
 

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