Question

Sonos does not seem to index m4p music in my iTunes library. How can I fix this?

  • 3 September 2013
  • 15 replies
  • 4854 views

It appears as if my entire iTunes library is not being indexed by Sonos. I checked the details of the songs some are in an m4p format. Others appear to be just regular mp3. My library is approximately 66 GB. How can I make sure it all syncs properly with Sonos?

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15 replies

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Hello Sherburn, Apple m4p tracks are DRM (Fairplay) protected and Sonos will not be able to index nor play them. There is a way to turn them into DRM free tracks with a iTunes Match subscription as described here: click me Regards, Daniel H.
Thank you so much for this suggestion Daniel, not only have I managed to remove the annoying DRM from some of my favourite music, I've also managed to convert a lot of my tracks into a much richer 256kbps which makes them sound even better on my new Sonos play 3.

I hadn't even heard of iTunes Match until coming onto this forum, Apple should be paying you guys for the free advertising!

Steve
Userlevel 4
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Hello all, 

Apple m4p tracks are DRM (Fairplay) protected and Sonos will not be able to index nor play them. 

There is a way to turn them into DRM free tracks with a iTunes Match subscription as described here: 

click me 

Regards, 

Daniel H.
Hello Sherburn, Apple m4p tracks are DRM (Fairplay) protected and Sonos will not be able to index nor play them. There is a way to turn them into DRM free tracks with a iTunes Match subscription as described here: click me Regards, Daniel H.
This is unbelievable. OF COURSE you don't say that in your marketing material. You wait until we have plunked down 100's of $ and are stuck with your system. This little "bug" has completely screwed me. Thanks for nothing.
You're blaming Sonos for Apple's past behaviour?
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Hello Sherburn, Apple m4p tracks are DRM (Fairplay) protected and Sonos will not be able to index nor play them. There is a way to turn them into DRM free tracks with a iTunes Match subscription as described here: click me Regards, Daniel H.
I think I am right in saying no 'non-Apple' devices are able to play m4p files. Apple deliberately locked down the tracks to keep the music publishers quiet and allow their artists music to be delivered digitally. You may have noticed that Apple has not locked down their tracks for some considerable time now as the publishers allowed Apple to relax that.
If you use iTunes Match, you can redownload the tracks without the DRM locked in to the files and Sonos will be able to read those. There are a number of other ways to remove the DRM but I think those have been covered.
My Fiat 500 is unable to read any Apple files but I didn't go screaming to Fiat (or Apple). I just converted the ones I wanted to play into MP3 ones. Simples.
You're blaming Sonos for Apple's past behaviour?
I blame Sonos for creating an inferior product and hiding its main (huge) flaw from the buying public until after they've made the purchase. Apple's behavior has nothing to do with it.
Hello Sherburn, Apple m4p tracks are DRM (Fairplay) protected and Sonos will not be able to index nor play them. There is a way to turn them into DRM free tracks with a iTunes Match subscription as described here: click me Regards, Daniel H.
How does your Fiat analogy have anything to do with this issue? Fiat doesn't try to sell their cars as the grand solution to issues with playing your music collection wirelessly. I don't want to have to pay Apple AGAIN for a subscription to something I don't otherwise need just because I wasn't informed that the Sonos system doesn't do what it purports to do when they're selling it to you. Simples.
You're blaming Sonos for Apple's past behaviour?
Apple put the DRM protection on.  They could offer people the ability to take it off for free but don't.  Sonos is powerless to do anything about it.  This "huge flaw" can be dealt with for a small amount of money (paid to Apple, not Sonos).

Most Sonos customers are unaffected by this issue.  I have personally avoided anything Apple for years (including any of their music formats) because you never know what restrictions they might put on next.

Blame Apple not Sonos.  Hand over a few £/$.  Stop exaggerating the problem,  Start enjoying a fabulous, not inferior, system.
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Hello Sherburn, Apple m4p tracks are DRM (Fairplay) protected and Sonos will not be able to index nor play them. There is a way to turn them into DRM free tracks with a iTunes Match subscription as described here: click me Regards, Daniel H.
My point was that it appeared that the Fiat multimedia system would allow me to dump a load of tracks onto a Usb stick and play them directly into the car. This proved not to be as the system was manufactured by Microsoft and they don't support .m4a files, let alone .m4p ones. I was a bit narked by this but worked out a workaround.
The main point is that Sonos is not alone in this issue. It is unfortunately an issue that you were not aware of and hadn't checked before you bought from your retailer. The brand new Denon HEOS system FAQ page has this to say: 
Before 2009 music files purchased from iTunes were embedded with DRM (Digital Rights Management) access technology. Like many other systems on the market, the HEOS App will not play music files with DRM embedded. Apple allows consumers to download a DRM free version of their purchased content which is fully supported by HEOS. 

For a single year's subscription to iTunes Match you would be able to convert all your tracks (and I'm assuming you have a lot of them) to a non-DRM version.
You're blaming Sonos for Apple's past behaviour?
[quote][/quote]I blame Sonos for creating an inferior product and hiding its main (huge) flaw from the buying public until after they've made the purchase. Apple's behavior has nothing to do with it..

"Hiding?"  I hardly think listing in their FAQ under "Sonos and iTunes" subheading "Playing iTunes Purchased Music" the following can be called "hiding" anything:

https://sonos.custhelp.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/626/kw/Apple+DRM/related/1

Before 2009, iTunes purchased music was copy-protected using a form of Digital Rights Management (DRM) called FairPlay. The DRM protection prevented this purchased music from being played through any non-Apple devices, including the Sonos Wireless HiFi System. The vast majority of music sold through the iTunes Music Store was protected with DRM except for a small offering of DRM-free music through iTunes Plus. During 2009, Apple did away with DRM protection and began selling all music free of any playback restriction.

All music purchased through iTunes since mid-2009 is free of DRM and will play without restriction on Sonos. Tracks previously purchased with DRM protection will remain protected against playback on Sonos.

Audiobooks purchased through iTunes with the .m4b file extension will not play on Sonos as they are DRM protected.

If I have DRM tracks in my library, can the DRM be removed so I can play them on Sonos?

The following link has all the information you should need about upgrade your DRM tracks through iTunes:
http://support.apple.com/kb/HT4914

iTunes Match allows users to remove DRM protection from any tracks in the matched library. Match the tracks with iTunes Match and remove the local copies by deleting the files. Then download the matched version from your iCloud-hosted Match library - the new version will be a DRM-free 256kbps AAC file. For further information about this process, contact Apple.
If you upgrade your music to the DRM-free version you'll need to update your Music Index using the Sonos Desktop or handheld Controller before the changes will be registered by the Sonos Wireless HiFi System.
Hello Sherburn, Apple m4p tracks are DRM (Fairplay) protected and Sonos will not be able to index nor play them. There is a way to turn them into DRM free tracks with a iTunes Match subscription as described here: click me Regards, Daniel H.
and why would I allow Apple to fleece me again when I already paid for the music.
I realize this is an old thread but the DRM issue should only be a problem if you want to use the Sonos application to play your music. I have little desire to use their app. I just want to play my music directly from iTunes on my Mac or iPad to the speaker. I just want to have the Sonos software act as a virtual sound card that redirects the digital audio data that the sound card circuitry in the Mac and iPad converts to analog and instead redirect it to the Sonos speaker over the WiFi.
When you download an Apple Music track to your iPhone, Windows computer or Mac, it's got DRM. You'd better download a converter like TuneFab Apple Music Converter to convert iTunes songs to MP3.