How to create a streaming MP3 playlist

April 1, 2009 5:13 pm Tags: No Comments 0

M3U files are simply text files with a .m3u extension instead of a .txt extension. When opened in a browser from clicking on a link to an m3u file, the listener’s default audio program will launch the playlist. Many mp3 players support the m3u format, including Winamp and iTunes.

Here are the contents of an example M3U file:

#EXTINF:210,Song Title
#EXTINF:123,Song Title 2

For each additional song in the playlist, you must add “#EXTINF:” followed by the length of the song in seconds, and the song title. The next line should be the path to the media. This can either be relative to the location of the mp3 file (e.g. mp3/song_title.mp3) or absolute (e.g.

PC Users

  1. Open up notepad.exe and copy and paste the example m3u code into notepad
  2. For your filename, enter “your_playlist_name.m3u”, (replace the example name with your own)
  3. Choose File > Save As, and when prompted with “Save as Type”, choose “All Files” to prevent notepad from appending a “.txt” to the end of your playlist name

Mac Users

  1. Do not use TextEdit to create m3u files because it will add extra formatting to the file that may prevent the m3u file from working properly. Instead, try using TextMate
  2. Follow the same instructions as listed for PC users