USB drives and CUE
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**Cadillac User Experience (CUE)** Discussion, USB drives and CUE in Item Specific Cadillac Discussion; ...
  1. #1
    dchamb is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Angry USB drives and CUE

    So far I've experimented with several options to try to get the CUE system on my 2013 XTS to accept my full music library. I need a drive capable of supporting at least 128GB of storage, which limits the available options. I have tried this with a 1TB Western Digital My Passport drive and an iPod Classic 160GB.

    I went through all the folders of the drive to make certain the only files on it are .mp3, .jpg and .m3u. I have this data organized as (same as used for my Sonos system):

    [Root]
    [Artist folder]
    [Album folder]
    [mp3 files; folder.jpg containing the album artwork]
    [Album 2 folder]
    [Artist 2 folder]

    I have one .m3u playlist which is located in the root directory level. There are 1116 jpg files, 13,220 mp3 files and 1 m3u file.

    First I tried the Western Digital My Passport drive straight out of the box formatted NTFS 1TB. At first it seemed to work and was indexed the files on the drive. Problems encountered: most album artwork would not display; playlists unrecognized; unable to add/change content on the drive without CUE becoming confused.

    Second, based on a suggestion by another member of this forum, was to try an iPod Classic 160. At first seemed like it was the solution. All album artwork appears; playlists recognized. Problem however was playing stopped abruptly and would only clear up if a reset on the iPod was performed. Answer from CUE team: don't use the iPod Classic because Apple no longer supports it. Lockups are due to CUE system too many queries to the iPod because iPod is too slow to respond.

    Third. Took the My Passport, repartitioned the drive to a single 160GB partition formatted NTFS. No lockups on playback; more album artwork appeared that when this was tried the first time; no playlists recognized. Still has problem with recognizing adds/changes to the drive as if it still remembers the way it looked previously.

    So I am about to give up. I sent a message to codeman71 but have not heard back.

    My questions to this group are:

    1. Is there a procedure to get CUE to forget about what it indexed before and treat the drive as a totally new drive?
    2. Is there a limitation on the size of USB drive CUE can handle?
    3. Is there a limitation of the number of folders/files it will index before it drops them on the floor?
    4. Should I give up on thinking I can carry my entire audio library in my XTS?

    Thanks

    Dale

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  3. #2
    RippyPartsDept's Avatar
    RippyPartsDept is offline Hi, I'm Chris - Please Read My Signature
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    Re: USB drives and CUE

    if you don't get good answers here (sorry, I don't have any for you) you can try calling the CUE hotline 855-4CUE-NOW
    Chris Heath (RippyPartsDept) is an ASE Certified GM Parts Consultant at
    Rippy is a Cadillac, Hummer, Saturn & Saab dealership - family owned and operated in Wilmington, NC since 1946
    We offer all forum members deals on parts and freight - e: parts@rippyautomotive.com ph: 800-RIPPY-22
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  4. #3
    dchamb is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Thanks but the CUE hot line hasn't been much more help than the CUE manual, which lacks much in technical details. Codeman71 was more help but I haven't seen a response lately from him.

  5. #4
    georule is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: USB drives and CUE

    I don't know how long it takes, but I think if you leave it running it likely will completely replace the index eventually. The leaving the old index there to use is, I think, considered a feature instead of a bug. And most of the time it is --it allows you to continue playing songs that are still on the stick while CUE does its index updates. The only time I lose my index entirely is if CUE has one of its occasional random reboots. That seems to wipe the index and make it start over from scratch.

  6. #5
    dchamb is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: USB drives and CUE

    Hmmm..seems like it took much less time to do the initial indexing than the reindexing is taking. I found that the initial indexing took about 20 minutes or so to complete, or at least be usable. It's been days/weeks since the changes were made to the content of the drive and still the changes do not appear. I sorta wish for one of those random reboots to occur! LOL

  7. #6
    Yplus is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: USB drives and CUE

    Quote Originally Posted by dchamb View Post
    Answer from CUE team: don't use the iPod Classic because Apple no longer supports it. Lockups are due to CUE system too many queries to the iPod because iPod is too slow to respond.

    Apple still sells the iPod classic, so why does the CUE team think they don't support it? Maybe, just maybe, the indexing scheme CUE uses totally sucks and thrashes spindle based drives to death. Nah, can't be, must be the "slow" iPod Classic.

    Here's my solution. Get a 128GB flash drive and format as NTFS. Spindle drives are apparently "too slow" for CUE. To get playlists, you need to edit them in a specific way that I never remember, but search this forum for playlist, xml, and edit and you'll find it. It completely works.

    Me? I just use bluetooth functionality on my 64GB iPhone. No album artwork, but Siri is 1000% better than waiting 20 minutes for the ability to say to CUE "Play Rock Music" and not get a soliloquy on why indexing is happening and you have to wait. Take CUE out of the equation since they seriously need to hire someone to understand how to make a reasonable indexing scheme.

  8. #7
    dchamb is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: USB drives and CUE

    They said the iPod Classic is in "maintenance mode" which means no new enhancements. Just bug fixes and Apple doesn't regard this as a bug. And apparently neither does GM. So the lesson learned here is don't use an iPod Classic in a Cadillac with CUE.

    To test things out, I went for an hour+ drive Saturday afternoon to see how CUE responded to the reindexing of the My Passport drive partitioned to 150GB. I left the screen on the browse artist list and the circle was spinning for an hour and 15 minutes before the screen suddenly changed and all (except for one so far) albums were indexed. Still a very small percentage of them show with album art even though there is a "folder.jpg" file for every album on the drive. During the nearly 1 1/2 hour reindexing run, I was not able to make any music choices. It started playing at the first artist in alphabetical order and going through each song title until the next artist in alphabetical sequence. If I tried to select a song before it was reindexed, CUE just got very confused, not playing anything and randomly jumping through the index attempting to play something. Occasionally it would let out a squeak in the speakers.

    So now I can live with what I think is the greatest majority of my music collection in the car, minus album art on most of them. Oh, the one I can't find is ".38 Special". Don't know if CUE can't handle the period in front of 38 or what the deal is! Needless to say, CUE is one strange acting bird!

    Dale

  9. #8
    dchamb is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: USB drives and CUE

    Update on my latest experiment: I got a Patriot 256GB Flash drive and put my entire collection on it. The drive comes preformatted as FAT32 and it is USB 3.0 compatible. Much faster than the Western Digital My Passport 1TB drive. I plugged it into the XTS USB port under the "garage door" on the console. It took almost 40 minutes to index it and during that time I was able to access much of the content on the drive before it was completed. Still most of the album art does not come through...truly hit or miss and I believe this to be a solid bug in the CUE software.

    Playlists (I added a few more) all showed up and played just fine. So far this seems to be my best solution. One thing I haven't been able to crack, and this is probably another bug in CUE, but I have .38 Special 20th Century Masters Collection album on the drive but CUE does not seem to pick it up and display it in the album or artist browse. I added a playlist made up entirely of the content of this album and the playlist appears and will play the music. Not sure if the indexing algorithm used by CUE has a problem with periods or names starting with a number. I modified the mp3 metadata to remove the period in front of the 38 and it made no difference. Count that as bug number 2 in this experience.

    I hope the folks at the CUE customer support are reading this and passing on this information to CUE development.

    Dale

  10. #9
    RippyPartsDept's Avatar
    RippyPartsDept is offline Hi, I'm Chris - Please Read My Signature
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    Re: USB drives and CUE

    Have you contacted the CUE team to report these bugs yet?

    855-4CUE-NOW is the phone number to reach them

    hoping that they will see your post on an internet message forum is almost guaranteed to ensure nothing will happen
    Chris Heath (RippyPartsDept) is an ASE Certified GM Parts Consultant at
    Rippy is a Cadillac, Hummer, Saturn & Saab dealership - family owned and operated in Wilmington, NC since 1946
    We offer all forum members deals on parts and freight - e: parts@rippyautomotive.com ph: 800-RIPPY-22
    <-- insert standard boilerplate about posts not necessarily representing my employer, etc -->

  11. #10
    dchamb is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: USB drives and CUE

    I've been in contact with codeman71 and he has forwarded my findings to the development team.

  12. #11
    Eckless is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: USB drives and CUE

    I got a 64GB USB stick today...here were my experiences in getting it to work (2014 ATS):

    1. If you format the drive in Windows, Windows will use exFAT by default. CUE will not read the stick.
    2. Another option available in Windows when formatting is to use NTFS. I did so, put a bunch of music on the stick...CUE seemed to start reading, but after giving me the yellow circle for about 10 minutes, it gave up and said "No Media Available". Note I may have screwed something up here -- others seem to say NTFS works.
    3. FAT32 is the format the seemed to work. However the issue here is that Windows will not format anything in FAT32 beyond 32GB. To do so, you must "trick" windows -- some googling will land you several utilities that format drives in FAT32 beyond the (completely artificial) 32GB limit. Formatting the stick in FAT32 seems to work thus far!

    Eckless

  13. #12
    dchamb is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: USB drives and CUE

    Quote Originally Posted by Eckless View Post
    I got a 64GB USB stick today...here were my experiences in getting it to work (2014 ATS):

    1. If you format the drive in Windows, Windows will use exFAT by default. CUE will not read the stick.
    2. Another option available in Windows when formatting is to use NTFS. I did so, put a bunch of music on the stick...CUE seemed to start reading, but after giving me the yellow circle for about 10 minutes, it gave up and said "No Media Available". Note I may have screwed something up here -- others seem to say NTFS works.
    3. FAT32 is the format the seemed to work. However the issue here is that Windows will not format anything in FAT32 beyond 32GB. To do so, you must "trick" windows -- some googling will land you several utilities that format drives in FAT32 beyond the (completely artificial) 32GB limit. Formatting the stick in FAT32 seems to work thus far!

    Eckless
    Yes I did find that out that CUE does not recognize exFAT. Only seems to like NTFS and FAT32. I used a utility called USB Disk Storage Format Tool http://www.authorsoft.com/usb-disk-s...rmat-tool.html to format my WD My Passport drive just to see if the drive format made a difference. I really didn't see any difference in how CUE recognizes and uses the drive formatted NTFS vs FAT32. The Patriot drive came preformatted FAT32. So far all I can say about the drive issue with CUE is this:

    1. Drive size doesn't seem to matter.
    2. Format doesn't seem to matter as long as it is FAT32 or NTFS.
    3. Drive speed DOES matter. CUE expects fast response from the drive (hence why the iPod Classic 160 didn't work well causing the iPod to lock up frequently). Rotational drives are slower than solid state, so your best bet is to go with a solid state device with a fast interface.

    I don't know if the 2013 XTS USB ports are level 2.0 or level 3.0 compliant. That might make a difference too if the USB drive is 3.0 compliant.

    As far as album art goes, I am going to experiment more with embedding the artwork into the mp3 file to see if that works consistently or not.

    Dale

  14. #13
    georule is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: USB drives and CUE

    I'm coming to really dislike the spoken message about media is still initializing when I try to do voice recognition to play an artist after getting in the car. Since Cue will reindex every time you start the vehicle, this means anybody with even a decent size collection of music is going to hear that long azz message every. . . single. . . time. . . they get in the car and try to play something, at which point it is just worthless waste of my time.

  15. #14
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    pissedoffwookiee is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: USB drives and CUE

    Quote Originally Posted by georule View Post
    I'm coming to really dislike the spoken message about media is still initializing when I try to do voice recognition to play an artist after getting in the car. Since Cue will reindex every time you start the vehicle, this means anybody with even a decent size collection of music is going to hear that long azz message every. . . single. . . time. . . they get in the car and try to play something, at which point it is just worthless waste of my time.
    which is why it was recomended to me by an acquaintance who works for cadillac that i get a nice usb lighter charger and use Siri with bluetooth, and he's right 1000 times better, CUE would be a million times better if it were just an amp with a volume knob and bluetooth. voice is terrible, screen is layed out badly and calls too much attention to itself while driving, and wheel buttons are ok but very limited and you must do extensive setup of presets, no way to change station on wheel that is not preset

  16. #15
    dchamb is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: USB drives and CUE

    I agree. I've come to not use the CUE voice recognition and rely only on the manual controls. On-Star's voice recognition is even better than CUE's. The problem is not everyone has Siri available to them. A car should not be dependent on one particular vendor's technology, as in Apple iPhone. Something I find also annoying with CUE is when my smartphone is linked via Bluetooth, none of the smartphone's voice prompts come through the car. It's like the smartphone is on mute. Which means when I use the mapping app on my smartphone to give me directions (which I always do because CUE is too slow, interface too clunky and the maps are horribly out of date), I must turn off bluetooth to hear the directions. So in the end what good is CUE anyway????

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