History:How To Merge Releases

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It is necessary to merge releases whenever two (or more) releases exist that are completely identical.

Before attempting any merge, please attentively read WhatDefinesAUniqueRelease!

Also, you should check for releases listed on NotDuplicateReleases or VirtualDuplicateRelease, or other lists of releases that are confirmed not duplicates.

Please note that, with the current system, release annotations are usually the only reliable way to tell apart different remasters of an release. This means that, if the releases appear to be identical, and there is no annotation to the contrary, my advice would be to merge them.

The documents MergeRatherThanDelete and DuplicateRelease also are of interest.


Step by step instructions

In this example, we will be merging four releases. The first two are 100% identical, and are the result of a Various Artist add gone wrong (the artist of each track is set the same as the title of the track), the third is attributed to the correct artist, but all titles are in lower case and several are misspelt, and the fourth is the "correct" release, which we will be merging into.

Step 1: Select the Releases to Merge

A release merge (or other batch operation) may be started from either the Artist page (Step 1a), or a Release page (Step 1b).

Step 1a: Selecting Releases via Artist Page

Step 1a.1: Mark the Releases to be Merged

On the Artist page, mark all of the releases to be merged.

Step1a-1 1.png

Step 1a.2: Start a Batch Operation

Choose the "Batch Operation" link, near the top of the page.

Step1a-2 1.png

Step 1a.3: Mark Remaining Releases

If there are more releases in the set that need to be merged, find those now and repeat steps 1a.1 and 1a.2. MusicBrainz will remember the releases you have already marked as long as you don't close your browser, so you can take your time to do this, even if that means creating a new release to merge into.

Step1a-3 1.png

Step 1a.4: Done with this Alternative

Skip to Step 2

Step 1b: Selecting Releases via Release Pages

Step 1b.1: Open the Releases to be Merged

Open each of the releases to be merged in a separate browser tab (or window).

Step1b-1 1.png

Step 1b.2: Add Releases to Batch Operation Cache

On each of the tabs / windows, choose the "Merge With..." link, to add each release to the "Batch Operation" cache. Step1b-2 1.png

Step 1b.3: Close the Redundant Releases

This step is completely optional, but reduces the clutter in your browser. Close all but the last (most recent) "Batch Operation" tab / window.

Step 1b.4: Done with this Alternative

Skip to Step 2

Step 2: Start the Merge

From the "Batch Operation" menu, choose "Merge all the selected releases into one release, preserving all TRM IDs and Disc IDs".

Note: Since SG5DisasterRelief, the "Merge into Various Artist release" option is probably obsolete and should not be used. (If this is not the case, please update this.)

Step2-1a 1.png

Step 3: Complete the Merge

Step 3.1: Choose the Target Release

Scroll down the page to find the release you want to merge into (the "target" release). If it is not already at the top, choose the "Move to Top" button.

Step3-1 1.png

Step 3.2: Choose Attribute Merge Option

The release attributes describe what type of release a release is. Examples are "Album/Official", "Compilation/Official", or "Live/Bootleg". Choose whether to merge the attributes from all the selected releases, or to keep the attributes of the target (top) release.

If you choose to merge the attributes, then any attributes that are blank (e.g. "None" or "Unknown") in the target release will be set to match one of the releases being merged.

Step3-2 1.png

Step 3.3: Choose Language Merge Option

The language/script attributes are handled in exactly the same way as the release attributes (above). Choose whichever option is appropriate.

Step3-3 1.png

Step 3.4: Submit the Merge

Enter a moderation note (optional, but recommended) to describe why the releases should be merged, and what the intended outcome is. Once this is done, choose the "Merge!" button to complete the merge operation.

Step3-4 1.png

Related How To's

Further Information