Local Time Signatures and XML export

• May 15, 2016 - 13:35

I am having a serious issue with exporting a file containing local time signatures to XML format. The conversion does not honour the local time sig, seemingly, which results in extensive corruption and renotation that does not match the original score.

Here is what the original mscz file looks like:

xml export problem original mscz file.png

Here is what the converted xml file looks like:

xml export problem.png

Here is the load-error message that pops up on opening that xml file with MuseScore:

xml export problem--Load Error message.png

The original mscz file opens without any problems; no load-error appears.

I need to solve this somehow, as the piece has been submitted to a competition and the sponsoring organisation uses Sibelius 6. If I can't provide a clean xml file, they'll have to re-input the score from scratch, working from my PDF.

Suggestions, anyone?


I suggest there will be a bug with local time signature an xml export (the same for midi export).

And maybe the other can't open the corrupted file (I just exported an xml file with local time signature and tried to open it with "https://www.soundslice.com/musicxml-viewer/" but I got only an error message).

Maybe I would try in your case to write and save each instrument in a single file without any local time signatures and send each instrument in a single xml-file to the sponsoring organisation so that they can combine the four files to a whole piece , maybe this would take up less time as reinput it from the scratch.

But maybe there is somewhere with a better suggestion ;-)

In reply to by kuwitt

The organisation hasn't yet tried to open the XML; if they can't open it at all using Sibelius they'll have to copy it over manually from the PDF. Fortunately, only the first movement contains local time signatures, and it's only four parts, 32 measures, so it's not a huge job. But it's obviously something that needs to be fixed, IMO.

There are already known bugs in the use of local time sigs; you can't paste into measures after one or change the local time sig in the middle of a score that contains any music already. I don't know if it's one of these bugs that's messing up the xml conversion, or if the conversion algorithm just isn't recognising the time sig change.

I understand that it's a highly complex issue, though.

In reply to by Recorder485

An other (oldschooled;) way could be trying to edit the xml file manual in a text editor, if there is no other solution and fix in sight (delete lines like < dots / >, change the < type > of the note length and so on). I'm not sure wheather each text editor is suitable for this (with leafpad under xfce it matched). But this would only make sense if there are not so much corrections.

(A long time ago (the time before free wysiwyg sore writer where rearly useable) I used sometimes musictex for creating music sheets but never musicxml ;)

In reply to by kuwitt

I opened the xml in IE just to see what it contained; that indicates I should be able to open it with Notepad, but I haven't tried yet.

Unfortunately, the sheer magnitude of the task of hand-correcting all those errors line by line is at least two orders higher than the work involved in re-copying the score from a PDF into Sibelius. If worse comes to worst, I could probably download the free-trial version of Sib6 and do it myself, although it would probably take me a couple of days to wrap my head around Sibelius as I have never used it before, and this is not a simple score.

There are some standard questions that are generally asked at this point:

* What version of MuseScore are you using?
* What operating system and version are you using (Windows 10, OS/X 10.7.4, Ubuntu 14.04, etc) ?
* Could you post the MSCZ file so that it can be examined for problems?

In your particular case, why is the starting time signature in the first staff 6/4 and not 4/4, changing to 6/4 at the 9th measure? It seems inconsistent with the other staffs.

In version 2.0.3, I don't see how you can even create that situation. This bug looks more like the sort of thing that could have been created in versions before 2.x.

In reply to by jim.weisgram

MS version 2.0.1; OS Win7 professional.

I cannot post the score on a public website; the competition rules state the work must be unpublished.

The time signatures are written the way they are for musical reasons, and I'm not going to rewrite the music. The pardessus comes in at m.9 in 6:4 playing a series of quarter notes which would be notated in 4:4 as two groups of quarter-note triplets per measure. But the 6:4 is interpreted differently to 4:4, and it's just as well that the player start out by counting in 6:4 through those 8 measures of rest, because he/she's going to be in 6:4 almost to the very end of the piece. This piece is difficult enough for players to keep to the actual meter in their own lines without the composer adding to the confusion by throwing unnecessary changes at them.

If you suspect that the problem involves the change to a local time sig in the first measure--where the program would expect to see a global time sig for all staves--I could address that by changing the local time sigs in m.2 (after a measure of rest on all staves), and then making the first measure invisible. But XML export does not honour 'visible/invisible' instructions, either. That is confirmed by the hidden dynamics I put in the score to control the playback, all of which showed up in the XML version.

In reply to by Recorder485

Maybe your best option right now is to sign up for the 30 day Sibelius free trial and use that for your misbehaving movement.

I had to look up local time signature to even understand what you did. So I am not going to pretend to be expert enough to advise on what you should do.

I was able to reproduce your error with a fresh score with 2 staves, with 4/4 global time, and 6/4 local time on the first stave, then entered similar music as what showed on your screen shots. I used 2.0.2 and 2.0.3 on Ubuntu Trusty running on a Chromebook.

I posted this in the issue tracker as a bug but someone with more knowledge of the application would need to confirm whether Musescore is designed to allow a 6/4 local time against a 4/4 global time.

For what it is worth I also tested a 2 measure score with 2 staffs, 4/4 global time, with 1 staff set to 6/4 local time, and entered a couple of bars of quarter notes in each staff. Then saved to XML and then loaded the XML. I got the same type of error message.

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