keeping collection organized?????

i was wondering if any of you uses some kind of computer program where you can have complete access to all the information of your collection.
Oh, if only I had that much time. I do good to keep mine in alphabetic order by artist.
No, though a palm pilot with the list would be good -- I have purchased a cd to bring it home and find that I already own it! You can bet my spouse noticed that one. My memory isn't quite as fine as it once was, or at least as I remember it ;-)

Currently, I organize by artist and category: Alpha by composer for classical, alpha by artist for blues, alpha by artist for jazz and alpha by artist for all other music forms.
I made up my own in Microsoft Access and it works fairly well. I know there are commercial software programs for doing the same and they probably are more versatile than mine, but the main reason I did it is to prevent buying CD's I already have!
Microsoft Excel works fine for me; I made a workbook with one sheet being LP's, one for CD's, and one "other". Costs nothing and keeps me reasonably organized. Jeff
I have my 3,000+ cds in Word, alpha list by artist's name and title of cd. Updates are relatively simple and easy to do. The printed version fits on five sheets of paper - four columns, pinted on both sides in 7pt font. It folds up nicely into my wallet and has prevented me from buying duplicate copies on several occassions over the years. If I need further information, I rely on for the finer details of a particular non-Indie labeled cd.

Simple yet practical.
My collection is as organized as an old bookstore after an earthquake.
Here is what i use works great.

CD Trustee CD catalog software for Windows
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Ozfly, the memory is the second thing to go. I forgot what was first.
I've used several different programs over the years. I started with an Access database I built myself. I eventually imported that in to Spinfree Audiofile v. 4.03. Spinfree hasn't supported the product actively in a couple of years, so when Windows XP came out, using the Audiofile Internet Companion to retrieve CD info automatically became problematic. Just recently, I ported everything over to Collectorz Music Collector v. 6.1. (

I have been very happy with Music Collector so far. It can be relatively complicated to use if you want to delve into the more esoteric and detailed information fields, but, if you are inclined you can store everything from the basic info like title and track names to musicians, producers and engineers, where and when you bought it, the record label, etc. It's extremely detailed and easy to search. It also has an excellent lookup utility, where using either the basic disc data (retrieved from this disk automatically be inserting it in a drive), the UPS code (eithertyped in or scanned, if you have a bar code scanner), or the artist and title, it will query not only the CDDB, like most other music cataloging programs, but also the All Music Guide and info. Check out the website. I've been very happy with it's ability to keep track of my 1500+ CD, 2000+ CD-R, 500+ DAT collection
I use CD Trustee and it works just as advertized. Especially valuable is the automatic loading of CD titles, tracks, times and genres from Gracenote. Having used this now for several months, I would not recommend you attempt to use a spread sheet or access or word. This product is far superior and relatively inexpensive. Plus, you can down load and try it for a limited number of CDs for no charge.
Elgordo, it's probably best to have forgotten that ;-)
I use CD Trustee. A newer version is also available where you don't have to scan the records as you chose directly from the accessible database making it better if you have a collection of vinyl LPs, so long as the recording was also issued on CD.
It's all in my head.
i use an excel spreadsheet that i download to my ipaq. i then take my ipaq with me when i go shopping for cd's and albums (a couple times a week) to verify if i have the album/cd or not before purchasing. I also have a list of music that i want to purchase, so if i see it, i buy it. the columns in the spreadsheet are: artist, album/cd name, type of music (jazz, new age, rck, etc..), and format (cd,sacd,album,dvd). another plus, i can sort by any column to find something fast.
I started writing it all down on some graph paper, but that got all washed-up - it got wet in the bathroom when I left it on the floor there (I'd brought it in there to do some critical editing during a lengthy session on the crapper and forgot about it when things got ugly). Next I tried putting all the info in my Palm Pilot, but that only lasted a week when I left it on an airplane and no one returned it.....back-up, back-up, back-up! I tried the Excel spreadsheet after that but I forgot my password and can't get past the startup screen now. It's in there somewhere, all neat and tidy in zeros and ones...really it is. Once I remember that password I'll probably be able to find where I left the disc for Eva Cassidy Live at Blues Alley....I have the jewelcase, but the disc went AWOL. It's all in the spreadsheet you know, so nothing to worry about. Everything's under control. Nothing to see here! You can all go home now. C'mon, get along with all of youse! Nothing to see....


PS Once I get that f&*%ing password and get my spreadsheet back I'm going to have the whole damn list tatoo'd on my left buttock so I'll never be without it again!
I bought an Expedit "organizer" from Ikea with 13 x 13" square cells there.
My near 2000 record collection consists of groups that I specify in the label sheet in nearly each of the cell.
CDs I simply keep in my head. Not too much of the new music deserves to rest in my collection.
OPP, Microsoft Access 97 has preprogrammed application called Music Collections.mdb
Microsoft Access 97 is a part of Microsoft Office.
After you open it choose File/Open Database/Databases/ Music Collections,mdz.
Store it in My Documents folder.
This program is very easy to use.
If you will have a problems to find Microsoft Access 97, I can e-mail copy of this application.
If you have Office 2000 or Office XP on your computer, Music Collections.mdb can be converted to Access 2000 version.
Get in touch with me, if you have any questions.

Good luck.
I know I am showing my age, or perhaps the age of my collection, when I say how I organize my collection: 4000+ LPs and 1500+ CDs. I started in the 60s using 3x5 plain library cards. Each work is on a separate card and filed by composer. On the left side of the card at the top is RECORD, CD, CASSETTE or DVD. Next, at the top, is the composer and his/her "dates".
Under the composer is the complete info on the recorded work. Next down is the manufacturers name and the number of the album given by the manufacturer. (I file all of my recordings alphabetically by manufacturer and numerically by the manufacturer's number.) Next down is the timing, format, and date of recording. Under that is the orchestra or performers who are performing and the conductor. Followed by the person's name who wrote the program notes. Under this I list all of the other works by the same composer found on the recording and/or the name of other composers whose works are on the same recording. One recording can have as many as 12 cards generated as I have one card for each work by each composer. This way I do not "Lose" a recorded work.
Needless to say there has been a great deal of work done in cataloging my collection over the years but I can find any work I have within a minute or less once I have looked it up in my card file. It is rather easy to keep the catalogue current by typing a card or cards for each new purchase. I've gone through 3 or 4 typewriters over the years and have thousands of cards.
I also have all of my musical scores and books catalogued as well within the same card system. I have a few genres located in the system, the largest two being Band music and Jazz. Listings in these catagories are also listed alphabetically in the files.
Works for me!
Microsoft Excel
Library cards? Good Grief!