Picard 2.9 alpha 1 available for testing

Today we have released an alpha version for the upcoming Picard 2.9. The main change coming with this release is limiting Picard to a single instance by default and the ability to run commands inside this running Picard instance from the command line. This work was done by skelly37 as part of last year’s Google Summer of Code.

Keep in mind that we consider this an alpha release and it might contain bugs. As the single-instance mode by default is a significant change on how Picard is being run we want to gather some feedback on the new functionality before we do a final 2.9 release.

If needed the single-instance mode can be disabled using the --stand-alone-instance command line parameter. If you use this we would be interested why you need this option and what your specific use case is.

Please report any issue through our bug tracker and give us feedback on this beta release on the Community Forums.


Downloads for Picard 2.9.0 alpha 1 are available from the MetaBrainz file servers with the links below or directly from our GitHub release page.

What’s new?


  • PICARD-2576 – Options window minimum height does not fit on smaller screens
  • PICARD-2599 – Crash on plugin install / update

New Features

  • PICARD-2471 – Restrict Picard to a single instance, open new files in existing instance
  • PICARD-2519 – Allow passing supported URLs on command line
  • PICARD-2526 – Allow starting processing actions from the command line


  • PICARD-356 – Replace Windows incompatible characters with user defined character
  • PICARD-2486 – Add text-based comparison scripting functions
  • PICARD-2550 – Support dBpoweramp secure ripping log files for disc ID lookup
  • PICARD-2553 – Add option to use underscores instead of spaces in file naming
  • PICARD-2567 – Support fre:ac ripping log for disc ID lookup
  • PICARD-2595 – Customizable replacement character for directory separators

Helping out

The easiest way to help us getting a great Picard 2.9 release is using and testing this beta release. Please report bugs on the Picard issue tracker and provide feedback in the community forums.

Please also help translate Picard. There have been many changes to the user interface and existing translations need to be updated for the final 2.9 release. Translating is easy and can be done online: Head over to MusicBrainz’s translation page on Transifex and click on “Help Translate MusicBrainz”.
Once you have registered an account on Transifex you can start translating. For Picard the primary resource to translate is “picard“, but there is also the “picard_appstream” resource, which is used for providing descriptions for various Linux software-center applications, and “picard_installer”, which contains the translations for Picard’s Windows installer.

If you are a software developer you are very welcomed to provide fixes and features. Picard is free software and the source code is available on GitHub. See Developing on the Picard website to get started.


This release contains the changes done by skelly37 as part of the 2022 Google Summer of Code. Thanks a lot for these contributions.

In addition this release contains code contributions by Bob Swift, Philipp Wolfer, Laurent Monin and Jeffrey Bosboom.

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