OK, I partially take back my comments from yesterday. I found another thing about my new Sansa Clip Zip that's annoying.
Yesterday I tried upgrading the Clip Zip firmware. It came with firmware version 01.01.12, but the current release is 01.01.18, so I figured I'd get up to date. The firmware upgrade process itself was actually totally painless. You can use Sandisk's upgrade utility or just copy the file into the root of your device and disconnect it from the PC to start the upgrade. Nice and simple.
The problem is with the new firmware. As far as I can tell, there were no major bug fixes or improvements that I care that much about, but there is one major bug. In the 01.01.12 firmware version, the media refresh will pick up M3U files and add them to the device's list of playlists. The file paths need to be relative, of course, or else you end up with an empty playlist, but it's actually a very nice feature.
Well guess what's missing in firmware version 01.01.18 - no playlists. They don't even show up. A thread on the official Sansa forum suggests that this problem is actually shared by all the newer firmware versions, not just the latest. So nice going, Sandisk! Way to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.
On the up side, reverting to the 01.01.12 firmware was dead simple. Just download the appropriate archive and follow the normal upgrade instructions. Once I did that, my playlists were back...after the hideously long media refresh.
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