Ardour continually crashing when searching tags

I have started tagging my audio files in Ardour 5.12.0 on AV Linux.
So far I have tagged 11 files with 80bpm, however when searching for 80bpm only 3 results are returned.
If however if I search for drums all 80bpm entries show up. Weird!
Searching for drums,80bpm only returns 3 results, not 11.
Searching for drums,90bpm returns all results entered.
Sometimes searching with more than one tag just crashes ardour.
Also I have one entry at 94bpm which is not returned from a search at all. Using other tag categories does not return it as well. The behavior is crazy. Not consistent.
I just entered 18 tags with 100bpm and all are returned.
Again I then searched for 100bpm,drums and ardour crashes.
When checking the sfdb file all the entries are there. Just some are not returned in a search.

If anyone can help with this issue I would be really grateful.

Am I the only one having problems when searching by tags.
Does anybody else have tag searching working?

Sadly tagging is something I haven’t used in a long time. Because I was dealing with 30k+ sound files to search through I always found it easier to search outside of Ardour. It will have to be looked into, it is possible you have found a bug and it should probably go on Mantis. Especially given it is causing a crash.


Hi seablade,
I have just installed ardour 6 and tag searching still crashes ardour.
On looking at the file it is just a text file with a separate line for each tag.
For such a program as ardour it should be something more than a text file.
Having thousands of sample files it is really important to have a working tag search system.
I hope this can be fixed in the next version of ardour 6.
I thought it would be some kind of sqlite database but sadly it isnt.
Parsing the file seems to just crash ardour when searching multiple tags.

Honestly I didn’t remember the TAG searching still being there, but being a text file isn’t necessarily a problem, and one of the design goals of Ardour is that all files should be editable with a text editor to prevent losing access to data. The fact it is a text file may slow it down possibly, how much depends on the system, but the fact it is crashing is a bug either way. Can you create an account on Mantis ( and report the bug along with a recipe to create it (And any necessary files you don’t mind sharing to create it)? That will ensure it doesn’t get lost which it often can here on the forums.


I just tested the tagging system on my PC - with Ardour & Mixbus - and none of them crashed, so I can’t help with that.

That being said, the tagging as it is now, is a bit limited in its use imho. It doesn’t search for parts of text, only whole words. And tags ending with a dot (".") are not found - probably because the line in the sfdb file ends with it ?

Also a bit confusing that there is a Tag column in the Sources and Regions tabs of the Editor List. Those tags entered there never make it into the sfdb file.

EDIT: it’s also case-sensitive (on Linux anyway).