Nov 222011
Free Chord Lyric Software for Windows®

Jazz and rock musicians often play from chord and lyric sheets instead of sheet music. I wrote this simple Windows program to replace the printed chord sheets I used to use during practice, and decided to make it available for anyone else who may find it useful. Digital Fake Book displays chords and lyrics in plain text format on 1 or 2 sheets. It is not able to display standard music notation.

Latest update 1.9.7

Main Features
  • Keeps all your songs in one place for easy, one-click selection.
  • Built-in metronome with tempo setting for each song.
  • Chord transpose to change the key of the song.
  • Audio file linking with A/B section looping helps with learning songs by ear.
  • Audio files can also be transposed.
  • Text size and sheet divider position is saved with each song enabling the largest text size possible while still fitting the whole song on the screen.
  • Random sets can be created to make practice more varied.
  • Several color schemes (themes) to choose from.

Digital Fake Book. Free chord lyrics software for Windows.

Download Version 1.9.7
Size:953.0 KB – 6,643 downloads

License: Freeware. Digital Fake Book is copyright Mike Warren. It may be used and distributed freely as long as no fee is charged and the author is not misrepresented. This software is distributed on an “AS IS” basis, WITHOUT WARRANTY OF ANY KIND, either express or implied.

The Digital Fake Book forum is available here if you have any questions, or want to discuss the program with other users.

Click here to view the Digital Fake Book help online:  How to Use Digital Fake Book

Download Manual
Size:399.7 KB – 2,915 downloads
Thanks to danmar for creating it.

Digital Fake Book Portable

A portable version of Digital Fake Book can be downloaded if you want to use the same set of data on more than one computer. This is supplied as a zip file, and needs to be extracted to the location you want to run it from. This is exactly the same program as above, but is packaged in such a way that it doesn’t need to be installed to run.

It’s important to keep the file and folder structure the same as it is in the zip as the program expects to find the various files in particular locations in relation the the program file. There is no installer to run, but you may want to download and install the Bitstream Vera font

The portable version is also useful if you want to run multiple versions with different configurations of song data. See the help file for more information.

Download Portable Version 1.9.7
Size:1.1 MB – 2,010 downloads

Using Digital Fake Book on a Mac

I’ve been informed that DFB can be used on OSX by installing WineBottler. The downside is that media file playback and the metronome won’t work.

If you find any bugs or have any suggestions for improvements, please email me, post on The Digital Fake Book Forum or leave a comment below.


  160 Responses to “Digital Fake Book”

  1. Hi Mike,I’m using a laptop pc “HP Pavilion 360” with DF RC204 , sometimes the mp3 will stutter on start up and continue to do so until I shut down and reboot. also sometimes another issue is that I might turn the page to the next song but the lyrics to the previous song remain until I hit Esc ,this will clear it .NOTE I was using a TOSHIBA SATELLITE until it crashed and had to replace it with the HP don’t know if this is relevant to the whole ordeal??

    • Hi Fred, I’ve just sent you an email asking for more info to see if we can track down the cause.

  2. Hi Mike,
    I really like your DFB and have been using it on a full sized laptop setting
    on a music stand.
    My laptop is getting old and I would like to get another one that can run DFB.
    What Brand/Model, 2 in 1 laptop should I get that will run DFB.
    I’m thinking of getting a smaller one, fold it backwards and mount it on my
    mike stand.

    • Just bought an RCA Cambia 2 in 1 10.1″: It comes with Windows 10 and is working great with DFB.
      The price on Amazon was nice also. I think I now have a great stage combo.

  3. “How can I run DFB on an iPad”
    Hi Mike, I love DFB and have been using it for years. It’s great for an aging musician with an aging memory. My question is, how can I run your program on an iPad. I’ve tried downloading Winebottler, but the iPad won’t let me download that program. I would love to just clip an iPad to my mike stand and use DFB. Now I need to use a laptop on a music stand.

    • Unfortunately, it’s not possible to run DFB on an iPad. Like Android devices, iPads use a different type of CPU.

      • Thanx for the answer Mike.
        Your DFB is so great I’ll continue to use it on a laptop.
        Kinda cumbersome but it’s worth it, in order to use your DFB on stage.
        Kerry Doyle

    • works fine

  4. Hello Mike
    I would really like to use the software but have now been trying for several weeks and still no luck . Nothing will export in text form i just get jumble computer jargon, so my thoughts are to type all my songs in myself
    or is there a data base of songs you have from which to pull from within the software
    Kind Regards

    • Richard,
      I have developed a data base of 2,622 DFB songs which I have entered one at a time over many years.
      I am willing to share this with you and anyone else currently using DFB Beta 2.0.0
      Send me a request with your email address at I offer these free, but I do ask for any songs you have prepared in return to add to my file.

    • Hi Richard. I’ve sent you an email asking for more information about your problem.

  5. The transpose feature is not working.The lines for each, transpose up and transpose down, are readable but the printing is dimmed. Control U and control D do not activate transposing.
    Thank you,

    • That’s a known bug. It only occurs on newly created songs. To work around the bug, save the song, move to another song and then back to the one you were working on. Now the transpose function will work.

  6. Version 2 is now in beta.
    See here for more details:

  7. Since making a portable backup to take out with me I have since added a number of files to my song list and I’m not sure how to up date the usb stick can anyone give me an idea ???

    • Fred,
      It’s so simple to back up your DBF data.
      1. Insert your memory stick into the computer
      2. Open Digital Fake Book
      3. Select the [OPTIONS] Tab
      4. Scroll down and select the 4th item, “BACKUP/EXPORT DATA FILE…”
      5. A box will pop up asking which items you wish to backup or export.
      6. Be sure all boxes are checked, which they likely will be. Un-check anything you wish to omit.
      7. PRESS [OK] and you’ll then be given the choice of destination for your data file.
      8. Browse to Locate your MEMORY STICK’s location
      9. Once you’ve located the MEMORY STICK, click on [SAVE] and you are done!

      If you have difficulties with any of the above or other DBF questions, please contact me – and I’ll walk you through it.

  8. Mike,

    I read all the different posts throughout and became excited with downloading the program and getting it up and running. And I was planning on using my Windows based notebook called the “Surface” version 1. I store the majority of my words in notepad. As I went to download your latest version, I got a notice that this could not be run on my pc. Then it gave me an option to go to the Windows store to look for a app to open DFB with. At best, I am stuck as to what to do next. Your help would be much appreciated.

    Thanking you in advance!

    Tom Towner

  9. Hi Mike Thanx for this awesome but simple Program. We as band love using it. The Only thing that we would like is to be able to change the font type and Bold and that’s it.
    Thank You again

  10. Thanks for your work. I can not find the links to the individual song files. Can you tell me where they reside. I am trying to launch songs from outside the program. The purpose is to make a master list of songs that open in different programs like finale, a pdf viewer etc.

    • The songs are all in a flat database file called DfbSongData.dat in your {AppData} folder under your your account. In Win7/Win8 it’s something like this: C:\Users\Mike\AppData\Roaming\DigitalFakeBook

      The only real way to get access to individual songs is to export them as text.

      I’m not sure I understand what you’re trying to do. If you want to create a desktop icon that will launch DFB at a particular song, then that’s not supported in the current version. It’s something to consider for V2, though.

  11. Great looking software, thanks for the work. I love the simplicity of it. A couple of questions though; first, would you expect to experience in problems running it with a screen in portrait mode? Any tips or suggestions concerning that? Are there any foot switches that anyone can recommend? Prefer wireless with a dongle.

    • I’ve used DFB for several years now. It performs flawlessly in portrait mode as long as you limit yourself to single page. Currently I have 2050+ song files in DBF, and have no problems. I am careful to format each song to be readable as a single page.
      Be sure to use the “AUTO TEXT SCALING” option. This will allow the full text to appear in both landscape and portrait mode. I usually edit in the landscape mode, then use in portrait mode for performance.

      I currently use DBF on a DELL XPS-12 ULTRABOOK and a DELL XPS 18 ALL-IN-ONE. The 18″ screen in portrait mode is WONDERFUL for these tired old eyes! The 12″ screen works good, too and I used it for several years before adding the 18″.

      For page turning, I used a PageFlip Cicada Bluetooth Page Turner Pedal for a time, but now just keep a Kensington Orbit Wireless Trackball Mouse on my stand. Since all my songs are set as one page, this works well. I play out 4-5 times a week.

      I hope this information helps

      DBF is wonderful, and I thank Mike Warren once again for his development and improvement of this program to version 1.9.7. I (and many others) eagerly await the release of version 2.

      PageFlip Cicada Bluetooth Page Turner Pedal:
      Kensington Orbit Wireless Trackball Mouse:

    • This foot switch has been doing a GREAT job for me for many years now with DFB – – about $50 with a long cable. Then, you can get free key-assigning software from –, that works flawlessly with it.

      • Thanks for the replies. I just bought a Rasberry Pi2 from Amazon. The plan is to repurpose an old BFI monitor speaker and imbed a 24″ display running off of the RPi2 with a wireless foot switch and an additional HDMI out for a second screen. Currently it looks like it’s mostly Linux based OSs but rumor has it Windows10 will be available in June so I can run DFB on it.

        • I’m pretty certain the RPi will not be able to run Win32 programs such as DFB. The RPi has an ARM processor, not Intel. The version of Windows 10 will probably be based on the Windows CE for ARM code, which also won’t run normal Windows desktop programs. It’s meant for IoT (Internet of Things) devices.

          • Well that’s a bummer. I really like your program and was looking forward to using it for this project. I’m still going to build it and hope for the best in either finding something similar or, better yet, that W10 will run it. That or get a crash course in programming. Thanks for the program and for chiming in here.

          • Change of plans. I decided to repurpose an old laptop running Windows Vista as I found that having the “Songs” screen up on the off stage laptop and the main DFB screen on the two portrait mode displays on stage to be a much better way to run it. It was also much easier to rotate the second display(s) on that platform and know that I won’t have to go digging through a configuration set up the day of a show. I just found the highlight line feature, which I like.

            Three features/suggestions I wouldn’t mind seeing in future versions, if there are any, would be- 1) A way to import from a word file and the ability to keep the formatting so that that things line up when copying and pasting. 2) A way to italicize when needed. As I said, I just found the highlighter, but it would be nice to be able to italicize just chords for instance. And 3) A way to scroll so that longer songs can be kept on one song page. I’m probably using my set up from further away than most but I can wish can’t I? I’m sure that one’s not practical.

            In any case, thank you very much for a very cool program. I’m looking forward to my first show with it in July.

          • The second and third are on the list for V2. The first one, I’d like to do, but there is a lot of work in it in relation the the benefit, so if it happens it won’t be for a while.

  12. Mike as usual I want to reiterate how much I appreciate your program. I sent in a couple requests before / Ideas to improve usability for gigging musicians. I usually set up 80 song sets for a 4 hour gigs and I was wondering if you could look at two possible changes for V2 when you upgrade. Right now you have up and down buttons to move songs within a set. Is it possible to set it up so a song could be clicked on in a set and then dragged and drop to the position you want without having to move it by buttons. If it’s a big set this takes quite of bit of time to click the button up to or down sometimes 70+ to move a song a song in a set especially if it at the start
    The other request I was hoping you might look at is ability to change an existing set’s name. This would allow the user to put his sets in alpha order to make it easier to find a particular set when searching at a live gig.
    I have set up numerous sets to expedite searching for example if you have a request for southern rock, a waltz, cha cha, rock, line dance, doo wop, and so on. My reason for asking for this change as the users set files grows there is no way to currently put them in Alpha order. Thanks for considering our suggestions and as I have said in the past I hope you allow us to pay something for V2. I love what you have done for all of us and I use your program 3 to 4 times every week at live gigs and I love it.
    Thank You so much

    • Renaming sets is already added to V2. I had deliberately not allowed drag reordering of songs in a set to allow marquee multi-selection, but since dragging is the usual function in most programs now days, I’ll change that.

      The feature creep continues. 🙂

  13. Hi

    Is it going to be possible to increase the text size within the program ?

    • I’m not sure what you mean, Mike.
      If you mean increase the size of the displayed lyrics, you can do that easily with the TEXT SIZE ARROWS .
      If you don’t SEE the TEXT SIZE ARROWS when you use the program, that means you have the AUTO TEXT SCALING enabled.

      FIRST, be sure you have the latest version of Digital Fake Book installed.
      It SHOULD be “Version”.

      You can check that by going to the OPTIONS Menu and clicking on
      the VERY LAST ITEM which is “ABOUT”.

      If you need to update, do so before you proceed.

      1. Open the OPTIONS Menu.
      2. Scroll down to AUTO TEXT SCALING, which is the 9th item down on the Menu.
      3. Click on that item to disable it.

      You should now be able to use the TEXT SIZE ARROWS.

      You may email me directly if you need any more assistance:

  14. I am getting involved with a band, and was looking for an accessible fake book. YOur softward would allow me to export to a text file, put it in my braille notetaker, and read it in braille. What do you think?

    • I don’t think it will be any help to you. Digital Fake Book is just a viewer program. You would have to import the text before exporting it, so you’d gain nothing.

  15. Fantastic looking. Wife has been asking me for this for quite a while. Note that the EXE download using Norton shows that it has a virus and will not allow me to use that one. I did download the .ZIP file, checked it before running and it was clean. Sometimes these Virus checkers just are not happy with EXE files, so whether it is an actual virus or not is unknown.
    Thanks for what looks to be a great program. Now I just have to get the footswitch and import her lyrics, MP3s, etc. etc.

    • Hey Doug,
      This foot switch has been doing a GREAT job for me for many years with DFB – – along with free key-assigning software from –
      Good Luck with your project!

      • Thanks, I was just getting ready to look up a USB solution. Good timing!

      • Hi John, I check out the infinity foot pedal and it looks to be cheaper than Altoedge but they claim infinity wont work with the free software,I’m a bit confused

        • I should mention something that may be of interest to people wanting footswitch control.

          The company I work for will shortly be releasing an 8 channel USB switch controller for Windows. This has eight 1/4″ jacks on it, allowing up to 8 foot switches or other switch controllers to be plugged in, and will send programmable keystrokes to programs.

          The upcoming version 2 of Digital Fake Book will support his controller natively.

        • certainly has worked for me perfectly since day one. You can always return the pedal is all doesn’t work as it should, and get your $ back. I’ve been using mine several days/nights a week for over three years now 🙂

    • I use a free installer system called Inno Setup that is extremely popular. Because Inno Setup is sometimes used by virus makers, many anti-virus programs have mistakenly marked any Inno Setup installer as a virus,

      Very frustrating.

      • No problems, just wanted to comment about it in case someone else runs into the same issue. Great programming job, btw.

  16. Mike
    I can’t thank you enough for the great job you did on putting this program together. You can’t believe how much you have lightened my load at gigs. No more hauling in books and searching for requests song is so much easier. In the past I used an MP3 player to play my backing tracks and word pages for my files. So finding the page and then pulling up the backing track was to time consuming and if you got them up dancing you need to keep songs coming quick. I have 2 reguests.
    1.) Please allow us to donate something – you have helped so many others with this program and I for one would like to send a donation.
    2.) I sent this request before, but I was hoping in your update that you can add a change that allows you
    to exit a current gig playlist when you have a song requested at a gig and when you return to the the gig playlist that it returns you to the same place you were when you left it so you don’t have to search for your
    previous spot in the playlist again.
    Thanks so much

    • Hi John,

      I’m not sure I understand your request. DFB should remember the playlist and position on exit and put you back in the same spot when restart. Do you close DFB before you shut down the computer? If not, it may be that Windows is pulling the rug out from under DFB before it has a chance to complete writing the settings file.

    • If I may echo the same question about exiting playlist…
      DFB will come back to the same playlist (and song) upon exit, but not when opening another playlist without closing the program.
      I suppose you could add the song request to the existing playlist, but you’d still be at the bottom and have to scroll back up to where you were.
      I think the idea is to temporarily close the existing playlist, finding the requested song, then a resume button to go back to the previous playlist.
      I have been planning to ask the same question. (That, and, could you put in a small digital clock somewhere in the display?)

      • Heheh! I LOVE the idea of a digital clock in a corner I don’t wear a watch..and am always squinting at the small desktop one in the right lower corner, and would rather not have to minimize my screen to accommodate some other program. Is this an easy add, Mike?
        PS _ I play out professionally several nights per week, for the last four years, and ALWAYS use this program on stage. When I drag along a new player with me (bass or keyboards usually), I have a second laptop stand with a 17″ flat panel monitor attached, cloning my laptop display of DFB via the VGA out on the lappy. That setup, along with the use of a three button USB footswitch, makes the gigs easier in many ways:)
        THANKS, MIKE..for all your hard work taking care of us musicians!!!

      • The playlist thing will be in version 2, which is delayed (of course) due to family commitments. It’s progressing, but way slower than I was hoping.

        I’ve added the clock to the list, and that will be in V2 as well. It’s going to have to go in the increasingly busy top bar and will only show if your screen is wide enough (most will be).

  17. Just a comment Friends to make this better!

    – there also other solutions like Musicreader etc.

    -what is really needed are:
    – any switch -forward
    – any switch or the same twice -backward
    – that’s all for the switches needed

    – notes transposition +/- x–keys
    – save your selection.

    that’s all what’s needed.


  18. Mike,
    How is the new version of DFB coming along?
    I have 2 requests for inclusion in the new one:
    1. Text formatting or the ability to keep existing formatting, such as from MS Word.
    2. The ability to import scans & images as files, thus allowing a scan or image of sheet music to become a file.
    Thanks for all you do. Have you yet considered accepting “donations” from your grateful software users for all your hard work?
    Thanks again!!!

    • I haven’t done any work on the new program for several months due to having no large blocks of spare time. I’m designing this version properly to allow for future direction and the only actual code I’ve written is the shell for the user interface.

      If I had been accepting donations I would’ve felt obliged to put other, more important things in my life aside to work on DFB.

      I may consider accepting donations with the new program.

      “1. Text formatting or the ability to keep existing formatting, such as from MS Word.”

      Handling Word format won’t be in the first release, but because of the modular way I’m designing it, it won’t be hard to add later.

      “2. The ability to import scans & images as files, thus allowing a scan or image of sheet music to become a file.”

      A graphics display mode will be there. I’ll support the easy formats first (BMP, JPEG, GIF) and add others further down the track.

  19. Hi Mike:
    Would it be possible to program a 3rd
    Foot switch into the program?



    • Hey Tim,
      If you can get hold of almost any usb footswitch, whether one-two-three-four-five, etc., buttons, it can be told to emulate any keystrokes for each button/pedal, as long as Mike has programmed the keystrokes in the program. I have a three button usb pedal and use one button for advance, one for going back, and one for toggling the songlist on and off. The button assignments are done by a free program from Pedalware. Hope this helps!

      • Thanks for the info and I understand all that, but I already have a serial footswitch and don’t really want to invest more money into more equipment.


        • Unfortunately, there are only 2 input wires on a standard COM port that can be easily used as a switch. Adding more switches would become very complicated, hardware wise.

          • I have found a db9 based foot switch and can provide you with a diagram as to the wiring. this foot switch has a fwd switch, rew switch and a play switch.all wired to db9.

          • Hmm, I guess the third switch is between TxD and RxD. That would mean a continuous stream of data would have to be transmitted. I could probably do that, but would need to check how it would affect CPU usage.

    I’ve used this program several years now, and it is an important part of my musical set-up. Currently I’m using DFB with a Dell Inspiron 12″ laptop/tablet convertible, running Windows 8.1. I have accumulated 1755 songs on file and am constantly adding more. I’ve found Mike to be very responsive to requests for tweaks in the DBF program, and the current version implements several of my suggestions. I realize Mike is working on an entirely new ‘from the ground up’ version of DBF, possibly to be called “DBF 2”. I’s been a long time coming, and it apparently still is a work in progress. If you have any suggestions for Mike to include in the new version, go to the forum linked below.

    Please note that he has stated he’ll NOT be doing a Mac, iOs, or Android version, due to time and equipment restraints.

    Here’s the link to the forum:

    Thanks again Mike!

  21. I love this. Very handy. I do need for Android though.

  22. just fantastic Mike, you are the best

  23. Thank you so much for your program! I just downloaded it and I love it!
    If you’ll email me your info, I’ll send you a donation. You deserve it.

    Jay Josey
    (phone number removed)
    Lawton, OK.

    • Thanks for the offer, Jay, but if I accepted donations I would feel obliged to update the program more often, and I am really short on spare time as it is.

  24. Just FYI, hardware-wise, I use an Infinity IN-USB-2 INUSB2 PC Computer Transcription Foot Pedal ($54 off of Amazon), installed the free pedalware program from Altoedge… to assign the keys. The device has three pedals, and works especially good with the center pedal using the toggle function for the F-key song list trigger you put in! This might help some of you that don’t want the audience to see you leaning over your laptop during your sets, as I can pedal through songs quickly. Also I use the set list folder area to also subset songs into genres, ballads, danceable stuff, etc., as well as Beatles, country, folk, etc.separate
    I use this stand to hold it up!
    System has worked for me for several years now! Hope this helps some of you!

  25. I’m having no response pasting in text I copy to the clipboard from any document or web page. I can copy the text to other documents, so I know it’s there on the clipboard. I tried both the right click-paste function and the Control+V shortcut. Currently I’m just saving everything to a txt document then using the “import song from text” option. This works ok, except all the chord symbols have to be moved around if it’s from a lyrics and chords type document. I’ve tried several work arounds, but no success. Once I import a text document I can cut and paste internally in DFB, but can’t paste in any outside text. Any ideas? Thanks

    • That’s certainly odd. I’ve never seen anything like that before. I’m just calling the inbuilt Windows Clipboard APIs so if it works in Notepad it should work in DFB.

      When you right-click to get the pop-up menu is “Paste” active or greyed out?

      What happens if you paste into notepad and then try to copy and paste to DFB?

      As for needing to move chords around, I found that happens quite a lot. Many web sites use tricks to control the formatting which don’t get passed to a text-only program.

      • Yes, paste is active, and I tried saving it to Notepad first and several other options. Maybe it’s this new Windows 8 laptop I bought to take on vacation?… I like Windows 7 better.

        Well I found a work around. Using lyrics only was no problem, just use a text file imported. But we all want an easy, accurate way to get those chord charts from the web. I just discovered a trick that I’m going to share. First I’ll tell you I am SO happy with your program, the look, the search function, many things. I work on cruise ships and am now preparing my hundreds of songs and it looks like your program will be my choice for stage. I’ve spent days scouring the web and trying different programs.

        Here’s the trick I just discovered for getting tabs (chords and lyrics) from the web. As with recording and video, I’ve discovered that sometimes one uses different programs in combination because there is a certain feature one program can do, and the song gets passed from one program to the next in order to achieve the desired result. Well, it worked again. I downloaded a 30 day trial version of Chordastic, which appears to be inferior to your DFB – for my needs – in appearance and search. Here’s the trick:
        1) Highlight and copy the lyrics with chords from the internet. So far I did this in tests from 2 different websites, Ultimate Guitar Tabs and Chordie.
        2) paste into Chordastic using the tab: Lyrics > paste from clipboard (at this stage the chords no longer lineup to the words, but don’t mess with it.)
        3) Export in Chordastic as chordpro file type.
        4) In Digital Fake Book: Options >Import Song From Text, and at the bottom drop down menu where it says “Files of type”, choose All Files rather than Text Files.
        5) Find your Chordpro file you just created in Chordastic and import it. The amazing thing… now all the chords and words lineup perfectly just like they did on the web page! Wow, go figure.

        Sorry about the long posts, but I’m immersed in this right now.

        Still don’t understand the paste issue, but unless it pasted with the chords perfectly aligned I’ll probably keep using this multi-step process. Thanks man, I would happily donate for your program. If you wish, I will share a couple of cool features I saw in my research that you might like to consider in the future.

        • By the way, I did try to cut and paste from Wordpad… nothing. I can paste it into another blank document, but not DFB. Nevertheless, because of the difficulty it helped me discover that work around, so I’m pleased.

          • Are you interested in doing some testing for me? I’d write a small test program that might give some clues as to what’s going on. It will be a simple program with 2 text areas and a paste button.

            It’s entirely possible that something about DFB is incompatible with Windows 8. I don’t have Windows 8 to test it myself.

            If you’re willing to do this, send me an email and I’ll reply.

          • Sure I could do the test for you. email [removed]

  26. I am a newby at using DFB and I really appreciate all the time and effort you have put into creating and sharing this program. When I first started trying out DFB I loaded the downloaded program before I read in more detail that you have also developed a portable version which is exactly what I need as a gigging musician. My question is I have completed setting up my first 90 song playlist and I need help determining if this set is under the downloadable version or the portable version. My concern is that if I delete the downloadable version will I lose the 90 set song list which took me a few days to create.

    Is there a way to transfer a playlist to make sure it is under the portable version before I delete the downloadable version? I don’t want to lose the work I have already done if there isn’t away to do this
    should I just delete the downloadable version and start over using the portable?

    I also was wondering if you could tell me what steps are involved in backing up my playlist unto the portable version? You can probably tell that I am technically challenged by the nature of my questions. This program is fantastic and I am so excited about starting to gig with it and finally leaving my lyric and chord books behind. I currently have over 2000 songs to set up under DFB
    and I want to make sure I am doing it right before I proceed further.
    Thanks agian Mike for all your help!

    • Sorry for not replying sooner. I’m having web site problems and wasn’t notified of your post.

      Probably the easiest way to transfer the songs is to select “Export Data File” from the options menu and take note of where you are saving the file. Then, run the portable version and select “Import DFB Data File” from the Options menu, and browse to the file you saved earlier.

      Theoretically, uninstalling the installable version should not delete any data you have created, but if you back up both data files first as I mentioned above, you can be sure to have it available. You can even merge the 2 backups by importing them separately and specifying “Merge”.

  27. I’ll add that to the list. Version 2 is going to be quite different and have a lot more options. 🙂

  28. hi mike i use this on stage every week and love it, I have 2 requests, a larger counter or have the option to place it elsewhere and make it change color or size, i struggle to see it on stage. And the second the ability to have different size fonts bold and normal on the page at the moment they all have to be the same size

    Cheers keep up the great work

  29. After much searching, I like this software for my solo guitar and vocal performance. I’m wondering if it’s possible to search for a song if you have hundreds of tunes? My shows are not pre-determined sets, rather mostly requests. Thanks for your efforts! Brian

    • Unfortunately, not at the moment, but I’ve added it to the list for a future version.

      • Does anyone have a suggestion of how to find a song fast on stage? For example, if you have a total of 500 songs and someone requests a tune. Thanks.

        • Something that may help a little is that you can get to the first song starting with a particular letter by pressing that key. eg: pressing “p” will get you to the first song starting with P.

          This will only work in the song list window, so for me to load the first Led Zeplin song, I’d need to Press F5 then L then Enter twice.

          • Wow thanks Mike that really helps. We all appreciate your work, so I will pass on what I’m learning about searching your list for a song, such as a random request. I’m still new with the program, so this may not be the only way or best way, but I will share it for anyone else reading this who doesn’t always want to follow a set list, here’s the method I found. (This is for simply reading charts – with no audio track linked. I have not experimented with the steps involved when audio track is linked, but I imagine it’s similar) In the song window I choose the song list “All Songs – Alphabetical.” You should un-check “auto show” in the song window. Then open the song window and drag it over to the right until you can just see the set list… in other words, the lyrics screen takes up about 80% of the screen, on the left side, and the song list screen is way over out of the way on the right, but still readable. Then you can select the song window so its active (or F5). Now as long as you stay on the song screen you may – as Mike mentioned: 1) select the first letter of the song; 2) use arrow down to the song you want 3) hit enter to load the song chart. As long as the song window is selected, you can repeat those 3 steps for each song chart. If you have many many songs, you could create some smaller partial lists of all your songs that fit a particular gig to make the process faster… for example if you have 40 songs that start with the letter “S.” But in that case, here is one more trick… if you know the song you want starts for example with the letters Sw, such as Sweet Caroline, you know it’s nearer to the end of all your “S” songs, so choose the next letter “T” and use arrow up to get there faster. Alternate Idea… by checking “Auto Show” you can do the same thing. The difference? Auto Show works in between songs because it will take you away from your current chart, and you don’t have to hit “Enter” – Step 3. Without “auto show” You could be cueing up the next song as you are performing (between strumming) for faster transition to the next song. Hope this helps. Thanks again.

          • I have found if you are in the song list mode. You can go directly to Sweet Caroline……as in your example above by keying in SW quickly together. This will take you to the first song starting with SW.

          • Wow, great tip John for the search using first 2 letters quickly! I also have been looking at a number of programs and this seems the best solution I’ve seen.

  30. Many thanks for your excellent program
    Please because i am Greek and here the songs are writen in greek language
    there is any probability to work with Greek fonts ?
    Thank you very very much

    • Unfortunately, that’s a limitation of the programming language I use; an old version of Delphi that doesn’t understand Unicode.

  31. is there any way to set the program up to go from one song to another in a set without having to push the next button

    • i don’t know about that, but i use a footswitch to advance while i’m performing 🙂

    • As John said, only with a foot switch. An automatic system based on the playback of the linked mp3 file is on the list for future addition, but it will be quite some time before I get it done.

  32. This is far the best bit of free software I have ever came across so easy to use and the fact it will transpose to any key is absolutely brilliant this is a life saver for any guitarist well done!!!

  33. Love this software. Set lists are a so easy to manipulate. When you get requests… bam. they are all ready for you. Thanks a ton Mike.

    • Hi Larry, May I ask how you quickly find a song on stage when someone requests? I have several hundred tunes. Thanks.

  34. Hard for me to find falult with this software works like a champ

  35. Thank you so much for this software!! absolutely fantastic!!!

    i had a question , is there a way to change the font in DFB?

    i know you can change the size of the font but to change the type of font used ?

    Thank you! Mike

    • It’s not currently possible to change the font. The main reason is that it must be a fixed width font or the chords will not line up with the lyrics. There is a way to solve it, but it requires a different system to keep chord/lyric alignment.

      I have this feature in my todo list for when I write version 2, but there’s a lot of work do do for V2, and I’m very busy, so it will be a while.

  36. Mike- Thank you for this program. I play in an acoustic duo. The worst part of preparing a gig is putting the lyrics in setlist order. This program will be a huge time saver!



  37. Just wanted to comment that I have used since down loading it and have had no problems
    as per the doubles they show up with Pound keys in front and I just delete them now problem original stays. I use drop box to keep my master file and can copy them over at anytime. love this software.

  38. Hello I would like to visit with you more on the Infinity pedal. Sounds like a set up I need. Russel

  39. Just want to say that this is a GREAT program, and Mike is a SAINT for making it available on a donation basis only! I gig several nights per week, and have used it happily for the last two years now. Also, I purchased an Infinity IN-USB-2 INUSB2 PC Computer Transcription Foot Pedal for $54 off of Amazon. I then installed the free pedalware program from Altoedge – – to assign the keys.
    The device has three pedals, and works especially good with the center pedal using the toggle function for the F-key song list trigger Mike put in!
    Thanks Mike, for this sweet lil software program!!

  40. Do you have something to iphone??

  41. I think I got it figured out it places an * by the duplicates so easy fix. thanks I will do as you suggest .

  42. Mike love your DFB. question I tried to use drop box to help keep up with my desktop and laptop changes but so far that has not worked out for me. I notice that when I add to the one on the laptop then try to update the desk top it duplicates.
    I am not complaining just wonder if keeping both desktop and laptop current with each other is possible

    • I’m not clear about what you are doing or what’s happening. There isn’t really any way built in to DFB for keeping 2 versions in sync. You could either copy the whole database from one location to the other, but that’s risky, or you could use DFBs “Backup/Export Data File” option. Just select the new songs and “Import DFB Data File” to merge it with the existing songs on the second machine.

  43. Can I use this on a touch screen.

    • As long as it’s a touch screen that acts like a mouse, yes. If it’s a small screen i might be a bit of a challenge to hit the right spot. I added the “Large Text” option in the song list window because of someone wanting to use a touch screen.

  44. Found this “big little program” 🙂
    It’s just what I was looking for.
    Just one question: – the path for the data is alway on the C-drive.
    Actually I don’t want to store data there – but rather on a different drive.
    Can this setting be changed – and how??
    Thanks again for this great helper 🙂

  45. Would be useful if you could have an option where u could to the set list directly so that u can pick up the next song or another song depending on the audience mood. Thx for the great work…

    • I don’t understand what you mean. How do you envisage this working? Feel free to email me if you want.

      • Hi Mike,

        I think what he means is like a digital counter that counts in seconds so just say you need to start singing at 2.06s you know exactly when to come in. I think this would be an valuable feature to the program, I know I would make good use of it.


  46. Hi Mike:
    Another idea for your Digital Fake Book. A time counter during midi and wave file playback.stating the beginning of the file and the end.


    • I’m not sure I understand. The counter shows the current time now and the start time will always be 0. Do you mean to show the length of the track in addition to current time?

  47. I have a single pedal I purchased last week as a trial, I just plugged it in and told it to press the space button and it worked a treat, now I will buy a 2 pedal and tell it to press the next song button and problem solved no need for com ports any longer 🙂

    • I suggest you tell it to press Ctrl+2 instead. That way, it will behave the same regardless of whether you’re in edit mode or not.

    • That says: “And it comes with software allowing it to reproduce any keyboard keys or key combnations” which means it should work with DFB as it is now. Just set it to produce the appropriate key shortcuts.

  48. I have another Idea, With today’s technology why are we even using com ports this program should be using USB, we could then buy a 3 pedal on ebay for 20 bucks and have 3 functions that could be configured in the options 🙂 + my laptop has no com port 🙁 so a foot switch for me is out……until USB is implemented.

    • Software can’t address USB ports directly like it can with COM ports. There needs to be a driver layer in between. I’m assuming these devices simulate a keyboard or another Human Interface device.

      Can you provide a link to an example device?

      Aside from that, you can get USB COM Ports for less than $10. I’ve tried a couple of brands and they work with DFB.

  49. Mike:

    Is there anyway we can hook a foot switch to start and stop mp3 file playback?

    • That’s an excellent idea, and very easy to implement. It will be in the next release, probably a week or so.

      • WOW!! Thanks Mike! Can’t wait.

        Kind Regards

        Tim Hayes

      • I was just thinking out loud. wiring 2 footswitches together foot switch 1 can be for next song and foot switch 2 can be to start and stop mp3 file play back.

        • That’s how I plan to do it. Switch 1 can be set to Next Song or Metronome, Switch 2 can be set to Previous song or MP3 Play/Pause or MP3 Play/Reset.

  50. Is the DFB compatible with Windows tablets?
    The Acer Iconia Tab W500-BZ467 for example?
    How about the Kindle Fire?


  51. Thanks again for the freebie!

  52. Musicians use tablets
    an Android version please!

    Best regards from Finland

    erkki koskimo
    trombone & kb

  53. Hi Mike, Yes I see how that works but it would be nice to have the song list on one screen and the lyrics screen pop up on another, so basicly when you hit the play button the song list stays put and the lyrics pop up on a second window which you could drag to the 2nd monitor, this leaves the song list open so you can choose your next song while the current song is playing while not disturbing the current lyrics. Much like a Karaoke screen operates, this can be operated by a second person off the side of the stage as well.

    • I thought it already did that, but a quick test revealed it doesn’t. I’m working on a minor update at the moment and will include that as it should be quite simple.

      • Awesome Thank You very much and where is the donate button for your work I like to reward people for giving away their time and effort 🙂

  54. Great program mate very usefull and thank you for offering it for free. Any chance with the next update you could make the screen open on a separate box so that you could use it on dual monitors that would be perfect 🙂

    • I’m not sure I understand you. I use DFB on my second monitor now. Just drag the program into the second monitor and maximize it. Next time the program is run, it will appear on the same monitor. Are you seeing different behavior, or have I misunderstood what you want?

  55. This is a great program! Now if it was only available for my iPad! Any chance of that in the near future? If so, please make it easy to transfer, please! Thanks

    • I’d love to do an iPad version, but it would be a complete rewrite from the ground up and I don’t have the time at the moment.

  56. I love this little program. Thank you for it.

  57. Great Concept. I am having trouble with importing my music, I have tried pasting into Dig Fake Book, saving as text document, then importing ect… it will not save the song and I have to “end task” to start all over. Any ideas? Eric

    • Hi Eric. I’ve not had anyone report a problem like that before. I’ve sent you an email asking for some information so we can work out what’s going wrong.

  58. Hi. Just got it. LIke it but all my files are in word format, when I save them as text I lose the tabs and the chord locations are all screwed up. Other than that and the attendant moving them all back, I really like the program.
    Thanks for making this available.

  59. I love this little program. It’s supremely easy to use. Adding a song is just a paste operation away, though you can import songs too. You can export songs, create songs of your own right in the program and easily change the font to suit the age of your eyes – I’m happy to have that. 🙂 There’s a metronome which is very handy. You can backup your data file, import a DFB database or easily copy a song to the clipboard. AND, there are very useful transpose functions: up or down within the program and adjustments during audio playback. Heck, there’s even provision for adding a foot switch to control either the metronome or to select a song – hardware permitting of course. How cool is that?

  60. Hi Great program Mike as you know we both use it for our rare jam’s

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