Plex mysteriously injecting track & disc numbers
I am setting up a Podcast library in Plex. It is a "basic music library" set to "use embedded tags" and "store track progress," agent "Personal Media Artists."
The library contains several podcasts, each has its own artist, and the "albums" are the podcast episodes by year, so, for example, "This American Life" has a bunch of files, and the ones from 2015 are all tagged with artist (and album artist) "This American Life," and album "This American Life (2015)." They also have the year set to 2015.
There are no track or disc numbers in the id3 tags at all. For This American Life, their track titles are prefixed by episode number. For some of my other podcasts, the track titles are prefixed by release date (e.g. "2015-04-23 "). I want each "album" to have its tracks sorted by title, because "track numbers" just don't make sense, and it's far easier to wipe out all the track numbers than to go through and manually enter track numbers for everything to get them sorted well.
For the most part it all went well, but three podcasts in particular, for some reason, Plex insists on injecting track titles.
I have confirmed with multiple tools (eyeD3, puddletag, mediainfo) that the files have no track numbers -- and I've recreated the Plex Library a couple times, as well as done the dance of moving folders, re-scanning, optimizing, cleaning bundles, emptying trash.
No matter what I do, Plex continues to pretend there are track numbers for these files that absolutely do not have track numbers. For one podcast I even did a little bash for loop to grab the metadata into variables, wipe out the ID3 tag completely, and then recreate it with the grabbed metadata.
BUT WAIT, THERE'S MORE!
Even more mysteriously, when I try to manually remove the track & disc numbers in the Plex Web interface ... it won't let me! It looks like it lets me, but when I click save, the track number is still there! I'm at the point where I'm willing to go through and manually correct everything and it still won't let me. When I clear the fields, the "lock" icons light up orange. I've tried saving it like that, or clicking the icons to make them grey again. Nothing works, and it's not clear to me what the "lock" icons even mean.
What's going on? What can I do? I'm on the most recent plexpass release, 188.8.131.5252, running on Ubuntu.