Tip: Download Your Purchased Groove Music Now

Posted on October 3, 2017 by Paul Thurrott in Groove Music, Music + Videos with 62 Comments

With Microsoft finally shuttering the Groove Music Pass, most Groove users will want to move on to a new service. Before you do so, however, you should download any purchases you made in Groove.

You can, of course, continue using the Groove app on Windows 10 and Xbox One. It will still be available, and will be updated, and provides access to your locally-stored and OneDrive-based music collection.

But here’s the thing: Even if you intend to keep using Groove, you must download your purchased music: This music will not be available to you to stream starting on January 1, 2018. You must download it first, and then manage it (read: back it up) from there on out.

To download your purchased music, open the Groove app in Windows 10 and navigate to My Music.

Then, select the entry next to Filter (“All” in my case) and select “Purchased” from the menu that appears. This changes the display so that only your purchased music is shown.

Now, select the music you wish to download: A selection checkbox appears as you mouse-over each item.

To select all music, select the first item, scroll to the bottom, hold down the SPACE key, and then select the final item.

Now, select Download from the toolbar at the bottom of the app window.

One final note: While Microsoft is promoting Spotify as an alternative to Groove Music Pass, this otherwise excellent service does have one major downside: It offers no (elegant) way of playing your own music. That is, you cannot use Spotify to play your OneDrive-based music, and if you download your Groove purchases to your PC, you can only play them from Spotify on that one PC. I’ll be looking at workarounds to this in the near future.


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Comments (62)

62 responses to “Tip: Download Your Purchased Groove Music Now”

  1. mmcpher

    A few years back, Groove had an offer where you could download selected whole albums, which I did. But I figured I would access them from within Groove and I somehow lost track them.

  2. ponsaelius

    I was told I didn't have download rights on my purchased music. It wasn't a lot but annoying. I thought it was fine because who would have thought it would never be available.

    My CDs still work tho.

  3. mterrill68

    Amazingly MS is only showing 1 album I've purchased. This is not at all right as is evident by looking through my account purchase history. Can't wait till they cancel Movies & TV and really screw me.

  4. jcalamita

    Pretty sure there is a limited amount of times (3 maybe?) you can download your music. Might be why some folks are having issues...

  5. jcalamita

    Ok Paul, time for the "what music service to switch to if you still have a Windows Phone" article.... Gotta switch my dad to something else now...

  6. Michael Rivers

    "You can, of course, continue using the Groove app on Windows 10 and Xbox One. It will still be available, and will be updated, and provides access to your locally-stored and OneDrive-based music collection."

    If that's true, I'm all good. I use Groove for music stored on OneDrive. However, what motivation does Microsoft have to keep updating this app for the few of us who stream music from OneDrive? I have a strong feeling that someday soon we'll get a notice from Microsoft that they're removing the Groove app from the store and OneDrive music storage will be turned off, and we all have a short time to find a new solution. The trust I have in Microsoft for consumer software under Nadella is absolute zero.

  7. toshdellapenna

    This must be the reason groove started to look like Spotify. Thanks, but no thanks. If I wanted to use Spotify I wouldn't be using groove to begin with. Screw you Nadella. Go ruin another company and leave MSFT alone!

  8. bbold

    Sorry, but, for me... as a former Mac user for nearly 20 years and for a new "Microsoft ecosystem" user who converted over for the past 2 years, I have been slapped by Microsoft in the face more times than I normally care to admit, all because they didn't have faith in their own products or honor the trust and buy in from their customers, both old and new. Dropping the ball on Grove Music is just the final straw, for me.

    Things that have pissed me off that I "bought into": Microsoft Band, Microsoft Phone, Zune (years ago), SurfaceBook (first year was nonstop issues), and now, Groove Music. I'm a subscriber and I do use it and love it (I also use iTunes and Spotify) BUT.. if Microsoft is going to keep throwing away great products and services that we loyal users are buying into, I'm not going to invest my HARD EARNED MONEY into a dying ecosystem. What message does cancelling products and services 24/7 send? It sends me a message that it's time to sell my Microsoft products and buy back into the Apple ecosystem, because we know that isn't going anywhere. Thoughts?

    P.S. The fact that I STILL can't even burn CD's into Groove Music (without using WMP) is just a total failure, imho. What is taking so long to innovate and why does MS keep throwing away their products, or dumbing them down with NEW versions that strip them of all prior functionality?

    I'm like 9/10 done here, folks.

  9. NazmusLabs

    Yeah, except this tip doesn't work. My purchased content will not show up with the filter. I have to manually download purchased content from the Windows Store, assuming I can remember the name of the track. Guess I need to call MS Support.

  10. glenn8878

    Good idea. I bought a few albums for 10 cents each in the sale 2 years ago. Never downloaded them.

  11. Bats

    Ya know...I've been comparing Google Play Music vs. Spotify vs. Groove. 

    I can't believe that Groove only offered a bitrate of 192kbps? LOL...that's it? That's like...lol...cassette quality. Perhaps 8-Track! Also, I noticed that Microsoft never offered a free version of Groove? No wonder, Groove failed miserably.

    It appears that Google Play Music and Spotify are the two highest quality online music services at 320kbps. Well actually, there is a service called Tidal that offers a bit rate of 1411Kbps. To be honest, I don't know much about Tidal, except that no one I know uses it. 

    Between Google Play Music and Spotify, it appears that GPM offers the most extensive music library with 35 million songs vs Spotify's 30 million. Not just that, but the UI looks cleaner and better. 

    Hey, I don't want to sound like a commercial for Google Play Music, but it appears that GPM is the better choice. In addition to GPM, a subscription also comes with commercial free Youtube Red. That's good for me, because I like to watch a lot of Youtube. One can even say that I am a student of Youtube University.

    Like I have said, time and time again, the biggest reason Google and Android are so popular is because of the vast and wide ecosystem it offers. One log-in give you access to photos, documents, movies, live television, Youtube, maps, etc.... With Google life is simple and fun. Compare that to Microsoft, whose ecosystem is so bad that's why no one has a need for a Windows Phone and/or Groove. Who wants to center their digital life around....WORK?!

    Oh Well.

  12. toshdellapenna

    Paul made an interesting statement on todays FRD about the state of the Microsoft community and how negative it has become. He's right about how over emotional we are, but how can we not be. Especially in relation to Groove Music. He's right that they've carried the service on for over 10 years. Andin that lies the problem. You became the music service for a decade of peoples lives and then you expect them to be excited about walking away? Sorry it does work that way. I joined on in 2013 with thr Xbox music rebrand and promptly picked up 3 years worth of service for $90 during the 12 days of deals. And again in did the same thing on Pi day 2015. Not too mention that just a little more than a month ago they ran another sale, so i added 4 months more. I couldn't and still can't afford $10-$15 dollars a month for a service, but was racking up my rewards points to purchase another 1 year pass. Oh and having 1 app that does it all? Who wouldn't want that? Despite Mr.Nadella's wish to lose customers, ive been a windows on mobile user for 14 years and will continue to be long after he's shown the door. In the mean time thanks for nothing Mr.Nadella ☹

    • hrlngrv

      In reply to toshdellapenna:

      If MSFT were making money on music, they'd keep the service. Maybe they were making money on it until recently, but key music producers may be demanding more money for their music.

      MSFT isn't a charity, so they should drop products which don't/can't make money. Hard on users, but life is hard sometimes.

      • toshdellapenna

        In reply to hrlngrv:

        Fair enough. But they partnered with a provider that doesn't even care about Windows. So its no good for us. Also if money was the problem they should have raised the price. When my passes expired I would have gladly paid more for it if that's what it took.

        i also saw something yesterday about a class action lawsuit being filed already. People are mad.

        • hrlngrv

          In reply to toshdellapenna:

          Gauging demand is tricky. I figure MSFT must have believed the price increase they needed would have resulted in less total revenue, so wouldn't have helped. You might have accepted a 50% price increase (wild-ass guess), but most other subscribers wouldn't.

      • mrdrwest

        In reply to hrlngrv:

        Then MS should have marketed Groove more assertively. It was a good, dare I say excellent service over time. I hope the partnership produces a hybrid of features. SMH...

        • hrlngrv

          In reply to mrdrwest:

          More marketing would have cost more money, and likely would have made Groove lose even more money.

          No matter how much you liked it, not enough other people did. It was the Windows Phone of music services.

          • toshdellapenna

            In reply to hrlngrv:

            and as a Windows mobile user I'm sol. The Spotify app is rubbish and the only decent service out there is YouTube music, which doesn't make an app. Call me a cynic, but I feel Mr. "Windows first" wants everyone to carry an iPhone pro. Yuck ?

  13. mrdrwest

    Don't you mean SHIFT key?

  14. mrdrwest

    ...AND I WON'T BE PURCHASING ANY MORE MOVIES OR TV SHOWS FROM MICROSOFT'S SERVICE. The writing is on the wall. They are bailing on mainstream media services.

  15. Username

    Is it possible to download without Groove App, like through the browser?

  16. potzy1

    Ugh. . . welp, this is definitely a few more final nails for MS as any kind of consumer service. Maybe unfairly, but I feel jaded and bitter about investing so much into their ecosystem to have it shuttered a few years later. A drawer full of dead products and software. Guess I'll need to get an external hard drive to download my movies too. which have been a lot.

  17. Chris Hedlund

    Another benefit of sticking with the Microsoft ecosystem...

  18. mebby

    Thanks for the info. All my purchases are safely tucked away on OneDrive and Dropbox.

  19. gregsedwards

    BTW, once you select the first track, you can tap Select All at the bottom of the app to quickly grab them all.

    I'd never actually bothered downloading purchased music before. It comes down to the local Music folder on your device into Purchased \ artist \ album \ track, and it looks like they're all 320 kbps with full metadata, so at least there's that.

    Excellent tip, Paul. Thanks!

  20. monkeyboy

    I learned my lesson with MSN Music way back in 2005/2006 when that closed, and PlayForSure was shuttered too and I lost access to all my DRM-filled MLB.tv videos I paid for, around that same time. Ever since then, I don't trust MS for my music or movie or entertainment purchases EXCEPT XBox Live downloadable games (on 360/One), which will only disappear when MS finally axes the XBox brand.

    • Mestiphal

      In reply to monkeyboy:

      Well, remember Disney also cut ties with MS a few weeks ago. And if MS is throwing the towel here because it can't compete against Spotify and iTunes, I don't think their Video service might live too long either.

      Personally, the only few times I've seen a movie through the Xbox Video service is on those free movie weekend. But I wouldn't trust MS with my purchased DRM, and most people get their videos from Amazon or Apple. As Natela said regarding the phone, "there is no need for a third ecosystem"

    • PeteB

      In reply to monkeyboy:

      And let's not forget the GFWL debacle

      • monkeyboy

        In reply to PeteB:

        I was smart enough to avoid that. Once Steam became the defacto standard for PC gaming DRM, I vowed to never mess with GFW or Origin or anything else. If it's not using Steam for DRM, I'm not going to bother.

  21. jeffrye

    Amazon music will let you play your own music but there's a catch. After 250 songs, you have to pay $24.99 per year and then you get 250,000 songs. They do have the caveat that mp3s purchased from Amazon don't count against your limit. I'm actually considering this option.

    Another option is Google Music which also syncs your local music with its service. However I stopped using it a couple years ago because my playlists kept disappearing.

    I'm interested to see what Paul comes up with.

  22. Jimem1

    My Groove app does not show the tool bar at bottom nor am I able to mark the items to select for download...?

    It only shows the play controls and if you open the album you can then download; so, one album at a time.

  23. Jester

    Why doesn't MS allow the option of moving your purchased music into Onedrive? It's stupid you have to download then upload your music Onedrive.

    • PeteB

      In reply to Jester:

      Because Microsoft. They do not give a F about their customers. That's why I'll never spend a dime in the MS store - can't trust it'll be available tomorrow.

      • hrlngrv

        In reply to PeteB:

        I'll have to take your word for it that Groove Music lacks a single click facility to copy music from Groove music servers to OneDrive servers without anything having to pass through users' PCs. If true, it'd speak volumes about MSFT's inability to figure out the obvious or its indifference to customers.

  24. Bats

    Gosh, I feel so sorry for the people who entrenched themselves into the Microsoft ecosystem. There is only two ecosystems that I trust when it comes to paid purchases, Google and Amazon. Both companies have reason to sell music and their brands are so powerful, it won't go away. Spotify's brand, on the other hand, isn't so powerful. It may be highly popular music service now, but they are a company/brand that can be bought by a third party like Google, Amazon, and Apple.

    A couple more things:

    1. Groove going down is nothing more than inept leadership at the top. Remember when Steve Jobs was alive and he was promoting iPod video (or iPhone...i forgot), he made backroom deals to provide special content for users. Google does the same exact thing for their services as well. For Microsoft,...nada. It's all fruitless advertising to make Microsoft appear to be "hip" and "cool".  

    Groove had everything it needed. It had a PC desktop and mobile platform to which it can promote it's services. Funny, I don't recall Microsoft doing any!

    Being primarily a Google Play Music (Family Plan) subscriber, I often get the occasional $.99 Album special or the Free Album promo. I never heard anything like that when it came to Groove. If Groove ever had promos for their service I know Paul would jump and blog that right away, as we all know how he loves to try to make Microsoft shine. Microsoft didn't even try to compete with Groove. LOL...not even offer Groove $1-$2 per month less!

    2. IMO, the blame for this all goes to Satya Nadella. Nadella has been CEO for a few years now, and I just find it funny that he's still talking about transforming Microsoft. The fact that he was against the Nokia deal and his lack of conherent reasoning for his opposition to it, proves to me that he is not a leader and a visionary. His reasoning, "differentiate product" is utterly stupid. The mobile phone is a pocket computer. Google transformed that phone and turned into a digital hub of work, play, entertainment, etc... I find it so hard to believe Microsoft couldn't do that. "BBB" = Bring Back Ballmer. 

    • plettza

      In reply to Bats:

      In my opinion, Ballmer's not the crazy guy everyone thought he was. But it's clear that Satay Nutella wants Microsoft to be purely focused on the enterprise. This, I and many others have predicted, will turn Microsoft into nothing more than an Oracle or SAP. They'll only have a handful of products that people run on their PC's at work and services that provide backed infrastructure.

      Ask anyone else what Oracle provides and you'd be hard-pressed to get an answer.

      As for me, I've just signed up with Deezer again and see how they're going. I briefly tried their service a few years ago when Xbox Music was pure, unadulterated turd.

    • scumdogmillionaire

      In reply to Bats:

      I'm sticking with Amazon after having gone all in with Alexa with Echo's around the house. I tried Spotify yesterday with it and it had problems.

      I pity anyone who pays for the Cortana speaker coming. It's already dead.

    • SvenJ

      In reply to Bats: Well, you are wrong about some stuff. I have dozens of albums I got free from Groove over the past few holiday seasons. Groove has quite often had sales at 50% or more off, and you could originally get 10 free downloads a month to keep with a slightly higher priced subscription. It amounted to 10 purchases at half price. (I get that people don't buy music anymore, they just want to pay for it twice each time they listen to it. Once to the subscription, once to the delivery system).
      Now, on MSs marketing/promotion...it sucks.

    • Jules Wombat

      In reply to Bats:

      And yet Microsoft share price has soared under Satya. Just because Microsoft is moving out of consumer, upsets you, does not mean that Satya is doing the right thing. In his opinion there is no business point being in third or fourth place.

  25. Waethorn

    Google Play Music is looking better and better all the time. It has the music I want and it has the digital music locker system too.

  26. JustinMSalvato

    I'm looking into getting into a new ecosystem since Microsoft wants to be an enterprise only company. Hmm, Google or Apple... Oh, Amazon! Yeah, I have a HD Fire and some songs/movies/books on there, now I just gotta get a Fire Phone. Oh wait...

  27. torsampo

    Judging from your screenshots Paul, only 5% of the music you have purchased on Groove should be downloaded to any computer, ever.

  28. Jules Wombat

    And people laugh at those of us still buying CDs

    This is precisly why physical media will always rule. Heavens, evenm vinyl is comming back.