Downloading and installing Band-in-a-Box for Mac packages.

This tutorial contains some instructions and tips for downloading Band-in-a-Box packages with a lot of RealTracks. This is especially useful for people who purchased a 'download-only' (e-delivery) version of the UltraPAK for the first time, since there are over 100 GB of files to download and install.

Even though the UltraPAK is large, downloading should be straight forward if you take a few moments beforehand to prepare and understand the process, and assuming you have a reliable broadband internet connection and enough hard disk space available. If you selected the download-only option during checkout and are having trouble getting your files, you could contact us to have a physical copy shipped.

Last updated:  Thursday, 08 October 2020

Where to download your order

After you place your order, click on the link on the confirmation page or email to go directly to your "My Products" page, where you can download the files. You can access the 'My Products' page at any time in the future by logging onto your account at www.pgmusic.com.

Account drop-down menu
Access your 'My Products' page.

The top section of this page shows you your serial number(s) for Band-in-a-Box, needed for activation. Below this, you'll see all of the downloads available. For a Band-in-a-Box order, there are multiple files to download. For large packages like the UltraPAK there are a lot of files, totalling over 100 GB.

Download and install the Band-in-a-Box program

There are a couple of different options for downloading all the content installer files (detailed below), but you should know that the most important file you need to download is the first one on the list - "Band-in-a-Box and RealBand 20xx".

Download Band-in-a-Box
Download the Band-in-a-Box Program.

This file is relatively small and contains everything you need to install and run the main Band-in-a-Box program. You can start using Band-in-a-Box right away, even without having downloaded all of the additional 'RealTracks' content etc. See Running Band-in-a-Box for the first time.

Preparing to Download the rest of the files

Prior to downloading, decide on a drive and location to store the downloaded files and make sure you have enough hard disk space there. The complete download size is listed at the top of the Size column on your download page. To keep organized, you should create a folder that's separate from your other downloads. For example, go to your Downloads folder (hotkey: option+shift+L) and create a subfolder (e.g. "BBDownloads"). Also, note that you will need an additional 1.3 times the download size for installation, which can be on the same or a different hard disk. For example, if the download was 150 GB, you'll need another ~200 GB additional space for installation.

Hard disk properties
Check hard disk space.

The default install location for Band-in-a-Box is the /Applications/Band-in-a-Box folder on your Mac hard drive, but it can also be installed and run from an external USB hard drive; the install folder on an external hard drive will also be /Applications/Band-in-a-Box. Make sure the hard drive you will be installing Band-in-a-Box to does NOT have a case sensitive file system. To confirm, click on the hard drive in Finder and press Command+I or go to File | Get Info. It should not say "case sensitive" beside the Format item.

Downloading the Band-in-a-Box content

You can download individual files directly from your browser window, however if you are downloading a large package (e.g. UltraPAK) this will be tedious. You can use a third party download manager. Currently, "Folx" is one of the best options, and is compatible with OS 9 and higher. Use the stand-alone app (not the browser extension).

  1. Open Folx (no need to activate link catching in browser, and can use Free mode). If there are existing completed tasks showing from before, you can select all by shift-clicking and select File menu | Delete.
    Folx download manager - main screen
    Open Folx Download Manager
  2. Click on the "Copy links to clipboard" button on your 'My Products' page.
    Copy Links to Clipboard
    Click the Copy Links to Clipboard button
  3. In Folx, press Command+V (Paste) or go to Edit | Paste, and then click the [Download] button
  4. In the following dialog, choose your download location, and press OK. This should add the tasks and begin the download. Note - if you've already downloaded the Band-in-a-Box program as suggested above, you don't need to download this file again so you can skip it / delete the task.
    Folx - new task
    Paste, then choose your download folder.

    Folx - download progress
    Folx - download progress

The length of time the download takes depends mainly on how fast your internet connection is, so varies widely. If you are curious, there are lots of websites that will test your download speed - e.g. Google search "internet speed test". As a ballpark, 3 hours with a fairly fast connection (100 mbps). Remember that you can still use the Band-in-a-Box program while the content is downloading, or you can set it to download overnight.

Installing the downloaded files

The install files are .pkg (packages) that are launched with Apple's installer program by double-clicking them. You should run one installer package at a time. If you have decided to install Band-in-a-Box to an external hard drive, make sure to select this hard drive (volume) in the "choose destination" screen of each installer. Installation FAQ

  1. Most of the large content/RealTracks is downloaded as large .DMG (disk image) files. Once downloaded, you double-click to mount the .DMG. It should quickly appear as an icon on your desktop. Troubleshoot dmg mounting problems.
    Mounting disk images
    Mounting downloaded disk images (dmg files).
  2. Open the disk image contents by double-clicking the desktop icon.

    Open disk image
    Open disk image.
  3. Run the installer package (.pkg), making sure to choose the correct destination volume. Once finished, you can close and 'unmount' the .dmg by selecting it and pressing Command+E or dragging to the trash (this does not delete the actual .dmg file, just unmounts the volume)
    Run installer package
    Run the installer package.

Running Band-in-a-Box for the first time.

Here are a few useful pointers to get you started.

  • When you launch the program for the first time, you are prompted to activate. Use the serial number displayed in the top section of the My Products page, and paste it into the activation dialog. It is best to do online activation if possible.
  • Assuming this is your first time running the program, you will be prompted to rebuild the StylePicker. Open the StylePicker (hotkey s + <enter>) and click the Rebuild button ('fast' rebuild is OK; 'slow' rebuild will also search for third party and user styles). This allows the program to determine which PG Music styles and other content you have installed. If you are running the program prior to installing the RealTracks content, you will likely notice that there are many MIDI styles available, but no RealStyles. RealStyles use RealTracks instruments so they sound much more realistic than MIDI styles, and you can tell them apart because the style name starts with an underscore. You will have more RealStyles once you've installed the additional RealTracks content from your purchase. Double-click on any style in the StylePicker to hear a pre-made demo for it.
  • There are options under the "Other" button in the StylePicker to "Show only styles that are Found/Not Found (N/A)". Since the program knows about all available styles, you can use these options to determine if you are missing any styles, and see what Sets they are from.
  • Check the RealTracks Preferences and RealDrums Preferences dialogs to make sure that the folder locations are as you expect. If you have opted to store your RealTracks files on an external hard drive while the Band-in-a-Box program is installed on the Mac internal drive for example, the RealTracks "Custom Location" setting will need to be set. Band-in-a-Box also tries to determine the best folders automatically, so it is a good idea to double-check the setting either way.
  • The RealTracks Picker is another window you will probably use frequently. One way to open is to right-cick on a track and Select RealTracks. If you have any RealTracks installed, you will be able to choose them from this window. Note that you can view available RealTracks even if you don't have them, by clicking the "Show N/A" button, and you can even double-click them to hear what they sound like. As with the StylePicker, Showing "N/A" RealTracks is a good way to determine if you are missing anything.
  • The information about the RealTracks Picker above also largely applies to the RealDrums Picker, except to open the RealDrums Picker, right-click on the Drums track specifically.
  • There are two different GUI (user interfaces) for you to choose from depending on your preference - one has a large toolbar with many buttons and Mixer window on the top half of the screen, then other has a minimal toolbar with a larger chord sheet. To toggle between them, you can press Ctrl+T or find the buttons at the top-left side of the toolbar.
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