View Full Version : Creator Issue with Cover and TOC?


S3NTYN3L
05-18-2009, 11:51 AM
I'm using MobiCreator (publisher ed. 4.2 b41) to make eBooks.

When I have a Cover image and a TOC, the eBook opens to the Cover page on my desktop reader but opens to the TOC on my MobiPocket Reader on my Blackberry.

Can someone please explain the reason why and, if possible, instruct me in correcting the problem?


:thanks:

ericshliao
05-22-2009, 11:34 AM
Just like on BB, mobipocket reader on iLiad will automatically ignoe cover image, too. In order to make the reader dispaly cover image, I don't add a cover image in mobi-creator. Instead, I create a cover html file to include a cover image file and add the html file as the first file in the project. Here is some example:
<!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN">
<HTML xmlns="http://www.w3.org/1999/xhtml"><HEAD><TITLE>The Count of Monte Cristo</TITLE>
<META http-equiv=Content-Type content="text/html; charset="iso-8859-1">
<META content="Dan Brown" name=author encoding="iso-8859-1"><!-- iText 2.1.3 (by lowagie.com) --><!-- CreationDate: Thu May 07 17:40:41 CST 2009 -->
</HEAD>
<BODY topmargin="2em" leftmargin="2em" bottommargin="2em" rightmargin="2em">
<IMG height="935" width="768" src="cover.png" align="center">
</BODY></HTML>

You can also edit the first html file in your ebook project and insert a <img> tag right after <body> tag.

wallcraft
05-22-2009, 11:56 AM
At one time the MOBI format did not have a cover page, and so the cover image was always the first thing in the body of the ebook. Now MOBI has a separate cover page guide item and many ebooks use it without the embedded cover page. Most versions of the MOBI Reader don't come up on the (guide item) cover page, and some Readers can't display it at all - others (e.g. the Kindle) can only select it from the menu. So I second ericshliao's suggestion to include the cover image in the body of the ebook in addition to as a cover page guide item. The downside of this is that the image will be shown twice in those Reader's that start on the cover page. I have seen some ebooks that use a smaller version of the image in the body of the ebook, and this is an acceptable compromise.

HarryT
05-22-2009, 12:35 PM
In addition to what's been said above, it's a good idea to have a "Start Reading" Guide Item. Some implementations of the Mobi Reader (eg the Kindle) will automatically open the book at this position.

Place an anchor tag in the HTML at the point that you want it to open at:

<A name=start_reading></A>

Then, in the "Guide Items" section of the OPF file, define an item:

<guide>
<reference type="other.ms-firstpage" title="Start Reading" href="book.html%23start_reading"></reference>
</guide>

The book will (depending on the reader) now automatically open at the position of the "start_reading" tag when it's first opened, and you can return to that point using the "Start Reading" item on the navigation menu.

bobcdy
07-13-2009, 12:15 AM
Harry,
I've been trying to implement your suggestions for forcing the cover to be the 1st page of a mobi file opened by my bebook, but I'm having some trouble. I think I understand the first suggestion: add the aname code into the beginning of my ebook html file. Then use this html file to build the prc file.

The second one though, I don't follow:
add the following <reference type="other.ms-firstpage" title="Start Reading" href="book.html%23start_reading"> to the opf file.

How do I do this? - a new opf file is created when I build a prc from the html. Thus if I use notebook to add this line in the guide section of a previously created opf, the opf will be over-written as soon as I create a new prc file and will not have the proper reference codes

Whatever I do, it seems like the first page opened is the TOC, not the cover.
Bob

HarryT
07-13-2009, 04:57 AM
Are you using the "Create a new book from an HTML file" option in Mobi Creator? If so, don't do that. Simply copy an existing OPF file and double click it in Windows Explorer. It will open in Mobi Creator, and you can use the various "tabs" of Mobi Creator to edit it.

Terisa de morgan
07-13-2009, 08:26 AM
I've imported PDF and HTML files, and I can use the different tags for guide, no problem with it.

bobcdy
07-13-2009, 03:54 PM
Harry, Teresa,
Thanks for the input, but I must be particularly dense today. I double click on a opf and use the tabs on the left side of mobicreator to add cover, toc. etc. This seems to work as long as I've copied the ebook.html file and images to the previously created subdirectory that creator will use.

I've added the 'aname' code at the beginning of the ebook html file. But if I add the required start code to the opf as Harry suggests, using notepad to edit the opf file, it is overwritten when I build a prc with creator. The opf file is always overwritten upon the build (as far as I can tell from experiments with editing it and clicking on build). And then the newly created prc file always opens with TOC rather than cover.

What I need is a way to add the start item text to the opf using creator, not notepad, but I don't see any way of editing the opf file with that program.

How can I edit the opf file in a way that will affect the prc build?
Bob

bobcdy
07-13-2009, 04:10 PM
Harry, Terisa,
Apparently I wasn't paying attention and was misled by my results. I used the guide tab and saw that the start text was where I had added it to the opf (at the start of the <guide> section, before the toc text); also had added the 'aname' text immediately after the <body> of my ebook. Unfortunately, with all this, the toc keeps coming up as the first page, both in mobireader and on my bebook with Lbook firmware rather than the cover page.

I must be doing something incorrectly, so I'll work a bit more on the problem.
Bob

DaleDe
07-13-2009, 05:08 PM
Harry, Terisa,
Apparently I wasn't paying attention and was misled by my results. I used the guide tab and saw that the start text was where I had added it to the opf (at the start of the <guide> section, before the toc text); also had added the 'aname' text immediately after the <body> of my ebook. Unfortunately, with all this, the toc keeps coming up as the first page, both in mobireader and on my bebook with Lbook firmware rather than the cover page.

I must be doing something incorrectly, so I'll work a bit more on the problem.
Bob

Are you sure it is the first page or is the reader just starting with page 2. Mobi Readers often skip the cover page when starting up. Try hitting the previous button.

bobcdy
07-13-2009, 05:36 PM
Dale,
The cover page is pg 0 with my pc mobireader, and the toc is pg 1. Maybe the problem is how to assign page 1 to the cover page or page 2 to the toc because as it is, the ebook always seems to open to page 1, regardless of whether it's my pc mobireader or my bebook. Everything looks ok as far as the guides, etc. I also tried putting 'aname' in different locations such as immediately after the <html> in the ebook html file but that did not help. Yet most ebooks that I download from MobileRead start at the cover page.
Bob

DaleDe
07-13-2009, 07:20 PM
Dale,
The cover page is pg 0 with my pc mobireader, and the toc is pg 1. Maybe the problem is how to assign page 1 to the cover page or page 2 to the toc because as it is, the ebook always seems to open to page 1, regardless of whether it's my pc mobireader or my bebook. Everything looks ok as far as the guides, etc. I also tried putting 'aname' in different locations such as immediately after the <html> in the ebook html file but that did not help. Yet most ebooks that I download from MobileRead start at the cover page.
Bob

Well, try erasing the MBP file and see if it opens the cover page first this time. For me, generally they open the cover page the first time but not thereafter.

Dale

bobcdy
07-13-2009, 08:08 PM
Dale,
That took care of the problem, but only for the first time opening. A new mbp file will be created when I open my file again; also happened with another downloaded file - saw the cover on first opening, then not until I deleted the mbp. Is there any way to prevent creation of a new mbp, otherwise the cover does not really function as a cover - I never seen a paper book cover disappear after I start reading the book!

Thanks for the info, at least I won't worry so much now but I think there must be something wrong with the mobicreator/reader's authors who allow such a strange behavior.
Bob

DaleDe
07-13-2009, 08:25 PM
Dale,
That took care of the problem, but only for the first time opening. A new mbp file will be created when I open my file again; also happened with another downloaded file - saw the cover on first opening, then not until I deleted the mbp. Is there any way to prevent creation of a new mbp, otherwise the cover does not really function as a cover - I never seen a paper book cover disappear after I start reading the book!

Thanks for the info, at least I won't worry so much now but I think there must be something wrong with the mobicreator/reader's authors who allow such a strange behavior.
Bob

There is a jump in the menu to return to the cover. The cover is mainly used to show in the Library manager, not the book. You go through the cover but after that you want to return to the page where you left off so that is the way it is designed, for reading, not for looking.

Dale

bobcdy
07-13-2009, 09:05 PM
Dale,
That makes sense; thanks for taking the time and effort to help. Likewise for HarryT and Terisa.
Bob

DaleDe
07-13-2009, 09:27 PM
Dale,
The cover page is pg 0 with my pc mobireader, and the toc is pg 1. Maybe the problem is how to assign page 1 to the cover page or page 2 to the toc because as it is, the ebook always seems to open to page 1, regardless of whether it's my pc mobireader or my bebook. Everything looks ok as far as the guides, etc. I also tried putting 'aname' in different locations such as immediately after the <html> in the ebook html file but that did not help. Yet most ebooks that I download from MobileRead start at the cover page.
Bob

There is an old story about a programmer who had to go on a trip. When he returned his mathematician friend met him at the airport and they went down to the baggage claim to pick up the luggage.

The programmer says: "I checked 2 bags and now one is missing."

The mathematician says: "No there's not, I see 2 bags with your name on them."

The programmer says: "No, see there is 0, 1, ... and 2 is missing."

bobcdy
07-16-2009, 04:33 PM
Dale,
That certainly seems to apply to Mobicreator. I can't say I really like the function of the mbp file because the cover disappears as soon as you open the book, regardless of whether you plan to read it then or not. Of course I can go to the previous page(s) and eventually see the cover.

Yesterday, I started using Book Designer with the able assistance of HarryT's and Patricia's tutorials on BD and Mobicreator, and finally found how to locate the TOC at any place I'd like, such as after the title page or the end of the book. Their tutorials are really great! I had tried BD before finding the tutorials and had a great deal of trouble.
Bob

HarryT
07-18-2009, 05:26 AM
Dale,
That certainly seems to apply to Mobicreator. I can't say I really like the function of the mbp file because the cover disappears as soon as you open the book, regardless of whether you plan to read it then or not. Of course I can go to the previous page(s) and eventually see the cover.


I don't know about the BeBook, but the CyBook has a "Goto..." menu, one of whose options is to view the cover.

Could you clarify what you mean when you say that you "don't really like the mbp file"? Do you mean that you don't want the reader to remember where you currently are in the book? That's what the mbp file does! (among other things, like store your bookmarks and annotations)

bobcdy
07-25-2009, 04:24 PM
Help please! I've been unable to make my bebook go to toc and first page work with my ebooks nor with MobiCreator; it works with HarryT's, Patricia's etc. ebooks but not mine. I've experimented with various things but nothing works.

Here's my latest opf:

"<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<package unique-identifier="uid"><metadata><dc-metadata xmlns:dc="http://purl.org/metadata/dublin_core" xmlns:oebpackage="http://openebook.org/namespaces/oeb-package/1.0/"><dc:Title>The Moon Pool</dc:Title><dc:Language>en-us</dc:Language><dc:Identifier id="uid">B7DD4B3DBF</dc:Identifier></dc-metadata><x-metadata><output encoding="Windows-1252"></output></x-metadata></metadata><manifest><item id="item1" media-type="text/x-oeb1-document" href="The Moon Pool.html"></item></manifest><spine><itemref idref="item1"/></spine><tours></tours><guide><reference type="toc" title="Table of Contents" href="book.html%23toc"></reference><reference type="other.ms-firstpage" title="Start Reading" href="book.html%23start_reading"></reference></guide></package>"

and here is from my html:

"<br style="page-break-after:always"/><SPAN id=TITLE><A name=toc><DIV align=center><B><FONT color=#0000ff>Table of Contents</FONT></B></DIV></A></SPAN>"
...
"<br style="page-break-after:always"/><SPAN id=title><A name=start_reading><A name=BdToc_1><DIV align=center><FONT color=#001950><B><I>Forward</I></B></FONT></DIV></A>"
...

With MobiCreator, I get a warning that the hyperlinks for both toc and start reading are not 'resolved'

I thought I followed HarryT's tutorial but apparently I'm doing something wrong. Can anyone spot my error?

Bob

bobcdy
07-25-2009, 11:32 PM
I think I see the cause of my problem but don't know how to solve it. I noticed in my early ebook work that MobiCreator created a subdirectory called 'ebookname'_opfcache for each ebook during its creation. I think that MobiCreator uses files in that subfolder to resolve html links for toc, start page, etc. during creation of a prc file.

For my recent work, however, no such subdirectory has been created so that MobiCreator can't resolve the links for toc, etc - this is the warnings it gives upon creation of a prc ebook. At first, I thought perhaps Mobicreator had become corrupted so I uninstalled it, rebooted, and reininstalled Mobicreator. Had the same problem, so MobiCreator is not at fault. The problem appears to have started when I began to use Book Designer to develop the precursor html file for MobiCreator to work on. My two earlier HTML files were manually created from an MS Word rtf or doc file based on the ocr of my book scans; whereas now I use an rtf to start Book Designer that forms the html for mobicreator.

Yet the file created by Book Designer looks ok, and I think this is a procedure that many uploaders to MobilRead do, so why should I have problems with the opfcache subdirectory?
Bob

bobcdy
07-26-2009, 12:50 PM
OK, my problem is solved and as usual it was caused by my lack of attention to HarryT's excellent tutorial: I forgot to rename my html file as 'book.htm'. Mobipocket Creator tried to find book.htm and could not do so; hence could not resolve the files and gave warnings.
Bob