Hi Fidvo - thanks for such a great & thoughtful reply !!!
As to databases:
Not sure how that violates the idea of being a database. In my opinion, a database that points to external files is more of a violation of being a database, because it's not entirely self-contained. The point of a database is that you don't have to go poking around in external files to view or maintain the data; it's all centralized.
About a zillion years ago, back when dirt was 1st invented - a database was just that, for data.
Now things have been very blurred & folks expect things to behave like a website where ALL is a database.
From a strictly purist POV (which I truly am not...) that is some kind of all-in-one data management when it contains all the media, files, etc...
So again I refer to the apple users, most of whom have neither any idea nor need any idea of where/how anything is stored.
I am not one of those, and do maintain having such needs - as you have said you understand, thankfully.
...you prefer to keep your ebooks in a hierarchical file structure, and I can't really fault you for that.
Believe me, I know where you're coming from. I'm the same way. When I first started using Calibre, I didn't like it for exactly the same reasons. I thought it was too itunes-like. I want to store the files in my own structure, thank you very much. I bought an off-brand ebook reader specifically because it was one of the only ones on the market at the time that stored books as files in a hierarchical directory structure that I could access through Windows Explorer. Same with my MP3 player. And don't even get me started on tablets.
So I'm definitely not one of those people "who know ONLY 'iphone' and 'itunes'."
I've noticed that I do poorly with touch-screens, so after trying a few, I stay clear of the tablets (for now).
This is precious, great info, thank you:
Library management features aside, is there any reason why you can't use Calibre just to convert the files? Drag-and-drop into Calibre, convert, save to disk, delete from Calibre. That gets rid of the issue with having duplicates because those duplicates only exist for a few minutes at most.
That's how I get my ebooks into HTML format for manual cleanup before importing into my main library. I use a second library just for this task, which never has books in it except when converting.
I've stuck with the portable version of it, and tried a few different times to make it more palatable in my little world, but always failed at it.:duh:
Given the likelihood that I'll need it's conversion abilities and want to achieve what you've suggested above in just that manner, I'll have to try again and see if'n I have enough brains to duplicate your strategy.
Thank You !!!