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Old 03-05-2010, 07:37 PM   #1
GRiker
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Join Date: Mar 2009
Device: iPad
Calibre + Kindle: Fetching User Annotations

Calibre 0.6.44 is now able to fetch user annotations from a connected Kindle. This means that any Bookmarks, Highlights or Notes you have created on the Kindle (as displayed in 'My Notes & Marks') may be merged into the book's comments field in calibre's database. 0.6.46 adds archiving of 'My Clippings.txt' to calibre's database.

Important note about migrating books from Kindle to calibre:
If you have not yet migrated your books from the Kindle to calibre, please read this section carefully.

Kindle supports three types of user annotation, plus Last Page Read:
  • Bookmark: Type Alt-B on the Kindle keyboard to bookmark the current page. A small dog-ear triangle is displayed in the upper-right corner of the bookmarked page.
  • Highlight: Toggle the joystick to move the cursor to the beginning of the section to highlight, click, move the cursor to the end of the section, click to highlight.
  • Note: Toggle the joystick to move the cursor to the location where the note will be appended. Type your note; toggle the joystick to highlight 'save note', click to save.
  • Last Page Read: The Kindle automatically saves your last location when closing the book, and re-opens to that location when you return.
To utilize the Fetch annotations feature, you will need to migrate your books into calibre following the steps listed below.

If you have existing annotations for Kindle books that you wish to keep, including Last Page Read locations, you need to migrate your annotations into calibre then resave them to the Kindle following the steps below.

If you don't care about any existing annotations, or keeping your Last Page Read locations, you may skip steps 3 & 7 for each book.

This is a one-time process – once you've migrated a book from the Kindle to calibre, you won't need to do it again.

Migrating books and annotations into calibre
(0.6.45 required for step 7)
:
  1. Make a backup copy of the documents folder on the connected Kindle. A USB memory stick works well for this important step. If there's a problem, you'll be able to restore the contents of your Kindle/documents directory.
  2. Add the book to the calibre database
    • Click the down arrow to the right of the Add books icon, then select Add books from a single directory
    • Navigate to the 'documents' folder on your connected Kindle
    • Select the book to add. Supported Kindle book extensions include azw, mobi, prc, tpz, and azw1.
    • Click 'Open'. The Adding ... dialog is displayed. When the dialog closes, the book has been added to the calibre database.
  3. Add the annotations to the database
    • Select the book just added to calibre
    • Click the Edit meta information icon
    • Click the Add a new format for this book to the database icon.
    • Navigate to the 'documents' folder on your connected Kindle
    • Select the annotations file matching the book you added in step 2. Supported Kindle annotation extensions include .mbp and .tan. For example, if you added 'The-War-of-the-Worlds.azw' in step 2, you will now add 'The-War-of-the-Worlds.mbp' in this step.
    • Click 'Open'. The Adding ... dialog is displayed. When the dialog closes, the book's annotation file has been added to the calibre database.
  4. Edit the metadata
    • Edit title, author, comments, etc. to your liking.
    • Click OK to accept the changes and close the Edit Meta Information dialog.
  5. Delete the original file on the Kindle
    • Click on the Reader icon
    • Select the book
    • Remember that you backed everything up in step 1.
    • Click the Remove books icon to remove the original book from the Kindle
  6. Send the book with edited metadata to the Kindle
    • Click on the Library icon to display the books in your database.
    • Select the book
    • Click the Send to device icon
  7. Save the annotations to the Kindle (This step available with 0.6.45 and later)
    • Click the down arrow to the right of the Save to disk, then Save single format to disk ....
    • Select either MBP or TAN, matching the extension of the annotation file you added in step 3.
    • Select the 'documents' folder on your connected Kindle as the destination directory
    • The Saving dialog is displayed. When the dialog closes, the annotation file has been saved to the Kindle in the new location.
  8. Repeat for each book to be migrated
  9. Confirm the changes
    • Eject the Kindle
    • Confirm that the titles/authors conform to the metadata values in calibre
    • Select the book, toggle right, click 'My Notes & Marks' to view the annotations on the Kindle.
    • Confirm that the annotations have arrived safely.
Using Fetch annotations
Here's a 'My Notes & Marks' menu with some sample user annotations:

Fetch annotations merges user annotations created on the Kindle with a book's comments in the database.

Invoking Fetch annotations:
  • Connect a Kindle and wait until the Reader icon is displayed next to the Library icon.
  • Click the small down arrow to the right of the Send to device icon, then select Fetch annotations.
  • The Jobs icon spins while calibre is retrieving annotations from the Kindle.
  • A progress dialog is displayed while the annotations are merged into the database comments.
  • The annotation file is added to the database.

After the dialog is dismissed, you can review your annotations in calibre. Select the book in the main window, then type 'I' or click in the lower metadata preview window ...
... which will bring up the metadata viewer:
Caveats:
  1. Fetch annotations is an experimental feature introduced in version 0.6.44. I don't believe that it will harm your Kindle or your annotations.
  2. If you're a new calibre user and you haven't yet migrated your books to calibre, see the section 'Migrating books and annotations into calibre' above to get started.
  3. The Kindle must be connected for Send to device↓Fetch annotations to be enabled. Wait for the 'Reader' icon to display in the upper window.
  4. Calibre looks for the annotation file in the same location that it stores the eBook on the Kindle.
  5. Fetch annotations will not find annotation files (*.mbp, *.tan) in locations other than where calibre would store the eBook. See #4.
  6. If you use more than one Kindle with calibre, Fetch annotations will import annotations from the currently connected Kindle, replacing any previous annotations.
  7. Currently supported formats include MOBI, PRC, AZW, (*.mbp) TPZ and AZW1 (*.tan). PDF is not currently supported.
  8. Fetch annotations is implemented only for the Kindle at this time.

Question, comments, suggestions? Please post them in this thread.

G

Last edited by GRiker; 03-31-2010 at 09:02 AM.
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