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Old 05-28-2012, 03:28 PM   #1
Grzanka
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Problem with creating MOBI from HTML, OPF & NCX using Kindle Previewer

Recently I wanted to create an ebook to read on my Kindle Touch. I didn't want to use any program, I wanted to immerse myself into the thing and go with raw HTML, OPF and NCX. I started with reading OPF and NCX specifications, Kindle Publishing guidelines and with downloading Amazon's sample files.

What I'm showing here is a simplified case consisting of a "book" consisting of two poems of a Polish poet. It's here just to illustrate my problem.

The problem is that when I convert my three files (HTML, OPF and NCX) to MOBI using Kindle Previewer it works flawlessly, but only on Kindle Previewer. If I try to copy the new MOBI file to the /documents folder on my Kindle Touch and read it there all I get is an error message. The worst thing is that I have no idea what I'm doing wrong - it works perfectly on my computer but it desn't on the Kindle. If I send the file on my Amazon email adress it works all right too.

All the files I use are in my Google Drive folder below:

https://docs.google.com/folder/d/0Bz...hqdGR5X0U/edit

I hope I will find help here. It's bugging me all the time.
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Old 05-28-2012, 04:02 PM   #2
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Handcrafting an ebook from scratch is most admirable but also very error prone. Why waste time on creating an .ncx file, when Sigil will create one for you automatically? (Sigil creates .epub files, however, KindlePreviewer will compile them.)
I'd recommend using Mobipocket Creator for your first steps. If you had compiled your project with Mobipocket Creator, you'd have gotten 2 warnings:
One about an unclosed node in line 23 of the .opf file and one about an unclosed node in line 14 of the .ncx.
Both files are syntactically incorrect. (The error in the .opf is actually in line 17.)
This wouldn't have happened if you had used Sigil, because it makes sure that all file are at least syntactically correct.
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Old 05-28-2012, 04:21 PM   #3
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Thank you very much for your response. Yes, it is very error prone but I'd like to create one ebook by myself. It's a kind of a challenge and also allows me to find out more how MOBI ebooks look "underneath the surface". I want a full control of my "final product".

Thank you also for pointing out the syntax errors. However, my question is - why does it work on Kindle Previewer but not on my Kindle Touch?

Last edited by Grzanka; 05-28-2012 at 04:23 PM.
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Old 05-28-2012, 04:50 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Grzanka View Post
Thank you also for pointing out the syntax errors. However, my question is - why does it work on Kindle Previewer but not on my Kindle Touch?
It stands to reason that KindlePreviewer is more fault-tolerant than the actual Kindles. Why don't you fix the errors in your source files and recompile your files to find out if that will solve your problem?
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Old 05-28-2012, 04:51 PM   #5
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I did that and it didn't help. Besides sending the file to my Amazon account and downloading it to my Kindle from there apparently fixes the problem.
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Old 05-28-2012, 04:56 PM   #6
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How are you using Kindle Previewer to convert those 3 files? If you're just dragging and dropping the html file onto the Previewer, then your opf and ncx files are not going to be part of the resulting mobi—because the html file doesn't know of their existence. I don't know why the Previewer would work for that type of converted mobi where the Kindle touch wouldn't (except possibly because there's no Kindle Touch-specific emulation mode).

Anyway... just make sure you're dragging and dropping the OPF file onto the Kindle Previewer window rather than the html file in order to have the best chance of building a properly functioning mobi.
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Old 05-28-2012, 05:00 PM   #7
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I am building a properly functioning MOBI. I'm opening the OPF file. The MOBI file looks OK, can be read on Kindle Previewer and Kindle for PC. Only on Kindle Touch it makes problems.

EDIT

OK, this is weird. I opened the OPF file of the Kindle Users Guide, which I downloaded from Amazon in a sample pack. Kindle Previewer compited a MOBI file which I copied to the "documents" folder on Kindle. To my surprise, when I tried to open it on Kindle it also crashed. Weird.

Last edited by Grzanka; 05-28-2012 at 05:16 PM.
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Old 05-28-2012, 05:10 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grzanka View Post
I am building a properly functioning MOBI. I'm opening the OPF file. The MOBI file looks OK, can be read on Kindle Previewer and Kindle for PC. Only on Kindle Touch it makes problems.
Sorry, bad choice of words on my part. I didn't mean to suggest you weren't building a properly functioning mobi... only that you might not have been building the same mobi you thought you were; had you been building by opening the HTML file (a lot of people have made that mistake in the past) instead of the OPF. But that's all moot anyway since you've indicated you are using the OPF file.

Wish I could be more help, but I don't have a KT to try your files on.

EDIT: I did notice that the url fragment you use in the toc reference item in the guide section of the opf doesn't exist in the html file:

OPF: href="wiersze.html#Spis treści"
HTML: <a id="Spis-tresci">

Last edited by DiapDealer; 05-28-2012 at 05:31 PM.
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Old 05-28-2012, 05:41 PM   #9
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Yes, I also noticed that and fixed it about 15 minutes ago, but it didn't help. I will update the files to the current ones.

EDIT

I also added the compiled MOBI file. Could you chceck if it works on your devices? It may have something to do not with the file but my Kindle or Kindle's software.

Last edited by Grzanka; 05-28-2012 at 06:05 PM.
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Old 05-28-2012, 07:10 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grzanka View Post
...
Thank you also for pointing out the syntax errors. However, my question is - why does it work on Kindle Previewer but not on my Kindle Touch?
You've left out too much information to begin to solve the riddle. Questions:
  • What version of Kindle Previewer are you using?
  • What device(s) have you set in Kindle Previewer when you did the test?
  • What version of Kindle for PC did you test in?
  • What firmware version is on your Kindle Touch?

You should be using the newest version of Kindle Previewer, currently version 2.4. Also, in Kindle Previewer you should always test in both the "Kindle" and Kindle Fire" modes (if there is no Kindle Fire mode you have an old version of Previewer).

The current version of Previewer builds a dual format MOBI file. One partition is Classic MOBI and the other is the new KF8 format. The Kindle Fire and the current version of the Kindle for ?? apps all read the KF8 partition when available. If you haven't change its prefs, the Kindle Previewer will default to the Kindle Fire mode and thus preview only the KF8 partition. You Kindle Touch is an unknown. The original firmware only read Classic MOBI while the newest firmware (5.1.0) reads the KF8 partition if available.

If your MOBI file has a faulty Classic MOBI partition and a viable KF8 partition it will read fine in the current Kindle for PC and current Kindle Previewer is default mode but would fail on a Touch if it hasn't had its firmware upgraded. It's also possible that you've upgraded your Touch and your file's KF8 partition is exposing a flaw in the 5.1.0 firmware in the Touch or in both the Previewer's Fire mode and Kindle for PC ( riding over the flaw or reverting to the Classic MOBI partition when the KF8 flaw is encountered; this would be a flaw in a test app like Previewer but desirable behavior in a real world reader like Kindle for PC).
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Old 05-29-2012, 02:13 AM   #11
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Thanks for taking part in the discussion. I'm using Kindle Previewer 2.4. I'm testing the MOBI files on "Kindle", "Kindle DX" and "Kindle Fire" profiles - none has any problems with displaying the book properly. My Kindle Touch has the latest (I guess) firmware: 5.1.0 (1557760049) - that's what it says in the "Device info" window.

I should also add that building the MOBI file with the newest KindleGen didn't help either. It was also displayed properly in Kindle Previewer but not on Kindle Touch.

Oh, and my Kindle for PC is also the latest version that I've just downloaded from Amazon - 1.9.3 (38425).

Last edited by Grzanka; 05-29-2012 at 05:34 AM.
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Old 05-29-2012, 09:45 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grzanka View Post
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I also added the compiled MOBI file. Could you chceck if it works on your devices? It may have something to do not with the file but my Kindle or Kindle's software.
It displays fine on my K3, which would be displaying the Classic MOBI partition without even trying the KF8 partition.

Last edited by dwig; 05-29-2012 at 04:16 PM.
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Old 05-29-2012, 03:58 PM   #13
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Well, now that we've rulled out faulty conversion I've restarted my Kindle. It works like a charm.

Apparently something must've been wrong in my device, but now it's reset to normal. Thank you all for contributing. I feel a little stupid I didn't think of resetting my device earlier...

Last edited by Grzanka; 05-29-2012 at 04:03 PM.
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Old 05-29-2012, 04:26 PM   #14
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The important thing is: it's working like you expect it to!
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Old 05-29-2012, 04:31 PM   #15
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Yes, my main project works flawlessly and I'm proud of setting a whole book by myself. The worst/best part is that I probably did everything OK right from the beginning. But I have to say that thanks to this little adventure I learned quite a few things.

Last edited by Grzanka; 05-29-2012 at 04:33 PM.
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