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Old 03-08-2009, 01:24 AM   #1
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What is PDB?

In my searches for free ebooks, I keep coming across the PDB format but I've no idea what it is. Is it anything like PDF? Is it suitable for the sony ereader?

Any help would be welcome.
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Old 03-08-2009, 01:35 AM   #2
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Hi, BookCat!

I understand that a PDB extension can actually be used for a number for files related to the Palm operating system.

However when speaking of ebooks, people are usually referring to the eReader format. The software to read it on computers, PDAs, and some phones is available at eReader.com. (P.S. If you shop at Fictionwise.com and look at the "multi-format" books, you'll see they actually have two PDB formats offered. One is eReader and the other is...uh, yikes, I can't remember the exact name...but it's an older format).

eReader formatted books - whether they have encryption (DRM) or not - are not natively readable on the Sony.

Some Sony owners use a Python script named "eReader2html" to ... um ... "liberate" their eReader books and convert them to other formats. I see you're in the UK - Harry, one of the moderators here, has made it pretty clear the using such scripts is considered illegal in the UK (as it is in the US, actually). Not the everyone chooses to follow that law, of course. You still need to be aware of the legal issues, though, if you look into that option.

The only formats the Sony will read without any conversion are:

Sony's "BBeB" (which have the extension LRF for non-encrypted and LRX for encrypted), Adobe's version of encrypted ePub, Adobe PDFs (I think encrypted or not) - although PDFs have varying levels of success at being readable on the SOny - and RTF (no pictures will be displayed from RTF files).
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Old 03-08-2009, 03:15 AM   #3
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See wiki: PDB. If you buy a PDB, it is probably in eReader format, but if it is free then it might be PalmDOC or perhaps Plucker or zTXT. PalmDOC is very common, Calibre does not list it as a supported format but if you have a PalmDOC .pdb (and Calibre does not import it) then try renaming the file to .prc. This might work because the original MOBI was an extension to PalmDOC (MOBI ebooks often have the extension .prc).
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Old 03-08-2009, 04:34 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BookCat View Post
In my searches for free ebooks, I keep coming across the PDB format but I've no idea what it is. Is it anything like PDF? Is it suitable for the sony ereader?

Any help would be welcome.
Hi Bookcat.

I had some pdb files from an old palm. There is a website:


http://www.isilo.com/index.htm


There you can download their product for free. Also, (I did this) you can buy a licence for 20 USD. It will allow you to convert the book from .pdb to .txt.

After that you can use calibre to convert the text to .lrf to read on the 505.

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Old 03-08-2009, 02:41 PM   #5
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Does anyone know of an easy way to convert ereader PDB's without any DRM to another format (that Calibre or MobiCreator would import)? I know how to do it for DRM'd files, but not those without DRM. And Calibre won't read these particular books.
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Old 03-11-2009, 01:34 AM   #6
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If you have eReader format eBooks without DRM, delete them. There is no nice way to convert them to anything else.
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Old 03-13-2009, 02:54 AM   #7
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Oh dear! Not intended for Sony ereaders then?
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Old 03-13-2009, 07:46 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JSWolf View Post
If you have eReader format eBooks without DRM, delete them. There is no nice way to convert them to anything else.


NOT!

I think I'll keep them and read them on my pc, if nothing else will work. But I would prefer to get them into a longer lasting format (the ereader software hasn't been updated in years and won't even open some newer PDB files; it does open these). And I suspect I could still read the books on my phone as well (or all those old palms in the basement).

Also, I found a source of bible study materials that is all PDB, free to use, etc, but is one tiny revision too new for the ereader software - for those, I would be forced to stay on my phone, which is not where I would prefer to use them at all.

Obviously there is a way to convert them (or ereader2html would not work), I was just hoping someone here knew of software that would, without having to modify ereader2html myself.
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Old 03-16-2009, 07:10 AM   #9
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What you are looking for is a converter called mobi2html that can be found here
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Old 03-20-2009, 09:47 AM   #10
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Ummmm.... mobi2html can convert an ereader PDB file? I suspect not, since it isn't in mobi format (or Calibre would read it and renaming it to PRC would have allowed the Kindle to read it).
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Old 03-20-2009, 04:22 PM   #11
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A few months ago I asked the Copistar people if they were planning to support the desktop Ereader app (I have some non-DRM Ereader format files that I'd rather read with PalmFiction. And I already have FineReader, so...) They said they were planning a new version for February that would do that, but February came and went...
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Old 03-22-2009, 10:29 PM   #12
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"PDB" just meant "Palm Database" and since Palm stored all its files as compressed databases (including applications), .pdb as a file extension is pretty much meaningless unless you know which program the file was meant for ...
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Old 03-30-2009, 05:49 PM   #13
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ABC Amber Palm Convertor might be worth a try for non-DRM'ed PDB files. This utility is freeware and will convert the PDB file to PDF, RTF, HTML, etc. To read on the Sony eReader it would be best to convert to RTF and resize the text for readability. The Python script ereader2html.py is best for stripping DRM from your recently purchased eReader PDB books. As for the old Peanut Press books, sometimes the ABC Amber will work otherwise either pdbshred or ereader2html should do the trick.
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Old 03-30-2009, 06:53 PM   #14
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ABC Amber Palm will convert *palmdoc* PDBs; it won't convert EReader-formatted ones, not even the ones that don't have DRM.
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