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Old 05-25-2011, 02:33 AM   #1
Neefsck
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Alternatives to Calibre

So, my ebook library is getting..large to say the least.
Calibre is an awesome application but the library is simply too large to for it to handle effectively.
Im getting poor response from it and what I'm really looking for is something that will do the following ;

-Automatically scan for new files/ebooks in a directory and add them to an existing db.
-Provide search functions (ie: Author, Title etc)
-Share the library out via some sort of web interface (I like being able to grab books remotely) In much the same way Calibre does.
-Provide as minimal software footprint as possible - Possibly without a graphical front end interface as this will be moved to a simple server sitting at the terminus of my connection.
I'd like to move this sort of thing *off* the desktop and onto the house server.

I realise I might be asking for something which doesn't exist, and to be honest, Im not even sure if this post belongs in this thread, but I thought I'd give it a try regardless. (My apologies if its been asked already, I checked, but couldn't see anything related)

Should I be looking at perhaps a different content management solution ?
Any Ideas ?
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Old 05-25-2011, 03:18 AM   #2
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And you don't see a problem with asking for an alternative to Calibre on a forum dedicated to Calibre?
How big is your library if you're having performance problems, and which version of Calibre are you using? I've heard that some people have some 10.000 to 30.000 books with no problems, so I find it hard to believe you're having performance issues.
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Old 05-25-2011, 03:33 AM   #3
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And you don't see a problem with asking for an alternative to Calibre on a forum dedicated to Calibre?
Actually No.
I would think that its the first place to start given that the members / posters here should be able to at least tell me if I'm doing something wrong, or alternately provide feedback from their own experience.
In no way am I slighting Calibre, I am just saying that I dont think it's appropriate for my needs. Is that a problem ?

As for my library size - Its approximately 23K books totaling around 11Gig or so.
And yes - I am having performance options, my desktop isn't the newest model and it already runs several other services which also take up resources.
Hence my need for something that I can move to a server.
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Old 05-25-2011, 04:54 AM   #4
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And you don't see a problem with asking for an alternative to Calibre on a forum dedicated to Calibre?
At least he didn't ask where to find the latest version of Vim on an Emacs mailing list. Then he'd be in real trouble.
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Old 05-25-2011, 05:28 AM   #5
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As long as he is not dissing the developers and just saying that calibre is not meeting his needs and is just inquiring about an alternative I don't see anything wrong with it.
Now about the OP nothing comes close to the things calibre is able to do and so no developer feels the effort to make something new would be good use of their time. As it opensource any developers that feel they want they just add to calibre.
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Old 05-25-2011, 07:01 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Neefsck View Post
-Automatically scan for new files/ebooks in a directory and add them to an existing db.
No ideas here. The problem is that the metadata is usually terrible, so automatic additions are seldom acceptable.
Quote:
-Provide search functions (ie: Author, Title etc)
-Share the library out via some sort of web interface (I like being able to grab books remotely) In much the same way Calibre does.
-Provide as minimal software footprint as possible - Possibly without a graphical front end interface as this will be moved to a simple server sitting at the terminus of my connection.
Calibre's content server does all of the above, including not having the graphical front end.

Many people use the GUI to add books and maintain the metadada, then use calibre's content server on a different machine to serve that information. This is the easiest method to set up. The principle difficulty is syncing the libraries between the machine running the GUI and the one running the server.

I do something similar, but not with calibre's content server. For various reasons I wrote a PHP-based calibre library content server that integrates into either Apache or IIS (I use Apache). I run the PHP server on a virtual server (run by linode, should anyone care). I use dropbox to sync my library to the virtual server; the content server uses the changes immediately. See this thread for more details.

I confess that I have never tried running my content server with a library of 25,000 books (I have 2500). Perhaps one of the other users has.
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Old 05-25-2011, 02:30 PM   #7
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Why the in the world would you have 23k books?

Last edited by The Terminator; 09-22-2011 at 01:21 AM.
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Old 05-25-2011, 03:43 PM   #8
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Why the hell would you have 23k books?
The real question is where you would *find* 23k ebooks. Legally.
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Old 05-25-2011, 03:55 PM   #9
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For me, it would be where would I find 23k books that I would want to read. I guess you could download everything from Gutenberg or something similar, but I'd never be interested in reading even 10% of that, probably.
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Old 05-25-2011, 04:01 PM   #10
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Cool yes

Quote:
Originally Posted by susan_cassidy View Post
For me, it would be where would I find 23k books that I would want to read. I guess you could download everything from Gutenberg or something similar, but I'd never be interested in reading even 10% of that, probably.
yes, exactly!
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Old 05-25-2011, 10:39 PM   #11
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I have about 23k files, about 5gig, 4gig on an 8gg SD card in my prs-650. The other gig in main memory on that one.

Mine are various sizes, being a 15 year collection of on-line fanfic, for about 10 fandoms.

First, are you running one main library on Calibre, or have you split them up yet? I have about 14 separate libraries in Calibre that I switch between all the time. One each for the larger fandoms, the largest having 12,509 files. That one runs a bit slow, so am thinking of dividing it up into two libraries. I have a "Main" library for purchased books. A separate library with just names of books for my "Wish List" and so I can keep track of series. And one just for "Freebies".

I keep a blank library for importing and working on new ebooks and fanfics. Then I "copy to library (delete after copy) to which ever Library they're to go to.

So far, no problems, although the bigger ones need to run for a bit if I batch process stuff. On it I'm running the "Count Pages" plugin, and only select about 1,000 titles at a time, and it's taking anywhere from 15 minutes to 2 hours to process the files. So it just depends on how long it takes to go through some really large files. (I tend to put series stories together in one file. So some are kinda big.)

Otherwise, running fine.
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Old 05-25-2011, 10:41 PM   #12
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The real question is where you would *find* 23k ebooks. Legally.
There are always other alternatives to pointing your fingers and automatically assuming piracy

1. Thousand of free ebooks to download - is that ilegal
2. I own a secondhand book shop and have spent ten of thousands of hours scanning books in a HUGE scanner that accepts thousands of pages at a time before Amazon and the likes came along and before ebooks were being sold online
3. I own a bookshop and therefore have the right to store digital copies of those books for backup\insurance purposes but haven't got tens of thousands of hours to scan all my books in my collection so I have scanned some and downloaded others from other sources
4. I am the owner of a publishing house and have 100,000's of books but no f'ing software to effectively manage all my books so I use Calibre instead
5. I have a shop and buy all my books in ebook format from legitimate sources and offer books to my customers in ebook format with the option to print if a customer wants a hardcopy.
6. None of your business your just jealous
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Old 05-25-2011, 10:49 PM   #13
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For me, it would be where would I find 23k books that I would want to read. I guess you could download everything from Gutenberg or something similar, but I'd never be interested in reading even 10% of that, probably.
Some people fill their hard drives with mp3's and movies or porn and other garbage.

It's nice to have a choice of books - sure you might never read more than 10% of 23k but it's nice having them there and with the different ways of sorting and searching books in Calibre you run across books that you might never have thought to read in the first place, but once you pick them up you can't put them down and you've discovered another author to look out for in the future

or you could be a mutant with super speed reading skills?
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Old 05-25-2011, 11:40 PM   #14
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There are always other alternatives to pointing your fingers and automatically assuming piracy
Great.. All good alternatives. Without pointing fingers, *most* ebook "Collectors" match none of your list. If you want to put together a collection of books larger than most public libraries, more power to you. Just don't understand the purpose.
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Old 05-26-2011, 03:30 AM   #15
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No ideas here. The problem is that the metadata is usually terrible, so automatic additions are seldom acceptable.
Calibre's content server does all of the above, including not having the graphical front end.

<snip>

I confess that I have never tried running my content server with a library of 25,000 books (I have 2500). Perhaps one of the other users has.

Thanks for the feedback.
I'll definitely look into doing that way.
If not, I'd be most interested in your PHP solution - I'll take a look at the thread you've pointed me too.
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