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Old 06-05-2011, 07:44 PM   #1
kharrisma
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How to clean up this mess??

Hi Folks.. first post, be nice I've had a Kindle since they first came out. My collection has grown *huge,* and comes from many different sources, with many different formats (.azw, .mobi, .lit, .htm, etc.) I also just downloaded some audio-books (*not* a big fan, but too impatient to wait for the release in ebook form)

My problem is, the display in the home page is ALL screwed up; sometimes author in the title column, sometimes "word document blah blah" in the title column, just all kinds of random awfulness; it just grossly offends my sense of organization and order. The audiobooks I pulled down all appear to be listed in an orderly fashion (title, chapter, author) on the webpage, but in the Kindle, they show up as "Episode One," "Episode Two," and so on... no indication of which book they're from.

Additionally, some of these titles apparently have a coding "hiccup" somewhere that causes the footer/header of a page to appear as well as the story text; lots of %20's and html stuff, and finally a "page #" and then back to the story text. It's a *huge* block of gibberish which really throws a monkey-wrench into the story flow.

It's really getting to the point that I'm ready to go back to paper, some days. Is there any application out there that will let me re-work the books' headers to yield a uniform display in my home pages? I don't mind the work of having to do manual editing, as long as it clears up the nightmare mishmash of differing display formats.

I've seen Sigil, and a few others, but they seem to be mostly one-trick ponies, working with only one or two formats at most. I'm looking for a "swiss army knife" that'll tackle just about anything out there. I don't care if it isn't all GUI-pretty, as long as it's effective.

Really hoping for something positive here; this is really beginning to ruin the whole thing for me.
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Old 06-05-2011, 07:52 PM   #2
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Hello kharrisma, and welcome to mobilread.

I think Calibre should become your best friend. It does a wonderful job organizing the books; and also you can convert them, and have all the books in a single format. It is very user friendly and there is a sub-forum for it, if you need any help.
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Old 06-05-2011, 07:55 PM   #3
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What are you using for conversion? Calibre? Sounds like the metadata on the files is gettting messed up. If you're not using Calibre, check it out. One fine little program for maintaining ebook collections.

EDIT: Little_bear beat me to it, but I'll second Calibre anyway

Last edited by jgaiser; 06-05-2011 at 07:57 PM.
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Old 06-05-2011, 07:58 PM   #4
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Stop downloading poor sources and buy your eBooks.
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Old 06-05-2011, 07:59 PM   #5
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Quote:
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Stop downloading poor sources and buy your eBooks.
Thanks Jon. Once again, very helpful.
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Old 06-05-2011, 08:08 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by JSWolf View Post
Stop downloading poor sources and buy your eBooks.
Boy that helped the OP... maybe you could take a crack at world hunger next, tell everyone to stop being hungry!

Agree on Calibre, it's the best!

Last edited by GoSharks; 06-05-2011 at 08:11 PM.
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Old 06-05-2011, 08:18 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JSWolf View Post
Stop downloading poor sources and buy your eBooks.
I wouldn't jump to conclusions.

a) I have some lit files too, and I paid for them. (Years ago on Fictionwise, I believe.) Every other format listed too, come to think of it.
b) Have you seen the metadata that comes out of Smashwords sometimes? Or anywhere else - the other day I got a book on Amazon and the title in the metadata was "Final Revision ePub".

Oh, and another vote here for calibre. I can't live without it.
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Old 06-05-2011, 08:37 PM   #8
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Yet another for Calibre.
I also suggest trying out BookDesigner for creation of ebooks from substandard sources. The output is LRF, but using Calibre, one can make ePub from the LRF file. It's still how I create all of my own eBooks (from legitimate and perfectly legal and morally sound source materials, thank you very much). The learning curve is fairly steep, but with a little practice, and HarryT's BD Tutorial (which can be found here on MR:
http://www.mobileread.com/forums/showthread.php?t=11678&highlight=Book+Designer+tut orial) one can really make some fantastic books.
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Old 06-10-2011, 02:35 PM   #9
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Thanks for your input, especially JSWolf; I would never have thought of that one myself! The ONLY time I go to less-than-straightforward sources is when the ebook format is not available elsewhere, at least not where I can find it, or in a format I can use. Just yesterday, in fact, I purchased a book from MobiReader, only to find I couldn't download it without a lot of Google time and several Python scripts, and then couldn't open it once downloaded. Turns out Amazon owns this site, and I'm still going back and forth with them over a refund or a way to make it work.

Way to kill a great idea!

Anyway, I do have Calibre, and just upgraded it to the most recent version (I kinda like the older version better...) I use it for all conversions, download the metadata wherever possible, and *carefully* manually input the rest. I"ve been using it so far exclusively on my PC, haven't really let it get ahold of my Kindle yet. Would you suggest backing up the full Kindle content externally, and then letting Calibre do its thing to the Kindle? Any particular command for this?
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Old 06-10-2011, 02:59 PM   #10
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Quote:
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I"ve been using it so far exclusively on my PC, haven't really let it get ahold of my Kindle yet. Would you suggest backing up the full Kindle content externally, and then letting Calibre do its thing to the Kindle? Any particular command for this?
If you just want to back up the content, just backup the contents of the user store (the stuff you see in Explorer when you hook it up). To back up your collections and index files, those are in the hidden System folder within the user store so you'll have to show hidden & system files in Explorer to get the full set.

If you're going to *replace* the files on the Kindle with the copies from calibre, then just delete your index files and let it rebuilt them after you put the books on it. (Plug it into a wall overnight and let it do its thing.) I actually clean out and rebuild my indexes periodically to keep it from turning into a monster from all the adding and removing of books.

If you want to really get into detail with managing your Kindle via calibre, be sure to check out the Plugins available, specifically Kindle Collections and Reading List. For the first one, read the first post, then you can skip to the last few pages for recent information. For Reading List, it now integrates Sync, and will soon be able to work in conjuction with the Collections plugin, running it automatically after a sync.

The plugin devs and a few of us enthusiastic users hang out on those threads to answer any questions.
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Old 06-10-2011, 03:14 PM   #11
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Will BookDesigner work on Mac, or is it PC only? I'd love to use it to create "Books" out of my notes and underlined text from within different book series.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlbertaCowboy View Post
Yet another for Calibre.
I also suggest trying out BookDesigner for creation of ebooks from substandard sources. The output is LRF, but using Calibre, one can make ePub from the LRF file. It's still how I create all of my own eBooks (from legitimate and perfectly legal and morally sound source materials, thank you very much). The learning curve is fairly steep, but with a little practice, and HarryT's BD Tutorial (which can be found here on MR:
http://www.mobileread.com/forums/showthread.php?t=11678&highlight=Book+Designer+tut orial) one can really make some fantastic books.
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Old 06-10-2011, 04:10 PM   #12
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Thanks Jon. Once again, very helpful.
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Old 06-10-2011, 04:38 PM   #13
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Will BookDesigner work on Mac, or is it PC only? I'd love to use it to create "Books" out of my notes and underlined text from within different book series.
I am fairly certain that it's PC only.
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Old 06-10-2011, 04:56 PM   #14
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I am fairly certain that it's PC only.
Thanks for the info. Too bad.
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Old 06-10-2011, 05:01 PM   #15
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Will BookDesigner work on Mac, or is it PC only? I'd love to use it to create "Books" out of my notes and underlined text from within different book series.
I'd recommend using Sigil instead. It makes very nice ePubs. If you want Kindle files instead, just run the ePub through kindlegen or drop it onto the Kindle Preview application.
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