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Old 08-09-2013, 03:32 PM   #1
jackie_w
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Problem with Convert-PageSetup margins. Is this a bug?

I was trying to help a non-techie Kobo user with a problem yesterday when the following became apparent.

If you have your convert PageSetup left/right margins set to 'No margin' and you do an epub-epub conversion, my understanding was that the converted epub should end up with no margin-left/margin-right settings in its css body class.

This is not what I'm seeing (in 0.9.42). If the input epub's css already contains left/right margin settings (in either body{...} or a body class), then they are still there after the conversion -- in whatever css class name calibre has assigned to <body>.

So my question - is this a bug? or am I requesting an enhancement feature?

The reason this is undesirable for a Kobo user is that the on-device ability to adjust left/right margins will only work if either:
  • there aren't any left/right margins in body{...} or the body class
  • there are left/right margins, but they are only in body{...} not a body class. In this case the Kobo can override the epub's body L/R margins.
This leaves epubs with L/R margins in a body class as non-adjustable on the Kobo. This problem crops up a lot and, in the absence of the 'No margins' setting working as I had expected, I can only think of two ways to advise users.
  • Fix every epub manually using Sigil or Tweak ebook. Works perfectly (and it's what I would do myself) but unfortunately way outside the comfort zone of many users.
  • Use the convert Filter Style Info option to remove all Margins. Rather draconian IMO as removing every margin setting in the css is likely to render it's appearance worse than doing nothing.

So back to my original question... Is the convert with PageSetup L/R margins set to 'No margins' supposed to remove existing body margins? If 'yes' then I can create a bug request. If 'no' then is it worth me creating an enhancement request?

... or better still, can you think of a different option which is both easy to explain to a non-techie user and which doesn't risk wrecking their epub library.

Last edited by jackie_w; 08-09-2013 at 03:35 PM.
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Old 08-09-2013, 10:43 PM   #2
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No margin means that no margin is set by calibre during conversion. This means that if there is a pre-existing margin it will be left alone. IIRC, this behavior was added specially for JSWolf.

Doesnt the modify epub plugin have an option to nuke margins?

Also, why dont your friends simply set the margin to whatever they want it to be? That way they dont have to waste time adjusting the margins for every book they want to read on the device.
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Old 08-10-2013, 07:21 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kovidgoyal View Post
Doesnt the modify epub plugin have an option to nuke margins?
Modify Epub will remove L/R margins if they're in body {} but unfortunately not if if they're in a body class. IIRC there was some discussion about this a year ago but this is the current situation.
Quote:
Originally Posted by kovidgoyal View Post
Also, why dont your friends simply set the margin to whatever they want it to be? That way they dont have to waste time adjusting the margins for every book they want to read on the device.
I can only guess at the answer to this...

The logical guess -- users have multiple devices and a setting of, let's say, 5pt may be perfect on a 600x800 Kobo Touch screen but would appear too small on a 1080x1440 Kobo Aura screen. Conversely the setting which best suits the Aura would be too big on the Touch. And if they're reading on a smartphone they probably want no margins at all.

The emotional guess -- users hate to have a supposed Kobo feature which appears to be 'not working'

Last edited by jackie_w; 08-10-2013 at 07:24 AM.
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