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Old 10-20-2008, 06:45 PM   #1
sealbeater
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Thumbs down How I got 4000 plus books to show

So, I am sure I am not alone when I say that the PRS-505 is a tad disappointing for those of us who have "large" collections. I've been struggling ever since I hit the first book number limit to get it to display more than 3000 books and I've finally made progress.

What I did was run a Csh script that I will post that moves the books into folders. I've named the folders "books-vol#". So far, and I am missing about 600 or so, I've gotten 4057 books to register with no problems so far reading them (no invalid page or protected page messages). I've currently got about 13 dirs or folders with 350 books per folder. When I feel like going through adding books again, I'm going to experiment with the number of files per folder.

Ok, starting at the beginning, I first tried 500 books per folder but once the reader hit 3000, the rest of the files won't display. The SD and MS cards seem to suffer from file corruption if you just load all your books on it at once. So, after putting all your books in one folder, find out how many you have and edit and run the csh script (only helpful if you are using a *nix based OS). This will put all of your books into corresponding folders. Then load those folders onto your reader one or at the most, two at a time. Size of the folder seems to have some correlation, so if you got a folder that's more than 2 gigs, you might want to pare it down.

So, if anyone wants to try, I would love to hear your results.

-- Start script --

#!/bin/csh

# Here are the variables that you will need to change:
################################################## ##############################
set number_of_files = 350 # This is the number of files that you
# expect to store in each directory
set total_files_to_move = 1816 # This is the total number of files that
# you will move with this utility
# you will move with this utility
set source_dir = ./ # set to 'current' directory
set target_dir = ./books.vol # This is the prefix that you'll use for
# the folder tree.

# Here are the 'static' variables that you will not change:
################################################## ##############################
#this number will increment the count cap
set count = 0
#iteration counters
set folder_counter = 1 # Starts at one, such that multiplication issues don't arise
set counter = 0

# Get your list of files
foreach file ( `ls -tr $source_dir` )
@ counter = $counter + 1
@ count = $number_of_files * $folder_counter

# Test to see if the first target directory exists
if (! -d $target_dir$folder_counter ) then
mkdir $target_dir$folder_counter
endif

# Test to see if the maximum number of files to move have been moved
if ($counter > ($total_files_to_move)) then
exit
endif


# Check to see if you should move on to the next folder or not...
if ($counter > $count) then
@ folder_counter++

# Test to see if subsequent target directory exists
if (! -d $target_dir$folder_counter ) then
mkdir $target_dir$folder_counter
endif

mv $source_dir/$file $target_dir$folder_counter/$file
endif
# Since you didn't need to increment the folder_counter - move the file as if nothing happene
if ($counter <= ($count)) then
mv $source_dir/$file $target_dir$folder_counter/$file
endif
end

-- End --

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Old 10-20-2008, 06:47 PM   #2
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Old 10-20-2008, 08:05 PM   #3
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I don't especially want to try it, but could you tell us how long it took from when you turned the 505 on with the memory card in it with all those books to index until you could start reading on it?
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Old 10-20-2008, 08:17 PM   #4
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I think I'm overdoing it already with about 200 books on my Reader (internal memory), which is about a years' worth of reading. Who needs thousands of books loaded at once? Just leads to problems, from all reports.
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Old 10-21-2008, 12:03 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by dhbailey View Post
I don't especially want to try it, but could you tell us how long it took from when you turned the 505 on with the memory card in it with all those books to index until you could start reading on it?
I know what you are getting at, I actually have a chart somewhere of number of books and correlation to load time, to answer your question, it took approx. 1 hour and 15 minutes. This was not all loaded at once, I had to do a folder at a time across two flash memory devices because of some as yet unknown upper file limit or flash corruption, so it actually took most of my Friday and Saturday nights. Well worth it to me, however I want them all, so I'm going to try 250 books per folder when I feel like trying again. When/If I find the load time chart, I'll post it.
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Old 10-21-2008, 12:11 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by DrMoze View Post
I think I'm overdoing it already with about 200 books on my Reader (internal memory), which is about a years' worth of reading. Who needs thousands of books loaded at once? Just leads to problems, from all reports.
What problems, from all reports? I am interested to know because the only problem I have right now is deciding what I am going to read next, which is as it should be. As for who would need thousands of books loaded at once, obviously someone who is ready to read thousands of books. What I don't understand is why more people aren't pissed that the Reader doesn't access and read large numbers of books accurately. If my 160G ipod could only read 80G of mp3s, people would be pissed, and rightly so.

I personally, and I know I am not alone, view my Reader as a high tech Grimore, my personal library of Alexandria. If you are not excited at the thought of thousands of books in your pocket, you just aren't the same kind of reader as I. I know there are people who have just as many if not more or close to that number and this is to help them out.

Try 250 or less per dir, 350 went a long way but I am still missing approx 600 books. Sony, fix this please. Everyone contribute to openinkpot.
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Old 10-21-2008, 01:08 AM   #7
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Other than as a limit experiment I have never had more than 100 books on the Reader at one time since I've had it. Generally I keep about 35 to 50 books on the internal memory at one time. The great thing is that it works for both of us, you for a large number and me for a more moderate number.
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Old 10-21-2008, 01:57 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RWood View Post
Other than as a limit experiment I have never had more than 100 books on the Reader at one time since I've had it. Generally I keep about 35 to 50 books on the internal memory at one time. The great thing is that it works for both of us, you for a large number and me for a more moderate number.
Well, if only it were so easy, but unfortunately it's not. People will tell you that anything over 1500 is very problematic and this is the case. The fact that I had to basically experiment for almost a year, and that this had to be spread out across multiple memory cards with special doo-hicking on file management in order to get MOST, not all, is a big BOO on Sony from me. So, I wish that it did work for both of us, but the ones who read the PRS-505 supporting up to 16gigs as it actually supporting 16gigs of books are sadly still in search of a solution. But this is a start.

Note: I'm currently using about 10gigs out of 16.

By the way, what's a more "moderate" number?

Last edited by sealbeater; 10-21-2008 at 01:59 AM. Reason: mispelling correction, note, additonal question
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Old 10-21-2008, 02:18 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sealbeater View Post
Well, if only it were so easy, but unfortunately it's not. People will tell you that anything over 1500 is very problematic and this is the case. The fact that I had to basically experiment for almost a year, and that this had to be spread out across multiple memory cards with special doo-hicking on file management in order to get MOST, not all, is a big BOO on Sony from me. So, I wish that it did work for both of us, but the ones who read the PRS-505 supporting up to 16gigs as it actually supporting 16gigs of books are sadly still in search of a solution. But this is a start.

Note: I'm currently using about 10gigs out of 16.

By the way, what's a more "moderate" number?
Wow, so at $4-$6 per book, you must have spent around $20K, you are richer than I, sir. I buy probably close to 50 books a year, maybe more. Even at a hundred books a year, it would take me 40 years to reach your lofty limits.

Reading at 1 book a day, it would take you over 11 years to get through your 4000. I suspect by that time the current E-readers will have no problems accomodating ridiculously huge libraries.
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Old 10-21-2008, 03:10 AM   #10
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Wow, so at $4-$6 per book, you must have spent around $20K, you are richer than I, sir. I buy probably close to 50 books a year, maybe more. Even at a hundred books a year, it would take me 40 years to reach your lofty limits.
Thanks for the slightly irrelevent comment about my theoretical spending habits, I think I've made it plain that I love books. There are free sources if you find yourself financially strapped, Gutenberg being the most prominent.

It's not about lofty anything, it's about being able to utilize an expensive electronic gadget to it's full stated purpose. As noted, my ipod has no trouble reading mp3s.
Quote:
Originally Posted by bkilian View Post
Reading at 1 book a day, it would take you over 11 years to get through your 4000. I suspect by that time the current E-readers will have no problems accomodating ridiculously huge libraries.
Besides that not being the point, if the average mp3 is 3 minutes in length and I have 10,000, that's 30,000 minutes or 20.8333333 days. Nobody suggests that a person is going to listen to them all sequentially nor is that considered unusual. You read what you feel like, just as you listen to what you feel like. What's the big deal about having a wider choice? What's wrong with wanting one? Nobody has mentioned that the PRS-505 has a problem and this is a step towards figuring out a fix for those who are inclined to not accept artificial limits on hardware. Like I said, if my ipod couldn't read more than a thousand or so mp3s, with room to spare, Apple would be sued. Here, it's "Well, why do you want so many books?" I really don't understand that.

Oh, and I wouldn't refer to 4k+ books as "ridiculously" huge. Why is that ridiculous? What is ridiculous about that? It should be 4689. I guess everything is relative.
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Old 10-21-2008, 04:53 AM   #11
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I completely agree with sealbeater on this issue.
The habit everybody here (me included) developed of considering normal having <100 books on the device is due to bad design of the Reader.
I hate to be forced to occasionally linking with my PC where I store all my books: the way it was meant to be, the PC should hold a <backup> of my books - which should live happily on the Reader.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bkilian View Post
Wow, so at $4-$6 per book, you must have spent around $20K, you are richer than I, sir. I buy probably close to 50 books a year, maybe more. Even at a hundred books a year, it would take me 40 years to reach your lofty limits.
I'd like to direct you to http://wiki.mobileread.com/wiki/Free_eBooks , enough to fill up some dozens of Reader's


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Old 10-21-2008, 04:54 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sealbeater View Post
What I don't understand is why more people aren't pissed that the Reader doesn't access and read large numbers of books accurately. If my 160G ipod could only read 80G of mp3s, people would be pissed, and rightly so.
If each book only took around 3 minutes to read and you could read them while focussing on other tasks, then you might have a point, but I suspect the fact that they don't rather explains it...

I expect most people compare the number of books on an ebook reader with the thought of trying to carry the same number of physical books rather than with the intention of having a portable library!
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Old 10-21-2008, 05:48 AM   #13
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The ability to read all of them isn't the point -- the desire to be able to select what to read next from a large library is one of the very appealing aspects of ebooks, which I agree with Sealbeater about.

When I go into a bookstore, I don't expect to be confronted with only 300 titles. I expect to be able select from thousands. And I don't expect to be told, "Wait, we'll get something you want from the warehouse. Just wait and we'll empty these 300 titles and give you 300 more to select from!"

Yet that is what the current generation of ebook readers forces on readers. The potential is to be able to carry thousands of books with us -- why else would they include the memory cards? Yet they don't build the ability to utilize the capacity of memory cards easily into the operating systems of the readers. What's up with that? The comparison to having a 160GB mp3 player which can actually only conveniently index 80GB of mp3 files is a good one -- the public simply wouldn't stand for it.

However, the mp3 player field has much more competition, so that each mp3 player manufacturer has to build things to get the most out of all the potential. Unfortunately, the ebook reader marketplace is so limited that the manufacturers feel there is no need to fully implement the potential.

When I am reading, sometimes I want to read a mystery, and sometimes I want to read a history and sometimes I want to read a biography and sometimes a music theory and sometimes a music history and sometimes a computer how-to and sometimes a humor book. And I quite often keep 4 or 5 books current at the same time. And I definitely like to go to my reference shelf (which isn't just a dictionary and thesaurus and atlas) and look things up.

I want my ebook reader to give me the same capacity -- it can hold well over 4000 books with a high-capacity memory card, so it should have the ability to handle them as easily as it does ebooks stored in the internal memory.

I am definitely with Sealbeater on this one -- it's like the built-in mp3 player capability. Why include the stupid thing if it doesn't work well? We have all complained about that and very few use the mp3 capability at all because it sucks to high heaven.

And I am tired of the arguments "you can only read one book at a time, why do you need 4000?" or "Reading at 1 book a day, it would take you over 11 years to get through your 4000."

Do people who make such arguments really only keep a few books in their house at a time? Throwing out or giving away already-read books instead of leaving them on their bookshelves to re-read some day?

PG gives us over 20,000 books (yes, many are old magazines, and many are in foreign languages I don't want to read) and wouldn't it be cool to have a library like that in our pocket? so the next time somebody says "So-and-so says something like 'blah-blah-blah' in his book 'Things I Have Written'" you can pull that up easily on your screen and either verify that or shoot it down?

How many times have people misquoted the Bible when I've been around, usually to support some view they have and want to force on others? I've always wished I had a Bible to put in their hands and say "show me where it says that!"

ebook readers hold this promise -- I am hopeful that someday they can actually live up to their promise!

It will be very interesting to see if the new OS in the 700 makes having extended libraries easy to work with!
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Old 10-21-2008, 09:47 AM   #14
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What I don't understand is why more people aren't pissed that the Reader doesn't access and read large numbers of books accurately.
Believe me, there's a lot of pissed of people. I too want to transfer every ebook I own to my Reader and have it act as my personal library. Same thing with my iPod, I'm not going to listen to 80 GB of music, but I want all of it on my device anyway. It gives me the option to choose.
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Old 10-21-2008, 11:56 AM   #15
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Believe me, there's a lot of pissed of people. I too want to transfer every ebook I own to my Reader and have it act as my personal library. Same thing with my iPod, I'm not going to listen to 80 GB of music, but I want all of it on my device anyway. It gives me the option to choose.
I agree completely. Also, snarky comments about the number of books someone carries are uncalled for. I enjoy keeping my entire ebook library on a SDHC card in my Nokia 800 and it ticks me off that I can't do the same with my Sony. I don't even keep a card in my 505; it's pointless w/o folders.
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