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Old 06-14-2009, 11:08 AM   #1
river
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Sorting out my ebook collection using Calibre

Hi there guys, if this has been covered previously kindly point me in the right direction, I couldn't find on the forum...

I've got a lot of ebooks spread across my drive named 'mostly' in the format 'Author - Title.pdf', but with no meaningful tag information or covers.

I've posted earlier about an issue with the name to tag conversion but I'm wondering if I'm going about his right. pdf's use the regular expression to guess the tags from filenames, but word doc's don't, they look at the author tag instead. so when I import my collection gets in a mess, and I lose a lot of the info that was in the filename (especially where the filename wasn't 'author - filename' but contained series info.

I was going to use Calibre to create/structure my new main ebook directory (rather than having them all over the place). But I read on here that it's best to keep this as a 'black box' away from the main files.

What have you guys done, and what did you use to consolidate and tag your collections?
Ideally I'd like all to be in the structure; Author/Title/Author - Title.extension


Many Thanks... River.

Last edited by river; 06-14-2009 at 11:55 AM.
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Old 06-15-2009, 04:56 AM   #2
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Actually you use Calibre as a black box, but you let it become the owner of all your files. It's not quite as black box as something like iTunes though.

Like iTunes you need to abide by Calibre's naming conventions, which bothers some users, but I don't have a problem with it personally.

Unlike iTunes you may often find you need to go touch the files directly, primarily when converting from one format to another. Calibre makes that pretty easy to do though, any time you're looking at a book in Calibre you can just right click and ask it to open the directory for that book, the 'o' keyboard shortcut will do this as well. So I manage my metadata in Calibre, but when I'm format shifting to epub I'll often open up the files and tweak the output manually. If you're always content with what Calibre does automatically when format shifting then you may not have much reason to access the files directly.

If you try to keep all your files duplicated elsewhere you're just going to have management headaches. What you can do before you import all the books is try to clean up the filenames a bit to make them as uniform as possible. Then import using the filename regular expression to populate the metadata.

Last edited by ldolse; 06-15-2009 at 07:32 AM.
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Old 06-15-2009, 05:26 AM   #3
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Just to note that there's an option in the (v0.5.*) "Preferences" to toggle whether Calibre reads the metadata from the file properties, or from parsing the file name, so maybe that's part of the issue.
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Old 06-15-2009, 06:32 AM   #4
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Thanks for your help guys...

I'll go through and tidy up my pdf filenames, and put all the one's I want into into a source directory.

Now if I name them uniformly 'author - title' that should import ok (apart from it fills out the TITLE with 'Author - Title' for some reason??)

But what about he one's where they are 'author - title - series', should I import these seperately altering the regular expression before I do?

Thanks again, river.

Last edited by river; 06-15-2009 at 06:35 AM.
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Old 06-15-2009, 07:25 AM   #5
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As I recall, I was able to tweak the default regex to handle title, author, and series, with series being optional. But I don't remember what I tweaked it to....

This is what my current one is, no idea if this is the default or even what I used previously, but it looks like it covers all three:
Code:
(?P<author>[^_]+?) - ((?P<series>.*) (?P<series_index>[0-9]*) - )?(?P<title>.+)
I recall some other people on other threads having questions about how to set this regex, and I borrowed mine from there, so it would be worth your time to search the forums a bit.

Note even with that it seemed like sometimes Calibre preferred the Metadata in some filetypes over my regex. However that was many versions back when I did my major import, and I have no idea whether it was my fault for not setting some option which forced Calibre to use the regex or whether it was a bug that has since been resolved.

Here's a thread with some other suggestions:
http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...t=series+regex

Last edited by ldolse; 06-15-2009 at 11:18 PM.
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Old 06-15-2009, 11:05 PM   #6
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Just so you are on the same page, those expressions are called regular expressions (or regex).

What you have will detect books like this:

Author - Title.pdf
Author - Series 1 - Title.pdf
Author - Series 2 - Title.pdf


The default expression in my Calibre (0.5.10) is:

(?P<title>.+) - (?P<author>[^_]+)
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Old 06-16-2009, 03:16 AM   #7
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Thanks guys.. idolse, cheers for the link and parameter hint, very helpful.

CleverClothe, does your regex parse the filename correctly for PDF's?
Mine brings the 'title' in as 'title - author', but only on pdf's- everything else works fine.

Also, what's the conversion format/settings of choice... I've now got a big directory with a selection of pdf's, doc's and txt's, and I'd like to give them some consistancy in terms of the filetype and overall presentation?
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