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Old 06-25-2009, 08:25 PM   #1
AJ Starr
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Question Old pdf ebooks w/drm

I have a couple of ebooks I purchased waaaaaay back about 10 years ago, back when ebooks were not really known and that one author published his in ebook to try to get the industry started.

My question is, how do I access them now. It was using three computers ago, a 400 mhz emachine. I don't remember where I purchased them, I don't remember anything said about security. I still have the files, but of course, Adobe 7 and 8 stopped reading them, and now Adobe 9 is out. I have yet to install ADE because when it first came out I downloaded it and had lots of problems so I took it off.

So, does anyone know how I could access these books?

Thanks for the help.

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Old 07-25-2009, 08:18 PM   #2
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Do you remember with which version of Acrobat those books used to work? You can just download that, install and give the books a try. You can get the older versions of acrobat here http://www.oldapps.com/adobe_reader.php.

The thread is pretty old, but as no one has replied yet, I did. Please correct me if this shouldn't be done.
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Old 07-25-2009, 09:26 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Prash View Post
Do you remember with which version of Acrobat those books used to work? You can just download that, install and give the books a try. You can get the older versions of acrobat here http://www.oldapps.com/adobe_reader.php.

The thread is pretty old, but as no one has replied yet, I did. Please correct me if this shouldn't be done.
I'm still here wondering if anyone had any ideas. The pdf's were downloaded when Adobe 5 was out there. I don't remember anything being said about encryption. I could read it fine with 6. But when 8 came (I somehow skipped 7) I couldn't get to it. I still have the zip of 6 but when I tried to load it a few years ago, it said that a more recent version had been loaded and it would not load. I just kind of gave up.

But now with ebooks so prolific I was wondering if there was some way to get to them. If not, it's no big deal, it's just a couple of Star Wars ebooks, and a few free ebooks that I probably wouldn't read.

I was wondering if I loaded ADE whether it would read them or not. I tried loading ADE when it first came out, but I had all sorts of problems so I removed it and have not tried it again. I guess with epubs being pushed as the defacto standard I might have to try again.

But thanks for answering.

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Old 07-26-2009, 05:25 AM   #4
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Hmmm... Why don't you upload one of the free ebooks. Just upload one of the free ebooks you have, and I will see what I can do.
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Old 07-26-2009, 10:01 AM   #5
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I'll be glad to. I tried pulling this one, which was free, Middlemarch, into the Calilbre 6. It gave me errors, then showed it on the list and said it was drm.

Unfortunately, the DRM never requests an ID for me to decrypt it.

This was my first attachment try, so let me know if it didn't work

AJ
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Last edited by AJ Starr; 08-08-2009 at 05:40 PM.
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Old 07-26-2009, 12:19 PM   #6
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I thought I almost succeeded to get it to work, but I couldn't. But I tried a few things, and got one information about the book - it has totally 811 pages. The first pages are numbered as C,I,II,III till VI, next are the page numbers till 811.

I tried to convert it, tried to remove the security using some dos scripts from the net and only achieved this. Will see what else can I do. They worked with adobe 6 right?
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Old 07-26-2009, 02:00 PM   #7
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Wow, that better than I hoped. Yes, it worked on the first version of Adobe that separated the ebooks, before ADE came out. I remember when I bought the Star Wars ebooks and got these others free, that Adobe did not have the separate ebook display. So when the next version, I assume 6, came I checked them all out and they worked. I missed version 7, but version 8 started with the ADE.

I do know it was a few computer's back, and I probably was running WIN ME if not 98.

If you can get it to ask for an id, I might know what it would be, but none of my tries ever asked for an id, just told me it was DRM.

And to reassure you, this is just a nice to have. I've done without the books for 10 years or so, I was just wondering if I could un-DRM them.

Do you think if I get ADE, it would read them? As I said, it was several computers ago, but I don't remember if when I bought them I had to register or not.

Thanks for attempting this, but don't worry if it doesn't work.



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Old 07-26-2009, 04:21 PM   #8
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I just tried opening this on my computer to see what would happen.

When trying to open it with Acrobat, it just bounces me over to the Digital Editions webpage.

When I try to open it with ADE, I get an "Authorizing Content" dialog box, but the progress bar doesn't go anywhere. It eventually just times out.

Opening it in Preview just shows that there are 811 pages (but all show up as blank), and it indicates that there is no encryption (which is obviously wrong).

Digging through the file with the 'strings' command shows that it's encrypted with EBX version 0.9 (which was supported by an older version of Acrobat). A quick web search shows that EBX was an encryption standard set up by the Electronic Book Exchange Working Group, but they don't seem to exist any longer. In its own way, this makes sense. Acrobat and ADE recognize the encryption system, but hang when trying to connect to an authentication server.

In short, it looks like you're out of luck--stuck in that nowhere when the authentication servers go offline. I suppose you could try getting in touch with Adobe to see if they can do anything (highly doubtful, though).
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Old 07-26-2009, 05:09 PM   #9
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Yeah, I figured that I'd be out of luck when all the new ebooks are certain formats with drm.

As I said, when I got those was when Stephen King first announced that his book would be in ebook format, and the world went "What is that?"

Oh well, the free books I got are already available here at Mobileread, and the Star Wars ebooks showed up in later novels, which I have to buy for my husband.

Thanks for investigating that. I'll stop thinking about them now.

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