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Old 11-19-2009, 10:45 PM   #1
Marcy
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Please Help - My Entire Calibre Library Disappeared

The title really says it all. Suddenly my Calibre library is gone. I can't find it anywhere. There is a folder called Calibre, but there is 1 book in it. I have searched my computer for all the missing folders without success -- I've even pored through the recycling bin. However, I have over 400 books on my e-reader and only had about 15 that I hadn't transferred over.

Well, I said, I'll just transfer them from the e-reader back into Calibre. Nope. No way to do that. :-( The thought of re-downloading all those books, stripping the DRM off them, importing them back into Calibre and then converting them all back to epub is enough to make me cry. That's many hours of work.

Is there some easy way to do this?

-Marcy
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Old 11-19-2009, 11:13 PM   #2
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First up, try not to panic as there has to be a logical explanation to it! I mean files / folders don't just magically disappear from a computer.

Have you tried running a search on your comp for some of the actual ebooks that were in your collection? I am thinking that perhaps the books have been moved by accident and are now sitting in a different location on your pc?

If you do hopefully find them, it might be a good idea to back them all up onto an extrnal drive or a cd / DVD because as you say it represents hours of work.

If anyone else has some suggestions, I hope they will help you out.
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Old 11-19-2009, 11:19 PM   #3
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Have you tried a search on just a particular book that you know was in the library or a search of all files and folders for an author name or book file type?

My laptop died and I lost my Calibre library a few months ago. I had many of the books on my Sony reader and was able to save the books from the reader to the hard drive on the new computer and then load them into Calibre from there. I lost all the metadata but at least I had the version that worked on the Sony and then could reload many of the books back from where I purchased them.

I also purchased a separate USB hard drive and now backup the Calibre library to it so I won't have to go through the data loss again.

Good luck, I hope you can find your library.
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Old 11-19-2009, 11:20 PM   #4
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The other thing, if you have the ebooks on your ereader, surely you must be able to copy those back onto your pc and just add them again into calibre?

You don't say what ereader you have but if you plug it in it should come up as a separate drive on you pc which you can then search through in windows explorer. The books must be on there in one of the folders.
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Old 11-19-2009, 11:43 PM   #5
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I have tried searching on individual ebook names. No luck.

I did save the library back onto my computer from the ereader (from within calibre using the save to disk function) and tried to re-import them. Calibre gives me a message that it can't read the metadata and wouldn't import anything.

I didn't directly copy them, because they are all in folders sorted by author name. Having to reimport by going through each folder would be painful as well.

I have some of the library backed up at home. Unfortunately (in this situation) I've been on vacation for a month and bought a bunch of books that I haven't backed up yet - I was going to do it when I got home next week.

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Old 11-20-2009, 12:15 AM   #6
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Are you using Windows? If so copy them from the reader within the Windows explorer to a new directory. You should then be able to import them from that directory into Calibre using the second option on the Add Books menu (click the down arrow between the Add Books and Edit Metadata buttons). This will add from multiple directories (including subdirectories) assuming each file in a directory is a copy of the same book.

If the metadata files are still giving you trouble do a search within the Windows explorer of the new main directory for the .opf file type and then delete them from within the search window and try to import again. I didn't have any trouble re-adding my books back from the reader this way.

Last edited by bookfanmd; 11-20-2009 at 12:20 AM.
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Old 11-20-2009, 12:08 PM   #7
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OK, the first thing to check on is where Calibre THINKS the books are... open Calibre and click Preferences. The first item in the first tab is "Location of Ebooks". On mine, it's
C:\Documents and Settings\mcox\My Documents\books

Then see if you can find that folder, OR try searching on some relevant part of the path. ( For this, I would try searching 'books' )

Check your trash.
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Old 11-20-2009, 04:53 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wygit View Post
OK, the first thing to check on is where Calibre THINKS the books are... open Calibre and click Preferences. The first item in the first tab is "Location of Ebooks". On mine, it's
C:\Documents and Settings\mcox\My Documents\books

Then see if you can find that folder, OR try searching on some relevant part of the path. ( For this, I would try searching 'books' )

Check your trash.
I checked there. I checked the trash. The books are gone or are hidden in some way that can't be searched. I was able to sort of restore my library using suggestions above and recovering it off my reader, although most of the tags/series info was wrong and for some reason new tags were added.

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Old 11-21-2009, 05:45 AM   #9
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Lost files

You might try downloading locate, which is a much better search than Windows search. Make sure you have it update its database first before you search.

If that is still unavailing, it is time to make sure you do a good backup of all your documents, including those hiding out in My Documents and Application Data. Files generally don't just disappear, so I am concerned your computer may be about to crash leaving you with nothing if you have no backups.

If you use Firefox and Thunderbird, mozbackup is the easy way to backup data for those programs.
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Old 11-21-2009, 06:12 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrmikel View Post
You might try downloading locate, which is a much better search than Windows search. Make sure you have it update its database first before you search.

If that is still unavailing, it is time to make sure you do a good backup of all your documents, including those hiding out in My Documents and Application Data. Files generally don't just disappear, so I am concerned your computer may be about to crash leaving you with nothing if you have no backups.

If you use Firefox and Thunderbird, mozbackup is the easy way to backup data for those programs.

Can you provide links for those? "locate" is a pretty generic term...

Update: I think you mean this: http://locate32.webhop.org/
I just download and tried it out......looks to be an excellent program.


To the OP. One of two things happened. The location of the library in Calibre changed or the folder was deleted or moved. Things don't just disappear.

Last edited by kennyc; 11-21-2009 at 06:55 AM.
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Old 11-21-2009, 10:03 PM   #11
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Oh my, so sorry to hear that. I hope you find your books.

Happened to me somehow (not sure if I pressed wrong buttons or what ) but the books disappeared. Thankfully it was my first few freebies so I easily downloaded them again. Now I have started a 'backup' library - before I transfer to the reader, I copy the books into another folder on puter.

And unfortunately if you work with WIndows, anything is possible, including the sudden and mysterious disappearance of files.
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Old 11-22-2009, 07:09 AM   #12
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Backup programs

Yes, the program I was referring to is locate32...was not sure if that was only one version's name.

And the link for mozbackup is:http://mozbackup.jasnapaka.com/

Calbre has always been very stable for me. It hasn't just made files disappear on whatever computer I am running it on. One gloomy prospect is the computer has a virus that has hurt the file structure.

If it is a matter of things being improperly changed, maybe you could do a system restore to put pointers back as they ought to be.
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Old 11-22-2009, 11:08 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by mrmikel View Post
Yes, the program I was referring to is locate32...was not sure if that was only one version's name.

And the link for mozbackup is:http://mozbackup.jasnapaka.com/

Calbre has always been very stable for me. It hasn't just made files disappear on whatever computer I am running it on. One gloomy prospect is the computer has a virus that has hurt the file structure.

If it is a matter of things being improperly changed, maybe you could do a system restore to put pointers back as they ought to be.
If an A/V was overly aggressive, it might have quarantined the whole folder. :eek .
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Old 11-24-2009, 01:13 AM   #14
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If you are worried about hard drive failure and feel reasonably competent tech wise, you could try http://www.ultimatebootcd.com/. It has various free utilities that can be of help provided you have some idea of what you're doing. WARNING: It is completely possible to totally wipe your hard drive with some of these utilities. Make a back-up of any data you might need. Read the instructions carefully, as many times as necessary to fully understand them, and then print them out. Then go make another back-up... just in case.

A scan of your hard drive's disk surface should let you know if your drive is starting to fail. One sign of such failure is the loss or corruption of files on your drive. It can take several hours, but it will save you from complete data loss if your drive fails completely.

BTW, these are all DOS / Command Prompt utilities; no Windows versions are included because the disk assumes Windows is not available due to catastrophe.

The warning above is simply to impress readers the software is not meant to be played with and is used at your own risk. Most of the utilities will ask for confirmation before doing something permanent... On the other hand, the back-ups are simple paranoia. Most people don't back-up their data until something goes horribly wrong. And sometimes back-ups fail.

Edit: BTW, unless I've mis-understood locate32's functionality (I only took a quick look), Copernic Desktop Search, or even MS' Desktop Search is a more capable program. Locate32 is based on filename only. Both of the others I mention will look inside of files for applicable text. Results in a huge database though. (But they could, for example, let you know every book on your hard drive with a character named "Dan" in it.)

Last edited by Sabardeyn; 11-24-2009 at 01:27 AM.
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Old 11-24-2009, 06:31 AM   #15
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That site it too confusing. You click the download button and it takes you somewhere else.
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