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Old 12-11-2009, 10:05 AM   #1
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Incentive to 'liberate' secure epub when everything reads it?

The only DRM I currently buy is secure eReader. I used to leave it as is and read on my computer or ipod Touch, but when I got my Sony Reader, I started liberating it and have loaded everything onto it.

Now, it seems epub is the new thing, and I am not sure what to do. Shortcovers is very tempting, and now I could buy it at the Sony store too. I could read it on every device I own and it would not 'need' liberating. But I have been reluctant because I am already pretty entrenched at Fictionwise and am not sure I want multiple bookshelves spread out all over creation.

So I am curious, if every device one owns will read epub because it is the new standard, what is the incentive to 'liberate' it? Is there still one? On the plus, if one 'liberates' and loads it onto a device with text to speech or some such feature, you can use your book regardless of whether the publisher 'allows' it or not. And it seems the file sizes of my 'liberated' books are much smaller than most of the free books I have downloaded from the Sony store.

On the minus though, 'liberating' is a lot of work. I have downloaded the epub scripts and not tried them yet, but I know that my secure eReader books need a bit of formatting clean-up once I get them freed, and that can be tedious and time-consuming. There is definite appeal, for a heavy reader like me, in being able to just download, load into the reader and go without needing to do all this work and wind up with a not as pretty plain text file in the end.

As long as I can load them into Calibre for proper tagging and loading, I suppose it does not matter which 'source' one buys it from, and it seems like epub support is being built in to every new gizmo these days. So I am wondering if it might be worth it to start buying from the Sony Store and Shortcovers in secure epub rather than in secure eReader from Fictionwise. Is this a good idea? Is there a downside to doing this? Do any of you who regularly buy secure epub see any compelling reason to liberate, or not to?
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Old 12-11-2009, 10:12 AM   #2
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I see a compelling reason to liberate just because drm is there.
I feel much more secure in my purchases when I know I can keep and read the files for as long as I choose, and not as long as the publishers or the device manufacturers or the book stores choose.
I don't think that my liberated epubs have any difference in formatting from the unliberated ones, so it's not really hard work at all.
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Old 12-11-2009, 10:20 AM   #3
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I don't think that my liberated epubs have any difference in formatting from the unliberated ones
They don't. Removing the ADEPT DRM does not touch the payload of the ePUB at all. This is indeed different from eReader, where removing DRM entails exploding it into HTML.

Mobi DRM removal is the same as ePUB; it does not touch the formatting either. LIT gets exploded into an OEBS directory, but formatting is kept when your tool can handle those, like MobiPocket Creator and Calibre.
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Old 12-11-2009, 10:32 AM   #4
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Just because everything reads it now doesn't mean it always will. Adobe has upgraded Content Server in the past and folks who missed the eventual deadline to upgrade/migrate the DRM on their OLD books could eventually lose the ability to read them.

Example...
http://www.mobileread.com/forums/showthread.php?t=64457
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Old 12-11-2009, 10:35 AM   #5
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The ineptepub.pyw script is in python, like ereader2html, but you just click on its icon to run it (no command line needed). The result is exactly the same ePub as before, but now with no DRM.

There are three reasons to do this:

a) Adobe has dropped support for DRM schemes before and what they say is essentially "go away" if you complain about not being able to migrate your ebooks to a new device. This never happens with DRM-free ebooks.

b) Adobe's allowance of 6 devices per AdobeID is generous, but their current handling of EInk devices is completely broken. Every time a new firmware comes along you get to reauthorize and this counts as another device. You can deauthorize devices, but this has no noticable effect (still gets counted against the device quota). The only fix is a phone call to Adobe. Also, a few Adobe ePubs don't allow use on EInk devices at all (this is an option the publishers have if they want to use it).

c) Most ePubs have "good enough" formatting, but some are terrible on a 6" screen (e.g. margins 1/4 of the screen width). If the ePub is DRM-free this is easy to fix with Calibre. Similarly if you like a bold font or a sans-serif font or a different line spacing, this can only be done currently (with Adobe Digital Editions) by creating a new version of the ePub using Calibre and its --extra-css option.

Last edited by wallcraft; 12-11-2009 at 10:41 AM.
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Old 12-11-2009, 10:36 AM   #6
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They don't. Removing the ADEPT DRM does not touch the payload of the ePUB at all. This is indeed different from eReader, where removing DRM entails exploding it into HTML.
Hmmm. I held off on experimenting because I am not very good at it and didn't have a secure ebook to try it on, but now that the Sony store has been upgraded and I have some 'secure' books (freebies from the Sony store) I will definitely have to try it. If it's as easy as you say it is and the finished book will not need further work, this could be a game-changer for me as far as where I shop...

I am assuming that once it is freed, I can put it into Calibre and convert it to LRF if I prefer that format for the full justification?
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Old 12-11-2009, 11:53 AM   #7
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But I have been reluctant because I am already pretty entrenched at Fictionwise and am not sure I want multiple bookshelves spread out all over creation.
And now you might not have to... secure ePub at fictionwise. I think there is still some question as to which DRM it is though.
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Old 12-11-2009, 12:39 PM   #8
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So I am curious, if every device one owns will read epub because it is the new standard, what is the incentive to 'liberate' it?
I read on four devices: work computer, home computer, home laptop, PRS-505. I can't install the software on the work computer, but I can read (non-DRM'd) ebooks from my flash drive.

The kids have a separate computer, which can't be validated; it's not connected online at all. I shouldn't have to connect it to the internet, with all the risks that entails, in order to get them access to ebooks.

And that's aside from the issue of permanence--Adobe is currently dropping one of their old forms of DRM, and there's no reason to believe the current one is going to last more than a few years. Amazon has dropped DRM support of ebooks in the past. So have several other ebook sellers. (Gemstar comes to mind.)

There is *always* a reason to liberate ebooks from DRM--it's the only way to be sure you continue to have access to the content you paid for.
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Old 12-11-2009, 02:20 PM   #9
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I always liberate my ebooks. Before I could do this I'd been burned on a handful of books that I couldn't redownload. I still have over two dozen secured ebooks at Fictionwise that haven't been replaced. I was proactive and had already downloaded the old secure versions and liberated them so not having access to the two dozen titles won't hurt me. (I have both on and off site backups of my PC data so if my PC is destroyed I still have all my books.)

Even if you feel that you will always have a device to read a secured format it is still prudent to liberate the title so you will be able to read it in the future.
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Old 12-11-2009, 03:08 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by ficbot View Post
So I am curious, if every device one owns will read epub because it is the new standard, what is the incentive to 'liberate' it? Is there still one? On the plus, if one 'liberates' and loads it onto a device with text to speech or some such feature, you can use your book regardless of whether the publisher 'allows' it or not. And it seems the file sizes of my 'liberated' books are much smaller than most of the free books I have downloaded from the Sony store.
Correct these limits are imposed on the DRM scheme.

I have an ereader that supported adobe DRM and one that supports MOBI. Liberating would allow me to read on both since ePUB MobiReader converts ePUB to MOBI on the fly.

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On the minus though, 'liberating' is a lot of work. I have downloaded the epub scripts and not tried them yet, but I know that my secure eReader books need a bit of formatting clean-up once I get them freed, and that can be tedious and time-consuming. There is definite appeal, for a heavy reader like me, in being able to just download, load into the reader and go without needing to do all this work and wind up with a not as pretty plain text file in the end.
My friend you have NO idea how hard you are working. Version 6+ of ereader2html now saves off the PML and images. You can use dropbook (free at ereader.com) to re-create the PDB sans DRM. Or you can just zip up the PML + images. From here calibre can create any supported format. There is no need to touch up the HTML unless that is the final format you wish to have.

To my knowledge ereader2html tool that actually destroyed the original format.
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Old 12-11-2009, 03:25 PM   #11
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dsvick - It appears that Fictionwise uses the regular Adept DRM for its few secure epub titles, as the Sony reader library had no difficulty opening the books. I haven't transferred any of the new epub titles to my Sony 505 yet, but I'm assuming that it will also be able to read the files since the reader library is able to open the files with no difficulty.

Thanks.

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Last edited by SteveK; 12-11-2009 at 03:28 PM.
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Old 12-11-2009, 03:41 PM   #12
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So I am curious, if every device one owns will read epub because it is the new standard, what is the incentive to 'liberate' it? Is there still one?
Edit the book, like fix the the margin.
if, somehow, an other format shows up, i can convert my book. I don't have to worry about activation, download limits or whatever.

And finally
All of my books are belong to me !
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Old 12-11-2009, 03:46 PM   #13
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dsvick - It appears that Fictionwise uses the regular Adept DRM for its few secure epub titles, as the Sony reader library had no difficulty opening the books. I haven't transferred any of the new epub titles to my Sony 505 yet, but I'm assuming that it will also be able to read the files since the reader library is able to open the files with no difficulty.

Thanks.

SteveK
Thanks for the info Steve, when you load them to your 505 let us know how it goes. I'm looking at the 900 when it comes out so I would expect the experience you have to be the same as I can expect - I hope.

It is strange though that fictionwise would use the Adept DRM, from what I understand the nook is using something newer and since B&N owns fictionwise... On the other hand the nook will probablly still open these so they are just trying sell books here, not nooks.
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Old 12-11-2009, 03:52 PM   #14
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My friend you have NO idea how hard you are working. Version 6+ of ereader2html now saves off the PML and images. You can use dropbook (free at ereader.com) to re-create the PDB sans DRM.
Where can I get this? Someone emailed me the one I have now as I am on a mac and could not figure out where to get it. Currently, I have to use the macro on it in terminal and then I get an HTML file where everything looks fine but when I put it into Calibre, it is all centre-aligned no matter what I do. So I have been opening the HTML in Firefox, cutting and pasting it into Kompozer and them running a find/replace in Text Wrangler to remove extraneous line breaks. It's quite a lot of work, especially when I have more than one to do at once, and I lose all the images etc. It's mostly fiction so I don't care----much---but there are a few books where I just can't get a read-able version this way and have to read them on my iPod. If this adept DRM fix is as easy as you say, maybe buying those instead is better than eReader.
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Old 12-11-2009, 06:12 PM   #15
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Where can I get this? Someone emailed me the one I have now as I am on a mac and could not figure out where to get it. Currently, I have to use the macro on it in terminal and then I get an HTML file where everything looks fine but when I put it into Calibre, it is all centre-aligned no matter what I do. So I have been opening the HTML in Firefox, cutting and pasting it into Kompozer and them running a find/replace in Text Wrangler to remove extraneous line breaks. It's quite a lot of work, especially when I have more than one to do at once, and I lose all the images etc. It's mostly fiction so I don't care----much---but there are a few books where I just can't get a read-able version this way and have to read them on my iPod. If this adept DRM fix is as easy as you say, maybe buying those instead is better than eReader.
Directions here (http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...&postcount=121) -- use google.

Give me a PM if you need more help.

I'm not a fan of PDB, it's a terrible file format. Wallcraft's study proved it, but I do on occasion buy eReader because eReader.com/FW has had some good deals, or exclusive deals where eReader(PDB) was the only format they offered. My personal favorite format is MOBI it's by far the easiest to deal with and has the best reading software. Though ePUB/LIT are also pretty good. ePUB might be the easiest for you since the Adept tool has a GUI front end.

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