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Old 07-01-2010, 03:29 AM   #1
mudsharkbytes
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Calibre has ruined my Sony Reader collections - help!

Well, much to my regret I decided I'd try transferring a few ebooks to my sony Reader tonight using Calibre instead of the somewhat slow & clunky Sony Reader Library program.

Much to my great dismay, when I started to use my reader afterwards, I discovered that Calibre had 'helpfully' created over 200 new collections! These collections had obviously been created from the metadata calibre had downloaded for many of the books in its library. They are for all intents & purposes useless and are very inconvenient.

Previous to this I had around 70 collections which was a good way to manage all my ebooks, they took up about eight pages. Now I have 30 pages of collections!

Desperate to get rid of all these unnecessary collections I fired up my Reader Library program to delete them.

Sadly, now that Calibre has 'helpfully' increased my collections over three fold - whenever I actually try to open the Sony Reader from the Reader Library software, the software crashes when trying to load the multitude of collections now on the reader, which means that not only can I NOT get rid of these collections, I cannot add book or do ANY editing anymore with the reader library software.

I'm pretty steamed by this as you can imagine.

Does anybody know how to go about deleting these unwanted collections from my sony Reader without using the Reader Library software? Calibre does NOT provide any collection editing as far as I can tell.

Please help!
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Old 07-01-2010, 03:48 AM   #2
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1st, What version of calibre are you using?
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Old 07-01-2010, 03:55 AM   #3
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Doesn't the Sony reader show up on your PC as a normal disk drive?
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Old 07-01-2010, 04:05 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mudsharkbytes View Post
Well, much to my regret I decided I'd try transferring a few ebooks to my sony Reader tonight using Calibre instead of the somewhat slow & clunky Sony Reader Library program.
Using two programs to manage your books/reader can sometimes be problematic.

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Originally Posted by mudsharkbytes View Post
Much to my great dismay, when I started to use my reader afterwards, I discovered that Calibre had 'helpfully' created over 200 new collections!
Unless you turn off this feature calibre has always created collections from tags/series by default. You turn off having calibre create collections for you by going to Preferences - Plugins - Device interface plugins - customize the sony plugin. With the plugin open, remove "tags, series" from the bottom box. Without anything specified by this plugin, no collections will be created.

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Originally Posted by mudsharkbytes View Post
These collections had obviously been created from the metadata calibre had downloaded for many of the books in its library. They are for all intents & purposes useless and are very inconvenient.
If you didn't want or like the tags you shouldn't have downloaded them. For future reference, downloading those tags is optional. I chose not to download those tags because they cluttered up my collections. If you want to prevent future tag downloads you can go to Preferences - Plugins - Metadata download plugins and customize each plugin by unchecking download tags.

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Originally Posted by mudsharkbytes View Post
Does anybody know how to go about deleting these unwanted collections from my sony Reader without using the Reader Library software? Calibre does NOT provide any collection editing as far as I can tell.
Use calibre. Connect your device, go to the reader view and delete the tags by double clicking on the collection field. If it doesn't work, go to Preferences - Add/save - Sending to device tab and check Preserve device collections.

Personally, managing my tags/series and having calibre automatically create collections when sending a book to my device is a great convenience. On the rare occasion my device may reboot and trash my collections, it takes only minutes to put it back like it was.

Quote:
PS. Did I mention it might be wise to limit yourself to only use one program to manage your books? That way you can learn one program well instead of moving back and forth between two programs and hoping that it all works out.

Last edited by DoctorOhh; 07-01-2010 at 07:48 AM.
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Old 07-01-2010, 07:11 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mudsharkbytes View Post
Does anybody know how to go about deleting these unwanted collections from my sony Reader without using the Reader Library software? Calibre does NOT provide any collection editing as far as I can tell.

Please help!
First, be sure that you are running 0.7.6.

Second, look at the device view, where calibre DOES provide two styles of collection editing. You can double-click on a book line and directly edit that book's collections. Alternatively, you can right-click on a collection and open the collection manager. From there you can delete (or rename) collections, and the changes will apply to all books on that view.

Third, follow dwanthny's advice and tell calibre what metadata (if any) you want calibre to use in the future to create collections.

Last edited by chaley; 07-01-2010 at 07:22 AM.
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Old 07-01-2010, 10:56 AM   #6
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Thanks for the quick responses.

I WAS using version 0.7.2 but upgraded this morning.

Actually, I didn't even transfer any ebooks to my reader using Calibre, I just looked at it. When I didn't see any obvious way to use the collections I'd already created on the reader, I decided to abandon using Calibre for any transfers and just go back to the standard way I've been doing it.

Unfortunately though, I've discovered the problem is worse than I'd first imagined.

Calibre actually DELETED all the collections I'd meticulously created off of my reader when it created it's 299 new collections. It moved books around on my reader that weren't even in the Calibre library. I cannot fathom why Calibre would actually DELETE the collections that were allready on the reader but that is what it did.

It's as if somebody took your physical library, dumped it all on the floor, and re-shelved everything in a seemingly random order. I can't find anything without going to the actual list of books.

The suggestions I've read have been helpful for the future, but at this point the only option that I can think of to return my reader to normal is to delete all the collections off of it and start over, a process which turns my stomach but looks like the only option left.

Yes, the reader DOES show up on my mac desktop as a drive, but I cannot determine which of the many files on it is the one that manages the collections. If somebody could tell me which of the files on the reader drive I need to delete to start over, that would be helpful.

Thanks for the help.
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Old 07-01-2010, 11:11 AM   #7
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Okay, I managed to delete all the collections by deleting all the collections tags from all the files in calibre, so now my reader has NO collections on it, which is still depressing.

As calibre is FASTER than the sony reader library software, I am considering using calibre to rebuild my collections.

Is there a way to set the order of books in a collection using Calibre?

One of the more depressing aspects of losing the collections I've created is that I had ordered the books in the collections in chronological order if the books were part of a series, such as the Flashman books, which I was wanting to read in the order of publication.

If I cannot order the books in any convenient way, I would probably just go back to using the sony library software, clunky & slow as it is.
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Old 07-01-2010, 11:14 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mudsharkbytes View Post
Yes, the reader DOES show up on my mac desktop as a drive, but I cannot determine which of the many files on it is the one that manages the collections. If somebody could tell me which of the files on the reader drive I need to delete to start over, that would be helpful.
The file is database/cache/media.xml.

I see four choices:
1) If you delete it and then unplug the reader, the Sony SW will reconstruct the database. You will lose all bookmarks as well as collections.

2) If you are careful, you can edit the file and remove all the collections.

3) You can also use calibre 0.7.6's collection manager to delete all collections.

4) If you have a backup of the reader, then putting a backup copy of that file will recover everything in it at that point. Books subsequently added will show up, but with no collections.

Final thought: I heard a rumor once that the Sony Reader had records of collections. You can try deleting them all, then see if the Sony can put the old ones back. I haven't installed Sony Reader, so I have no idea if I heard correctly.


Edit: Calibre orders series in series order, if a) you set the series metadata, and b) you permit calibre to create collections from series.
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Old 07-01-2010, 11:20 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mudsharkbytes View Post
As calibre is FASTER than the sony reader library software, I am considering using calibre to rebuild my collections.

Is there a way to set the order of books in a collection using Calibre?
This is what the series metadata is for. If you use calibre to create your collections for you via tags or series restoring everything in the future would be just a couple of clicks.

The problem you experienced with 0.7.2 has been fixed.
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