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Old 06-15-2010, 01:21 PM   #1
Midnight
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converting lit to lrf

I am having problems with converting files from lit to lrf. I have used calibre to do this for a long time but version 5.14 was the last version that did this properly. Every version since then messes up the formatting. Has something changed in the conversion code or am I just missing settings in the later versions? I have attached pics to show the formatting changes. In 5.14 the only setting I had to change was to "disable chapter detection".

The first 3 pics (lit-01.jpg to lit-03.jpg) are the original lit file. The title and author info are centered and there is a page break after this page. On the second page the heading is again centered properly and the first paragraph is not indented. The same for the third page.

The second 3 pics (5.14-01.jpg - 5.14-03.jpg) show the same formatting as the original with the centering, page breaks, and a first paragraph that is not indented.

The last 2 pics (7.2-01.jpg and 7.2-02.jpg) show the messed up formatting that has occurred in every version of calibre after v5.14. The title/author info is broken up with a page break that is not in the original, the title/author/chapter info is not centered, there is no page break where it belongs after the chapter info and after the prologue section, and the first paragraphs are indented (which they should not be). In calibre text justification is set to "original" however it does not match the original text.
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Old 06-15-2010, 01:43 PM   #2
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LRF output is deprecated. It is no longer maintained and you are encouraged to switch to EPUB
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Old 06-15-2010, 05:27 PM   #3
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That's your solution? It no longer works the way it did in an earlier version so I should switch to a different format?? That does not make a whole lot of sense since lrf is one of the formats in the list of "supported formats". You are actually the one who told me to use lrf instead of epub, because of the limitations in trying to full-justify epub documents for the Sony. The justification issues make epub a horrible format choice for the Sony. But if that is your solution I guess there is no other choice. In that case I am having no better luck with the epub conversion.

Converting the same file from lit to epub again left justifies all of the chapter headings, title, author etc. Also, it does not retain the indenting info from the original document. You can manually add an indent in the "remove spaces between paragraphs" section, but this also adds an indent in front of the paragraphs that should not be indented (the first paragraph in any chapter). This conversion also worked correctly in version 5.14.

Last edited by Midnight; 06-15-2010 at 05:29 PM.
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Old 06-15-2010, 06:09 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Midnight View Post
That's your solution? It no longer works the way it did in an earlier version so I should switch to a different format??
There may be a solution, but it takes some manual intervention. Run calibre with a directory in debug. After conversion you can go to the directory and see the html code at various spots in the conversion process. Clean up the html to suit your requirements. Then via the Edit meta information window add the cleaned up html format and convert that to lrf. This gives you control of the process.

Even after Kovid stopped work on LRF he did take the time to write a LRF conversion process to allow folks to migrate the LRF files they had in their library.
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Old 06-15-2010, 06:17 PM   #5
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Another with the attitude. Why do you assume you are entitled to a solution? I am not an indentured servant.

You want a solution, help make one happen. Either submit a patch or at the very least open a bug report with a test case that demonstrates the problem. And be polite.

And if you don't want to do that, please dont use calibre.
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Old 06-15-2010, 07:47 PM   #6
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dwanthny - Thank you for the info. What I am doing now is just making the conversion in version 5.14 where it works properly, then importing the finished lrf into the newest version. Unfortunately, I can't just use the older version since it does not recognize the PRS-600. I may give the debug a try as I am very interested in what it is doing to the file that is different than in earlier versions.

kovidgoyal - I apologize if you took my comment as "attitude". It was actually meant to show my surprise at the response, which was explained by also including the info that you were the one who suggested I switch from epub to lrf because of the justification issues using epub in a sony reader.

"Entitled to a solution"? Well I guess nobody is "entitled" to anything these days, and as you said you are not an indentured servant, but a software developer. However, when you accept donations to "support the development" from people, myself included, I admit that I guess I did expect that there would be some kind of solution, instead of being told that a common format is deprecated. Especially when it is the format that from my experience (having tried every possible format for the sony) seems to be the best at retaining the formatting in the original ebook (up to and including version 5.14).

As for making a solution happen, I had thought that the information that I provided would have helped in that respect. I attached pics of the original lit file (the format listed at the top of the list of the best formats to convert from), and the last version that worked correctly, and also how the same conversion looks in the latest version. I also mentioned what the last version that worked correctly was, so it would be easier to see what had changed after that version that resulted in the output file formatting having different formatting.

I was told that this was the best place to post my difficulties with your program by other people who use it, so I also apologize if it was not the right place to do so.

Last edited by Midnight; 06-15-2010 at 07:52 PM.
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Old 06-15-2010, 08:09 PM   #7
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LRF has been abandoned by SONY, the only organization (apart from calibre) that makes a viewer for LRF, a long time ago. It is not a "common" format.

Making a donation does not entitle you to support. Make a donation if you like calibre as it is, not because you expect it to get you support. If you send me your email address, I will be happy to refund your donation. I do not want to take money from people that are not happy with calibre.

If you want help with your conversion of LIT files to EPUB, open a ticket and attach a sample lit file showing the problem. And be aware that the fact that it was converted correctly in 0.5.x does not mean that it must be converted correctly in 0.7.x. When doing conversions there are often choices to be made about ambiguous things. As calibre evolves, those choices change. A different set of choices means a different set of files converts correctly.
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Old 06-15-2010, 08:26 PM   #8
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I have to jump in and say, try your LRF with Reader Library. That is the only way to tell if it looks good or not other then loading it on the Reader to have a look. Reader Library may or may not work better then Calibre's viewer for viewing LRF.
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Old 06-15-2010, 09:15 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Midnight View Post
dwanthny - Thank you for the info. What I am doing now is just making the conversion in version 5.14 where it works properly, then importing the finished lrf into the newest version. Unfortunately, I can't just use the older version since it does not recognize the PRS-600. I may give the debug a try as I am very interested in what it is doing to the file that is different than in earlier versions.
That seems like a workable solution. If I recall correctly when calibre evolved from 0.5.14 to 0.6.? the conversion processes were all changed to a plug-in system. This allowed maximum flexibility going forward. The down side to this is the amount of hours needed to refine a plug-in to the ability of the original LRF conversion wasn't deemed worth it since the world was headed away from the LRF format.

There were countless threads and discussions covering this back then. On top of the small decline in quality of the conversion to LRF there was no easy way to convert LRF files to other formats. After many months of not having the time to write a way to convert LRF Kovid found himself stuck at a airport and wrote the main conversion code (in a few hours) from LRF to html so you could change to any format. Afterwards there were a few refinements in the code and then LRF was put to rest.

It is possible to easily run from source and take a closer look at the LRF plugin. Maybe with a little (a lot) of effort you could be the savior of all of the LRF devotees. If you can refine the conversion I'm sure many folks would welcome the update.

Personally I use larger fonts to avoid reading glasses and full justification looks horrible when using larger fonts, especially on a reader that doesn't support hyphenation. When all I used was LRF I also used a hack that changed LRF viewing from full justification to left justification.

Because I'm OK with left justification I convert everything to epub for future compatibility. This allows me to fine tune any hitch in my outputted book by opening the epub in Sigil and doing simple find/replace or css tweaks to make the book the way I want it.
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Old 07-14-2010, 07:56 PM   #10
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Oh, pity about the LRF. I'm just starting with my reader, Calibre is an awesome program. After a month I'm finally comfortable enough to start experimenting with things.
So I take it it's impossible to have full justification *and* indentation in my PRS-600 without manually editing HTML? I've been using EPUB so far, but really wanted full-justification that my reader can't provide with EPUB. Then I read somewhere that the LRF format would have it, so I converted a book to LRF and it worked! I now have full justification, but for some reason the first line indentation won't work (tried it in the conversion option 'Indent first line' and also using CSS 'text-indent' in the Extra CSS, but nothing (checked Calibre's reader to make sure it wasn't a PRS-600 thing) and no luck with indentation (by the way, I'm using the same options I used to convert to ePUB, which shows indentations just fine).
Guess I'll have to stick with EPUB, but I really really really miss full-justification.
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Old 07-14-2010, 09:57 PM   #11
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Wait, LRF has been abandoned by Sony? Really? Does EPUB even support headers/footers?

I've always thought LRF's look a lot better than EPUBs and are easier to convert with less problems. With EPUBs I have problems like links jumping to wrong pages and too much spacing. Then if you choose to remove spaces, it does so through the entire file where you don't want it, i.e. the TOC and front page.
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Old 07-14-2010, 10:39 PM   #12
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yes, really
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Old 07-14-2010, 11:53 PM   #13
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How come? Is it because other readers also support EPUB and Sony readers are dying out?

That's a shame really. I have nothing but problems when converting to and from EPUBs, and I still prefer BookDesigner over Sigil.
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Old 07-15-2010, 01:06 AM   #14
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You'd have to ask them, why they decided to drop support for it.
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Old 07-15-2010, 09:14 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wolfing View Post
Oh, pity about the LRF. I'm just starting with my reader, Calibre is an awesome program. After a month I'm finally comfortable enough to start experimenting with things.
So I take it it's impossible to have full justification *and* indentation in my PRS-600 without manually editing HTML? I've been using EPUB so far, but really wanted full-justification that my reader can't provide with EPUB. Then I read somewhere that the LRF format would have it, so I converted a book to LRF and it worked! I now have full justification, but for some reason the first line indentation won't work (tried it in the conversion option 'Indent first line' and also using CSS 'text-indent' in the Extra CSS, but nothing (checked Calibre's reader to make sure it wasn't a PRS-600 thing) and no luck with indentation (by the way, I'm using the same options I used to convert to ePUB, which shows indentations just fine).
Guess I'll have to stick with EPUB, but I really really really miss full-justification.
Actually, I find a well made ePub with embedded fonts look nicer then LRF with simulated bold and simulated italics. After having used ePub for long enough, I find simulated italics to be reader unfriendly.

If your LRF isn't showing indents, then I think you may have a problem with the source you re using. I just converted a Mobipocket eBook and the resulting LRF had indents.
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