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Old 07-28-2010, 12:01 AM   #1
Merischino
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New to Calibre, having some difficulties

I tried reading the FAQs, and did try searching through this forum for posts related to my questions, however it seems that folks here are all much less of a n00b to programming and coding to get around than I am. In fact, I am not at all comfortable with coding of any kind.

I am using Calibre library in concert with Stanza on an OS X 10.6.4 mac and an iPhone 3GS running ios 3.1.3.

I am able to import books into calibre. I am able to download from my computers library into the iPhone. So far, so good.

But... I have a considerable library, less than 2% of which I have brought into Calibre. I've spent the last 2 months trying everything (short of coding) to get the simple task of sorting by author done. And, it appears that it simply cannot be done. Adding books by a single author all at once, then changing the calibre metadata (distinct from the existing file's metadata) for each record so that the author's name is uniform in all instances before adding books from another author does not help.

I also can't sort reliably on any other category, but for simplicity I will limit this post to the fact that re-entering/correcting the "author" field doesn't do it. Re-entering/correcting the "author sort" field doesn't do it. Deleting the entire calibre library and starting from scratch doesn't do it.

What is the trick?

Things I'd like to do that seemingly *can* be done in calibre although I haven't been able to make it happen:

-Update all records with the series name and series number for all those books for which these fields are relevant.... and sorting on those.

-Making series information available and usable while on the device, in this case the iPhone using Stanza (although I also have Good Library and several other iphone programs that would suffice)

-Do something to correct the files in the Calibre library such that corrected author names, author sort fields, ISBN numbers and cover art which has been downloaded, etc. all get associated with the book file (my ideal view would be, this information gets put INTO the ACTUAL file so that the calibre metadata work does not have to get done over, and over, and over again as is my experience)

-Ultimately arrive at a Calibre library that does not have multiple folders for the same author, some with a comma, some with an underline, in the name, all with identical contents, and arrive at a Calibre library that does not have emply folders for every instance of incorrect author name that existed prior to being corrected

I don't need to go into my Calibre library as an access point for the books, but with a substantially large library, I do not want to have duplicate, triplicate, quadruplicate files in that library. Its inefficient and undesirable, not to mention impossible to figure out which file is/should be updated with the corrected metadata.

Anyway, I would appreciate any help, and if there IS an existing thread or help file that addresses Sorting, integrated correct metadata into your file, etc, feel free simply to point me there, I'm not intending that anyone recreate the wheel.

Last edited by Merischino; 07-28-2010 at 12:06 AM. Reason: Added thread subscription
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Old 07-28-2010, 03:21 AM   #2
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Sounds like a lot of problems.

Moving the database/library should copy over only those folders that are actual library entries.
saving to disk will create an opf file that will associate the metadata with the file and you can save to disk so all the files are in one directory.

The underscore in the folder name seems to happen when you have a comma(or other illegal filename character) in the author name and for me the extra folder is removed when the name is corrected. It used to be easier to spot in the author list when it was displayed alphabetically by first name. Now asmall difference in name can be several entries away. (all the Smiths would be listed in order and then a Smith, would follow)

Sorting generally works for me but is a little odd once in a while. For me it is confusing to not be sorting on what you see but I am sure there are good reasons for it.

typing the author name into the search bar is often an easier way to go. type in name, then sort on author should help you narrow it down.

Thanks for posting as I did not realize that I had the odd underscore in there myself

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Old 07-28-2010, 03:53 AM   #3
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First, you want to read this link to an old post of mine. While you're reading it, I'll work on a more comprehensive reply.
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Old 07-28-2010, 04:01 AM   #4
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I have a library of around 1500 books, and I have no problem sorting them on any field using Calibre.

When you add books you have to make sure that the author name is exactly as it is for all other books for the same author, and you also have to make sure that author sort is correctly set. It all works fine for me, no problem.

So I don't have any multiple folders for the same author. I don't have any empty folders either. That is a sign that your library is out of sync with the database. The easiest way to correct that is to delete the entire library and restore from a current backup. You can also move the library to some other folder, and see what is left behind. Save any books.

But I have not yet found a good method to handle series. The best for now is to save a series in a subfolder under the author, and have the title of the book containing an abreviation of the series name and the series index. The subfolder thing Calibre handles, but I have to manually fix the title. Works fine, but it is a little work.

Another way could be to send all books in a series with one save pattern, and after that all books without a series in another save pattern. That way I could write the filenames and folders to reflect [series name and index] without any spurious zeroes and stuff.

This is how I save to device now:

{author_sort[0]}/{author_sort}/{series}/{title} - {authors}

If there is no series, then that part is just left out.

I usually browse my library using folder view.
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Old 07-28-2010, 04:14 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Merischino View Post
I tried reading the FAQs, and did try searching through this forum for posts related to my questions, however it seems that folks here are all much less of a n00b to programming and coding to get around than I am. In fact, I am not at all comfortable with coding of any kind.
Despite the fact that a lot of coding chat breaks out here on occasion (including a rather massive argument I once spawned as to whether writing a regex constitutes programmign!), it's actually not necessary to using calibre. It's just that the calibre devs hang out in this forum, and various other code geeks hang out here too, and where there are coders, they talk about coding.

Quote:
I am using Calibre library in concert with Stanza on an OS X 10.6.4 mac and an iPhone 3GS running ios 3.1.3.
I may not be 100% useful on this because my OS and device mix is different, but I'll try to genericize if necessary.

By the way, thank you for providing this information. I don't know how many times, in my years of answering random tech questions for people all over the Web, I've given someone a comprehensive answer to their question only to hear "well, that will work for you, but I'm running (strange, obsolete OS) on (obscure hardware) in (just plain strange environment) so that's not going to help." Yeah, well, and if you'd told me that up front .... (sorry for the rant, I'm kind of peeved at the clueless right now)

Quote:
I am able to import books into calibre. I am able to download from my computers library into the iPhone. So far, so good.
Are you talking about "send to device" in calibre, or some other means?

Quote:
But... I have a considerable library, less than 2% of which I have brought into Calibre.
Since "considerable" means different things to different people (some think my library of 2500 ebooks is insane, some think it's pathetically small), I ought to ask you right up front how many books you're talking about.

Quote:
I've spent the last 2 months trying everything (short of coding) to get the simple task of sorting by author done. And, it appears that it simply cannot be done. Adding books by a single author all at once, then changing the calibre metadata (distinct from the existing file's metadata) for each record so that the author's name is uniform in all instances before adding books from another author does not help.
There is no way it should be that hard. It shouldn't take you 2 minutes, let alone 2 months.

For starters, what format are your files in? There are some format quirks (mostly with PDF, the format of the beast) which might be involved here.

I deal mostly with epubs. I just import the book, do a quick check on the existing metadata, add my tags, and I'm done. I've never had a problem sorting by author; it's just a matter of clicking the "author" column header. If I'm misunderstanding you and you're referring to sorting on your device, or if this just isn't working for you, please correct me.

Quote:
I also can't sort reliably on any other category, but for simplicity I will limit this post to the fact that re-entering/correcting the "author" field doesn't do it. Re-entering/correcting the "author sort" field doesn't do it. Deleting the entire calibre library and starting from scratch doesn't do it.
There is something seriously whacked here. I've never had a problem sorting on any category; I don't think anyone else has either. I have a bad feeling I'm misunderstanding the problem.

Quote:
What is the trick?
There shouldn't be one.

Quote:
Things I'd like to do that seemingly *can* be done in calibre although I haven't been able to make it happen:

-Update all records with the series name and series number for all those books for which these fields are relevant.... and sorting on those.
There's a "series" field for that purpose. It can auto-number all books in a series, or you can choose not to do this, in case (for example) you have a non-contiguous part of a series.

Quote:
-Making series information available and usable while on the device, in this case the iPhone using Stanza (although I also have Good Library and several other iphone programs that would suffice)
That one you're going to have to ask the iPhone people about; my Sony PRS-505 handles it as collections -- in fact, I've had to turn off making collections from series as it caused the number of collections to get way out of hand.

Quote:
-Do something to correct the files in the Calibre library such that corrected author names, author sort fields, ISBN numbers and cover art which has been downloaded, etc. all get associated with the book file (my ideal view would be, this information gets put INTO the ACTUAL file so that the calibre metadata work does not have to get done over, and over, and over again as is my experience)
That's easy: Just convert the book to itself. That is, if it's in epub format (for example), convert epub to epub. That will update the book's internal metadata. Understand, however, that some book formats provide for more, or different, metadata than others. You're not going to have much luck trying to add metadata to a text file, for instance. (edit: once you've done this, if you want the udpated file to use for other purposes, use "save to disk" to export the book(s) you need to wherever you need them)

Quote:
-Ultimately arrive at a Calibre library that does not have multiple folders for the same author, some with a comma, some with an underline, in the name, all with identical contents, and arrive at a Calibre library that does not have emply folders for every instance of incorrect author name that existed prior to being corrected
The calibre library needs to have a big blinking neon sign on it saying "NO USER SERVICEABLE PARTS INSIDE!!!!" Never mind what it does with its folders; just pretend they're not there at all.

Quote:
I don't need to go into my Calibre library as an access point for the books, but with a substantially large library, I do not want to have duplicate, triplicate, quadruplicate files in that library. Its inefficient and undesirable, not to mention impossible to figure out which file is/should be updated with the corrected metadata.
Stop trying to use calibre to manage files; that's not what it's for. Use it to manage books. If calibre wants to have quadruplicate files, let it. Don't try to mess with their metadata. You'll break something.

Quote:
Anyway, I would appreciate any help, and if there IS an existing thread or help file that addresses Sorting, integrated correct metadata into your file, etc, feel free simply to point me there, I'm not intending that anyone recreate the wheel.
Hopefully this will be a start -- but don't forget to read the first post in the thread I pointed you to in my prior post first. And read my .sig; it's true.

Last edited by Worldwalker; 07-28-2010 at 04:18 AM.
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Old 07-28-2010, 07:33 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Merischino View Post
But... I have a considerable library, less than 2% of which I have brought into Calibre. I've spent the last 2 months trying everything (short of coding) to get the simple task of sorting by author done. And, it appears that it simply cannot be done. Adding books by a single author all at once, then changing the calibre metadata (distinct from the existing file's metadata) for each record so that the author's name is uniform in all instances before adding books from another author does not help.
First make sure you have the current version of calibre installed.

Then since I don't use Stanza are you having trouble sorting in Stanza or in the calibre application itself?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Merischino View Post
I also can't sort reliably on any other category, but for simplicity I will limit this post to the fact that re-entering/correcting the "author" field doesn't do it. Re-entering/correcting the "author sort" field doesn't do it. Deleting the entire calibre library and starting from scratch doesn't do it.

What is the trick?
There is no trick, If the metadata entered is correct then sorting is correct. It is just that simple. Understand that the author field sorts off of the author_sort entry and not from the author entry. Highlight all the books for a given author, select Edit Metadata, place the author's name (first last, for example Isaac Asimov) also check the Automatically set author sort, then click ok. Now the Author sort is set to Asimov, Isaac and will sort in under "A".

Quote:
Originally Posted by Merischino View Post
-Do something to correct the files in the Calibre library such that corrected author names, author sort fields, ISBN numbers and cover art which has been downloaded, etc. all get associated with the book file (my ideal view would be, this information gets put INTO the ACTUAL file so that the calibre metadata work does not have to get done over, and over, and over again as is my experience)
I think you need to start with figuring out one thing at a time, then moving to the next. Once you set the metadata it does not have to be done over, and over, and over again. The metadata doesn't somehow magically disappear from calibre's library or change on its own accord. Statements like this is why I think you need to tackle one concept at a time. That said, reconverting a book, say epub to epub, will place the cover and pertinent metadata in the file itself.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Merischino View Post
-Ultimately arrive at a Calibre library that does not have multiple folders for the same author, some with a comma, some with an underline, in the name, all with identical contents, and arrive at a Calibre library that does not have emply folders for every instance of incorrect author name that existed prior to being corrected
First off read Worldwalker's link. there is no reason to be poking around in calibre's folder structure. That said, folders / file names change on the fly as you change the content of the metadata. Folders do not get left behind, unless you are mucking around in the folders trying to fix the naming (very bad, very very bad). If you think the folders aren't right then go back to the GUI and fix the metadata and that will fix your folders. At this point you might have orphaned folders because you mucked things up by manually playing with folder and file names.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Merischino View Post
I don't need to go into my Calibre library as an access point for the books, but with a substantially large library, I do not want to have duplicate, triplicate, quadruplicate files in that library. Its inefficient and undesirable, not to mention impossible to figure out which file is/should be updated with the corrected metadata.
Calibre does not keep duplicate folders/files in its library unless you added duplicate files.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Merischino View Post
Anyway, I would appreciate any help, and if there IS an existing thread or help file that addresses Sorting, integrated correct metadata into your file, etc, feel free simply to point me there, I'm not intending that anyone recreate the wheel.
At this point it might help to use the "Move library to a new location" feature by clicking on the library icon in the top row. Move it to a new EMPTY folder. After your finished this new folder will have the exact books / metadata you have listed in your library. Now stay out of the folder structure and correct the metadata in the GUI to clean things up.

Last edited by DoctorOhh; 07-28-2010 at 07:41 AM.
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Old 07-28-2010, 12:08 PM   #7
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Some answers for Worldwalker

Quote:
Originally Posted by Worldwalker View Post
Are you talking about "send to device" in calibre, or some other means?
I have not figured out how/if "send to device" has any meaning in an iphone environment. Here's what I do to get a calibre library item onto my device:
1. Import/add the epub (in 90% of cases. 9% of cases it's a .lit file, 1% or less it's a rtf or pdf or doc file which I import, convert into epub etc. my ideal end state is a calibre library consisting entirely of epub files.)
2. Edit any metadata such that I have cover art for all works that were ever published with a cover, or such that I have added a relevant image (e.g., famous painting or illustration or photograph related to the author or work) to those items such as short stories that never had an actual cover
3. Ensure that the Author's name is identitical to other entries from that author in the library. (e.g., Jane Austen appears in all instances in the library as "Jane Austen" in that order without punctuation in both the "author" and "author sort" fields)
4. "Save to disk" assuming that this in some way associates the corrected metadata with the existing epub file
5. On the device (my iphone 3GS) I open Stanza, go to the "Get Books" page, go to where it says "Computers sharing books", click on my computer (which is sharing books if Calibre is running) click on ""Books in Calibra (on "computername") and then navigate to the book I'd like to download to my device.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Worldwalker View Post
Since "considerable" means different things to different people (some think my library of 2500 ebooks is insane, some think it's pathetically small), I ought to ask you right up front how many books you're talking about.
Ok. I have been working with about 52 authors representing 31 series and about 296 distinct works of fiction in order to learn and understand how Calibre works, before adding *all* my digital files into Calibre. This library represents a tiny percentage of my total library. The two largest author collections in what HAS been imported into library are 105 works for one author, and 86 works for the other. In many instances for each of these authors, what is reflected as a "book" in the calibre library is a short story or novella which, understandably, has little in the way of downloadable metadata. In other instances with just these two authors, the works are members of a series, and not just a trilogy but a series with anywhere from 3 to 5 to 15 to 24 items in that series.

I have put considerable time over the last 2 months into updating and completing each record (work, book, item, whatever you want to call it) with the complete correct and standardized author name, author sort name, series title, series number, cover art, and summary/description. No matter what I do, I cannot get "Jane Austen" to sort in all instances (or even half of the instances where Jane Austen occurs in the library) In either what could be called a "J" spot in the library, or in what could be called an "A" spot in the library. So, in a library with Herman Melville and Jane Austen and Edgar Rice Burroughs and Mary Shelley and Theodore Huxley, I get a sort that looks like this:

Edgar Rice Burroughs
Edgar Rice Burroughs
Mary Shelley
Theodore Huxley
Edgar Rice Burroughs
Jane Austen
Mary Shelley
Theodore Huxley
Jane Austen
Edgar Rice Burroughs
Herman Melville


Where there appears to be exactly no rhyme or reason for the failure of calibre to sort alphabetically on either the last or the first name, because in no case are J entries being followed only by items later in the alphabet, nor to "a" items precede other alphabetical items, and neither the J items nor the A items group together.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Worldwalker View Post
There is no way it should be that hard. It shouldn't take you 2 minutes, let alone 2 months.

For starters, what format are your files in?
Epub, primarily

Quote:
Originally Posted by Worldwalker View Post
There are some format quirks (mostly with PDF, the format of the beast) which might be involved here.
I avoid pdf's like the plague when dealing with electronic formats intended for reading purposes on any device

Quote:
Originally Posted by Worldwalker View Post
I deal mostly with epubs. I just import the book, do a quick check on the existing metadata, add my tags, and I'm done. I've never had a problem sorting by author; it's just a matter of clicking the "author" column header. If I'm misunderstanding you and you're referring to sorting on your device, or if this just isn't working for you, please correct me.
Nope. What you are describing is what I am wanting. I haven't even gotten to using or wanting anything library-related on my device. I just am trying to get the Calibre Library, within the Calibre software, on my Computer, to function as advertised. Your article (thank you for posting it) talks about leaving the Calibre library's source files alone. I would have no problem with that if I weren't engaged in an investigation into what the $*@#$*#$* Calibre does when it writes information into its own file structure. Because it MUST be doing something utterly @#$*#* up if it can't sort by Author Name for its life. Pardon my French. I posted about what I found there when I went to Calibre Library's source/save folders only because it was indeed just such a mess that would indicate something is seriously wrong. I do not, have not, and would not intend to both expend energy on using Calibre's gui AND go mess about in its file structure. Becasue to do so would be stupid and futile. That said, using Calibre to manage my library, these last 2 months leading up to my "peeking into the calibre file structure" has proven to be.... hate to be so harsh, stupid and futile.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Worldwalker View Post
There is something seriously whacked here. I've never had a problem sorting on any category; I don't think anyone else has either. I have a bad feeling I'm misunderstanding the problem.
Yes, something here is seriously whacked. That's why I came here to post.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Worldwalker View Post
There's a "series" field for that purpose. It can auto-number all books in a series, or you can choose not to do this, in case (for example) you have a non-contiguous part of a series.
In my case, I find that adding series information works only for that one instance where I am in Calibre entering that information. Once I quit Calibre and come back to it another time another day, that information is all whacked and either missing or corrupt.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Worldwalker View Post
That one you're going to have to ask the iPhone people about; my Sony PRS-505 handles it as collections -- in fact, I've had to turn off making collections from series as it caused the number of collections to get way out of hand.
I think once this is working reliably in Calibre, either Stanza or GoodReader or Both could handle reflecting the information in the calibre database. It's not really different for an iphone vs. another device.... the software out there has the power to handle collections assuming the data in the db is correct.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Worldwalker View Post
That's easy: Just convert the book to itself. That is, if it's in epub format (for example), convert epub to epub. That will update the book's internal metadata. Understand, however, that some book formats provide for more, or different, metadata than others. You're not going to have much luck trying to add metadata to a text file, for instance. (edit: once you've done this, if you want the udpated file to use for other purposes, use "save to disk" to export the book(s) you need to wherever you need them)
Ok. This is why I think there is something seriously wrong with my installation of Calibre. I have done that. I put all 52 authors (in my sub-collection of 296 works) into Calibre using either an original epub format or an original lit format for about 90% of them. A few of the more rare works came in a .doc or a .rtf format and had to be converted, but I did that so that when adding metadata to my files I did so in all instances by adding metadata to existing epub files. When I was done, I ensures that all files were epub, then I converted first to epub, then to lit. (because GoodReader doesn't do epub, and because Stanza may do lit but prefers epub). I had no interest in maintaining other formats so did not re-convert into .rtf or .doc files.

When that didn't work, I spend days laboring on metadata collection again, and then instead of converting to epub, the second time around I chose "Save to Disk" and maneuvered the save location to be the hard drives Calibre db location. Now, "Save to Disk" provides a number of different (to me, esoteric) options such as "save to disk"-no further description, "save to disk in a single folder" and 3 more. I have not discovered where the documentation is that explains when/why you would choose one over another, and it's quite likely that the huge duplication of files in the calibre db when I got there is because my "save to disk" choices were not the good ones. But, if you are dealing with a 300 item database which represents only a tiny fraction of your total digital library, having upwards of 32 records for each and every book in your library is not something to just wave away. It could represent a huuge and costly waste of storage real estate.

I would like to use Calibre the way it was meant to be used. And, I'd like to do that for a considerably large library ie a library of a size you would find in a building marked with the stone sign "library" on the front of it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Worldwalker View Post
The calibre library needs to have a big blinking neon sign on it saying "NO USER SERVICEABLE PARTS INSIDE!!!!" Never mind what it does with its folders; just pretend they're not there at all.
Heard and understood.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Worldwalker View Post
Stop trying to use calibre to manage files; that's not what it's for. Use it to manage books. If calibre wants to have quadruplicate files, let it. Don't try to mess with their metadata. You'll break something.
I am uninterested in using calibre to manage files. What I am interested in doing, is ensuring that all my digital files are in the same 1 or 2 formats, giving them over to Calibre to manage, and then freeing up my active/running computer HD space by deleting the source files used and leaving it so that the source files are stored elsewhere offline. If anything is desired to be read online either on the computer or on a device, it is done using Calibre Library in concert with whatever device software works well with Calibre. Once Calibre is working as it should, there should be no reason why anyone should touch the structure Calibre uses to perform its magic.

I just can't seem to get to a place where Calibre reliably and understandably performs even the assumedly simple function of sorting by author alphabetically.

Michele
PS Please forgive me if my tone is that of a frustrated wretch. I don't mean to sound like that... but I'm kind of a frustrated wretch......
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Old 07-28-2010, 12:31 PM   #8
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The Save to Disk option is irrelevant in your workflow. Think of it instead as an "export to disk" option. You seem to be thinking of it as an Update books inside Calibre library which it is not.

To get your metadata changes applied in your scenario you need to run a conversion in calibre (even if both input and output formats are the same). Without doing that you will be getting the books in their unmodified form (I.e. Exactly as they were before you added them to calibre). Metadata is only updated in the physical ebook files on conversions, save to Disk (export) and send to device actions. There has been discussion about providing a way of updating the metadata in the files inside calibre's library 'in situ' without conversion but currently that does not happen. (for reasons probably too complicated to go into here)

Having said all the above you could achieve the same effect by doing a Save to Disk to get the files updated, and then read the saved books to Calibre as the new versions of a format would then take precedence. However it is easier to do a conversion of a format to the same one as mentioned above.

Note that if you were using iBooks instead of Stanza then calibre has full integration with iTunes, and the conversions would not be necessary as calibre would update the metadata as part of the transfer of books into iTunes.
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Old 07-28-2010, 12:42 PM   #9
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Are your books sorted on some other field, if not on author?

You can easily change what to sort on by just clicking on the field heading you wish to sort on. Click again to reverse sort.

If you do this on "Author(s)", does the order of the books change?

I usually sort on last name. So if the author is Jane Austen, I sort using "Austen, Jane".

One quick way to ensure that all entries for the same author are sorted identically is to mark them all and then right click on them and select "Edit Metadata in Bulk". Set the author name and select Automatically select author sort. (This will make the books sort on the last name of the author.) Don't change anything else and click OK. After that all the books for that author should appear together, if you sort on author. You may have to refresh by cklicking on the Author(s) heading.

This is what I (and I assume most others here) always do to books I add to my library. It works perfectly.
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Old 07-28-2010, 12:49 PM   #10
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Some clarification

Quote:
Originally Posted by dwanthny View Post
First make sure you have the current version of calibre installed.

Then since I don't use Stanza are you having trouble sorting in Stanza or in the calibre application itself?
In Calibre application itself. All my posted problems are Calibre-application specific and do not relate to usage on the device.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dwanthny View Post
There is no trick, If the metadata entered is correct then sorting is correct. It is just that simple.
Unfortunately, this SHOULD be true. It is not true in my case.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dwanthny View Post
Understand that the author field sorts off of the author_sort entry and not from the author entry. Highlight all the books for a given author, select Edit Metadata, place the author's name (first last, for example Isaac Asimov) also check the Automatically set author sort, then click ok. Now the Author sort is set to Asimov, Isaac and will sort in under "A".
I have taken every instance of "Heinlein, Robert A." in my calibre library and changed both author fields, specifically the "author name" field and the "author sort" field so that in all fields in all cases where there is a record for Robert A. Heinlein that his name appears in BOTH fields in exactly the same way. Whether it is Heinlein Robert A or Robert A Heinlein is not relevant or meaningful to my issue. The Fact that whichever one it is in my metadata, that's the way it should sort in Calibre application. That's not what it does. There is no combination of data enter-able into my Calibre application which will result in Calibre sorting all "heinlein" records in an alphabetical method by which they are all sorted in a group and occur in an "h" place in a list of records.

I don't know how else I can say it in English to be understood: Calibre is not sorting alphabetically. My metadata has been standardized, and it still is not sorting alphabetically. There's something wrong: it doesn't sort alphabetically.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dwanthny View Post
I think you need to start with figuring out one thing at a time, then moving to the next.
I agree. Let's figure this one out: Calibre doesn't sort alphabetically

Quote:
Originally Posted by dwanthny View Post
Once you set the metadata it does not have to be done over, and over, and over again. The metadata doesn't somehow magically disappear from calibre's library or change on its own accord. Statements like this is why I think you need to tackle one concept at a time. That said, reconverting a book, say epub to epub, will place the cover and pertinent metadata in the file itself.
OnceI set the metadata, it SHOULD NOT HAVE TO be done over and over again. Data, whether in calibre or any other database program, should not disappear or become corrupted on it's own as a mysterious process. If something DOES get corrupted or "disappear" there is an agent or force at work. Ie -- it's not just corrupting itself. I understand this. But... what is corrupting it? is my question.

and... in my experience, changing the metadata so that is is all uniform - does not make it sort properly. And, in my experience, re-converting to the same file format as the original, eg. epub-to-epub, has not resulting in my problems being fixed.

So... something is amiss in Denmark.



Quote:
Originally Posted by dwanthny View Post
First off read Worldwalker's link. there is no reason to be poking around in calibre's folder structure. That said, folders / file names change on the fly as you change the content of the metadata. Folders do not get left behind, unless you are mucking around in the folders trying to fix the naming (very bad, very very bad). If you think the folders aren't right then go back to the GUI and fix the metadata and that will fix your folders. At this point you might have orphaned folders because you mucked things up by manually playing with folder and file names.
i have not mucked. I shall not muck. I have peeked, and seen, and reported what I have seen. What I have seen was worthy of being reported, in my view. But, *I have not mucked*



Quote:
Originally Posted by dwanthny View Post
Calibre does not keep duplicate folders/files in its library unless you added duplicate files.
I have not mucked. Said another way, All issues I mentioned as present in my Calibre folder were put there by Calibre, not by a user. So, When I had Isaac Asimov books imported into calibre with multiple instances of Isaac Asimov entered in different ways, like this:

Isaac Asimov
Asimov, Isaac
Isaak Asimov
I. Asimov
Asimov, I.

I went and changed each instance such that his name was in the metadata in Calibra through the GUI (*not from the file structure):

Isaac Asimov

(note: no punctuation)

I could go and peek (NOT MUCK) at the calibre file structure and not only see:


Isaac Asimov
Asimov, Isaac
Isaak Asimov
I. Asimov
Asimov, I.

as folders, but I could see that within each folder were still records for all the files, in addition to those exact same records now all residing within

Isaac Asimov

such that there were duplicate files. Files which were no longer accessible through Calibre-s GUI, and folders for author names which were no longer reflected within Calibre's GUI.

I DID NOT MUCK. I simply came here and reported -- Calibre has multipe folder instances and multiple file instances where they are not need/required and they are wasting hd space.

So, your statement:
Quote:
Originally Posted by dwanthny View Post
Calibre does not keep duplicate folders/files in its library unless you added duplicate files.
Is actually false. Hate to break it to you.


Quote:
Originally Posted by dwanthny View Post
Calibre does not keep duplicate folders/files in its library unless you added duplicate files.At this point it might help to use the "Move library to a new location" feature by clicking on the library icon in the top row. Move it to a new EMPTY folder. After your finished this new folder will have the exact books / metadata you have listed in your library. Now stay out of the folder structure and correct the metadata in the GUI to clean things up.
i will try this and report back. And... I'm freaking tired of "correcting the metadata in the GUI" because that is what I have been doing, ov er and over, and that is what i came here to complain about having to do, over and over. I only work on calibre through the gui -- that's what it was built for. I should NOT Have to go do it again.

And please, future posters, please... hear me. I have not mucked in my calibre file structure. I don't need further spankings on this issue. It may be an issue with the majority of your noobs, but 'taint the case here.

Last edited by Merischino; 07-28-2010 at 12:53 PM. Reason: fixed quoting formats
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Old 07-28-2010, 01:00 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by itimpi View Post
The Save to Disk option is irrelevant in your workflow. Think of it instead as an "export to disk" option. You seem to be thinking of it as an Update books inside Calibre library which it is not.

To get your metadata changes applied in your scenario you need to run a conversion in calibre (even if both input and output formats are the same). Without doing that you will be getting the books in their unmodified form (I.e. Exactly as they were before you added them to calibre). Metadata is only updated in the physical ebook files on conversions, save to Disk (export) and send to device actions. There has been discussion about providing a way of updating the metadata in the files inside calibre's library 'in situ' without conversion but currently that does not happen. (for reasons probably too complicated to go into here)

Having said all the above you could achieve the same effect by doing a Save to Disk to get the files updated, and then read the saved books to Calibre as the new versions of a format would then take precedence. However it is easier to do a conversion of a format to the same one as mentioned above.

Note that if you were using iBooks instead of Stanza then calibre has full integration with iTunes, and the conversions would not be necessary as calibre would update the metadata as part of the transfer of books into iTunes.
Thank you. I realize Save to Disk is irrelevant in my workflow. I mentioned it (in fact, used it) only because when I did the convert-to-same method of updating metadata it didn't do spit for me. So... I tried the Save To Disk, which indeed I viewed as an export. Now, it's quite possible that the std/export thing worked except that it made duplicate files and calibre still refers to the originals. In which case, I'm not sure that Save to Disk is of any use to me at all.
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Old 07-28-2010, 01:08 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Merischino View Post
i will try this and report back.
I can hear your frustration. Just be aware that you're reporting something that none of the experts have seen before, so it's hard to provide practical guidance. I concur with the recommendation to move your library (that will move the books Calibre knows about and leave behind any folders that it does not know about). I'd also run the "Check database integrity" in Prefs|Advanced.

Those 2 steps will clean the Library as far as can be done automatically.

If I was guessing, based on your reported symptoms - I'd be looking at file/folder permissions issues.
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Old 07-28-2010, 01:10 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Adoby View Post
Are your books sorted on some other field, if not on author?
when I click on the colum headed "author" I get a mishmash of results, where it looks like this

McCaffrey, Anne
Austen, Jane
Melville, Herman
Heinlein, Robert A
McCaffrey, Anne
Melville, Herman
Huxley, Theodore
Heinlein, Robert A

such that although I have asked it to sort alphabetically by Author, it is neither sorting alphabetically by last name, nor is it sorting alphabetically by first name. It is not grouping authors of the same name together in a mistaken place (e.g., all McCaffreys are not together. All Heinleins are not together. All Melville's are not together).

In short: there is no rhyme or reason to where items appear in the list.

When I click to sort on Series, It does, happily, sort on series and in numerical order. So that

Foundation 1
Foundation 2
Foundation 3

Occurs or conversely

Foundation 3
Foundation 2
Foundation 1

So, Calibre is CAPABLE of sorting on a field. There simply is nothing clearly understandable to me, a lay person, why if AuthorName filed is populated with "Robert A Heinlein" and (for simplicity's sake) AuthorSort field is populated with "Robert A Heinlein" it would not both group all "Robert A Heinlein"s together, and place them within a larger list in an "R" location within that list.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Adoby View Post
You can easily change what to sort on by just clicking on the field heading you wish to sort on. Click again to reverse sort.
That's what should happen when I click on the field heading. That is not what happens, though, which is why I came here to post my issue.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Adoby View Post
If you do this on "Author(s)", does the order of the books change?
Yes.. Calibre clearly is doing something. What exactly it's doing, completely a mystery to me.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Adoby View Post
I usually sort on last name. So if the author is Jane Austen, I sort using "Austen, Jane".

One quick way to ensure that all entries for the same author are sorted identically is to mark them all and then right click on them and select "Edit Metadata in Bulk". Set the author name and select Automatically select author sort. (This will make the books sort on the last name of the author.) Don't change anything else and click OK. After that all the books for that author should appear together, if you sort on author. You may have to refresh by cklicking on the Author(s) heading.

This is what I (and I assume most others here) always do to books I add to my library. It works perfectly.
I have done this to all my books. It does not work for me. That's why I came here.

I can edit my metadata individually. I can edit it in bulk. I always perform my edits from within the GUI. I never edit it in the file structure itself. I can edit the author name manually. I can choose to edit the metadata by having the downloaded information overwrite what is existing within the database. No matter how I do it, my Calibre does not sort alphabetically by author based on the actual metadata reflected in those fields as viewed from within Calibre's GUI.

I cannot get Calibre to sort alphabeitcally by author.

Help.
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Old 07-28-2010, 01:23 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Merischino View Post
I cannot get Calibre to sort alphabeitcally by author.
If you want to post or PM me your metadata.db file, I'll look at it and check sorting. I don't need the books, just that one file, which is in your library.
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Old 07-28-2010, 01:50 PM   #15
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file sent

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Originally Posted by Starson17 View Post
If you want to post or PM me your metadata.db file, I'll look at it and check sorting. I don't need the books, just that one file, which is in your library.
Done. PM Sent. Thank you for the offer!
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