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Old 09-21-2010, 10:20 PM   #1
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Question Hosting a file for direct Kindle download?

I've noticed that while some sites (gutenberg etc) allow you to directly download .mobi files to your kindle I can't seem to get it to work hosting the file on my own site.

Does anybody know what the trick is to get this to work?

I have a website and I've tried uploading a .mobi file and even writing a simple html page with a link but when viewed on the kindle they either come up as "cannot load page" or it'll open the .mobi file in the webpage itself which results in just a bunch of garbage text.

I tried to use this page as a reference http://freekindlebooks.org/MagicCata...iccatalog.html

It looks like he just has a simple a href link to the .mobi file which is in the same directory as the magiccatalog.html file.

Any info would be appreciated.
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Old 09-21-2010, 10:35 PM   #2
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I was wondering about this concerning PDF downloads.
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Old 09-21-2010, 11:45 PM   #3
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I don't think the kindle is able to do that, but then again until I found out that you can actually download .mobi books directly I didn't think that was possible either. So far it's only been .mobi files that I've seen work from a web link, you'd think though that any supported type should work but thus far I haven't been able to figure out how.

On the pages I've seen I've snooped the page source code and there does not seem to be anything special there that prompts the kindle to download and install it. Hopefully some of the "advanced" users like the ones who developed the SS hack will see this post and perhaps shed some light.
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Old 09-22-2010, 12:20 AM   #4
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When I did this for my K2 I just uploaded the Mobi files and had an HTML page with links that listed them to my web server space. When I clicked a link it would download, I did nothing special. Perhaps there is something up with your servers mime setting or something and it's trying to treat a Mobi file like it's HTML or something.



@SunLight; PDF's can't be directly downloaded. They must either be sideloaded or emailed to the Kindle (the PDF will be converted or not depending on how you do the email).
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Old 09-22-2010, 10:29 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jphphotography View Post
I have a website and I've tried uploading a .mobi file and even writing a simple html page with a link but when viewed on the kindle they either come up as "cannot load page" or it'll open the .mobi file in the webpage itself which results in just a bunch of garbage text.
.
You need to define the MIME type on your web server. Either of these should work for Kindle books:

application/x-mobipocket-ebook
application/octet-stream

Last edited by trekchick; 09-22-2010 at 10:31 PM. Reason: clear up confusing typo
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Old 09-22-2010, 10:55 PM   #6
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Thanks trekchick and AnemicOak, I was wondering if it was something like that but wasn't sure. I don't know how much control I have over my webspace when it comes to stuff like that, I'll have to look into it a little further.
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Old 09-22-2010, 11:14 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trekchick View Post
You need to define the MIME type on your web server. Either of these should work for Kindle books:

application/x-mobipocket-ebook
application/octet-stream
That was the fix for me when I posted a similar issue a few weeks ago (and it suggested I fix the mime type). I havent downloaded PDFs at all, only .mobi and it works a charm (I all my ebooks running off the webserver on my HTPC).
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Old 09-22-2010, 11:22 PM   #8
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Thanks folks, I'll be needing that trick too as I'm also selling our eBooks from our own WWW server and want to be sure it works 'right' for Kindle owners. Alas at the time of typing our WWW server has decided to be severed from the internet due to someone fiddling with the fibre backhaul .

Paul.
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Old 09-22-2010, 11:47 PM   #9
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How difficult is it to change the server-side mime type associations? I'm currently going through Canaca.com for my web space and have never had to dig that deep into the server side. I'm fairly technical but just have never messed around with server stuff, could anyone provide a rough how to? Doesn't need to be specific really, I'm just curious and this way if others stumble on to this thread there is a little more information.

Thanks,
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Old 09-23-2010, 12:05 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jphphotography View Post
Thanks trekchick and AnemicOak, I was wondering if it was something like that but wasn't sure. I don't know how much control I have over my webspace when it comes to stuff like that, I'll have to look into it a little further.
MIME types really are a server issue, but, you might _try_ to work around it by adding the content type to the link (e.g. TYPE="application/octet-stream"). It goes against my grain to suggest something without trying it out first, but I'm getting lazy in my old age.
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Old 09-23-2010, 02:39 AM   #11
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@Trekchick
I wasn't sure where to specify the type in the link so I tried this but no luck, does the syntax look wrong to you? I know this was just an off the cuff suggestion so it's quite possible that it just won't work but I thought I'd follow up

Code:
<a href="www.yourwebsite.com/ebooks/test.mobi" TYPE="application/octet-stream">Click here</a>
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Old 09-23-2010, 03:07 AM   #12
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jphphotography,

The syntax looks fine, did you try the application/x-mobipocket-ebook type though?

Paul.
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Old 09-23-2010, 08:52 AM   #13
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Adding the "type" param to hrefs is only a browser fallback option and won't override any server prefs that may already be defined.

Any of the AddType or AddHandler statements may be added to the .htaccess file (in the folder where the file is going to be served from--or the web root folder) to override server settings in the case where you don't have full control of your server configuration. Something like:
AddType application/x-mobipocket-ebook .mobi
should do the trick.

NOTE: this is all assuming your web server is Apache and your provider is not preventing Overrides. Don't mess if you don't know, as improperly written .htaccess files can render your site unusable.

EDIT: render it unusable until you fix or delete the bad .htaccess file--didn't mean to make it sound as drastic as I did.

Last edited by DiapDealer; 09-23-2010 at 09:22 AM. Reason: typo
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Old 09-23-2010, 01:18 PM   #14
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Couldn't one utilize Calibre to host a server and files locally? At the very least, one could temporarily set up Calibre, see that it works as a server, and then investigate it's setup and incorporate its features to your own server.
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Old 09-23-2010, 01:32 PM   #15
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Couldn't one utilize Calibre to host a server and files locally? At the very least, one could temporarily set up Calibre, see that it works as a server, and then investigate it's setup and incorporate its features to your own server.
You can (and many do), but the Kindle can only access web servers running on port 80. Since it's not easy getting Calibre's content server to run on port 80, you have to have the ability (and the know how) to redirect port 80 requests at your router to 8080 (or somesuch) on your Calibre machine. It can be a bit much for some.

As for examining Calibre's content server setup -- unless you're intimately familiar with Python (and CherryPy) -- that's easier said than done.
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