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Old 08-09-2019, 05:23 PM   #1
abradaxis
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Unhappy Suddenly Can't Add Books to Calibre

I hope this is posted in the correct place. I am a Calibre user for many years, under Windows 7, Calibre 64 bit version, using Norton A/V and Acronis (mentioning it since it has been alluded to as being a problem creator in previous posts). Suddenly I cannot add any books to Caoibre. I reinstalled, same problem. Shut off my A/V, uninstalled Calibre, then reinstalled with no A/V present. Now, instead of getting an error message when loading content ("cannot add content") the loading process just hangs with no error message. Can't find any way to locate a file or path in Acronis to eliminate this problem. I am stumped, and have researched every thread in this forum and elsewhere on the Internet. I know that David K has previously stated that the A/V program or some other function has locked out Calibre from obtaining a necessary file, but how should I continue to solve the puzzle?
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Old 08-09-2019, 06:41 PM   #2
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Please post the error message in full, if it's a calibre error then there's a button to copy the message to the clipboard, which you can paste into a post; otherwise post a screenshot

You posted this in the Server sub-forum, any specific reason for that? Is your library is on a server of some sort - file server, shared drive, NAS, Internet host etc? If it is, see ==>> I am getting errors with my calibre library on a networked drive/NAS?

Which version of calibre are you using ?

The potential paths to exclude from Norton and Acronis are:
  • The install folder - that would be normally be something like "C:\Program Files\Calibre2"
  • The configuration folder - that would be normally be something like "C:\Users\<your username>\appdata\roaming\calibre"
  • The library folder - where ever you keep it - e.g. "C:\Users\<your username>\appdata\roaming\Documents\Calibre Library"

BR

Last edited by BetterRed; 08-09-2019 at 07:02 PM. Reason: typo
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Old 08-09-2019, 07:07 PM   #3
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This may seem odd, but I had some folders we use regularly at work suddenly switch to "read-only". While it was probably some UE with one of my less techie co-workers, a quick fix was to check the folder properties and clear the read-only checkbox.
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Old 08-10-2019, 01:34 PM   #4
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Thanks much for trying to help out.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BetterRed View Post
Please post the error message in full, if it's a calibre error then there's a button to copy the message to the clipboard, which you can paste into a post; otherwise post a screenshot
At first I was getting the error about not being able to add books, followed by some lines ending in fatal error about not being able to start child: I cannot give you the actual message since, after deleting Calibre and reinstalling it, the message went away and now it just hangs after initiating an Add Books command.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BetterRed View Post
You posted this in the Server sub-forum, any specific reason for that? Is your library is on a server of some sort - file server, shared drive, NAS, Internet host etc? If it is, see ==>> I am getting errors with my calibre library on a networked drive/NAS?
My bad. looked and looked, and couldn't find a sub forum which could be used just to report the error I was having. And, after all, I just want to use Calibre to add new books to Calibre, so a server topic seemed vaguely relevant. Tell me where to post, and I will go there and repost my problem.

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Originally Posted by BetterRed View Post
Which version of calibre are you using ?
I am using Calibre 1.48 since I am operating under Windows XP.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BetterRed View Post
The potential paths to exclude from Norton and Acronis are:
  • The install folder - that would be normally be something like "C:\Program Files\Calibre2"
  • The configuration folder - that would be normally be something like "C:\Users\<your username>\appdata\roaming\calibre"
  • The library folder - where ever you keep it - e.g. "C:\Users\<your username>\appdata\roaming\Documents\Calibre Library"
These paths are correct, but how do I use them to exclude from Norton and Acronis? I can't locate any paths in either program to eliminate items from. I'm certainly computer literate, but no forum ever mentioned specifically how to effectively how to use the paths to subvert the program's quarantining actions.

Last edited by BetterRed; 08-13-2019 at 05:23 AM. Reason: To fix quote/response
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Old 08-10-2019, 01:50 PM   #5
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Thanks Fizzy. I'm still negotiating the replies to this forum, so I hope it is channeled to your response. No, it is not a read-only file. Any other guesses?
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Old 08-10-2019, 01:55 PM   #6
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1. you said earlier that problem is still present with AV off, so its not being caused by Norton
2. there are several ways to add books - which one are you using
3. do other calibre functions which need write access to library still work ok - e.g. changing an author name will require the book to be re-filed in a different subfolder.
4. you say you removed and re installed calibre but the problem could be in the config data which survives that process
5. I would be inclined to back up everything, then completely remove calibre program AND config data, test with a fresh install and an empty library in a different location - add a book to that - see what happens i.e. get to a clean state where add books works, then gradually re-introduce previous elements one at a time.
6. also, but I don't know exactly how to - turn on verbose logging /debugging and post log files of what goes wrong

usually when something used to work but stops working, it that you have added or deleted something else ( That you thought was unrelated ) to the device, or updated the OS. e.g. there was a time when the password manager roboform on default settigns would mess with calibre.
So recall if you can ALL the things you have changed, since the last time that everything " just worked" even if you are convinced they are irrelevant
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Old 08-13-2019, 05:42 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by abradaxis View Post
At first I was getting the error about not being able to add books, followed by some lines ending in fatal error about not being able to start child: I cannot give you the actual message since, after deleting Calibre and reinstalling it, the message went away and now it just hangs after initiating an Add Books command.
I'm thinking your library may be corrupt in some way. Try creating another library and adding books to it. If that works we can see what we can do to recover your existing library

Quote:
Originally Posted by abradaxis View Post
My bad. looked and looked, and couldn't find a sub forum which could be used just to report the error I was having. And, after all, I just want to use Calibre to add new books to Calibre, so a server topic seemed vaguely relevant. Tell me where to post, and I will go there and repost my problem.
No worries - I moved it into the main calibre forum.

Quote:
Originally Posted by abradaxis View Post
I am using Calibre 1.48 since I am operating under Windows XP.
Ah-ha - that's interesting.

Quote:
Originally Posted by abradaxis View Post
These paths are correct, but how do I use them to exclude from Norton and Acronis? I can't locate any paths in either program to eliminate items from. I'm certainly computer literate, but no forum ever mentioned specifically how to effectively how to use the paths to subvert the program's quarantining actions.
I don't know how to exclude things from Norton or Acronis (to be frank I regard both of them as borderline malware), have you updated either of them in recent times.

BR
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Old 08-13-2019, 06:52 AM   #8
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it has been very many years since i used XP but can it be started in a safe mode - with norton and Acronis not running ?
if so, try it and see if calibre add books works in safe mode. that will be a useful clue

i second the observation that they are borderline malware. consider permanently removing them anyway. if you are bothered about security you should not be using something as unsafe as XP to start with
and , repeating myself from post #6, you removed and replaced calibre but that does not remove the calibre config data, so if that's where the problem is, it is still there
. you need to remove everything, and then start over.
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Old 08-13-2019, 09:38 AM   #9
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Friends do not let friends use Yellow Box (Symantec) software.

There was a time, when Peter still owned Norton, that they were great products.
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Old 08-13-2019, 10:49 AM   #10
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Friends do not let friends use Yellow Box (Symantec) software.

There was a time, when Peter still owned Norton, that they were great products.
there was a time , long ago, when windows xp was also a great product

times change
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Old 08-13-2019, 02:59 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stumped View Post
it has been very many years since i used XP but can it be started in a safe mode - with norton and Acronis not running ?
if so, try it and see if calibre add books works in safe mode. that will be a useful clue
Hit F8 multiple times when the first boot screen appears. From the menu, select safe mode with networking. Have fun with a 480x640 screen.

Did that too many times before finally saying goodbye to Windows XP at work.
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Old 08-13-2019, 03:05 PM   #12
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Hit F8 multiple times when the first boot screen appears. From the menu, select safe mode with networking. Have fun with a 480x640 screen.

Did that too many times before finally saying goodbye to Windows XP at work.
Even at 480 X 640, still might be worth doing as a one off test.

If it will start windows without starting Norton....
It may aquit Norton etc from the usual suspects list, or not.
But if that test is not done we will never know

My money is on there being corrupt stuff in the config folder. OP may need help finding that in xp. Can't remember if app data folder had been invented back then
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Old 08-13-2019, 06:26 PM   #13
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Quote:
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My money is on there being corrupt stuff in the config folder. OP may need help finding that in xp. Can't remember if app data folder had been invented back then
Back then it was called Documents and Settings, it's ghost lingers on, but via a hidden+system junction to Users.

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But, the OP can find the config folder using the time honoured method of pressing the Preferences->Maintenance->Open calibre configuration directory button - even on version 1.48.

BR
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Old 08-16-2019, 06:01 PM   #14
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How did this become a debate about the value of Norton or Acronis, or, even better, XP? Those of us who are merely mortal have used XP for years, so, for better or worse until we get around to migrating to Windows 10 (or buying a new computer), that is what we are stuck with, and the programs like Norton or Acronis are what is reasonably available to us. My original problem was that I could not add books to Calibre, so please try to help with my original problem.

Okay, so I booted up in Safe Mode, and I was able to add as many books as I wanted to Calibre. So I am thinking that it is maybe Norton or Acronis after all (both have been reported in previous posts as being culpable). Now Norton is continually being updated, and I just updated to the newest version of Acronis, so that is in answer to a previously asked question in this forum. With this information in mind, and ignoring the fact that I am still using Windows XP, Acronis, and Norton, how do we proceed to find out what is actually stopping my adding to Calibre when running under non-Safe Mode? If you are still kind enough to offer me assistance, please let me know how to carry out any suggestions, since some previous suggestions had no details concerning how to implement them. For example, how do you start Windows in Safe Mode and add programs one-by-one?
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Old 08-16-2019, 06:46 PM   #15
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Because you can add books in Safe Mode we know it is not a corrupt install, configuration (preference settings, plugins etc), or library.

The most likely candidate is "Norton's AV" - I found this How to Exclude Files and Folders From Norton Antivirus at the top of a search for 'norton exclusions' - followed by more than a few more.

The three folders you want to exclude are described in this post ==>> https://www.mobileread.com/forums/sh...62&postcount=3. I would exclude them one at a time - Library, Configuration and Software.

If excluding the folders from Norton's doesn't resolve the issue, then it must be something you have in Start Up. Remove the bottom 50%, reboot and test. If the problem goes away the culprit is one of those you removed, otherwise its one of those remaining. Then repeat the process on the appropriate 50%, rinse and repeat, until you isolate the culprit. Then make a decision as to what to do about it.

BR
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