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Old 09-01-2015, 09:08 PM   #1
LisaAlissa
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Trouble adding multiple books from multiple directories to Calibre

I have a number of books to be added. Each book is in a different folder, and some of them are embedded in a series of folders. When I back out to the level where they are all in the same folder, that folder contains some folders I want to add books from, and some that I don't want to add books from. I'd like to be able to open that single folder and specify which of the folders I'd like to have books added from.

As I read the Calibre User's Guide, I can:

Quote:
3. Add books from directories, including sub-directories (Multiple books per directory, assumes every ebook file is a different book): Allows you to choose a directory. The directory and all its sub-directories are scanned recursively and any ebooks found are added to the library. calibre assumes that each directory contains many books. All ebook files with the same name in a directory are assumed to be the same book in different formats. Ebooks with different names are added as different books.
Close reading of this paragraph leaves me confused. The "title" (part in bold type) says I can add from "directories," which is what I want to do. But the text that follows says that I can "choose a directory." Which is the problem (I think).

Is there any way I can choose more than one folder? Which would make what I want to do easy. Right now, I've been separately selecting and adding each folders books. It would be nice if I could start the process and let it run, instead of having to separately choose each successive folder I want the "add" function to run on...

Thanks!

Last edited by LisaAlissa; 09-01-2015 at 09:09 PM. Reason: Clarify title of thread
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Old 09-01-2015, 09:22 PM   #2
LisaAlissa
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Note that I can (have) created a temporary file and added copies of the folders which contain books I want to add and then specified that temporary file as the directory. Then once the books have been added, I delete the copies in the temporary file.

But if there's a way to avoid having to copy files for the purpose of adding them, then deleting them, I'd like to. And the User's Guide makes it sound as if it might be possible.

Thanks!
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Old 09-01-2015, 09:34 PM   #3
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No, the user's guide says clearly that you can choose one (1) directory and all books from multiple directories inside that one (1) directory will be added.

This is a potential feature request, but not IMHO in need of clarification as such.
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Old 09-01-2015, 09:42 PM   #4
LisaAlissa
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eschwartz View Post
No, the user's guide says clearly that you can choose one (1) directory and all books from multiple directories inside that one (1) directory will be added.

This is a potential feature request, but not IMHO in need of clarification as such.
I agree that the text following the subtitle is clear (if we ignore the subtitle). And if the subtitle said

Quote:
Add books from directories, including sub-directories (Multiple books per directory, assumes every ebook file is a different book) inside a single directory
adding the bold/italic text (or something to that effect) there would have been no confusion (at least on my part lol). That would seem to be a suggestion for the user's guide. Perhaps with info about the temp file work-around I've been using.

However I find your hint that this might be a potential feature request much more interesting (than editing the user's guide). How would I flag this as a potential feature request?

Thanks for your help.
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Old 09-01-2015, 09:49 PM   #5
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The Auto Add folder self cleans.
You just need to set it up.

BTW The auto add folder expects Book format files, not nested folders
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Old 09-01-2015, 09:53 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theducks View Post
The Auto Add folder self cleans.
You just need to set it up.

BTW The auto add folder expects Book format files, not nested folders
Whoops, I was set to be thrilled. And was going to ask about how I need to set up an Auto Add folder.

However it sounds like I'd need to open all of my nested folders to populate the Auto Add folder.

Am I misunderstanding? Could the "Auto Add" folder still help?

Thanks
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Old 09-01-2015, 10:30 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LisaAlissa View Post
Whoops, I was set to be thrilled. And was going to ask about how I need to set up an Auto Add folder.

However it sounds like I'd need to open all of my nested folders to populate the Auto Add folder.

Am I misunderstanding? Could the "Auto Add" folder still help?

Thanks
No you have it right.

Personally, I would just start adding at a branch (point), and move that branch to an Archive (or trash)

When you select for any of the Normal adds, you get a standard navigation box

ADD also only adds 'book (type) files' files if that is a help

(using Auto Add folder)

Would Windows search help filter you results?
You can copy from the Search Results into the Auto Add folder
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Old 09-01-2015, 11:03 PM   #8
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What theducks means is: Auto add will recurse into subdirectories, but ONLY in "assumes every ebook file is a different book" mode.

As for the feature request, Kovid Goyal (creator) may see this thread and respond or add the feature, but you can make sure he sees by submitting a formal enhancement request here: http://calibre-ebook.com/bugs

Last edited by eschwartz; 09-01-2015 at 11:11 PM.
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Old 09-02-2015, 12:11 AM   #9
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Simply create an empty folder, then in windows explorer copy paste the folder you want books added from into that empty folder, then in calibre select that folder.

Or if your books are all single ebook files as oppossed to multiple files per book, simply do a windows search for ebook file types and drag and drop the result into calibre.
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Old 09-02-2015, 12:23 AM   #10
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@kovid,

as per post #2 that is certainly a way of doing it, but might possibly be regarded as slightly wasteful, e.g. breaking out of calibre into the file browser merely to copy books around into a clump.

I can see why someone might desire that the selector be able to accept a list of folders.
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Old 09-02-2015, 12:42 AM   #11
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Yeah, but this is a one time operation (during initial import of your book collection into calibre), not something that is done repeatedly and often, so adding dedicated UI for it is not worth it -- especially given that there are perfectly good ways to achieve it by combining two tools -- the file explorer and calibre.
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Old 09-02-2015, 12:53 AM   #12
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Actually, it is done repeatedly, and regularly.

But I take your point, and will continue to use the work around. (I'll consider this "closed.") Perhaps per #4 above, a clarification/addition to the user's guide addressing this for others might be a good idea then?

Thanks for all of your work on Calibre. It's a great resource!
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Old 09-02-2015, 02:27 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kovidgoyal View Post
Yeah, but this is a one time operation (during initial import of your book collection into calibre), not something that is done repeatedly and often, so adding dedicated UI for it is not worth it -- especially given that there are perfectly good ways to achieve it by combining two tools -- the file explorer and calibre.
I was imagining that Add books option #2-3 be changed behind the scenes to accept a list of "root folder"s.
No idea if that is worth it of course but it *could* be done without a dedicated option #4, so that itself shouldn't be a blocker IMHO.

I would never suggest adding yet more dialog boxes or menu entries unless there was a compelling need.



Granted that it can be done with a minimum of fuss by pre-sorting the books.

Last edited by eschwartz; 09-02-2015 at 02:30 AM.
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Old 09-02-2015, 02:41 AM   #14
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You mean make the file chooser dialogs multi-select so you can select more than one root folder? I suppose that could be done, although it is more work than I feel like putting in on this -- patches are welcome

EDIT: And that will only work if the multiple folders are all in the same parent folder.
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Old 09-02-2015, 03:05 AM   #15
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...

Yeah, it looks like there is no easy way to get a mode = Directories for the file picker. Pity.
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