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Old 02-04-2014, 04:28 PM   #1
mfmadden
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Conversion not working in calbre GUI -- CLI OK

Help. I must have done something very bad.

Calibre was working fine -- I even added plugins and it did everything
as advertised. Then I did something; I'm not sure what, but I did run ccleaner
and Spybot Search and Destroy.

Now it won't do conversions using the GUI -- but it will do it in command line mode!
When I click on the icon for Convert Books, either individually or bulk,
or in Preferences/Convert, it just comes back with an error message:

ERROR: Unhandled exception
TypeError: expected string without null bytes


I tried uninstalling calibre and re-installing with a new download. To no avail.
I tried creating a new library. Same error.

I even tried it in safe mode. Didn't help.


I have Windows 7 (32/64 running in 32bit mode).
Here is the debug log:


calibre Debug log
calibre 1.22 isfrozen: True is64bit: False
Windows-7-6.1.7601-SP1 Windows ('32bit', 'WindowsPE')
32bit process running on 64bit windows
('Windows', '7', '6.1.7601')
Python 2.7.5
Windows: ('7', '6.1.7601', 'SP1', 'Multiprocessor Free')
Traceback (most recent call last):
File "site-packages\calibre\utils\config.py", line 289, in refresh
File "site-packages\calibre\utils\config.py", line 378, in raw_to_object
File "encodings\utf_8.py", line 16, in decode
UnicodeDecodeError: 'utf8' codec can't decode byte 0x84 in position 240: invalid start byte
Starting up...
Started up in 27.91 seconds with 1 books
calibre 1.22 isfrozen: True is64bit: False
Windows-7-6.1.7601-SP1 Windows ('32bit', 'WindowsPE')
32bit process running on 64bit windows
('Windows', '7', '6.1.7601')
Python 2.7.5
Windows: ('7', '6.1.7601', 'SP1', 'Multiprocessor Free')
Traceback (most recent call last):
File "site-packages\calibre\gui2\actions\convert.py", line 156, in convert_ebook
File "site-packages\calibre\gui2\actions\convert.py", line 173, in do_convert
File "site-packages\calibre\gui2\tools.py", line 41, in convert_single_ebook
File "site-packages\calibre\gui2\convert\single.py", line 151, in __init__
File "site-packages\calibre\gui2\convert\single.py", line 206, in setup_pipeline
File "site-packages\calibre\gui2\convert\single.py", line 204, in widget_factory
File "site-packages\calibre\gui2\convert\metadata.py", line 61, in __init__
File "site-packages\calibre\gui2\convert\__init__.py", line 73, in initialize_options
File "site-packages\calibre\ebooks\conversion\config.py", line 40, in load_defaults
File "site-packages\calibre\ebooks\conversion\config.py", line 80, in from_string
TypeError: expected string without null bytes
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Old 02-04-2014, 08:33 PM   #2
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@mfmadden - See fifth bullet point - http://manual.calibre-ebook.com/faq....s-occasionally

BR
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Old 02-07-2014, 11:35 AM   #3
mfmadden
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@BetterRed Thanks for the tip. But I just uninstalled Spybot, re-booted, and tried again.
Same error message. I'm beginning to think it's corrupted system software. I suppose I will have to reload Windows 7 -- Oh well, next week.
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Old 02-07-2014, 03:11 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mfmadden View Post
@BetterRed Thanks for the tip. But I just uninstalled Spybot, re-booted, and tried again.
Same error message. I'm beginning to think it's corrupted system software. I suppose I will have to reload Windows 7 -- Oh well, next week.
@mfmadden : Sorry Spybot suggestion was a red herring, my bad - brain didn't register that you'd tried it in Safe Mode. Saw Spybot and went ah-ah.

If it works from command line I doubt its system software

Suggestion : download portable, make minimal changes to preferences, don't add any optional PI's, then add one of the books that's failing, and try convert. If it works then you probably don't need to do a windows (inline repair) install - if it doesn't then - hmmmm, maybe you do.

The one time I took the repair install route (not for calibre's sake) it did NOT solve my problem, the solution was far simpler Luckily I found it before I did a windows install to a reformatted drive :lol:

BR
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Old 02-14-2014, 11:51 AM   #5
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@BetterRed: I tried your experiment with the portable calibre -- it worked.
Now what? I suppose I could just stick with the portable version.

I am discovering other funny errors though: one Excel spreadsheet crashes;
random errors occur in Thunderbird.

You know what they say about cockroaches: if one cockroach runs out of your cabinet, expect more.

I'm going to go ahead and do a clean install of Windows 7.
I may try a repair install first as an experiment.

Thanks for your suggestions. I will post my results.
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Old 02-15-2014, 02:03 PM   #6
mfmadden
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@BetterRed: I bit the bullet and did the clean install -- it worked; calibre now works as it is supposed to and I managed to rescue all of my books.

The repair (update) install I tried first as an experiment did not solve the problem.

It was a long, hard road but I'm happy with the way it turned out.
Thank you again for your assistance.
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Old 02-15-2014, 05:43 PM   #7
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@mfmadden - thanks for feedback.

Wonder what it was - probably another application program broke something. As I understand it a windows repair-install 'wraps' itself around existing installed applications - including broken ones I guess

The advantage of a clean install of everything is that you can do the things you wish you'd done last time, and not do things that you wish you hadn't done - if only that were true of real life

BTW that time when I did a repair-install that didn't fix my problem, only needed me to uninstall/reinstall the indexing service. The index files had been well and truly corrupted. Who did that then - why yours truly of course - tried to coerce it into doing something I didn't ought to have done, the problem took a while to manifest, so...

Cheers BR

Last edited by BetterRed; 02-17-2014 at 12:09 AM.
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Old 02-22-2014, 11:32 AM   #8
mfmadden
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@BetterRed: I don't know what the problem was but I know what caused it.

To err is human; to really foul things up you need a C compiler.
I am the culprit.

Moral: If you're going to modify files using a recursive subroutine,
make sure you really, really, really, know the stopping condition.

I'm only surprised more havoc was not wreaked.
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Old 02-22-2014, 04:14 PM   #9
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@mfmadden - Aaah, my beloved C - nice to know she's still doing her job and not making assumptions about what you wanna do, and just getting on with doing what you told her to do

BR

Last edited by BetterRed; 02-22-2014 at 10:09 PM.
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