Why can't I install the latest calibre on Windows XP?
#1  eschwartz 03-15-2015, 09:26 PM
When calibre version 2.0.0 was released, it was transitioned over to a new graphical toolkit, Qt5. Qt no longer supports Windows XP (and neither does Microsoft, so there is little hope of anything changing).

As a result, the latest version of calibre to work on Windows XP is calibre 1.48. If you want to run calibre on Windows XP, you have a few options:
1. Install version 1.48 (download it HERE) -- yes it is an old version, but it still works just fine, doesn't it. It hasn't magically stopped doing what it used to do just because there is a newer version.
This is the official recommendation, as suggested on the calibre website.
2. Insist on running the latest version anyway. Yeah, Qt isn't supported. Yeah, it might crash horribly. But it *might* work, people *have* reported success. As long as your processor supports the SSE2 instruction set, you may very well get lucky.
You must run from source -- the calibre developers will not support this.
calibre 2.x will now run -- whether it works remains to be seen. Good luck.
3. Trying to run the new version is too risky, but the old version is broken!
Do you have a Kobo H2O, the driver for which appeared post-calibre2.x? If so, try this plugin, or run from source as described above, but with my backports described HERE. The backports can and will work to fix other breakage, e.g. Amazon website changes for metadata download. The plugin is just for the Kobo.
4. Upgrade your computer. Microsoft no longer supports Windows XP, not even for security vulnerabilities. Okay, they did anyway. But we can safely assume it won't happen again.
• For a few hundred dollars you can get a brand-new computer that runs Windows 7/8 and does everything you need it to do, with up-to-date software -- that includes running the latest version of calibre.
• I don't have the money/I don't want to spend the money on a new computer, my old one works fine no matter what Micro\$oft thinks!
Rather than upgrading the hardware, maybe you can upgrade the OSware? Linux is free, and runs fine on old hardware -- even if your computer isn't compatible with Windows 7/8, you can still run a modern operating system. You can even run both linux and Windows XP on the same computer.
Popular choices of linux distribution for linux newbies include Ubuntu and Linux Mint. I suggest the latter -- it has a friendlier desktop and is closer to the experience one would expect coming from a Windows environment.
Installing linux is fairly easy -- all you need to do is burn a disk image to a USB drive and reboot your computer -- and be good at following (clear) directions.

#2  J.C. 04-07-2015, 07:28 AM
I've followed the instructions in: 2.
Still I'm missing connecting part:

I now have a "C:\Program Files\Calibre2\" directory with the 2.23.0 binaries (which won't run because of the safety check).

I also have an edited "src/calibre/gui2/__init__.py"

Whats next?
How do I get a binary out of it ?
Can it actually be run right now as is ? (If so, how ?)

#3  eschwartz 04-07-2015, 10:43 AM
Make sure you follow all the instructions for setting up a development environment.

For instance, did you set the CALIBRE_DEVELOP_FROM environment variable as directed?

#4  J.C. 04-07-2015, 11:56 AM
Yes, I followed all the instructions, including setting up the environment variable and testing to make sure it's set.
I even followed the implied instruction that I should have python installed, and installed version 2.7.9 .

But what is it I'm suppose to do next ?

I just want to use the latest version which should work just fine on my system seeing as I've been using version 2.0.0 until now which I suppose was the latest to install on xp.

#5  eschwartz 04-07-2015, 12:01 PM
If you still get the incompatibility warning, you haven't set it up correctly.
If it was set up correctly, just run calibre as you would normally.
If nothing happens, maybe it crashed horribly -- like I warned.

What is the output from running "calibre-debug -g" from the command prompt?

#6  J.C. 04-07-2015, 12:14 PM
Ah, I get your meaning about the environment variable (should have set it globally).

However it is still not enough despite editing the indicated file I still get the same error message that should have been disabled.

#7  J.C. 04-07-2015, 12:19 PM
calibre 2.23* isfrozen: True is64bit: False
Windows-XP-5.1.2600-SP3 Windows ('32bit', 'WindowsPE')
('Windows', 'XP', '5.1.2600')
Python 2.7.9
Windows: ('XP', '5.1.2600', 'SP3', 'Multiprocessor Free')
Python function terminated unexpectedly
calibre requires Windows Vista or newer to run, the last version of calibre that could run on Windows XP is version 1.48, available from
Traceback (most recent call last):
File "site.py", line 132, in main
File "site.py", line 109, in run_entry_point
File "G:\WorkSpace\Programming\Cygwin\home\User\cal ibre-2.23.0\src\calibre\debug.py", line 220, in main
calibre(['calibre'])
File "G:\WorkSpace\Programming\Cygwin\home\User\cal ibre-2.23.0\src\calibre\gui_launch.py", line 61, in calibre
with register_with_default_programs():
File "G:\WorkSpace\Programming\Cygwin\home\User\cal ibre-2.23.0\src\calibre\gui_launch.py", line 47, in register_with_default_programs
from calibre.utils.winreg.default_programs import Register
File "G:\WorkSpace\Programming\Cygwin\home\User\cal ibre-2.23.0\src\calibre\utils\winreg\default_programs.p y", line 17, in <module>
from calibre.utils.winreg.lib import Key, HKEY_CURRENT_USER, HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE
File "G:\WorkSpace\Programming\Cygwin\home\User\cal ibre-2.23.0\src\calibre\utils\winreg\lib.py", line 136, in <module>
raise RuntimeError('calibre requires Windows Vista or newer to run, the last version of calibre'
RuntimeError: calibre requires Windows Vista or newer to run, the last version of calibre that could run on Windows XP is version 1.48, av

#8  eschwartz 04-07-2015, 04:42 PM
Hmm, the new Default Programs register is blocking it?

I would hope that an error there didn't block calibre from starting...

OK. In src/calibre/gui_launch.py, change:
Code
def register_with_default_programs(): from calibre.constants import iswindows if iswindows:
from "if iswindows:" to "if False:"

#9  J.C. 04-07-2015, 07:47 PM
Does not seem to have changed it:

Code
calibre 2.23* isfrozen: True is64bit: False
Windows-XP-5.1.2600-SP3 Windows ('32bit', 'WindowsPE')
('Windows', 'XP', '5.1.2600')
Python 2.7.9
Windows: ('XP', '5.1.2600', 'SP3', 'Multiprocessor Free')
Python function terminated unexpectedly calibre requires Windows Vista or newer to run, the last version of calibre that could run on Windows XP is version 1.48, available from: http://download.calibre-ebook.com/ (Error Code: 1)
Traceback (most recent call last): File "site.py", line 132, in main File "site.py", line 109, in run_entry_point File "G:\WorkSpace\Programming\Cygwin\home\User\calibre-2.23.0\src\calibre\debug.py", line 220, in main calibre(['calibre']) File "G:\WorkSpace\Programming\Cygwin\home\User\calibre-2.23.0\src\calibre\gui_launch.py", line 63, in calibre main(args) File "G:\WorkSpace\Programming\Cygwin\home\User\calibre-2.23.0\src\calibre\gui2\main.py", line 489, in main gui_debug=gui_debug) File "G:\WorkSpace\Programming\Cygwin\home\User\calibre-2.23.0\src\calibre\gui2\main.py", line 335, in run_gui from calibre.gui2.ui import Main File "G:\WorkSpace\Programming\Cygwin\home\User\calibre-2.23.0\src\calibre\gui2\ui.py", line 51, in <module> from calibre.gui2.open_with import register_keyboard_shortcuts File "G:\WorkSpace\Programming\Cygwin\home\User\calibre-2.23.0\src\calibre\gui2\open_with.py", line 65, in <module> from calibre.utils.winreg.default_programs import find_programs, friendly_app_name File "G:\WorkSpace\Programming\Cygwin\home\User\calibre-2.23.0\src\calibre\utils\winreg\default_programs.py", line 17, in <module> from calibre.utils.winreg.lib import Key, HKEY_CURRENT_USER, HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE File "G:\WorkSpace\Programming\Cygwin\home\User\calibre-2.23.0\src\calibre\utils\winreg\lib.py", line 136, in <module> raise RuntimeError('calibre requires Windows Vista or newer to run, the last version of calibre'
RuntimeError: calibre requires Windows Vista or newer to run, the last version of calibre that could run on Windows XP is version 1.48, available from: http://download.calibre-ebook.com/

#10  kovidgoyal 04-07-2015, 11:13 PM
@eschawartz: Default programs uses APIs only available on Vista and later. You have to prevent the entire module from being imported.

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