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Point Calibre to Folder
#1  Jafofubar 05-28-2020, 02:33 PM
Hi all,
My computer died so I had to rebuild it. I have a back up of the folders/files but not an export. I thought there was a way to point Calibre to a folder and it would recognize it as a Calibre library of books. I use SyncThing to sync folders across computers. I've reinstalled Calibre and now I need to point Calibre to the folders where the books are but I can't remember how to do it. Everything I've tried wants to create a new empty library or import a library etc. I just want to point Calibre to the folder where the files are if possible. I have two libraries so the structure is
C:\Books\Mine
C:\Books\Hers
I thought I could point Calibre to the Books folder and it would see the libraries.
Any help would be appreciated
Thanks!
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#2  DNSB 05-28-2020, 04:28 PM
Quote Jafofubar
Hi all,
My computer died so I had to rebuild it. I have a back up of the folders/files but not an export. I thought there was a way to point Calibre to a folder and it would recognize it as a Calibre library of books. I use SyncThing to sync folders across computers. I've reinstalled Calibre and now I need to point Calibre to the folders where the books are but I can't remember how to do it. Everything I've tried wants to create a new empty library or import a library etc. I just want to point Calibre to the folder where the files are if possible. I have two libraries so the structure is
C:\Books\Mine
C:\Books\Hers
I thought I could point Calibre to the Books folder and it would see the libraries.
Any help would be appreciated
Thanks!
You will need to click on the Library icon and select switch/create library. Select Use the previously existing library at the new location, browse to the library folder (Mine or Hers) and click OK.

Note that this will only work if these are calibre library folders. Easy way to tell is if in the the root of the folder, you see a metadata.db file.

See attached image.
create_library.png 
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#3  Jafofubar 05-28-2020, 07:34 PM
Quote DNSB
You will need to click on the Library icon and select switch/create library. Select Use the previously existing library at the new location, browse to the library folder (Mine or Hers) and click OK.

Note that this will only work if these are calibre library folders. Easy way to tell is if in the the root of the folder, you see a metadata.db file.

See attached image.
Thank you for your reply. I've tried that and it works but only for one of the subfolders. Then when I try to add the other one, Calibre just switches to the new folder I'm pointing it to and ignores the first one. It only seems to want to add one of the folders. Both subfolders have a metadata.db file in them. As I said, I had this working before but I can't remember how I did it. Although the last time I did this it could have been several versions of Calibre ago and something has changed. I don't know. I'm probably just missing something simple.
Thanks again!
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#4  theducks 05-28-2020, 10:00 PM
That is not a valid (nested) config.
Libraries are self contained

They may exist ALONGSIDE other Libraries.
my books/lib1
my books/lib2
OTOH a VL is just a view. There is only 1 Metadata.db
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#5  DNSB 05-29-2020, 01:13 AM
Quote Jafofubar
Thank you for your reply. I've tried that and it works but only for one of the subfolders. Then when I try to add the other one, Calibre just switches to the new folder I'm pointing it to and ignores the first one. It only seems to want to add one of the folders. Both subfolders have a metadata.db file in them. As I said, I had this working before but I can't remember how I did it. Although the last time I did this it could have been several versions of Calibre ago and something has changed. I don't know. I'm probably just missing something simple.
Thanks again!
That is the expected behaviour. You have two physical calibre libraries. You can not access them both at the same time. You can switch between them using the library icon menu. The icon should display the name of the currently active library (Mine or Hers). In my case, the active libraries are Intake and Calibre Library and I switch between them rather often. If you want to combine both libraries into a single physical library, take a look at Virtual Libraries in the calibre documentation and decide if it's worth the effort.
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#6  Jafofubar 05-29-2020, 08:33 AM
Quote theducks
That is not a valid (nested) config.
Libraries are self contained

They may exist ALONGSIDE other Libraries.
my books/lib1
my books/lib2
OTOH a VL is just a view. There is only 1 Metadata.db
I'm not sure I understand what you are saying here but I think I do. I have 2 libraries, both in separate folders, both with their own metadata.db.
C:\Books\Mine\metadata.db
C:\Books\Hers\metadata.db
And of course there are folders within each library subfolder that contain the books. I want Calibre to see those two libraries so that I can flip between them in Calibre but I can't figure out how. It only seems to want me to add one library (folder). I'm thinking as if there were and Option to "Add Existing Library" or something and just put the path in and Calibre would see it, and then I would repeat that and add then other library. I don't think that's there but that's what I want to do. I did it so easily last time that I never though anything of it and this time I'm stumped for some reason. It's hard to describe things via written text and just as hard for people reading it to figure out what you're trying to describe!
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#7  Jafofubar 05-29-2020, 08:36 AM
Quote DNSB
That is the expected behaviour. You have two physical calibre libraries. You can not access them both at the same time. You can switch between them using the library icon menu. The icon should display the name of the currently active library (Mine or Hers). In my case, the active libraries are Intake and Calibre Library and I switch between them rather often. If you want to combine both libraries into a single physical library, take a look at Virtual Libraries in the calibre documentation and decide if it's worth the effort.
That's what i want to do and was doing before my computer died. I want to switch between them using the library icon menu. But I can't get both of them into Calibre at the same time. It only wants one at a time.
Thanks
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#8  theducks 05-29-2020, 09:40 AM
Quote Jafofubar
I'm not sure I understand what you are saying here but I think I do. I have 2 libraries, both in separate folders, both with their own metadata.db.
C:\Books\Mine\metadata.db
C:\Books\Hers\metadata.db
And of course there are folders within each library subfolder that contain the books. I want Calibre to see those two libraries so that I can flip between them in Calibre but I can't figure out how. It only seems to want me to add one library (folder). I'm thinking as if there were and Option to "Add Existing Library" or something and just put the path in and Calibre would see it, and then I would repeat that and add then other library. I don't think that's there but that's what I want to do. I did it so easily last time that I never though anything of it and this time I'm stumped for some reason. It's hard to describe things via written text and just as hard for people reading it to figure out what you're trying to describe!
That is proper.
I misunderstood. I thought you had merged
BTW these ARE complete Libraries (Author folders in the same place as metadata.db)?


The option is there:
On the Library Icon: Create/Switch: USE EXISTING: <select the others path to metadata.dbs FOLDER. AKA Hers>
Now Calibre will switch AND Mine will appear on the Library Icons 'quick switch' list. click that and Hers, will be on the list (The active Library can't be switched TO )
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#9  Jafofubar 05-29-2020, 12:47 PM
Quote theducks
That is proper.
I misunderstood. I thought you had merged
BTW these ARE complete Libraries (Author folders in the same place as metadata.db)?


The option is there:
On the Library Icon: Create/Switch: USE EXISTING: <select the others path to metadata.dbs FOLDER. AKA Hers>
Now Calibre will switch AND Mine will appear on the Library Icons 'quick switch' list. click that and Hers, will be on the list (The active Library can't be switched TO )
I've tried that option too. The option is to 'Use the previously existing library at the new location'. When I try to use that option it either tells me that the folder is not empty (which it isn't) or that the library already exists there. If I use that option to add the second library, it changes that ONE current library to be the new library I'm trying to add. I'd like to be able to list all the things I've tried for all of you to see but I've tried so many things that I can't remember them all until you try to help me and then I try it again.
In that same area, when I click the down arrow beside the Library icon and choose 'Switch/create Library', if there was an option there to 'Add Existing Library' and I could just point it to a folder with the metadata.db file, and then do it again for the second folder, I'd be all set. But that option is not there so maybe I just can't do what I'm trying to do anymore.
I have read a lot of the Calibre help documents and one of them says 'do not use a networked drive' and goes on to talk about the problems it will create. I'm not using a networked drive but I am using a local folder that is sync'd from another computer and I'm trying to basically use the same libraries on two computers. The document I read said I'm asking for trouble doing that. I've been doing it that way for a long time without issues but maybe I've just been lucky.
So I'm going to remove all the libraries, create new empty libraries and copy all the books from their current location into the "new" libraries and then use Calibre on one computer from now on. It's not as convenient for me because of the setup of my computers, but if that's all that works, that's what I'll have to do.
Thanks for your help. If you or anyone can come up with something else for me to try, I'd appreciate it and will give it a try
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#10  gbm 05-29-2020, 02:56 PM
Quote Jafofubar
I've tried that option too. The option is to 'Use the previously existing library at the new location'. When I try to use that option it either tells me that the folder is not empty (which it isn't) or that the library already exists there. If I use that option to add the second library, it changes that ONE current library to be the new library I'm trying to add. I'd like to be able to list all the things I've tried for all of you to see but I've tried so many things that I can't remember them all until you try to help me and then I try it again.
In that same area, when I click the down arrow beside the Library icon and choose 'Switch/create Library', if there was an option there to 'Add Existing Library' and I could just point it to a folder with the metadata.db file, and then do it again for the second folder, I'd be all set. But that option is not there so maybe I just can't do what I'm trying to do anymore.
I have read a lot of the Calibre help documents and one of them says 'do not use a networked drive' and goes on to talk about the problems it will create. I'm not using a networked drive but I am using a local folder that is sync'd from another computer and I'm trying to basically use the same libraries on two computers. The document I read said I'm asking for trouble doing that. I've been doing it that way for a long time without issues but maybe I've just been lucky.
So I'm going to remove all the libraries, create new empty libraries and copy all the books from their current location into the "new" libraries and then use Calibre on one computer from now on. It's not as convenient for me because of the setup of my computers, but if that's all that works, that's what I'll have to do.
Thanks for your help. If you or anyone can come up with something else for me to try, I'd appreciate it and will give it a try
From the calibre user manual:

https://manual.calibre-ebook.com/gui.html#library

Quote
The Library action allows you to create, switch between, rename or remove a Library. calibre allows you to create as many libraries as you wish. You could, for instance, create a fiction library, a non-fiction library, a foreign language library, a project library, or any structure that suits your needs. Libraries are the highest organizational structure within calibre. Each library has its own set of books, tags, categories and base storage location.

Switch/create library¬Ö: Allows you to; a) connect to a pre-existing calibre library at another location, b) create an empty library at a new location or, c) move the current library to a newly specified location.
bernie
Screenshot from 2020-05-29 14-58-31.png 
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