08 January 2013

Alternate method - Linux, Calibre, e-books (epub) and DRM

You may already have read my previous post, where I examined the utterly ludicrous situation that Linux users are placed in if they want to buy, download and finally read an ebook on their ebook reader.

You may recall me mentioning that I had given you the long version.  This post will cover off on the slightly less long version – this is the Calibre plugins version.

Same as before, note that for this exercise, I'm using Linux Mint 14 (Nadia) XFCE.   Also, I'm assuming that the ebook that you purchased was DRM protected by Adobe's Digital Editions software and is in the .epub format.  Most lending libraries use the .epub format for their ebooks, so if you plan on using a library, this will help.  Sadly, if you have a Kindle, this will not help you.  Apologies, however you may notice later on in this that we will be downloading a plugin for Kindle users.  We'll pretty much leave it at that and go no further with that or any other plugins in this post.

04 January 2013

How to get round DRM issues with e-books in Linux (epub)

What a hassle this post was.  You'd think that in this 21st century world that we live in, there would be less issues with using any kind of media.  Sadly, no.  Ebooks are still possibly the number one reason why I can find myself in the situation where I am likely to throw my computer across the room.

Downloading ebooks and using them via Linux is a diabolically difficult, stupid and possibly legally dangerous situation.  You'd be forgiven for thinking that the reason is merely the reality that desktop Linux users are the one percenters and that the system is biased towards Windows and OSX users, but it's actually more insidious than that – copyright has sabotaged any kind of simplicity here.

This is a joke.  Only in the land of intellectual property law (and possibly high end encryption) does one find that the world is actually getting more complicated, rather than simpler.

I've just spent the best part of the last couple of days attempting to try to load my computer with the usual fixes to ensure that my computer can have the DRM cracked off it, which is necessary for using Linux with DRM-protected ebooks.  It's a time-consuming and wasteful job, and it's made worse by the fact that I totally fluked it the last couple of times and then didn't write the steps down.  Oh sure, there are plenty of web pages out there that have the steps, but no one seems to have the order right.