Broken Workflow remove DRM from Kindle Books using Hazel & Calibre

ok this was a great automatic workflow type thing that I had running. I remove DRM from my kindle books so I have a backup copy. I am not trying to steal them.

What used to work was I had Calibre with the drm removal tools installed. I would download all my new purchased on Kindle for mac and I had a hazel rule that if teh extension in a particular folder was .azw it made a copy into a Calibre import folder and then I had calibre set up to automatically import and remove DRM from every thing in that folder.

Now Amazon puts book files in subfolders and it’s not working any more.

I’m wondering if anyone has a similar set of actions that will automate the drm removal from all the new kindle file types.

It sounds like what you want to do is make sure that your rule processes everything in the folder that Hazel is watching, and any subdirectories, right?

If so, check out this article in the Hazel manual about how to process sub folders with Hazel.

Also, would you mind sharing the hazel rule? :slight_smile:

OK I’m way down a rabbit hole and can’t climb out…

The solution to process sub folders in Hazel works just fine. But then I ran into the problem that the newer version of Kindle books consist of a different format and Calibre cannot import them automatically. There are tools to decryot and de-DRM the new files but they require that you either individually navigate to each sub folder and select the .azw file by hand or create a zip file in a special format that contains all the books. Several hours of trying to figure out how to automate that process and I gave up.

So then I backed out to what is the goal:

I want to have, in Calibre, a clean set of all my kindle books all without DRM as a spare backup copy.

That requires that I know where all the book files are, know which ones have already been entered into Calibre and which ones are not yet entered. So I decided to first figure out which books were missing from my Calibre Library as compared to the Kindle library.

Simple solution, get the 2 sets of lists into files and compare them by hand. After all, I have about 800 books purchased in Kindle and about 700 in Calibra. I’m only missing about 100 books, not too many to add in by hand if I can figure out which ones they are!

I know all the book files are in the My Kindle Content folder in Documents in my user space.
I can cause Calibre to export a list of all the books in my library.

I cannot for the life of me get the same sort of list of all kindle books. All the various options that used to work, like pulling the content and devices page into developer tools and then cutting and pasting and parsing out the titles and authors no longer work since Amazon limits the display of digital content to only 200 items per page. Order history will not export your digital content history.

Lots of places say to import all the books into Shelfari (which no longer exists but is now bundled into Goodreads) and then download the .csv file.
Several issues with this process:
To enter your Amazon books into Goodreads requires that you go and individually select each one and add it to a shelf or rate it. With hundreds of kindle books my simple test showed that I’d have to spend approximately 2 hours just to enter in all my kindle books into Goodreads! I could not find any sort of bulk import tool. But even if I could get the books in there I get to the next issue. That makes all your book purchases public, something I do not want.

Looked at LibraryThing because it is private. Signed up but system doesn’t recognize me for some reason and wants me to sign up. Gave up trying to get actually recognized as a user.

And that doesn’t yet deal with the fact that the files and folders in My Kindle Content have cryptic names like B00A3U3C9I_EBOK.azw or B00AA20E5Y_EBOK so I can’t tell what book is actually covered by that file. If I try to import it into Calibre and it already exists I can find out but I really don’t want to have to try to import all 800 or so books and there are still the issues with the new file format as described on top.

I’m just going around in circles, I think I’ll head outside now and fill sheep water tanks. At least I’ll feel like I accomplished SOMETHING today!

Why don’t you try using an older version of kindle for Mac? I use version 1.17.0. In my experience all of the books I download are .azw and calibre/DeDrm has no problem decrypting seems that any version above 1.17.0 stores the files in another format that dedrm cannot read.

That’s a good solution if I still had that rev of the Kindle software. I don’t and I can’t seem to find it from a reliable source.

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And today’s update:

Pulled out the very old backup of my system, found that I had Kindle for mac version 1.17.1 .dmg file, installed it on my laptop, registered the device with Amazon, downloaded all my books to it.

Now I’m working toget Calibre installed on it, add the DRM removal tools and create a new Calibre Library.

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