calibre (software)

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Calibre (software)
Calibre logo 2.png
calibre main interface
Original author(s) Kovid Goyal
Initial release October 31, 2006; 7 years ago (2006-10-31)
Stable release 1.32 (April 11, 2014 (2014-04-11)) [±][1]
Development status Active
Written in Python, C (Qt), CoffeeScript, JavaScript
Operating system Linux, Mac OS X, Windows
Platform Cross-platform
Available in 37 languages (fully or partially translated)
Type E-book management utility (utility software)
License GNU GPL v3

calibre is a free and open source e-book computer software application suite for multiple platforms. It allows users to manage e-book collections, as well as to create, edit and read e-books. It supports a variety of formats, including the common EPUB and Amazon Kindle formats, e-book syncing with a variety of e-book readers and conversion between e-book formats, within DRM restrictions.


Kovid Goyal started developing libprs500 on 31 October 2006, when the Sony PRS-500 was introduced. The main idea was to enable the use of the PRS-500 on Linux. Goyal, with support from the MobileRead forums,[2] reverse-engineered the proprietary file format LRF.

In 2008, the name was changed to calibre, generally written in lowercase even at the beginning of a sentence.[3]


calibre supports many file formats and reading devices. Most of these e-book formats can be edited, for example, by changing the font or the font size and by adding an auto-generated table of contents. Conversion and editing is easily applied to appropriately licensed digital books, but commercially purchased e-books may need to have digital rights management (DRM) restrictions removed. Calibre does not natively support DRM removal. DRM removal may be possible after installing plug-ins with that functionality.[4]

Calibre helps to organize the personal e-book library by allowing the user to sort and group e-books by metadata fields. Metadata can be pulled from many different sources (e.g.,; online booksellers; providers of free ebooks and some periodicals in the US and elsewhere, such as Project Gutenberg, the Internet Archive, and Munsey's; and social networking sites for readers, such as Goodreads and LibraryThing). Search for author, title or keyword in the whole library, is possible. Full-text search is not yet implemented.[5][6]

E-books can be imported into the Calibre library, either by adding files manually, or by syncing an e-book reading device. Online content-sources can be harvested and converted to e-books. This conversion is facilitated by so-called "recipes", short programs written in a Python-based domain-specific language. E-books can then be exported to all supported reading devices via USB or via the integrated mail-server. Mailing e-books enables, for example, sending personal documents to the Amazon Kindle family of e-book readers and tablets.

The content of the library can be remotely accessed by a web browser, if the hosting computer is running. In this case, pushing harvested content from content sources is supported on a regular interval (subscription).

Since version 1.15, released in December 2013, Calibre also contains an application for creating and editing e-books directly, similar to the more full-featured Sigil application, but without that application's WYSIWYG editing mode.

Associated apps[edit]

Several third-party developers offer apps have to help calibre users manage and sync the ebooks on their mobile devices with those loaded in calibre. Examples include:

  • Calibre Companion, an app by MultiPie, Ltd. that "brings complete integration with calibre on your desktop, giving you total control over book management on your device."[7][8]
  • Calibre Library, an app by Tony Maro that allows one to "Connect wirelessly to your Calibre e-book library or other Stanza source. Browse and download your e-books on the go."[9]
  • Calibre Sync, an app by Seng Jea Lee that "seamlessly connects to your Calibre Library and shows up as a connected device on Calibre. If Auto-Connect option is enabled, your device will attempt to connect to the Calibre Library when it is within the home Wi-Fi network. This allows Calibre to automatically update your device with the latest newspaper or magazines you have scheduled for download!"[10]
  • Leger Calibre, an app by J.A. Escobar that provides a browsable interface for Calibre Libraries saved on an SD card.[11][12]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Goyal, Kovid (2014-04-11). "calibre - What's new". Retrieved 2014-04-11. 
  2. ^ "Mobileread Forums". Retrieved 14 July 2012. 
  3. ^ "calibre - About". 2006-10-31. Retrieved 2013-07-29. 
  4. ^ Sorrel, Charlie. "How To Strip DRM from Kindle E-Books and Others". Retrieved 4 August 2012. 
  5. ^ "User named kovidgoyal on fulltext search in TODO list". 2010-08-01. 
  6. ^ "User named Kovid Goyal (kovid) on fulltext search request". 2011-05-23. 
  7. ^ MultiPie, Ltd. "Calibre Companion". Google Play. Retrieved August 2013. 
  8. ^ John Jermey (September 30, 2012). "Calibre Tools For Your Android Device". Teleread. 
  9. ^ Tony Maro. "Calibre Library description". Google Play. Retrieved August 2013. 
  10. ^ Seng Jea Lee. "Calibre Sync". Google Play. Retrieved August 2013. 
  11. ^ John Jermey (September 30, 2012). "Calibre Tools For Your Android Device". Teleread. 
  12. ^ J.A. Escobar. "Leger Calibre". Google Play. Retrieved August 2013. 

External links[edit]