Kobo Desktop

I quite like the Kobo application on Android, so was disappointed to see that there isn’t a Linux client. Until I found there soon will be!

You can download the pre-release Ubuntu binary from here.

I’ve got it working on Fedora14 by roughly using these instructions.

Essentially you extract the .deb file into /opt/kobodesktop and create a shell script to set the environment variables to point to the statically-linked Qt/OpenSSL libs, and a desktop launcher file to run that from your Applications->Office menu.

/opt/kobodesktop/kobo.sh

#!/bin/sh

QT_PLUGIN_PATH=/opt/kobodesktop/usr/local/Trolltech/Qt-4.6.2/plugins 

LD_LIBRARY_PATH=/opt/kobodesktop/usr/lib:/opt/kobodesktop/usr/local/Kobo:/opt/kobodesktop/usr/local/Trolltech/Qt-4.6.2/lib 

/opt/kobodesktop/usr/local/Kobo/Kobo

/opt/kobodesktop/kobo.desktop

[Desktop Entry]
Name=Kobo Desktop eReader
Exec=/opt/kobodesktop/kobo.sh
Terminal=false
Type=Application
Icon=/opt/kobodesktop/usr/local/Kobo/Kobo.png
Categories=Office;

Apparently you can run the Amazon Kindle for PC app under WINE (instructions) but that’s no solution to me, and the ebook reader that comes with Calibre I don’t really like and FBReader is pretty basic too, so this is quite useful – you can even browse the Kobo store and sync with your Android.

Update: Calibre is now at version 0.7.52

Rawhiiiiiiiiide!

No, not the cowboy series, but the Fedora development repository.

As part of my investigation into why large transfers are hard locking my PC, I was advised to install the kernel from Rawhide, which also meant enabling the RPMFusion Rawhide repository to pull in the Nvidia modules. So first we install the repo:

yum install fedora-release-rawhide.noarch

Then we edit the repo files to enable them but limit them to kernel/nvidia RPM’s (we don’t want to upgrade to Fedora 15 Alpha!) and not debuginfo/source:

/etc/yum.repos.d/fedora-rawhide.repo

[rawhide]
name=Fedora - Rawhide - Developmental packages for the next Fedora release
failovermethod=priority
#baseurl=http://download.fedoraproject.org/pub/fedora/linux/development/$basearch/os/
mirrorlist=https://mirrors.fedoraproject.org/metalink?repo=rawhide&arch=$basearch
enabled=1
gpgcheck=0
gpgkey=file:///etc/pki/rpm-gpg/RPM-GPG-KEY-fedora-$basearch file:///etc/pki/rpm-gpg/RPM-GPG-KEY-fedora-$basearch
includepkgs=kernel*

/etc/yum.repos.d/rpmfusion-nonfree-rawhide.repo

[rpmfusion-nonfree-rawhide]
name=RPM Fusion for Fedora Rawhide - Nonfree
#baseurl=http://download1.rpmfusion.org/nonfree/fedora/development/$basearch/os/
mirrorlist=http://mirrors.rpmfusion.org/mirrorlist?repo=nonfree-fedora-rawhide&arch=$basearch
enabled=1
gpgcheck=1
gpgkey=file:///etc/pki/rpm-gpg/RPM-GPG-KEY-rpmfusion-nonfree-fedora-latest-$basearch file:///etc/pki/rpm-gpg/RPM-GPG-KEY-rpmfusion-nonfree-fedora-rawhide-$basearch
includepkgs=*nvidia*

Then running “yum update” pulled in the 2.6.38-0.rc7.git2.3.fc16.x86_64 kernel from Fedora 16 (and Nvidia modules) and it does seem to have fixed the issue – I did a full rsync backup and a couple of 1.3Gb NFS transfers to test.

VirtualBox works fine too thankfully – dkms/akmod rebuilt the kernel modules upon reboot and my CentOS 5.5/Ubuntu 9.10/OEL6 guest VM’s work fine.

Mum’s thinking of getting an Amazon Kindle3 for her birthday, and it seems they now allow reading of regular PDF/epub files not just Amazon’s DRM-protected Mobi format, and there’s a Linux program called Calibre that enables you to convert between the ebook formats, including .cbz comic books.

Update: the new kernel doesn’t seem to have fixed the issue, I’ve had several crashes today without much network traffic. Starting to wonder if its an Nvidia driver issue or a hardware issue like HDD/PSU/RAM. I ordered a new PCIe NIC with Via Velocity VT6130 chipset instead of Realtek RTL8111D but doubt its going to fix anything now 🙁

I’ve also been playing with the Kindle and Kobo Android apps and downloading a shedload of free ebooks from Amazon to read on my phone – even got Calibre to convert useless PDF’s to more portable epub files. The Kobo website is useless as its throws DRM-protected PDF’s at you (for free books!) but the Android app just downloads unencrypted epubs.