Problem syncing kindle for pc content to Kindle 3.
January 9, 2011 4:23 PM   Subscribe

I got a kindle 3 for Christmas and since I'm trying to limit my spending, I'm trying to take advantage of the free books available on Amazon and sites like that offers free books in the kindle (awz) format. I also downloaded kindle for pc onto my home laptop. So I downloaded 3 or 4 awz format books from onto my kindle for pc no problem. I then connected my kindle 3 to my computer via usb and tried to sync them to no avail. The books that I've downloaded directly to the kindle 3 from Amazon show up as "archived items" on my kindle for pc interface (and did before the attempted sync), but I can not get the books that were loaded directly to the pc onto the kindle 3.

I've checked both Amazon's kindle site, read the user manual, and did a quick search on the mobile readers forum, but really couldn't find anything. Unsurprisingly the amazon site/manual does not deal with downloading books from other sources and it seems that the threads on mobile reader that looked promising weren't helpful (it seems that most people were having problems because they were trying to download epubs or other non kindle supported formats).

I feel like I've overlooked something incredibly simple and I'll probably do a forehead smack once someone (hopefully) posts a solution, but I feel like I've wasted enough time trying to figure this out on my own.
posted by kaybdc to Technology (12 answers total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: I helped my mom figure this out over Christmas, and all we had to do with non-Amazon files was copy and paste them into the appropriate folder on the Kindle. When it's connected to your pc, it shows up as a Device under your Computer menu, and you can access the folders from there.
posted by ella wren at 4:31 PM on January 9, 2011

Response by poster: I was able to do that with a PDF that I had downloaded (actually didn't have to copy it, just moved into the kindle3's document folder). I'll try that out, but shouldn't it be able to sync like itunes for example? And I also understand that on the kindle sync means keep all ebooks open to the same page on all devices, but there is also the general sync icon which seems to imply that it is possible to sync in the way that I'm discussing since also says something about searching for new items.
posted by kaybdc at 4:36 PM on January 9, 2011

Non-Amazon books go in the "documents" subdirectory (same as where all the amazon books go, actually), right off the root. (This is true of my K2, at least; I can't imagine why they would have changed it.) Just drag and drop.

The Amazon sync to last-read page feature will only work with Amazon-bought books, if that's also what you're asking.
posted by sineala at 4:37 PM on January 9, 2011 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Are you all doing this from "kindle for pc" because it won't let me copy the books or drag and drop them into the kindle documents file.
posted by kaybdc at 4:41 PM on January 9, 2011

Best answer: I'm talking about just using your regular operating system. Open the folder (in Windows) where you've got the ebooks you want to transfer and drag 'em into the documents folder on your Kindle. You do it by hand, not within Kindle for PC.

The "searching for new items" you get is when the Kindle attempts to connect to the Amazon servers to grab anything you've bought lately. It isn't syncing with non-Amazon books on your computer. I don't think it can.

If you want an iTunes-ish manager for your ebooks, your best bet is calibre, whose functions include being able to dump books from your local library to your attached Kindle (or email them, if you have WiFi). I don't know if/how it interacts with the Kindle PC software.
posted by sineala at 4:44 PM on January 9, 2011 [1 favorite]

(Clarification: by "local library" I mean whatever ebooks you have on your computer in the folder Calibre knows about; ebook library books from your library are not supported. Anyway, you can load up your public domain books in calibre, attach your Kindle, and hit the transfer button to do it that way, if you'd rather not do it manually.)
posted by sineala at 4:47 PM on January 9, 2011

No, just open File Explorer (on Windows) and do it. Just open the Kindle (When connected via USB) the same way you would open a USB drive or a hard disk. There'll be a folder called 'Documents'. Drop your files in there.

You can also do the same with any file you get from Amazon via the 'Save to Computer' option on the 'Manage my Kindle' screen
posted by GilloD at 4:50 PM on January 9, 2011

Response by poster: Thanks Sineala; that worked. I guess that I thought that since I specifically chose books that were azw formatted books and they downloaded without problem to the kindle for pc, that there would be a more elegant interface between the two (for lack of a better way of explaining it). I have calibre downloaded and was going to use it in case I needed to convert non-DRM protected epubs to mobi. Maybe I'll resort to using it in lieu of kindle for pc.
posted by kaybdc at 5:01 PM on January 9, 2011

I drag and drop, or sometimes let Calibre do the sync. Two other options:

Email the file to your Kindle. The email address is configurable in your Amazon account. Works great, no need to even plug in a USB cable!

Install the Magic Catalog by using the Kindle expiremental browser to download and install It's a Kindle book that consists of links to download free Project Gutenberg books. Works great.
posted by Nelson at 5:20 PM on January 9, 2011 [1 favorite]

Any *.mobi or *.prc files also display perfectly on the Kindle. Don't restrict yourself to *.awz files.
posted by Chasuk at 5:31 PM on January 9, 2011

Yeah, if they're not purchased directly from Amazon, the only ways to get them on there are to put them in the Documents file using your PC file system, email them, or download .awz, and .mobi files directly in the Kindle browser. Try the Baen free library! Or save long web pages with Instapaper and it will email them to your Kindle later.

(Incidentally, if you change an .html file extension to .txt and put it in the documents folder of the Kindle, it will render perfectly fine).
posted by timepiece at 1:54 PM on January 10, 2011

I'm a bit late but wanted to let anyone reading this to know that people browsing can use (a mobile-device optimiced version of that site) on their Kindles to download any of the "Mobipocket/Kindle" books directly to the Kindle without having to use file manager or needing to know all books or documents just go into the "documents" folder.

This is also true of etc. and other sites.

- Andrys
posted by andrys at 12:50 AM on July 29, 2011

« Older Am I crazy for sticking by my boyfriend through...   |   Up the river without a guide Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.