[APP] FBReader "Sync" App - FBSync v1.0.26 (Beta)
Recently I've started using two seperate Android devices to read books
using FBReaderJ for Android, a NookColor, and my phone, a Sprint EVO
3D. Very quickly, I ran into a problem. I read the same books on both
devices, so I ended up spending a lot of time looking for my place
whenever I switched devices (I used the NC at home, and my phone
I imagine that this must be a problem quite a few people are having,
or will be having as android devices become more popular.
So, I wrote an android app to synchronize my place in each book
between the two devices.
App Name: FBSync
Current Version: v1.0.26
1.0.26 - Removed Auto-Sync feature (hopefully just temporarily. I want to get this working, but the FBReader API just doesn't provide enough functionality to get it working smoothly). Removed syncing of "recent" books (It caused more trouble than it was worth, sorry, you will have to manually open your book if you changed books on another device). Added a "Sync" item to the FBReader menu that pulls up FBSync.
1.0.24 - Updated Dropbox support to use latest Dropbox API. Fixed Auto-Sync feature to properly sync new book positions (broken due to a change in FBReader). Due to limitations in FBReader, the Auto-Sync feature is still rather rough.
1.0.23 - Added a Dropbox support for your book position data, an Auto-Sync feature that makes use of the FBReader API, and (in theory) the program has been translated into Russian (thanks Dmitry!). If you have set up your own synchronization server, you will need to update the PHP files to the files in the attached sync.zip
1.0.19 - Fixed another bug that affected Honeycomb devices. Confirmed working on an Acer Iconia A500.
1.0.18 - Fixed a bug that affected Honeycomb devices (I hope!)
1.0.17 - Added "Alternate Sync URL" functionality for those people who want to set up their own sync server instead of using mine. See below for more instructions.
1) Root. Your devices must be rooted. This application only uses
root for two things. First, it uses root to get access to the
FBReaderJ books database, and second, it uses root to kill the
FBReaderJ process before it syncs the data (it has to kill the process
to force FBReader to reload the database).
2) FBReaderJ must be installed on the device (you will be prompted to
install it if you haven't already when you load my app)
3) You must have already opened FBReaderJ at least once, and viewed
it's library (Menu button, "Library"). This creates the databases
that my application needs.
An older version is available on Google Play, but the latest version can always be found at the bottom of this post.
Instructions for Use:
As of v1.0.23, you have the option of either syncing book positions to my web server, or to Dropbox. If you choose to use Dropbox, it will create a single file on your Dropbox account (under \FBSync) that contains the book position data.
If you desire to sync the book positions to my web server, you can also enable a new, experimental "Auto-Sync" feature that syncs your position whenever you open or close FBReader (or a book in FBReader). This functionality only works when using my web server, it does not currently work with Dropbox.
The auto-sync feature make use of FBReader's API and makes FBSync work as a plug-in for FBReader. Unfortunately the API does not contain all of the features needed to completely remove the root requirement for FBSync.
If you are going to use my web server to sync:
After you install it, go into the settings (blue icon, or menu/
settings), and enter an email (doesn't have to be an email, any unique
string will work) and numeric pin # (this isn't secure, so don't use a
pin you care about). The email/pin is just to uniquely identify you.
You should use the same email/pin on each device.
On the same screen, you can choose to sync the actual book files to Dropbox. Since your Dropbox account is used, only your account can access the books, if
you choose to sync them. It only uploads/downloads the books when it
needs them, so it may take a while the first time you sync, but after
that it shouldn't take more than a minute MAX (my typical sync times
for 90 books is about 5-10 seconds)
Click the middle, orange icon, to begin the sync process.
If this is the first time you've synced since selecting the "Enable Dropbox" setting, you will be prompted to allow FBSync access to your dropbox account.
The sync process first uploads, then downloads. It only updates the book's "place" on the web (or Dropbox) if it's farther ahead than the web's "place" for the book.
If you are using the Auto-Sync function, the above statement is not true. It always saves the exact position of your book upon closure of FbReader or closing the book.
This program is still in beta. I have used and tested it extensively,
but I'm not liable if you manage to break it somehow. Since it does
alter the data in FBReader's databases (it does not, and never will,
alter the database structures), it is possible, but very unlikely,
that it could lose your book's places. I would suggest that you back
up FBReaderJ using something like Titanium Backup before you start
using FBSync, just to be on the safe side.
The synchronized book position data is currently hosted on my personal web server, or your Dropbox account (as of v1.0.23). Your book files are only stored on your Dropbox account.
UPDATE: As of v1.0.17, I added the ability to define your own "Sync Server". Here's how to use it:
In the Settings (Menu, Settings), there is a new option "Alternate Sync URL" where you can enter your own URL. Leave it blank if you want to use my server.
If you want to use your own, you will need the file attached to this post. I wouldn't recommend trying to set up your own server unless you are pretty comfortable with web servers, php, and mySql.
Sync.zip contains a .SQL script, and several .PHP files that are required to set up your own sync server.
The primary thing that you need to set up your own Sync server is a HTTP Web server that supports mySql and PHP.
On your server, create a new mySql database (name doesn't matter, just make sure there's a user attached to it that has insert/update/delete rights), then run the sql code in the sync.sql to create the two tables that are needed.
Edit the common.php file and replace the '' values in this block:
$dbhost = 'localhost';
$dbuser = ''; // Fill out the database user name here
$dbpass = ''; // Fill out the database user password here
$dbname = ''; // Fill out the database name here
with the correct values for your server. $dbhost can probably remain 'localhost'.
Then create a directory on your web server that is accessible from your devices, and put the 5 PHP files into it.
Launch FBSync, hit Menu, Settings, click the "Alternate Sync URL", and type in the URL that points to the directory you put those PHP files in (ex; http://sync.splitmatrix.net/alternate_sync
). You must start it with http://,
and it should not end in a /.
After you enter the URL, save out of it, back out to the main FBSync window, and click the Sync button. If you set up everything correctly, it should sync to your server now instead of mine.
Please let me know of any issues you find, or any improvements you
6/27/2012 Edit - Updated Sync.zip to remove some buggy code from addbook.php