Amazon Has Retired KindleGen

I was just catching up with the #ePrdctn tag over on Twitter when I read that Amazon has removed the KindleGen ebook-creation tool from its website.

I checked the page in question, and he is correct. Amazon has removed the KindleGen download links and replaced them with a notice which reads:

KindleGen is no longer available for download. Please use Kindle Previewer to convert, preview, and validate your eBooks. Kindle Previewer provides the same functionality of KindleGen and, in addition, provides:

  • Latest Kindle Conversion software that provides up-to-date validation for Enhanced Typesetting books (currently available for books in all languages except Simplified Chinese, Japanese, and Russian).
  • Choice of using in Graphical User Interface (GUI) for a visual inspection of your book, or, Command Line Interface (CLI) mode for bulk validation.
  • Faster preview and validation with features like thumbnails, auto-previews, and filters for pages with images, tables, drop caps, and links.

Click here to visit the Kindle Previewer product page

KindleGen was a command-line tool for creating Kindle ebooks. I beleive it launched around 2009, when it was a niche tool which was overshadowed by existing tools such as Mobipocket Creator. It was repeatedly updated over the years, but I don’t think it ever lost its status as a niche tool (there were always dozens of tools which could make Kindle ebooks).

I can’t tell you the last time I used KindleGen; I think it would have to be when I tested it to report on support for Russian. (This was all the way back in 2013!) I never found much use for the tool, but I understand that some publishers had integrated KindleGen into their production process. (Although I am not sure how many did; back when I paid more attention to this, I usually heard calibre mentioned instead.)

Nate Hoffelder

View posts by Nate Hoffelder
Nate Hoffelder is the founder and editor of The Digital Reader. He has been blogging about indie authors since 2010 while learning new tech skills weekly. He fixes author sites, and shares what he learns on The Digital Reader's blog. In his spare time, he fosters dogs for A Forever Home, a local rescue group.

4 Comments

  1. tony5 September, 2020

    The 64-bit version apparently lives on in the Kindle Previewer package. That’s where, according to Literature and Latte’s forum, Scrivener now finds it.
    If anyone’s interested…

    Reply
    1. Nate Hoffelder5 September, 2020

      thanks!

      Reply
    2. Aaron8 September, 2020

      that’s really good to know. As someone who used KG as part of their command line workflow I was stressing about this, but it seems all I have to do is change my path to the KG file in the KP3 package and it runs as smoothly as 2.9.

      Reply
    3. Aaron17 September, 2020

      Interesting, I figured this was at least a 3.0 release of KG, but its not, it’s just a 2015 version of 2.9 (the retired 2.9 download was c. 2012-2013). If the 64-bit is the only difference, why not just keep offering it as a download?

      Reply

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