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All Things about Kindle KFX Format

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Although Kindle KFX format has been released in 2015, the Amazon Kindle books readers were deeply affected by the Kindle KFX format at the beginning of 2017 when the Kindle for PC/MAC has been updated automatically to version 1.19. From then on, almost all Kindle books downloaded via Kindle desktop application version 1.19 are in KFX format. Also since then, people find that the Kindle books cannot be decrypted or converted, but only can be open with the Kindle devices or Kindle related applications. So what’s the Kindle KFX? This is what I want to share with you guys. I will discuss the problems you may concern about the Kindle KFX. As the old saying goes “Know thyself, ever-victorious”, let's unveil mysterious yashmak of Kindle KFX format.

1, Kindle KFX Format Features
2, Kindle KFX Format supported devices and apps
3, How to avoid Kindle KFX Format
4, How to remove Kindle KFX DRM
5, How to open/read Kindle KFX with Calibre

Part 1 Kindle KFX Format Features

Kindle KFX format is the successor to the azw3 format and released with the Kindle Paperwhite 3. This new format was featured a new enhanced typesetting engine and new Bookerly font. The Amazon Kindle books with enhanced typesetting enabled feature can be downloaded in Kindle KFX format.

To further dig, the Amazon uses a new image format called JXR which is higher compressed than JPG.

For downloaded content of the Kindle KFX format, you will not see a single book under the My Kindle Content folder, but a subfolder included the whole content of the book.

For the Kindle KFX eBook downloaded via Kindle for PC/MAC, it contains the content like the following picture.

Kindle KFX download via Kindle for pc/mac

For the Kindle KFX downloaded via Kindle device, it will be a little bit different.

The encrypted eBook content is stored directly in Document folder of my Kindle voyage with the title as: Telling Lies (A Sam Mason Mystery Book 1)_B06XQ655PC.kfx.

At the Document folder, you can also find the .sdr folder with the same name as the book title: Telling Lies (A Sam Mason Mystery Book 1)_B06XQ655PC.sdr. All userful contents of this book is stored at a subfolder named assets. Below are the contents in assets folder.

Kindle content device

If you miss any file, the book cannot be considered as an integrated book.

Part 2 Kindle KFX Format Supported Devices and Apps

Although Kindle KFX has been released for a while, not all Kindle devices or Kindle reader apps support this format because it is use special rendering techique. The following table shows the Kindle kfx format supported devices and apps.

 

Kindle devices with firmware<5.8

Kindle devices with firmware=5.8

Kindle for PC v1.19 and above

Kindle for PC v1.21

Kindle for iOS v6.03

Kindle for Android v7.2

Kindle Previewer v2.94

kfx

×

v(with extension .kfx)

v

v

×

v(with extension .kfx)

×

v: KFX format can be read on the device or with the app.
×: KFX format cannot be read on the device or with the app.

3, How to Avoid Kindle KFX Format

Although the KFX format has many new features, but it seems it is not welcome by many readers as it has much more limitations than before. Here I list two ways to avoid Kindle KFX format.

Method 1: Degrade your Kindle for PC/MAC to version 1.17 or older version

From the Kindle for PC/MAC version 1.19, the download books are mostly in Kindle KFX format. So we just have to keep our Kindle for PC/MAC at an old version and the download kindle books will not be in Kindle KFX format. If your Kindle for PC/MAC has already been updated to version 1.19 or even the lastest version, you have to follow the below steps to downgrade it.

Step 1: Deregister you Kindle for PC/MAC

Launch your Kindle for PC/MAC, click on "Tools"--"Options"--"General"--"Registration"--"Deregister". Now it will pop up a new window as below.

Kindle for pc deregister

Then check "I understand……this device" and then click on "Deregister". Now your Kindle account has been deregistered and all downloaded books have been deleted. To ensure all books have been deleted, you can go to My Kindle Content folder at your computer and delete all file at this folder.

Step 2: Uninstall the Kindle for PC/MAC

Right click on the Kindle icon at your desktop, select "open file location", then find the "uninstall.exe" and double click it to uninstall your Kindle.

Step 3: Install the Kindle for PC/MAC version 1.17

Download the old version of Kindle for PC/MAC. Since these install packages are not available at Amazon now, I have collect them for you.

Download the Kindle for PC version1.17.

Download the Kindle for Mac version 1.17.

When you have installed the old version of Kindle at your computer, just run it. Then click “Tools”--“General”--uncheck “Automatically install updates when they are available without asking me”--Click on “Save”. Your Kindle for PC/MAC will stop update automatically.

From now on the books you download will be in mobi, azw or other normal Kindle formats, but not Kindle KFX.

Method 2: Stop the renderer-test function at Kindle for PC/MAC

Note:
This method will prevent Kindle for PC/MAC version from version 1.19 to 1.24 from downloading the Kindle books as KFX format, but it can not be applied to Kindle for PC version 1.25 and newer.

From the Kindle for PC/MAC version 1.19, the book with enhanced typesetting function can be downloaded as Kindle KFX format. Do you know the real reason? That’s because the Kindle desktop application use a special rendering technique which called renderer-test. If we stop this module from working, the books downloaded via the new Kindle for PC/MAC will not be in Kindle KFX format. Before the following operation, please close your Kindle for PC/MAC at first.

If you are using Windows system, just open a command window and then copy and paste the following command to your command window and click “Enter” to disable the renderer-test program.

ren %localappdata%\Amazon\Kindle\application\renderer-test.exe renderer-test.xxx

Or you can just right click the Kindle icon at your desktop, then choose “open file location”, then find renderer-test.exe at the open folder, and change the program to renderer-test.xxx.

If you are using the Mac system, open your terminal, copy and paste the following code to the terminal window. Then click on “Enter”.

chmod -x /Applications/Kindle.app/Contents/MacOS/renderer-test

Some of you may come across the chmod command fails with a permission error like the below picture.

renderer test excute

When you enter ls –l /Applications/Kindle.app/Contents/Macos/, you will see that you do not have the root privilege to stop executing the renderer-test program. So you have to elevate the current user privileges to root user privileges. Copy and paste the command Sudo chmod -x /Applications/Kindle.app/Contents/MacOS/renderer-test then click “Enter” and fill in your current user’s passwords and click “Enter”. Then enter ls –l /Applications/Kindle.app/Contents/Macos/, you will see that renderer-test program stops working.

renderer test 2

When the command has been executed, the book you previously downloaded in KFX format will no longer open. You have to remove them all from “My Kindle Content” and re-download the books again. Good news is that the downloaded books will not be in Kindle KFX format this time.

Method 3: Download Kindle eBooks directly from the Amazon website

If you download the Kindle eBooks from the Amazon website, you possibly will not get the Kindle KFX format eBook, but azw3 format. You can follow the detailed guide to download the Kindle eBooks as AZW3 format.

4, How to Remove Kindle KFX DRM

It is universal known that Kindle kfx has been encrypted with Kindle kfx DRM, so if we want to back up our Kindle books, or read it on other reader apps or eReader, we have to remove Kindle KFX DRM at first. Here meet our Epubor Ultimate—the first tool on the market can decrypt and convert Kindle KFX to epub/mobi/pdf/azw3. The decrypted and converted file will keep the original quality.

Step 1. Install Epubor Ultimate.

     

Epubor Ultimate works on both Windows and Mac system smoothly.

Step 2. Run Epubor Ultimate to remove Kindle kfx DRM.

When you run Epubor Ultimate, the books you downloaded via Kindle for PC/MAC, or Kindle device will be side loading at the left column on the interface. Just drag the books from the left column and drop them to the right column. All books will be decrypted automatically.

remove kindle KFX drm

You can find the decrypted books by clicking the "Decrypted" at the end of each book or clicking the folder icon on right bottom.

5, How to Open/Read Kindle KFX ebook with Calibre

Recently, I received many emails about the problem on reading DRM-free Kindle KFX book with Calibre. Many readers complain that even they have removed DRM from the Kindle KFX eBooks, but they still cannot be open or read these books with Calibre. As we know that the Calibre can support most of the eBooks formats on the market, such as azw, mobi, epub, azw3, pdf, cbr, and so on, but Kindle KFX is not in its list. From part 3, we know that even the Kindle for PC/MAC cannot open the Kindle KFX eBooks when the renderer-test module stops working. Since Calibre does not have this Amazon exclusive rendering technique, consequently it cannot open the Kindle KFX eBooks. If you want to open and read the Kindle KFX eBooks, you have to convert KFX to epub/mobi/pdf/azw3 with Epubor Ultimate.

     

As an all-in-one tool, Epubor Ultimate cannot only decrypt Kindle KFX eBooks, but also can convert them to epub/mobi/azw3/pdf.

Step 1. Remove Kindle KFX DRM

You can see the guide at part 4 about removing Kindle KFX DRM.

Step 2: Convert Kindle KFX to epub/mobi/pdf/azw3

Then choose the output format for your decrypted books. Then click on "Convert to xx". The Epubor Ultimate will convert all books at the right column. When the books have been converted successfully, you will see "Succeeded" at the end of each book. At the same time, the folder stored the converted books will pop up automatically. It is easy for you to find your converted eBooks.

convert KFX to epub

Then you can run Calibre to open the converted epub/mobi/pdf/azw3 eBooks smoothly

read kfx with calibre.


Now you can read Kindle KFX with Calibre. These are all things about Kindle KFX format I collected for you guys. If you still have concerns about the Kindle kfx, please leave them at the comments.

Frequently Asked Questions
Q: If I fail to remove Kindle kfx DRM, what should I do?

A: You can try to download Kindle books as AZW3 format and remove the DRM or read the article Kindle KFX DRM Remove Failed and Solution to fix your problem.

Q: Can I remove Kindle kfx DRM from books downloaded via Android device?

A: It might not be possible to remove kfx DRM from books obtained from Kindle for android apps. I highly recommend you to download the Kindle kfx books via Kindle for PC/MAC, then run Epubor Ultimate to remove the DRM.

Q: Can I use Calibre to convert Kindle KFX format eBooks now? How to?

A: With the latest De-DRM plugin installed, you can convert KFX to pdf/epub/mobi/txt with Calibre. Please read How to convert Kindle kfx to epub/pdf/mobi with calibre to get the complete instructions.

author

joined Epubor since 2017. She always wants to share everything related to ebook reading and improve your reading journey.

4 Comments
reply
reply
01/31/2018 20:59:58
Thanks for all this detailed - if to my slow old mind a little confusing. I will save it and read it again when the .kfx impinges on my system.
Cheers
John
reply
02/1/2018 08:36:31
We are glad to know you like this article. We will keep sharing everything we know about the ebook and audiobooks!
reply
04/1/2018 23:30:09
I deleted renderer-test.exe from the user/local location and Calibre now converts azw books without a problem.
reply
04/2/2018 10:14:45
Yes, that's a solution.
reply
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