Decoding Secure Palm Reader format ebooks

One of my favorite authors has published a book in the Secure Palm Reader format. Does anyone know of any program that will convert that format to something that can be read in my REB1100, GEBll50, or GEB2150? Would really love to read the book but certainly do not want to have to buy a Palm Reader in order to do it.

There is a converter for some PalmReader books - it's called PDBSHRED, and you can download it here. (includes source code) It doesn't work for 32-bit encryption, however, and if the book you're looking at is just new, it might be at the 32-bit level.

If you want to give it a try, though, do read the instructions that are included in the download. It's a command-line app, and the syntax for an encrypted book is very particular (you need to include the purchaser's credit card name and number in the command.) If it DOES work, it will break the book into its component parts, one of which will be a text file in PML format. PML is "Palm Markup Language", a kind of HTML. You can find the meaning of the codes at if they're not obvious. You can do a find-and- replace operation to convert the PML codes to HTML codes, then add the <HTML>, <BODY>, and requisite <p> codes to make it readable. Or you can just search for and remove every code that starts with a \ , and you'll have an unmarked .txt file.

Finally, if that doesn't work, you can get a free PalmReader for your PC at, and can suffer through reading it on the big screen. You certainly don't have to buy a Palm Pilot to beat the problem.


I have downloaded PDBSHRED and the free Palm eReader and have no trouble reading the Secure Palm Reader content once I put in my name and credit card number in the eReader. However, I cannot get the syntax right to make PDBSHRED work. Looked on the download site for instructions but was not successful. I know everyone is very busy but would appreciate any helpful suggestions that anyone would care to make. Thanks.

If you read the "Readme" file that comes with it, it says:

pdbshred [-s secretname secretcard -a ] filename [basename]
filename might be bookname.pdb or bookname.prc
basename what you want things to begin with... default is "ebook"

-a option creates additional files that the program can't identify.
Main formats identified: .HTML,.TXT,.PML
Image Formats identified: .GIF,.PNG,.BMP

PeanutPress files require some "secret" stuff to decrypt.
Example: pdbshred -s "Algernon E Mouse" 12345678 ebook.pdb ebook

So, if your book is called "Book.pdb"
and your credit card name is "John B. Smith"
and your credit card number is 4567-8901-2345-6789 you would enter (with every piece of punctuation as shown:

pdbshred -s "John B Smith" 4567890123456789 -a Book.pdb Book

and then hit "enter"

Katy KayCee@t...

Another source for PDB format conversion software: local copy of source code:

Technical details of PDB database format:

Another PDB tech details file

Ebook Conversion Wiki