ComicBookLover Help / FAQ

Getting started

About ComicBookLover


1. What is ComicBookLover?

ComicBookLover is the premier digital comics software, enabling comic fans to collect, organise and view ALL of their digital comics. Whether you're a seasoned collector of digital comics or whether you're new to the digital comic experience, ComicBookLover is the perfect way to start building and organising your own library of digital comics. ComicBookLover even allows you to take your library with you when you're on the move         thanks to ComicBookLover for mobile devices (iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad).

2. What are “digital comics”?

Digital comics are simply comic books which you can read on your computer or mobile device.  Digital comics are folders of images which have been compressed with ZIP or RAR (both common archiving tools). This makes it easy for comic creators to create their own digital comics for distribution. These comic archives are also known as CBZ and CBR files, and are considered the de facto standard for digital comic distribution, in a similar way to how the MP3 format is associated with digital music.

3. What are CBZ and CBR files?

To put it simply, a CBZ or a CBR is an archive file for the purpose of sequential viewing of a series of images.  As the first two letters suggest, CBZ and CBR files are generally used to pack comic books.  The third letter identifies the archive format: ZIP or RAR.

4. Is it free to download ComicBookLover?

The advent of digital comics has radically changed the way that many people collect and view comics.  We believe that these are exciting times and we want as many people as possible to share the joy of reading digital comics.

ComicBookLover is currently free for mobile devices (iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad).

ComicBookLover for Mac OS X is free to download and use.  If you like it, and want to remove the watermark image displayed on screen, please register for $24.95.*  This software wouldn’t exist without the support of digital comics fans, so we would ask that if you enjoy using ComicBookLover and would like to benefit from more upgrades, please consider registering for the the full version.

*Please note that if you use an unregistered version of ComicBookLover on your Mac for tagging and organising your digital comics before transferring them to your mobile device, then the watermark will only appear on the desktop version of ComicBookLover and will not be transferred across to your mobile device.  You can still read your digital comics on your mobile device without any interruption.

5. When is the next update due?

ComicBookLover for Mac OS X has a menu option to check for updates.  Also, each time you launch ComicBookLover on your Mac it checks for a new version before auto-updating (if you click OK).

Check the iTunes App Store for the latest versions of ComicBookLover for iPhone/iPod touch and ComicBookLover for iPad.  You should also check the ComicBookLover Twitter feed and the Pixelverse discussion forum for news about the latest updates.

6. What are the basic system requirements?

For Mac:

Mac OS X 10.4-10.6

For mobile devices: 

For iPad: iOS 3.2+

For iPhone/iPod Touch: iOS 3.1.3, iOS 4.0+

ComicBookLover Sync: (for transferring comics over WiFi with the Mac app)

Mac OS X 10.5-10.6

7. Can I get ComicBookLover on my PC?

At present the desktop version of ComicBookLover is only available for Mac, not Windows or Linux.  However, ComicBookLover for iPad/iPhone/iPod Touch works with iTunes on both Mac and Windows so you can use ComicBookLover on your mobile device even if you don’t have a Mac.

Managing your library

1. Collecting Comics

i. What formats does ComicBookLover support?

ComicBookLover allows you to collect digital comics in the following formats: CBR, CBZ and PDF.

ii. Where can I purchase digital comics?

There are many places to purchase digital comics online. You can now buy digital          comics directly from many publishers.  If you’re looking for some more cool titles to purchase, we also recommend you check out the websites of the authors who feature in the Sample Comics page of the ComicBookLover website.


iii. Where can I get digital comics for free?

You can find a selection of free sample titles on the ComicBookLover website.  The authors of these comics have kindly made their comics available for free download from the website.  All licensing rights and copyright of the work belong to the authors.

A number of websites offer copyright-free Golden Age comics to download.  Check out         the blog over at Flashback Universe every Monday for free titles that you can download and view with ComicBookLover.

Many publishers also offer free sample titles on their websites that are available for download or can be viewed online.  

2. Moving Comics

The Basics

i. How do I transfer comics from my computer to my mobile device (iPod/iPhone Touch/iPad)?

There are a few methods for transferring your comics to your mobile device:

iTunes File Sharing over USB (All users)

If you have an iPad, or you have an iPhone or iPod Touch running iOS 4.0+ you can transfer comics over USB by using iTunes.

1. Connect your computer to your mobile device using the USB cable.

2. Launch iTunes on your computer.

3. In the Devices section of the left-hand menu, select your mobile device.

4. Click on the Apps tab and scroll to the bottom of the page.

5. Select ComicBookLover and then drag & drop CBZ/CBR comics to the document list.   Alternatively, click on the 'Add...' button and select the CBZ/CBR comics you want transferred.

6. In ComicBookLover on your mobile device, select Transfer, iTunes File Sharing, and then click the 'Add to Library...' button.

ComicBookLover over WiFi (Mac OS X users) - RECOMMENDED

We recommend that you start by getting the free ComicBookLover Sync tool.  Also, make sure you have downloaded the latest version of ComicBookLover (for Mac OS X). You don't need to register or purchase the application, you can run it in Demo mode.

1. Get ComicBookLover for your mobile device.

2. On your mobile device, enable WiFi, select the Transfer option in ComicBookLover, and select ComicBookLover Sync as the transfer method.

3. On Mac OS X, drag'n'drop a comic from ComicBookLover to the transfer helper         tool. That's it!

Note: Dragging a comic from the Finder to the transfer helper tool does not work, you must drag from the ComicBookLover desktop app.

FTP over WiFI (All users, including Windows and Linux users)

Alternatively, you can transfer comics via FTP (File Transfer Protocol)

1. Launch FTP software like FileZilla (all major computer systems) or CyberDuck (Mac OS X) to copy comics to your device.

2. On your mobile device enable WiFi, select the Transfer option in ComicBookLover, and select FTP transfer.

3. Use the connection details shown and if asked for login details, select Anonymous login (this means a username of ‘anonymous’ and an empty password)

ii. Do you plan on merging the sync tool with the ComicBookLover app?

Yes, the plan is to merge the sync tool with the ComicBookLover app at some point so that you can sync straight from the app without having to drag and drop your digital comic files.  

Check the iTunes App Store for the latest versions of ComicBookLover for your mobile device.  You should also check the ComicBookLover Twitter feed and the Pixelverse discussion forum for news about the latest updates.

Moving Comics - FAQ

i. Can I move comic books from one location on my hard drive to another? [Mac OS X only]

Yes, if your comic books are on your main hard drive, if you move the comics, ComicBookLover keeps track of the file locations.  However, if comics are moved onto external drives, then automatic tracking no longer occurs.  Instead, when using ComicBookLover to open a comic which has moved, an error occurs, and you will be asked to locate the new location of the comic.

Let's say you have a comic at: A/B/Comic.cbr

...and you move it to: X/Y/Z/Comic.cbr

If you try to open the comic, you will be asked to locate the comic.  So you select the new comic location, and then ComicBookLover will find all comics located at A/B/ and replace the location with X/Y/Z/.  Comics held in subdirectories will also get the location updated.

So if you have subfolders of comics, e.g. : A/B/C/D/OtherComic.cbr

They get updated too: X/Y/Z/C/D/OtherComic.cbr

ii. How do I convert a folder/collection of images into a “.cbz” or “.cbr” so I read it as a comic?

Simply zip up a folder of images using the Finder (Mac OS X) or a zip tool (Windows) and then rename the compressed file by changing the .zip extension to a .cbz extension.  You can then transfer this CBZ comic for reading on your desktop or mobile device.

3. Organising Comics

The Basics

i. How does ComicBookLover organise titles?

ComicBookLover uses the following basic information categories to organise and display digital comics: Title, Series, Volume, Issue, Date Added, Size, Publisher, Genre, Writer, Artist, My Rating.

ComicBookLover for Mac OS X allows you even more control over how you organise you digital comics library with additional categories such as Credits and Tags.  The Credits category allows you to enter the names of writers, artists, letterers, editors, etc. for an issue.  You can select the primary writer or the primary artist for the issue.  The Tags category allows you to manually create and and edit tags (labels) to highlight special events, appearances and anything else you want. By allowing you to create and edit tags, ComicBookLover for Mac OS X gives you the freedom to organise your comics however you choose.

Certain comic files will already include some of the information in these categories, but this is dependent on whoever has created the original file.   ComicBookLover uses ComicBookInfo, an open standard for tagging digital comics with metadata (i.e. information such as artists, writers, etc.).  ComicBookLover for Mac OS X even allows you to use Spotlight to search comic metadata right from the desktop.

We believe that digital comics fans want to have as much information about titles in their library as possible - therefore, we have introduced ComicBookInfo as an open standard in an effort to encourage other developers to adopt the format.

ii. What is ComicBookInfo?

ComicBookInfo is an open standard for tagging digital comic files.  It is a metadata container format to be used with the CBZ digital comic file format.  It allows information such as the title, series, genre, publisher, author and other information to be stored in the file itself.

The combination of ComicBookInfo and CBZ provides a cross-platform solution for including metadata with digital comics, and thus allowing the tagging of digital comics.

ComicBookInfo can also be used with CBR and PDF comics on Mac OS X.  Find out more about ComicBookInfo here.  

iii. Is it possible to add/remove/edit tags for comics?  

Comic tagging can be done via ComicBookLover for Mac OS X. Once tagged, you can transfer comics via the ComicBookLover Sync tool for Mac OS X, straight onto your mobile device.  We are exploring the possibility to add features for mobile device users in a future update so that they can tag comics.  Please         check the ComicBookLover website and the iTunes App Store for updates.

Organising Comics - FAQ

i. Is it possible to manually arrange comics into a series?  

Yes, comic tagging can be used to help arrange simple collections by letting you set the details such as the issue number and series.  Currently, editing tags is only possible on ComicBookLover for Mac OS X. We are planning to add features to address this issue for mobile device users in a future update.

ii. Can I create playlists of my favourite comics?

We realise that many digital comics fans would like to create their own playlists on ComicBookLover.  We are planning to enable users to create playlists of comics and then sync these playlists to their mobile devices.  Look out for this feature in a future update.

iii. Why don’t my existing tags appear on my iPhone/iPad when I transfer comics?

Tags appear if you use ComicBookLover for Mac OS X to set tags on comics and then transfer them with the ComicBookLover Sync tool.  If you use iTunes to transfer the comics, unfortunately only tags on CBZ comics will be copied, not CBR or PDF.  We are always looking at ways to improve transfer of comics so look out for updates and news.

4. Viewing Comics

The Basics

i. Does ComicBookLover have a pinch-to-zoom function on the iPhone/iPad?

Double-tap the screen to enter zoom mode which lets you pinch-to-zoom.  Double-tap again to exit zoom mode and show the full comic page on screen.

ii. Why is there a sad smiley face image instead of a page?

If you see this image in place of any pages that means that the file is corrupt and the pages cannot be displayed properly.  Try downloading the digital comic again.

Viewing Comics - FAQ

i. Is it possible to reverse the reading direction so that manga comics can be read         from right to left?

We plan to add a function for reading manga (right to left) in a future update.

ii. Why are the pages taking so long to load on my iPad?

This can happen if you are flicking through the comic rather than reading pages.  If you read at a normal pace, you shouldn’t notice the background loading when moving between pages.  We plan to add a pager/navigator to the app in the future so you don’t have to flick through the comic page by page.  

Another reason you might see the loading indicator when reading is due to images in your comic being extremely large. You'll see this if you have landscape/double-facing spreads.  Images of this size usually have excellent image quality but do take up more memory and storage space. When transferring comics to the iPhone and iPod Touch, there are options to shrink comics so they take up less resources, but this results in a slight reduction in image quality.

iii.  In full-screen mode, with laptop motion sensor enabled in the preferences, why is the comic displayed upside-down? [Mac OS X only]

This problem affects MacBook Pros, released around June 2007 and beyond.  The motion sensor has a different axis model from previous models.  For now, you'll have to turn off the motion sensor option in Preferences.

Other Issues

1. Registration problems

I’ve lost my registration code for ComicBookLover on Mac OS X. What should I do? [Mac OS X only]

You can retrieve your registration code via the lookup form.  If there are any problems, use the contact form to get in touch, providing the names and email addresses you used to purchase the software.

2. Reporting a problem

I want to report a problem. What should I do?

If you can’t find the answer you need in the FAQ, then please use the contact form to report a problem.