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Let’s face it! At some point, there comes a time when we feel the need to connect our Kindle to a computer; either to back up the existing collection of books or to transfer books!
Irrespective of whether you plan to purchase a new Kindle and transfer books to it, or whether you want to have a copy of all your books on your computer, one thing that we definitely need to know is – how to transfer books from Kindle to a computer?
The easiest way to transfer books from your Kindle to a computer is to use a USB cable. Connect your Kindle to a computer. Open the “Kindle” drive on your computer. Then, open the “documents” folder, and copy the books from this folder to your computer.
This article will help you understand how to connect your Kindle to a PC or a Mac. You’ll also get to learn what is the best way to transfer books to your computer. Plus, in the end, we will talk about how to transfer books back to a Kindle irrespective of which model you have!
So, let’s get started!
Can Kindle Books be Transferred?
Well, by now you probably would have guessed that you can transfer Kindle books from one device to another.
In fact, there are several ways in which you can do that. In my other article on how to transfer Kindle books, I’ve talked about all the different methods. Plus, I’ve also shared the best method specifically for each device (Android, iPad, iPhone, etc)!
So, make sure to check out the other article for complete details!
For this article, we are going to focus on how to transfer books from a Kindle to a computer and vice-versa.
How to Connect Kindle to a Computer?
In order to transfer books from a Kindle to a computer, one of the first things that we need to know is how to connect a Kindle to a computer.
To connect a Kindle to a computer, you will need a micro-USB to USB cable. Connect the micro-USB (smaller port) part of the cable to your Kindle, and the other end to a USB port of your computer. When connected, your Kindle will display the message “Your Kindle is in USB drive mode”.
It is rather odd, but Kindle still works on fairly old technology when it comes to cables. I mean, who has a micro-USB cable lying around in the house anymore! Good thing is, you can easily get a micro-USB to USB-A cable for PC for quite cheap on Amazon!
If you are a Mac user, you will find this extremely frustrating as not only is it difficult to find a cable with a micro-USB port, but when you do find one, you realize that your Mac only uses USB-C ports! I’d recommend getting a micro-USB to USB-C cable for Mac from Amazon (which is also thankfully quite inexpensive!)
Once you have the required cable with you, connect it the way it is shown in the image above. Make sure that you connect the smaller micro-USB port of the cable at the bottom of your Kindle next to the power button (the same port that is used for charging the Kindle).
Attach the other end of the cable to the computer. Once this is done, you will notice that the screen on your Kindle changes and give a message stating that “Your Kindle is in USB drive mode”.
How to Transfer Kindle Books to a Computer?
There are actually a couple of different methods you can use to transfer Kindle books to your computer.
We’ll take a look at both methods one by one.
Method 1 – Transfer Kindle Books to a Computer via USB?
Perhaps the fastest method of transferring books from your Kindle to a computer is by using a USB cable.
I’d recommend using the Calibre app to transfer books to your computer. Calibre is open-source software and completely free to use. It allows you to maintain the book library, push books to your device easily, edit metadata, book cover, book ratings, and much more!
Using the calibre book management app is a topic for another article. I’ll try to write the detailed steps and link it back to this article! If you don’t see the link, use the search function on this site to see if the article exists.
Meanwhile, let us understand how to transfer Kindle books to a computer. Depending on whether you are using a PC or a Mac, the steps for transferring books to your computer may vary. Rest assured, I’ll cover the steps for both PC and Mac in this article.
Transfer Kindle Books to a PC via USB
Once you’ve connected your Kindle to the PC using a USB cable (as per the steps mentioned earlier in the article), you can now begin transferring the files. Here’s what you need to do –
Step 1 – Open the Kindle Drive
You’ll see a “Kindle Drive” show up on your computer just like “C” or “D” drive on your computer. Simply double-click on it to show its contents.
Once the Kindle drive is open, locate the “documents” folder on it. This folder contains all the books visible on your Kindle device.
Step 2 – Locate and Copy Your Kindle Books
Now, select all the books that you wish to transfer from the Kindle to your computer. If you wish to transfer all the books, click on any one book and press “Ctrl+A”. This will select all the books.
You can also select the books individually by holding the “Ctrl” key on your keyboard and clicking on the book.
Once you’ve chosen the books, copy the books. You can either press “Ctrl+C” to copy the selected books. Alternatively, right-click on the selected books, and from the options click on “copy“.
Step 3 – Paste the Books on Your Computer
Now, navigate to the folder on your computer or create a new folder. Once the folder is open, simply paste the books that you just copied. You can either right-click and select the “Paste” option. Alternatively, you can use the keyword combination “Ctrl+V” to paste the books.
Step 4 – Safely Eject Your Kindle Device
Once you’re done transferring the books, make sure that you eject the Kindle drive properly. This will prevent your files on Kindle from getting corrupted.
Right-click on the “Kindle” drive once again. From the options that appear, click on “Eject“.
Transfer Kindle Books to a Mac via USB
Transferring books from your Kindle to a Mac via a USB drive works in a similar fashion. However, since the interface is different from that of Windows, it is easy to get confused. Nevertheless, we’ll cover the steps in detail below –
Step 1 – Open the Kindle Drive
Once you’ve connected the Kindle to your Mac, you will see a new drive appear on your desktop as shown at the top-right corner of the screen in the image above (drive can also be accessed using the “Finder”).
Once you open the “Kindle” drive, locate the “documents” folder and open it by double-clicking on it.
Step 2 – Locate and Copy the Kindle Books
Now select all the books that you wish to transfer. You can hold down the “Command” key on your keyboard and individually click on the book that you wish to transfer.
Once you have the books selected, right-click on any one of them and from the options click on “Copy“.
You can also use the “Cmd+C” shortcut to copy the books.
Step 3 – Paste the Books on Your Mac
Now open a new folder on your Mac. Right-click on the folder and from the options that appear, click on “Paste“. Alternatively, you can press the “Cmd+V” keys to paste.
Step 4 – Eject the Kindle Device
Once the transfer of books is complete, right-click on the Kindle drive, and from the options, click on “Eject“.
This will safely eject your Kindle from the computer and prevent the loss of any data.
Method 2 – Download Books from Your Amazon Content Library
If you don’t have access to a USB cable, or you don’t wish to go through the hassle of connecting your Kindle to a computer, or perhaps your computer just refuses to detect your Kindle device, there is another way to transfer books from your Kindle to your computer.
You can also transfer books to your computer from your Amazon account.
Here’s how to do that –
Step 1 – Open the “Manage Your Content & Devices” Section on Amazon
Firstly, log in to your Amazon account that is associated with your Kindle device. Then, hover over your account name, and click on the “Content & Devices” link (as shown in the image above).
Step 2 – Select the Books and Download
The page should open the content library by default. If not, make sure that you click on the “Content” section from the top bar.
Then, select the book that you wish to transfer to your computer. Next, click on the “More Actions” button. From the dropdown that appears, click on the “Download & transfer via USB“.
The book will get downloaded to your computer!
The only drawback with this process is that you will only be able to download books that you have purchased using your Amazon account. You won’t be able to access the books that you bought from other platforms.
How to Transfer Books to Your Kindle from a Computer?
If you have books that you wish to read on your Kindle but they are currently on your computer, there are ways you can transfer them to your device.
There are actually two methods that you can use. Let me share both methods with you below –
Method 1 – Transfer Books to Kindle from Computer via USB
The first obvious method is to transfer the books to your Kindle using a USB cable.
The overall process is similar to that of transferring books from your Kindle to a computer. Just that, you will now be copying the files from your Kindle instead of your computer.
Nevertheless, here is the step-by-step process to transfer books to your Kindle from your computer via USB –
- Connect your Kindle to a computer – make sure you have the correct cable and follow the steps that I’ve mentioned earlier in the article.
- Open the folder that contains the books that you wish to transfer to your Kindle
- Copy the books that you wish to transfer
- Open the Kindle drive on your computer and navigate to the “documents” folder
- Paste the books to the documents folder on your Kindle
- Once the transfer is complete, right-click on the “Kindle” drive, and select the “Eject” option.
In case you need any visual references, I’d request that you go through the previous section once again.
Method 2 – Transfer Books to a Kindle From a Computer Wirelessly
If you don’t have access to a USB cable, you can also send the books to a Kindle from your computer. This method applies to both your Kindle books as well as other books that you may not have purchased from Amazon. But, it is predominantly used for the latter.
You will need to use the Send-to-Kindle email address for this process. I’ve written a detailed guide on how to identify your Send-to-Kindle email address and send the books via email. Make sure you check out that article for a step-by-step process with images.
Here’s what you need to do to transfer books to a Kindle from your computer wirelessly –
- Identify your Send-to-Kindle email adress
- Add your email address to the “Approved” email list from Amazon
- Compose a new email. Enter your send-to-Kindle email address in the recipient field.
- Attach books to your email
- Send the email
The books will be delivered to your respective device shortly. If, for some reason, the process doesn’t work, here’s a troubleshooting guide on how to identify the issues and fix them when the send-to-kindle email is not working.
How to Transfer Books From Kindle Fire to a Computer?
To transfer books from your Kindle Fire, connect it to a computer using a USB cable. On the device, give permission to access the storage of your Kindle Fire. Then, open the Kindle drive from the “My Computer” section. Open the “Internal Storage” folder and then “Books” to access your books.
The Kindle drive will appear usually where other USB drives appear on your computer. It can normally be seen under the “Computer” or “My Computer” section.
Sometimes, you may be asked to enter the password of your device to provide access to the Kindle drive once it is connected to the computer.
How to Transfer Books to a Kindle Fire from Mac?
To transfer books from your Kindle Fire to a Mac (or reverse), you will need to first download the “Android File Transfer” software on your Mac. Then, connect the Kindle Fire to your Mac using a USB cable, locate the “Books” folder inside the “Internal Storage” folder, and transfer the books.
The Android File Transfer utility app can be easily installed on your Mac. It is completely free to use and is necessary to transfer any files from or to your device from a Mac.
Once you install the app on your Mac, the folder will automatically open the internal storage of your Kindle once it is connected using a compatible USB cable.
If you are still unsure of how to transfer files from Kindle Fire, check out this video from Amazon that guides you through the process.
Credit to Adrienne Andersen from Pexels for the featured image of this article
About the Author
Akansha is a former business journalist and a seasoned communications professional. She is the founder of TheBookBuff, an avid storyteller, and a lifelong biblophile! Check out her profile page to know more about Akansha.