Is there e-book reader on Ubuntu that read mobi file format?

7 Answers 7


calibre Install calibreInstall via the software center


calibre is a free and open source e-book library management application developed by users of e-books for users of e-books.

Calibre is primarily a ebook cataloging program. It manages your ebook collection for you. It is designed around the concept of the logical book, i.e. a single entry in the database that may correspond to ebooks in several formats. It also upports conversion from a dozen different ebook formats to LRF and EPUB. A graphical interface to the conversion software can be accessed easily by just clicking the "Convert E-books" button.

Supported input formats are: MOBI, AZW, LIT, PRC, EPUB, ODT, HTML, CBR, CBZ, RTF, TXT, PDF and LRS.

Starting calibre's ebook viewer as a standalone application

In certain cases you will not want to add an epub or mobi file to calibre's library before reading it. Luckily calibre's ebook viewer can be started independently via ebook-viewer. This makes it possible to create a standalone launcher:

#!/usr/bin/env xdg-open
[Desktop Entry]
Exec=ebook-viewer %f
Name=Ebook Viewer
Comment=Display .epub files and other e-reader formats

See here for more information on adding launchers to your system.

To click an ebook and open in ebook-viewer, make this application (/usr/bin/ebook-viewer) the default for that type of file.

  • @cipricus updated the answer Apr 18, 2013 at 11:13
  • 1
    @MHC - thanks, I have also added some info, as I had difficulties making ebook-viewer the default reader - i didn't know its name in fact. ebook-viewer is able to display more elements of the ebook than fbreader. also, latest versions can handle azw/kindle extension.
    – user47206
    Apr 18, 2013 at 11:41
  • 1
    i find ebook-viewer very heavy with large files
    – user47206
    Apr 18, 2013 at 12:29

Use FBReader, which is available as 'Ebook Reader' in the Software Center (fbreader in Synaptic Manager). Less bulky than calibre.

enter image description here

It can open a variety of ebook types, including 'azw'.

To open ebook on single/double click, the executable file to be added is usr/bin/fbreader.

  • Yeah, it installs Django (a web framework) for some reason...
    – Nitrodist
    Mar 11, 2012 at 2:40
  • the fact that it installs Django web framework may be related to it being able to search network libraries. fbreader displays slightly fewer elements of an ebook (like cover) than calibre's ebook-viewer, but it is much faster and lighter. (Opening a large and complex mobi file in both these readers, the Task Manger records 377 MiB for Calibre's ebook-viewer and 39 MiB for FBReader.)
    – user47206
    Apr 18, 2013 at 12:30

Another option is Okular.

You also need the kdegraphics-mobipocket package.

sudo apt-get install okular kdegraphics-mobipocket
  • Sorry yes, accidentally left -s in the apt-get command. Fixed.
    – gacrux
    Aug 18, 2013 at 23:58
  • 1
    This seems to be neat. Okular is the best PDF viewer out there and to reuse it for multiple purposes is good.
    – xji
    Jan 27, 2016 at 11:20

If you install calibre, and you just want to read a mobi file, then you can use the ebook-reader application is that installed as part of the calibre package. To do this:

  • Right click on the mobi file and choose "Open with other application ..."
  • expand the arrow near the bottom that says "Use a custom command"
  • in the text box that appears, type "/usr/bin/ebook-viewer"
  • tick the box that says "Remember this application for "Mobipocket e-book" files
  • click on the "Open" button
  • Thanks, that worked for me, but it is /usr/bin/ebook-viewer (on Calibre 0.6.42 on ubuntu 10.0.4, at least) Oct 1, 2012 at 7:05
  • @DarrenCook: thanks for that catch - fixed the answer Oct 1, 2012 at 12:13

Foliate is one of the best applications for reading epub and Mobi files.


You can use your favorite method for obtaining it.


sudo add-apt-repository ppa:apandada1/foliate
sudo apt update
sudo apt install foliate


flatpak install flathub com.github.johnfactotum.Foliate


sudo snap install foliate

.deb file

Grab the latest version from here.

Website: https://johnfactotum.github.io/foliate/

For more information: https://www.omgubuntu.co.uk/2019/07/install-foliate-ebook-reader-on-ubuntu


In Calibre:

Click on the view button (looks like an hourglass)...

The ebook viewer will open up a separate window...

Click on the the open ebook button...

You will be given a screen that asks you what file you want to open...

Choose your .mobi file and it will open in ebook viewer.

Note: I couldn't make any other option work for me and I stumbled on this method by mistake. Soooo easy and the ebook reader is better than any other Ubuntu reader.

  • Couldn't follow these instructions in 12.04 Aug 29, 2012 at 7:05
  • You propably meant magnifying glass.
    – M. Toya
    Nov 14, 2012 at 19:20

I recently started using csBooks and I am very happy that I don't need different book readers for different formats. this software supports PDF, EPUB, MOBI, DJVU, CBZ, CBR and even audio books. It is elegant software that looks good and works flawlessly. A screenshot of csBooks

You can install it as snap like this -

sudo snap install csbooks

Or download the suitable format for your OS here - Downloadable packages for csBooks

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