The SRESI bookmarks manager

Table of Contents




User Manual

Bookmarks Import

  1. The Problem
  2. Existing bookmarks formats
  3. Caveats

Technical Notes

Possible Evolutions

XBEL Formatting



Bookmarks Import

The Problem

SRESI is geared towards compulsive bookmarkers, with ridiculous collections, so it would be a dreadful hassle to import all these bookmarks manually.

So an import solution was needed.

Existing bookmarks formats

At this time, most people's bookmarks are in the IE favourites, Mozilla or XBEL formats.

I do not have any interest in Windows or IE, and there are many good programs to convert IE favourites to any other format. So I will gladly leave this task to them and not bother with Windows and IE myself.

So only the Mozilla and XBEL formats remain.

The old Mozilla format is a mess of broken HTML, and I have not been able to find any documentation on the current one (as of Firefox 1.x), not to mention the future SQLite-based Firefox 2.x.

On the other hand, XBEL is XML-based, reasonably easy to parse.

As there are already several programs to translate Mozilla bookmarks into XBEL, I will give free rein to my natural laziness again and only deal with the clean and easy XBEL.

Mozilla to XBEL converters

Some possible solutions are:
  • Torisugari's Bookmarks Synchroniser Firefox extension;
  • Konqueror's bookmark manager (try keditbookmark --help in the CLI);
  • Galeon's bookmark manager;
  • Kazehakase's bookmark manager;
  • bk_edit was a favourite of mine, but seems to choke on recent Mozilla files (I suspect UTF8 compatibility: to check).

Other supported formats

SRESI supports a few more bookmarks formats by now, to wit (in order of arrival):

  • XBEL (first and always);
  • Opera (easy enough);
  • (direct translation);
  • Mozilla.

Internet Explorer does not seem too difficult either, but motivation is mostly limited to curiosity.


Sresi uses a tags system, instead of the usual hierarchy of directories. While going from tags to directory is easy, the reverse transformation is not.

Any given directory structure does not always map cleanly to tags, as the logic is different. It will probably be necessary to do some clean-up first, and it is easier to do it on the original structure than on the transformed data set.

Name-space collisions

Home directories may have the same name for completely different concepts, such as CSS for both the Content Scrambling System and Cascading Style Sheets: they need to be renamed;

Inconsistent Names

Some directories may use slightly different names for the same concept: for exemple using the tags soft and software inconsistently;

SRESI's use of special characters

SRESI uses the vertical bar as a data separator: it is necessary to replace it in your original bookmarks file (either sed or a search-and-replace in your favourite editor will do just fine);

fourth, the XSL may choke on some characters (& comes to mind, but others may cause trouble depending on your engine), again, they need to be renamed;

SRESI's interface

SRESI does not have any kind of graphical interface at this time, while most browers or bookmark managers do: it is currently much more comfortable to do the grunt work with the old-fashioned but well-polished solutions rather than my powerful but admittedly flaky one.