Reading ebooks in LIT format on GNU/Linux

I am a book lover and so i download ebooks from the internet. Most of the books are in pdf or chm format. So i can read them with ease on my Debian system using eveince and gnochm. Recently I downloaded a book and it was in microsoft LIT format. Microsoft LIT (which stands for “Literature”) is a proprietary ebbok format which means there are no free readers for Free operating systems like GNU/Linux.

I searched on google and also asked on various irc channels to get information on the availability of a LIT ebook reader on debian GNU/Linux system. My search for a reader was unsuccessful but I came across a great application that can convert LIT ebooks to html.

The software is named “Open Convert-.LIT tool” and its home page is here. On my debian system, I had to use the debian-multimedia repository to install the software (the package name is clit.. hehe).

  • Add debian-multimedia(folowing line) in /etc/apt/sources.list file
  • sudo aptitude update
  • sudo aptitude install clit

After installing just run clit without any filenames or options and it will display a short how-to to use the software. I usual and simple way to run the command is :

  • clit <LIT file> <dir where you want the converted html and picture files>/
  • ex . $clit book-XYZ.lit book-XYZ/

After the command is run, you will find the extracted html and images in the directory book-XYZ.

Any digital data, be it music, books, videos, in proprietary format is one evil that all of us should always fight against. They are the tools used by big corporates and evil governments to keep the people under unlawful control and to prey onto people’s privacy. If you have a document and you want others to read it, please release it under free formats like pdf, html or plain text. Every one of us has the Right to Read. Read this article by Richard Stallman to see what type of a place our beautiful earth will be if closed and proprietary formats of the big corporates win the war.

Download and read free ebooks and audio books from

Happy reading!!


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