Barnes and Noble has Windows based PC reader software that works very well with ePub formatted books. There is motive in their madness, as the B-and-N Nook reader uses the ePub format natively. I’ve found their Windows nook emulation software to be quite excellent. I think the software is still a free download.
The B-and-N approach to helping book writers create ePub ebooks is to provide a web front-end for the purpose. When a manuscript is uploaded, B-and-N does the processing on the back-end. This requires an account.
It is possible to use free software from B-and-N to write Nook addon applications and to do it with the use of free/open source systems such as FreeBSD or Linux. The means by which this is accomplished is patterned after the manner of browser extensions that facilitate cross-platform book reading capability. The software provided by B-and-N uses special eclipse plugins (purposed to creating Android apps), so the underlying java machine creates the “cross platform-ness” that is required. However; Nook applications are a topic for another thread on some other day.
Like Barnes and Noble, Amazon provides ebook creation facilities via their own website(s). Use of this feature on Amazon is part of the Kindle developer’s program and requires an account.
The use of DRM (digital rights management) complicates things for ebook creators who use free software …
To be continued …