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Bakkin Reader X is a lightweight web-based manga viewer, suitable for use by scanlation groups with not too many (< 50) full manga series. It is currently used by by Bakkin:

Some features of this reader that distinguishes it from others (i.e. why Dory wrote this thing):

  • Fast. First page loading is fast; jumping around is fast; viewing things is fast; viewing on old computer is fast.
  • Small code size and easy-to-maintain code, with clear delineation of M/V/C. The webserver returns only a JSON structure.
  • On-line image scaling to save bandwidth without having to resize by hand.
  • Better use of mobile screen real-estate.
  • Minimal dependencies and no DB required.


Bakkin Reader X requires PHP 5+ with GD.

Drop the files into a web directory, drop your manga into the right directory structure below, edit the top of main.php to configure resolutions, and that's it.

Manga directory structure

A basic setup will simply consist of mangas inside the manga/ directory, organized series/volumes/chapters/pages.png. To add metadata, read on.

|-- main.php
|-- index.html
|-- caches/
`-- manga/
    `-- YuruYuri
        |-- SERIESINFO
        `-- v01
            |-- VOLUMEINFO
            |-- thumb.png
            |-- c001
            |   |-- CHAPTERINFO
            |   |-- thumb.png
            |   |-- 001.png
            |   |-- ...
            |   `-- 013.png
            `-- c002
                `-- ...

SERIESINFO is a cleartext file with information about the series. All fields are optional. The file itself is also optional:

<series name>
<series author>
<series status>
<where to buy>
<link to where to buy>

For example:

Yuru Yuri

VOLUMEINFO files contain zero to two lines, with the first line being the volume title, and the second line contains a link to download the batch of the volume. Both lines, as well as the file, are optional. If not provided, the directory name will be used to show the volume title and no download link will be presented.

CHAPTERINFO are files containing a single line with a custom chapter title. These files are optional. If not provided, the directory name ("v01", "c001" etc.) will be used instead. They are just there to make directory names pretty.

thumb.png files under each volume are used to show the volume covers. thumb.png files under each chapter are the tiny square chapter icons. Both are optional.

The manga/ directory does not have to be exposed by the web server.

Initializing the cache

The script maintains a cache of resized images and thumbnails in the caches/ directory, which should be writable by the PHP or webserver process.

The cache entries for all new pages will be created when the site is loaded. Which means that at the beginning right after installation, the script will go and resizes all images, which it will probably not have enough time to finish, given most PHP installation limit execution time to 30s or so.

To get around that, you can either:

  1. SSH into the server and run something along the line of sudo -u httpd php main.php
  2. Run that command on your local computer before uploading the populated caches/ directory to the server with FTP
  3. Sit there and keep refreshing the browser. When the site is loaded, the script would be processing images until it runs out of allocated execution time, which will make the page timeout. Keep refreshing until all the images are processed.


This web app can be modified to load a single series at a time, on demand, to help with larger group with more series to show, and that should not be hard. However, that is outside the scope of Bakkin.


AGPL-3.0. This license is chosen so that anyone using this would also make their modifications available.