Zotero and BibTeX

This method is best if you want to have Zotero autosync with your .bib file as you add or change records in your Zotero library.

1. Install and enable the “Better BibTeX” add-on in Zotero. Full instructions for downloading and installing this add-on can be found here: https://zotplus.github.io/zotero-better-bibtex/.
• Note, in some cases, you may need to update your Zotero version before Better BibTeX can be enabled. To update your Zotero desktop, go to Help -> Check for Updates

2. Once Better BibTeX is enabled, select the folder/library/items you wish to include in your .bib file.

3. In the export window, you will now see many more options for your export format.

  • Select the “Better BibTeX” option
  • To set up the autosync, make sure you also check the “Keep updated” box.
  • Click “Ok”, name your .bib file and save in the same location as your LaTeX file.

4. You can adjust or remove a .bib autosync of Zotero records at any time.

  • On a mac, go to Zotero ->Preferences; On a PC, go to Tools -> Preferences
  •  Click on the “Better BibTeX” tab and then the “Automatic Export” tab. All of your current autosyncs should be listed in the box.

  • To have your .bib file continuously autosync, make sure the “On Change” option is checked.
  • To force a sync of your exports (outside of any changes in your library), click “Export” at the bottom of this screen.
  • If you want to remove autosyncs, click “Remove”

Tip: You can make adjustments to how Better BibTeX generates your .bib file. In particular, you may want to consider adjusting how it handles potential duplicate BibTeX keys (the unique ID that you include in your \cite{key} entry in your LaTeX file). You can make these changes in the “Citation” tab of the “Better BibTeX” preferences window.

Christine Malinowski | MIT Libraries

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