JabRef is an open source bibliography reference manager. The native file format used by JabRef is BibTeX, the standard LaTeX bibliography format. JabRef runs on the Java VM (version 1.8 or newer), and works equally well on Windows, Linux, and Mac OS X.

BibTeX is an application and a bibliography file format written by Oren Patashnik and Leslie Lamport for the LaTeX document preparation system. General information can be found on the CTAN BibTeX package information page. JabRef also supports BibLaTeX.

Bibliographies generated by LaTeX and BibTeX from a BibTeX file can be formatted to suit any reference list specifications through the use of different BibTeX and BibLaTeX style files.


Search the Web

Entries can be searched in external databases and BibTeX entries can be fetched from there. Example sources: arXiv, CiteseerX, Google Scholar, Medline, GVK, IEEEXplore, and Springer.

Import of various formats

RIS, Medline/Pubmed (xml), Refer/Endnote, INSPEC, BibTeXML, CSA, ISI Web of Science, SilverPlatter, Scifinder, OVID, Biblioscape, Sixpack, JStor, and RIS.

Moreover, the FireFox add-on JabFox makes importing new bibliographic information directly from the browser very easy.

Automatic download of full texts

JabRef can be instructed to search for the full text of a reference, download it, and directly link it to the BibTeX entry.

Search the bibliography

Search a pattern in the whole bibliography.

Classification of entries

You can group entries explicitly, by keywords or any other fields.

Integrates to your environment

Launch external applications: PDF viewers, web browser

Insert citations into TeXstudio, LyX, Kile, LatexEditor, Emacs, Vim, and WinEdt

Automatic Key generation

BibTeX keys can be automatically generated in a customizable way from document data, e.g. using author names, title and year.

Support for XMP Metadata in PDFs

Improve the workflow of sharing PDFs and bibliography information

Built-in and custom export formats

HTML, Docbook, BibTeXML, MODS, RTF, Refer/Endnote, and OpenOffice.org as well as LibreOffice

Customization of the JabRef interface

Fonts, displayed fields, etc.

Customization of BibTeX fields

You can add your own fields to any BibTeX entry type.


JabRef menus and dialog boxes are translated into Brazilian Portuguese, Chinese (simplified), Danish, Dutch, English, French, German, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Norwegian, Persian, Russian, Spanish, Swedish, Turkish, Vietnamese.

See our translation page on github for more information and the status of each translation.


download development snapshot

We use install4j, the multi-platform installer builder.



Documentation is available at http://help.jabref.org.


Frequently asked questions are available at http://help.jabref.org/.

General Support

Use our discourse forum at http://discourse.jabref.org to get help or to provide feedback.

You can also propose new features there.

Bug and error reports are managed at GitHub.

Development Information

The development of JabRef is managed at GitHub.

You can find the source code and a contribution guide at our github project page at https://github.com/JabRef/jabref.


See https://github.com/JabRef/jabref/blob/master/CHANGELOG.md

Donations keep us going.

Support via Gratipay    PayPal Donation

Please visit our wiki for more information such as donating via bank transfer.

JabRef development is powered by Baola and Neuronade.

If you need books, please order them at your local bookstore.
In case you stick with Amazon, please use this link. You can use Amazing Affiliate Link to ensure that the affiliate link always works. Enter jabref-21 as code. This seems to work in Germany only.

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JabRef-compatible text editors

JabRef can push entries, i.e. insert \cite{key} commands, to the following text editors:

Additionally, JabRef can natively insert citations and format a bibliography in:

See OpenOffice/LibreOffice integration for details.

External tools


by Tobias Diez

JabFox is a Firefox add-on for users of the bibliographic reference manager JabRef. It automatically identifies and extracts bibliographic information on websites and sends them to JabRef in one click. A wide range of publisher sites, library catalogs and databases are supported.

Download the Firefox addon

WinEdt’s JabRef launcher

by Karl Koeller

This WinEdt’s package allows to launch the JabRef program from within WinEdt.

Download the WinEdt’s JabRef launcher

Export-Filter Editor

by Felix Wilke

Using this tool you can easily create a custom export filter for JabRef to build you own bibliography style. It supports:

  • HTML Export Filter
  • RTF Export Filter
  • OpenOffice/ LibreOffice Style File
  • Saving the filter for later refinements

Download the Export-Filter Editor


by Graham Dennis

PocketBib is a BibTeX library reader for academics on the go. With PocketBib you can search, browse and read the papers in your BibTeX library, and sync them with BibDesk or JabRef on your computer.

Available for iPad, iPhone and iPod Touch.

Download PocketBib

Eratosthenes Reference Manager

by Matthew Matlock

Eratosthenes Reference Manager is a BibTeX-based bibliography manager for Android. It integrates with JabRef, supporting top-level groups and attached files/external links.

Available for Android 4.0 and up.

Download Eratosthenes Reference Manager


by Mike Brookes

Bibtex4Word is an add-in for Microsoft Word that allows the citation of references and the insertion of a bibliography into your document using your choice of formatting style. It is lightweight, transparent and does not mess up your documents.

Download Bibtex4Word


by Daniel Mendler

BibSync is a tool to synchronize your paper database with a BibTeX file which might be most useful for Physicists and Mathematicians since it supports synchronization with DOI and arXiv.

Download BibSync

Export filters

JabRef allows you to create custom export filters. This functionality and the installation procedure are described in the help file on Custom export filters. Some users have created export filters that can be useful to many others. This page we provide links or direct downloads for some of these export filters.

If you have created an export filter that you want to share with other users, please notify us. We can provide a download from this page, or a link to your own page.

Mark Schenk’s HTML export filters

Mark Schenk’s HTML export filters provide HTML listings of your reference list. The exported HTML comes complete with scripts for quick filtering of the list.

Note: some of Mark Schenk’s filters are distributed with JabRef as standard export filters.

Download Mark Schenk’s HTML export filters

Daniel Haertle’s HTML export filter

Daniel Haertle’s HTML export filter provides an HTML listing of your reference list. The output looks like this.

Download Daniel Haertle’s HTML export filter

Truong X. Nghiem’s HTML export filter

Truong X. Nghiem’s HTML export filter provides an HTML listing of your reference list that does not contain a header nor a body. Its purpose is to be included in other HTML files or in text-to-html source files (e.g. Jemdoc). The output looks like this.

Download Truong X. Nghiem’s HTML export filter

Marten Kooiker’s RTF export filters

Marten Kooiker has put together a number of export filters outputting RTF references formatted for specific journals.

Download Marten Kooiker’s RTF export filters (v1.0a)

Edward Elgar export filters

Christian Bartolomaeus has made an export filter matching the author guidelines of Edward Elgar. The export filter requires definition of two name formatters - please read the included README file.

Download Edward Elgar export filters

International Journal of Greenhouse Gas (IJoGGC) export filter

This filter is a modified version of Edwared Elgar’s export filters. It formats the exported .rtf file into the format required by lots of Elsevier Journals. You just have to follow the next few steps:

Download the International Journal of Greenhouse Gas (IJoGGC) export filter

APA export filter

Russell Almond’s APA export filter provides an export filter that is close to the American Pychological Association (APA) guidelines. It exports the references in Rich Text Format (rtf).

Download Russell Almond’s APA export filter

CSV export filter with Mendeley tags

Cynthia D’Angelo’s CSV export filter with Mendeley tags provides an export filter that allows for exporting Mendely tags. It exports the refencence in csv format (i.e. spreadsheet- compatible).

Dowload Cynthia D’Angelo’s CSV export filter with Mendeley tags

JabRef journal abbreviation lists

JabRef can help you refactor your reference list by automatically abbreviating or unabbreviating journal names, as explained in the dedicated help file.

While JabRef comes with a build-in list of journals, additional lists are available:


Until version 2.11 JabRef offered a plugin framework. Support for that has been removed. See issue #152 for the current status of integration of the plugins into JabRef.

Entry fetchers

Until version 2.11 JabRef offered a plugin framework. Support for that has been removed. See issue #152 for the current status of integration of the plugins into JabRef.


Please head over to our contributing FAQ.