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Reference managers are easy-to-use tools that can help you collect, organize, cite, and share research sources. This guide will explain how to install Zotero and Mendeley.

Managing your PDF files

Manage your PDF files with Zotfile. 

Installation and configuration options instructions are found at

Zotfile will:

  • Automatically rename a file during downloading to contain author, date, and title information or any custom naming convention you define using available metadata.

    • e.g. instead of a file name EBSCOhost.pdf, your file will be named Ottman_Books_1998_Green marketing.pdf

  • (Firefox only) Automatically move, and attach PDFs (or other files) to Zotero items when doing a download

    • When downloading a PDF file, Zotfile will add the option to "Save to Zotero."  You will be able to select if you want the filename renamed from metadata during download. 

    • PDF will be saved to your currently selected Zotero folder

    • If the filename is not changed this is usually because Zotero could not access the metadata.  However, you can manually change this filename or the filename of any PDF directly in Zotero

      • Right click on the PDF in Zotero and select "Rename file from parent metadata."

  • Sync PDFs from your Zotero library to your (mobile) PDF readerInstructions at

  • Extract annotations from PDF files and add them to Zotero. Instructions at


Zotero on a mobile device

Accessing from your tablet or mobile phone  allows you to edit your Zotero library.  To save items you will need to install the Zotero Bookmarklet on your device.  This will allow items to be saved directly to your account.


There are also third party apps for using Zotero on mobile devices.


Other Zotero Plugins

Depending on your needs other Zotero plugins might be helpful.