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EndNote Official Guide: For Users

An offical EndNote LibGuide by Clarivate Analytics

User Resources

Thank you for using EndNote!

You can use EndNote to organize all of your reference materials, keep notes about materials, and even copies of the original articles. EndNote can do so much that it can appear overwhelming at first, but we have resources to help you get started.

Here you can find a list of general resources.  For resources specific to EndNote X8 or EndNote X7, please see the pages dedicated to those versions.

Tips for Getting Started with EndNote

  • Watch our short course videos for using EndNote on Windows or Mac to learn the basics in less than a half-hour.
  • Although you can create as many EndNote libraries as you want, you can only sync and share one of them. It is best to use only one library if you want all your references available on all your computers, online, and on your iPhone or iPad, then use groups to organize the library into categories.
  • If there are references you do not want to share, perhaps because of confidentiality issues, you can create a second library for these and organize them by groups, as well. However, you will not be able to sync or share this second library.
  • Storing EndNote libraries in cloud-syncing folders such as OneDrive, Box, iCloud, etc., or keeping read-write EndNote libraries on network drives or flash drives, can all corrupt EndNote libraries. However, it is possible to put an EndNote library on a portable hard drive (NOT a flash drive!) and use it with multiple computers.
  • Use the File>Compressed Library command to make backups of your libraries.

The Care and Feeding of Healthy EndNote Libraries

MacOS Sierra, High Sierra, Mojave, and Catalina Users

MacOS versions 10.12 (Sierra), 10.13 (High Sierra), 10.14 (Mojave), and 10.15 (Catalina) contain features to save the contents of the Documents folder in iCloud and to "optimize" storage by storing less-used files only in iCloud online. EndNote libraries stored in iCloud, even when stored on both the hard drive and online, are subject to corruption over time. If you choose to store your documents in iCloud, we suggest creating a separate folder in your home folder and saving your EndNote libraries there.  Do not store EndNote libraries in iCloud or any other cloud-syncing folder, and do not store EndNote libraries in the Documents folder if you have selected the option to store documents in iCloud.

You can find more information on these features on the Apple support site at these locations.


General Safety Notes

  • EndNote libraries are made up of two parts: the .enl file and the .Data folder. These two parts must be kept together; both are needed for the library to work correctly.

  • Keep EndNote libraries on your computer's local hard drive. Storing and editing libraries on a network drive can lead to corruption and performance issues.

  • EndNote libraries should never be stored in cloud-syncing folders such as Dropbox, OneDrive, Box, SugarSync, etc. Syncing folders corrupt EndNote libraries over time.

  • Uninstall your previous version of EndNote before installing a new version.

  • Synchronize references in EndNote libraries between desktop and laptop computers, the online library, and an iPhone or iPad using EndNote Sync.

  • Complete EndNote libraries can be shared with other EndNote X8 or X9 users through EndNote Sync and Library Sharing.

The EndNoteTraining YouTube Channel

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